Where Chefs Go On Vacation

4 famous chefs reveal their favorite destinations in the world and what they eat when they visit

Celebrity chefs: just like us! They travel long distances for good meals and often plan vacations around food.

But where do they go when they want to swap time in the kitchen for a gastronomically fueled getaway? Here, four famous chefs dish on their favorite culinary destinations around the world.

Jordi Lippe-McGraw is a freelance writer covering travel, food and wellness, and is also an avid truffle lover. Follow her on Instagram at @welltraveler.

Ina Garten

Not skipping a beat, the Barefoot Contessa says, "Paris. My idea of heaven is going to the Sunday market, picking up whatever's in season, picking up a bottle of wine, bringing it all back to my apartment and cooking it." Garten says she changes her home cooking style a bit whenever she's in the City of Light. "What I tend to do at home is pick an ingredient and cook with it. Whereas in France, I'll pick a dish, and then go to the market to get the ingredients I think belong in it."

Photo: Moyan Brenn via Flickr

Mario Batali

The Seattle-born chef also loves Paris. "There's an infinite variety of things there," he tells Tasting Table at the EAT (RED) Food & Film Fest in New York City. "I love the simple Miznon restaurant, where you get this roasted head of cauliflower with African spices, and the fancier Epicure, which is a three-Michelin-star meal that knocks them all away."

Unsurprisingly, Batali also raves about Rome, adding that he loves grabbing a good focaccia from the market. "I was recently inspired by something I ate there called trapizzino," he says. "It's a stuffed focaccia filled with braised nuts or tripe. Delicious!"

From The New Paris by Lindsey Tramuta, photographs by Charissa Fay. Published by Abrams c 2017.

Jean-Georges Vongerichten

The Michelin-starred chef is famous for his inventive fusion cuisine, which he credits to his travels. "My food is always inspired by the destinations I visit," he says. "I love Japan the most, because it's a very precise craft. They have small restaurants and focus on perfecting one dish."  

One of his favorites when he visits the archipelago island nation? Sushi Matsue in Tokyo. "They have standing bars only where you eat sushi. The freshness, the rice and the fish is spectacular."

Photo: Maxime Guilbot via Flickr

Michael Symon

It's all about Italy for the cohost on ABC's The Chew; he favors Sicily and Puglia. "I love to go to the market in Marsala," he says, referencing the coastal town in western Sicily. "Watching the fishermen walk in line-caught swordfish in the morning is unreal, and seeing all the produce, capers and native sausages is truly inspiring."

Photo: Gina Pricope/Getty Images