Perhaps the best, and certainly the most satisfying, way to learn about a culture is by tasting the local cuisine. With each nibble or sip, with each aroma, the traveller comes in direct contact with centuries of changing influences: terrain, climate, history and migrations, all factors which make up a country's gastronomic heritage.
In Europe, there are a mind-boggling number of culinary creations to try. An unending variety to be experienced, by buying spices at an open-air market, savouring a hearty stew at a family-run restaurant, delighting in the most elaborate regional specialties and, of course, tasting the local wine.
Whether it's fresh vegetables, superb sausages, hearty breads, smooth wines, delectable pastries, healthy soups, artisan cheeses, tasty sauces, free-range meats or any other culinary delight, a taste of the Old World is the traveller's key to discovering the Essence of Europe.