Updated: Dec 13, 2019
Highlights and pictures from my trip to Romania as the first official Arts Envoy IPR delegate appointed by the U.S. Department of State Cultural Affairs Division and Office of Intellectual Property Enforcement.
Romania was full of delicious food. From traditional dishes to modern tastings, I was delighted at every meal time. Here are some of my favorites:
These dishes were my first meal in Romania at the Corso Brasserie in the InterContinental Hotel in Bucharest.
Having asked the Embassy driver about traditional foods, I had heard of Sarmale before, but the sweet dessert cake Amandina was new.
Both these dishes, and the lovely head waiter made a wonderful introduction to Romanian food.
My companion had the lamb chops.
Another favorite meal was at Hermania in Sibiu.
This restaurant is cosy, scenic, and historic, and when you read the menu, you'll see that it is a very special place for musicians in particular, having served for over 100 years as rehearsal and concert hall for the Philharmonic Sibiu.
The first evening at Hermania, I ordered the Cornflake encrusted Trout, and had a little nip of the traditional plum brandy. (In Tennessee, we call this moonshine.)
My companion had a lovely steak and potatoes meal the following day for lunch, and my colleague ordered the more traditional goulash served in a bread bowl.
Not only was the food and story at Hermania incredible, the decor was homey and inviting.
I also had a nice salad at Hermania for lunch the next day, which somehow I neglected to photograph.
The veggies were fresh, and crisp, organic from the local providers in Transylvania.
There are still a lot of farmers in Romania, and like in Tennessee, there is a certain pride that comes from self sufficiency that cannot be matched, nor explained to those who don't know.
I look forward to returning to Hermania when we return to Sibiu.
Another amazing thing about Romania are the Christmas markets in every town we visited.
Food is a big part of these markets, none more obvious than the gorgeous displays at the Christmas market in Cluj Napoca.
It's hard for me to believe, but I did not have any of this delicious looking chocolate fudge during my trip.
At the Christmas market in Cluj, I did enjoy a traditional bread snack from this stand serving loaves and buns.
My friends were trying to get me to try a sweet bun, but my East Tennessee heart wanted to try the corn bread.
It was a little bit saltier than what we have in Tennessee, and it was covered with cheese and some kind of herbs.
But it was really good, and different. Maybe next time I'll try a sweet bun.
Also in Cluj Napoca, we ate at a couple of really tasty restaurants.
The first evening there we ate at a highly recommended place called Maimuta Plangatoare or "Crying Monkey."
I had the saffron chicken dish, and my companion had this tenderloin dinner.
And the second night in Cluj, we ate at the Double Tree Hilton hotel restaurant.
My meal was this delicious seafood fettuccini.
Well, now that I've made myself hungry, I'll close this blog with a little teaser of the next post.
I mentioned how many Christmas Markets were in Romania, and how each city we visited had a different take on this European tradition.
The ones in Bucharest had furs thrown over the benches so that patrons could keep warm while enjoying their cafea or snack.
My next post will be about the Christmas Markets around Romania.
Arts Envoy Intellectual Property Rights program is a cultural exchange pilot I'm helping to launch with the U.S. Department of State Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs and Office of Intellectual Property Enforcement.
See more information about this program on their official website here.
See more highlights from the trip, and my award winning concert A Story of Love through Music and Poetry at the next show Dec 29, 2018 in Nashville:
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