People April 1, 2016 | 12:10 pm

Dominican Republic’s world-class gastronomy encourages fisitors to explore beyond the buffet

Dominican Republic.– Popularly known forpicture-perfect beaches and all-inclusive vacations, Dominican Republic invitestravelers to experience authentic tastes and haute cuisine beyond the resortbuffet. Recognized as one of the most gastronomically diverse and exquisitedestinations in The Caribbean, the country boasts a variety of culinaryattractions, ranging from fresh-caught seafood and classes in traditional mealpreparation to five-star restaurants and imaginative high dining.

"There are innumerate opportunities here for visitorsto taste authentic traditional Dominican cooking and also have the chance toexperience high cuisine created by internationally award-winning chefs,"said Magaly Toribio, Marketing Advisor for the Dominican Republic Ministryof Tourism. "Whether looking to sample the traditional or modern, touristsin Dominican Republic need not look far to find it."

Dominican Republic is famous for its production oftasty treats. In fact, many of the country’s exports are food products,including some of the world’s finest cocoa, coffee, sugar, ginger, mangos andrum. Whether through traditional Dominican cuisine, an award-winning restaurantor an immersive cultural excursion, guests looking for true foodie experienceswill certainly not be disappointed.

Try Traditional Dominican Cuisine

Startyour day off with a traditional breakfast of eggs, fried salami, mangú (mashedgreen plantains) and queso frito (fried cheese). Guestsserious about trying local food won’t want to miss a portion of labandera, DR’s most famous dish. Translated as "the flag," thistraditional lunch consists of white rice, stewed beans and chicken orbeef. For those keen on fresh seafood, many local fishermen resting onbeaches throughout the country are happy to share their catch of the day andcook it for travelers on-site. Depending on time of day, traditional meals areaccompanied by a creamy cup of coffee, a variety of fresh-squeezed juices or anice-cold beer.

Indulge in Fine Dining

DominicanRepublic offers a variety of fine dining restaurants boasting imaginativetakes on cuisine. Santo Domingo is a must-visit for experimentaleating – the capital has more restaurants than any other city in The Caribbean,where visitors can find cuisines from all over the world. High-end eats stretchfar beyond the capital to other popular destinations including La Romana, PuertoPlata, Punta Cana and Samaná, where tourists can find AAA 4-Diamondrestaurants and dishes prepared by James Beard-winning chefs.

Experience Where Food Begins

Someof The Caribbean’s most fertile soil is found in Dominican Republic,making it ideal for fine coffee, cocoa, tobacco, sugar, ginger and other Caribbean staples.Visitors can immerse themselves by following specific production routes throughthe lush greenery of Dominican fields, led by knowledgeable guides offeringproduct samples along the way. Guests can learn about traditional techniquesfor threshing and grinding coffee beans in typical rural houses, enjoy lunchesprepared in local homes, take cooking classes, and much more.

Dominican Republic’s dining scene is the perfectcomplement to any type of vacation – whether a luxe getaway or escape to aneco-lodge.

For more information on food and gastronomy in DR, visit the hashtag #DominicanEats for a first-hand look at Dominican dishes.

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