Some call it the Venice Syndrome: attractive places under perpetual hordes of mass tourism.
The more the tourists in a place (because of art, attraction, location, activities) the wider the food offer: plenty of places and a generous choice among different cuisines. Bars/restaurants are not that expensive (but beware quality!); despite this, Michelin stars are also where you would have not expected ’till a short time (we’ll talk about this, I’d have some to say).
NY and London have an astoninshing plus in their multicultural offer (you can find absolute gems in authentic setting and execution), Paris keeps indulging in its haute cuisine, Milan exhibits an international inclination (but it’s still strongly rooted in italian tradition). Rome is Rome: carbonara, amatriciana, pajata, suppli’, carciofi fritti… Tourists expect paella in Barcelona, a spritz and baccala’ mantecato in Venice, bratwurst and brezeln in Munich, wienerschnitzel and knodel in Salzburg, a pot of goulash while sipping a fantastic Czech (Prague), a heart warming irish breakfast in Dublin (one more Guinness, please)…
Unfortunately what happens too often is that what tourists get is a “poor tradition”: cooking properly takes time and can’t match the numbers this tourism is made of.
As you walk these places, every day tons of unsold food will be thrown away. This is something that need fixing: tourists need an authentic experience, locations live better as they work in a proper way. Lowering quality and holding fake-high pricing makes everybody poorer. In culture, experience, knowledge. A sheer waste.
A higher quality and less abundant offer could also help to manage issues such as food waste. Food cost, menus, the whole experience need a long term rethinking.
I love to eat in places out of pro/web critique or status. I love where you have mom’s stuff, as humble as generous. Traditional food keeps doing well as you’re out of tourism routes. Let’s keep exploring.