In our new Globe Trotter series, Viral Travel reviews all the best places to see, eat, and stay at, in every country of the world!
This week we visit: Estonia
Throughout the centuries, Estonian cuisine has been strongly influenced by neighboring countries, and now includes many foods that have originated in Germany, Scandinavia and Russia.
The majority of traditional Estonian dishes are based on meat and potatoes, as well as on fish in coastal areas, and the most popular foods in the country are rye bread, pork, potatoes and dairy products. Having all of this in mind, it doesn’t come as a surprise that Estonia belongs to the beer, vodka, rye bread and pork belt of Europe.
A typical meal in Estonia starts with cold dishes, a wide variety of meats and sausages served with potato salad or rosolje, a dish that consists of beetroot, potatoes and herring. The Estonian cold table also usually features herring, eel, crayfish dishes, and imported crabs and shrimps.
Black rye bread is eaten with almost every food in the country, and instead of saying ‘‘bon appetit’’, locals will tell you jätku leiba (“may your bread last”).
The Baltic country boasts delicious desserts, some of the best known being kissel, curd snack and kama. Other common Estonian desserts include mannavaht (a cream made of semoline and juice or fruit), kohupiimakreem (creamy curd) or kompott.
When it comes to drinks, one of the most popular traditional beverages is called kali, though the majority of people opt for locally brewed beer to accompany food. Locals also love wine, but it is nowhere near as popular as beer. Estonians also take great pride in their vodka and other spirits, cush as the herbal liquer Vana Tallinn.