Romania is famous for its delicious, hearty soups. Meatball soup (ciorba de perisoare) and a vegetable soup with the option of added meat (ciorba taraneasca) are very popular. There’s also tocanita, a filling meat stew flavoured with onion and spices and ghiveci, cooked with over twenty vegetables. You could also try sarmale, a Romanian speciality of sauerkraut rolls, filled with minced meats and rice and seasoned with spices. Tuica, or plum brandy, is usually served with appetizers.
Besides the soups mentioned, Romanian cuisine specialities are rice balls with sour cream on the side, giblet soup and various fish soups. Parjoale are spicy, Moldavian meat patties and mamaliga or cornmeal mush is a staple food. If you’re a seafood enthusiast, try the Nisetru la gratar, grilled Black Sea sturgeon. Round off your meal with a bite of Pasca, the traditional Easter cake.
Wine lovers will be pleased! Romania offers a good variety of wines; from the vineyards of Murfatlar, there’s Riesling, Pinot Noir, Pinot Gris, Chardonnay and Cabernet Sauvignon. You can also try Grasa and Feteasa, both from the Cotnari vineyards (Moldavia). Also available are sparkling wines and Glühwein (mulled wine). Besides Tuicã, there’s also Tuicã de Bihor, a potent brandy that’s also known as palinca.
Legal drinking age: The legal age for consuming alcohol is 18.