When you are tired of cooking and want to order in, resist the urge to call your standby spot. Restaurants all over the world are reimagining their takeout and delivery offerings and creating everything from a gourmet Netflix-binging kit to a Five-Star home meal. Take this opportunity to try something out of the ordinary and utterly delicious.
Forbes Travel Guide rounded up some of its favorite new culinary options, including a pop-up drive-in in Utah and a fine-dining Hong Kong restaurant popping up in your kitchen:
Enjoy A Gourmet Picnic
Practice your social distancing while getting some fresh air at West Kowloon Nursery Park with a picnic. The Ritz-Carlton, Hong Kong will provide complimentary picnic delivery, setup and clean-up, so you won’t have to lift a finger, except to pick up dainty tuna salad sandwiches, smoked salmon rillettes or an apple tart.
To make your park excursion even more memorable, add on caviar, champagne and even your own butler.
Buy Wine, Get A Sonoma Stay Free
You likely don’t need more of an incentive to drink wine, but MacArthur Place Hotel & Spa makes an irresistible proposition: order a case directly from its vineyard partners and you’ll receive a complimentary night at the Sonoma hotel. Since MacArthur Place supports local boutique wineries like Donum Estate with this special offer, the hope is that the 12 bottles will give you a taste for a future wine-tasting trip with a stay at the modern-farmhouse-chic hotel.
Pick Up A Netflix-Binging Kit
Upgrade movie night by picking up a ready-made kit at Nashville’s The Hermitage Hotel. The Netflix Binge Snack Kit packs a quart each of white truffle popcorn, sweet potato chips, housemade pork rinds and spiced pecans. The Matinee Snack Kit provides pint-sized portions.
To make it through the new season of Dead to Me, we recommend adding on Capitol Grille’s fun cookie-decorating kits (sugar cookies with four icing colors and two kinds of sprinkles) and either the coconut cake (coconut cream and vanilla sponge encased in cream cheese frosting) or, for a uniquely local treat, Goo Goo chocolate cream pie (chocolate crust topped with chocolate cream, whipped cream and invented-in-Nashville Goo Goo Clusters candy).
Have Fine-Dining Meals At Home
As restaurants were forced to pivot to accommodate quarantine conditions, fine-dining institutions adapted by offering takeout- and delivery-friendly meals. For the first time, foodies have the opportunity to try some of the world’s best cuisine without securing a reservation months in advance and from the comfort of home.
For those who couldn’t land a table at Les Amis, Singapore’s newest Five-Star restaurant, before the pandemic, you now can order chef Sebastien Lepinoy’s exquisite cold angel hair pasta with kombu, caviar and black truffle for takeout or delivery. The French restaurant is also operating as a high-end grocer, selling top-notch products ranging from artisanal butter handcrafted specially for Les Amis to decadent Kristal caviar.
Families will want to dig into Mandarin Oriental, Hong Kong’s hearty signature roasts, which serve four to five and are available for pickup or delivery. Choose from beef Wellington, U.S. ribeye, a pork rack, a New Zealand lamb leg or Ping Yuen chicken as well as sides like cauliflower gratin or creamed potatoes.
For a more local flavor, opt for Man Wah. The Mandarin Oriental, Hong Kong restaurant crafts authentic Cantonese fare, like barbecued Iberian pork loin sweetened with longan honey or braised chicken and abalone casserole with sun-dried shrimp and chilli.
Epicurean meals aren’t only for dinner. At boutique hotel The Pottinger, Hong Kong, you can pick up a gourmet three-course lunch with a salad, an entrée (like slow-cooked oxtail with red wine sauce, or linguine with seasonal vegetables and semi-dried cherry tomatoes) and some fresh fruit for dessert.
Let A Chef Cook For You At Home
If you feel takeout doesn’t fully capture a fine-dining meal, The Ritz-Carlton, Hong Kong will sate you with its Tosca di Angelo Experience at Home. Select one of Sicilian chef Angelo Agliano’s two seasonal menus and the restaurant’s team will prepare the five-course feast in your kitchen. And you won’t have to worry about serving yourself dishes like risotto with Hokkaido sea urchin and fresh wasabi or seared line-caught sea bass with artichoke, potatoes and mullet bottarga — a maitre d’ also will be on hand to ensure your service is seamless.
Visit A Pop-Up Drive-In
If you want to go out for a meal but still want to maintain safe social distancing, visit Sundance Mountain Resort’s reservations-required Sundance Car Café. When driving in, you’re directed to a space in the Utah hotel’s roped-off parking lot, and then a server brings a menu to the car that you can keep. Order from the menu — which is a compilation of Sundance’s three most popular restaurants, Foundry Grill, Tree Room and Sundance Deli — and the meal is brought to your vehicle.
Sit in the car or its hatch and savor a wagyu burger topped with aged cheddar spread and roasted garlic aioli on a sesame sourdough bun and dirty fries (topped with truffle aioli, egg, everything seasoning and green onion) while taking in the mountain backdrop.
Savor A Barbecue To Go
As threat of a meat shortage looms, The Ritz-Carlton, Vienna stocks everything you need for an at-home barbecue. Its Dstrikt — one of the best steakhouses in the city — has a barbecue takeaway menu with locally sourced raw cuts, like a tomahawk, dry-aged beef fillet and a T-bone, along with housemade sauces and sides. It even sells charcoal and different salts to make grilling effortless.
Shop A Farmers Market
The demand for groceries inspired Cape Cod’s Chatham Bars Inn to launch an online farmers market. It’s an extension of the inn’s Farm Stand, which debuted last year with fresh finds from its nearby 8-acre farm. Go online and snap up salad mixes, peppers and eggplant as well as inn-made banana bread, garlic confit focaccia and macarons. In addition, the Farm Stand carries flowers like dahlias and sunflowers and hanging baskets of cherry tomatoes, strawberries and geraniums.
While The Betsy — South Beach offers takeout and free delivery through its trattoria The Alley, the Miami hotel also converted to a farmers market featuring fresh, local goods. The groceries change weekly, but includes produce (like everglades tomatoes), pantry essentials (Miami-based JoJo Tea), proteins (local snapper) and other food (The Alley’s handmade pasta and The Betsy’s housemade gelato in flavors like lemon ricotta or cafecito).
Indulge In A Champagne Brunch
The Dolder Grand’s Mc Dolder Drive-In tempts us with takeout items like respected chef Heiko Nieder’s lobster meatballs with wasabi potato salad and basil (his favorite dish) and pastry chef Christian Hümbs’ Dolder torte (shortcrust pastry, a crunchy layer, champagne cream, marzipan and lots of chocolate). But come Saturday or Sunday morning, we know we’ll crave the Zurich hotel’s Dolder All-Star Brunch, a spread for two that includes bread and pastries, a selection of mezze, beef tartare, charcuterie, bubbly and much more.
Try A Different Cuisine
In Temecula, California, Pechanga Resort Casino’s Baja Express looks like a typical Mexican fast-food restaurant with carnitas plates, steak burritos and more, but it also serves one-of-a-kind Indian tacos. These tacos swap tortillas for doughy Indian fry bread (made by mixing flour, baking powder, salt and milk and then frying it in oil). Simply add the filling of your choice and top it with some cilantro.
Get Elevated To-Go Cocktails
Forget the run-of-the-mill cocktails you’re making at home and leave it to the experts at Mandarin Oriental, Singapore’s MO BAR. They have crafted bespoke bottled libations like the citrusy gin-based Elixir and the pandan-infused, whisky-laden Oriental that you can order to go or for delivery.
In Vancouver, Five-Star Fairmont Pacific Rim is known for boundary-pushing cocktails at Botanist. The hotel’s test kitchen keeps an evolving list of classics and favorites alongside new experimentations that you can re-create at home. Try the Sakura spritz (Absolut, cherry blossom and green tea cordial, sparkling water and lemon) or the Not Far From the Tree (rye whisky, orchard cordial and sparkling water), or mocktail versions of either. If you opt for the spiked kits, be aware that a food purchase is required. We would go with the pre-made chocolate chunk or double chocolate cookies — all you have to do is bake them in the oven at home.
Enjoy a beloved Italian digestif with the Aperol spritz sets from New York City restaurants Marea and Osteria Morini. Equipped with Aperol, prosecco, club soda and orange, the spritz party kits make eight neon-orange drinks.
Both restaurants also curate an array of three- or six-pack Italian wine sets. For refreshing summertime sippers, we suggest Osteria Morini’s Lambrusco Flight. The sparkling red trio includes a light, bright Sorbara; a dry, potent Salamino; and a robust, berry-laced Grasparossa.