Malta ??

malta
#1

My wife and I are thinking about visiting Malta in April. Does anyone have any suggestions about where to eat or what to visit? One place that friends have recommended is Guzé in Valletta. Any other suggestions would be very welcome.

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(John Hartley) #2

It’s more years than I care to think about since my only trip to Malta. Must be getting on for 40, so absolutely no eating reccs. I do remember that rabbit often appears on menus and they did it well. There’s a strong Italian influence on the food - no surprise due to its location

It’s a very small island so easy to get about and see pretty much everything worth seeing in a few days. We had gone mainly as a beach holiday but managed the sights as well.

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#3

The local language is also a mix of Italian and Arabic. I speak Italian, and at one time I spoke some Arabic. So the logical conclusion is that in Malta I will communicate in English.

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(:@)) :@)) ) #4

It’s on the news here, every year or so, rankings of European countries and their proficiency in English. Scandinavians always take the top spots (which the Dutch don’t find amusing). Malta is not on this list because English is 1 of its official languages. Maltese also have highest English fluency.

You could communicate in Italian of course. Over 60% speak Italian. The Swiss I have met in my travels are amazing. They switch between languages with such ease. Speaking German, French, Italian, Spanish and English with high fluency like a piece of cake. (Although I don’t understand most of what they say in Swiss German :smiley: )

Unfortunately it’s been 20 years, things must have gotten better now in the food scene.

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#5

Well, of course I’ll speak English there. I was just connecting the Italian influence in the food to the Italian influence in the language.

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(John Hartley) #6

It’s that colonial legacy again.

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#7

At least some of us can profit from it.

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(John Hartley) #8

My sense is that the Scandis also speak it with less accent than the Cloggies.

By the by, Manchester United Football Club currently has a Norwegian manager. He used to play for United. His English is perfect and his accent, such as it is, is just like mine! Which, of course, means he has no accent.

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(Geoffrey) #9

Hi bcc. Trip Advisor would be a good search engine for food suggestions in Malta.

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#10

Thanks, but I’m afraid I don’t much trust tripadvisor. On the other hand, we visited Amsterdam a few years ago and I found 4 or 5 excellent suggestions on tripadvisor! So I guess I’ll take a look.

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(John Hartley) #11

Me neither. But sometimes it can provide the starting point - if for nothing else than throwing up some names to investigate further. It’s been a saviour when we’ve travelled in America. That said, if I look at the Top 20 for the city at the centre of metro area, there’s only three places I’ve even heard of - and of those, there’s only one that is “food worthy”.

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(Geoffrey) #12

Agree that it is a good starting point as it gives one a better idea of what is available in the neighborhood of where one is looking.

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#13

Not remotely food related, but I would hit ALL of the neolithic sites in Malta.

I love that stuff.

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#14

Thanks, we do too. But you say “all” of them. Last year in Sardinia there were lots of nuraghi, but the guided tour of Su Nuraxi di Barumini made it all make sense.

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#15

We are back from Malta. @Presunto the food was mostly very good. There were a few restaurants that were entirely forgetable, but most of the places we went to were very good. Our favorite was guzé (pronounced joo-ZAY), where we had excellent sea bass. Unfortunately, the portions are enormous. I could finish mine, My wife could not. 64 Gun may have an even better kitchen than guzé, but we had fewer courses when we were there for lunch. I had calamari fritti three times in the week we were there, and those at 64 Gun were the best by far. Unfortunately we had to wait a good fifty minutes to be served, and there were only three tables that were occupied.
Domus Corleone provided excellent, simple Pugliese cuisine. Not expensive and very enjoyable.
Palazzo Preca’s cuisine is basically at the same level as guzé’s, but the place is much more formal and, perhaps, a bit pretentious.
Legligin serves traditional Maltese cuisine, but prepared at a much higher level than in other places. They serve small plates, which enabled my wife to say “Stop” when she had had enough. They did not reduce the price, but they did give us complementary espressos.
Ambrosia was excellent. Capistrano and La Sfoglia were quite good.

What was interesting was that practically every restaurant we ate in had pork belly on the menu. Sometimes “crunchy,” sometimes “long-cooked.” We didn’t try it anywhere. We concentrated on fish.

@NotDoobieWah
The island of Malta has, apparently, 35 ancient temple sites. The island of Gozo has another ten. We visited three: Tarxien, Mnajdra, and Hagar Qim. Before visiting the temples, we spent a long time in the archaeological museum. What can I say about what we saw? It was fascinating. The Maltese temples are, I believe, the earliest human-made structures known. This would mean that they could not have been copied from elsewhere. The earliest of them are thought to originate from 4000 BC. They must have been built and improved and expanded over centuries. The engineering prowess they attained is remarkable. At Mnajdra they had holes in the stone to mark the solstices and the equinoxes. One of our guides recommended that we buy the book Malta, Prehistory and Temples ., so we did We’re reading it now.

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(:@)) :@)) ) #16

Thanks! The food part sounds good to me. I find the prevalence of pork belly interesting as it’s not a traditional meat. I remember fish being a big part of Maltese cuisine.

I still want to check out M’dina and Gozo someday.

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#17

We visited Mdina (pronounced im-dina), but didn’t make it to Gozo. If we were to return …

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(:@)) :@)) ) #18

From photos/videos Mdina looks nice and very “Mittelalterlich” (medieval). Is it worth a visit?

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#19

Well, yes. But the question is, how great is your interest in medieval buildings, and how great is your interest in the history of Malta. Our guides presented us lots of information on the history of Malta. At the time it bored me. But then I was able to put it all together, and I appreciated what I learned. Malta was never an interest of mine, but now I find it fascinating. So, to get back to Mdina. It has some nice gates and nice walls, but it wouldn’t be an architectural destination for me. But as far as history and culture are concerned, then yes.

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(:@)) :@)) ) #20

Thanks. I like a bit of both (medieval architecture and history).

I used to know a Maltese that’s how Malta became an interest of mine. Next time I want to do it better. Went there in my novice travelling days and didn’t know any better.

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