There are more than 1,000 places where one can eat and drink out in Malta. The majority are modest, but there are also some fine restaurants that serve ethnic, continental and fad cuisine.
More and more people who travel on holiday don’t want just sun and sea, but like to experience the local culture. One way to find out more about wine and local food specialities is to follow a wine route or visit a few wineries. In many of the established wine producing countries it is easy to join a tour or follow a wine route to find out about the locally produced wines and perhaps try some of the wines. What about Malta? Are there any organised wine tasting tours? Or is there a wine route?
Some of the large tour operators organise wine tasting tours for their guests, so if you are travelling to Malta on a package holiday you may be lucky to be able to sign up for a wine tasting trip as an excursion. If you are travelling independently alone or in a small group, visits need to be arranged by appointment with the wineries.
Distinctly Maltese cuisine is hard to find but does exist. The food eaten draws its influences from Italian cuisine. Most restaurants in resort areas like Sliema cater largely to British tourists, offering pub grub like meat and three veg or bangers and mash, and you have to go a little out of the way to find ‘real’ Maltese food. One of the island’s specialities is rabbit (fenek), and small savoury pastries known as pastizzi are also ubiquitous.
A typical soft drink that originated in Malta is Kinnie, a non-alcoholic fizzy drink made from bitter oranges and slightly reminiscent of Martini. The local beer is called Cisk (pronounced “Chisk”) and, for a premium lager (4.2% by volume), it is very reasonably priced by UK standards. It has a uniquely sweeter taste than most European lagers and is well worth trying.