If you wish to experience how a nation really lives, you should go to the market place, the very stomach of the city, and smell, touch and taste the food which people consume every day.
Even the finest chefs who visit Dubrovnik and prepare international dishes in some of the city restaurants cannot resist the taste of courgettes from Župa Dubrovačka, cabbage from Konavle and aubergines and tomatoes grown in the fertile and unpolluted surroundings of Dubrovnik.
The gastronomy of an area is based on the fruits which grow on ecologically- preserved land, as is still the case with that in the Dubrovnik environs. The delicacies of Dubrovnik are plain and without many spices. Prepared in a simple way, they are seasoned with plenty of olive oil, which accentuates the juicy taste of natural foods. The gastronomic choice on offer at the Dubrovnik restaurants is heterogeneous, varied and in compliance with the guests wishes. Those visiting local taverns wish to taste authentic national food, good smoked ham, cheese kept in oil, octopus salad, zelena menestra (smoked meat and cabbage stew), sporchi macaroni, fried sprats and grilled sardines. Visitors to top class restaurants, on the other hand, are served the freshest fish from Adriatic depths, shellfish from the unpolluted sea and other delicacies prepared to meet the requests of the choosiest gourmands. Restaurants also serve the popular sushi, which has become an integral part of western cuisine. In the attractive ambience of the Dubrovnik restaurants one can also enjoy
French cuisine and excellent steaks which would do credit to the finest Argentinian restaurants. In compliance with the wishes and adventurous way of life of younger visitors, fast food restaurants, pizzerias and small restaurants serve simple Dalmatian food and dishes of other cuisines.
Wine was highly valued in the Dubrovnik Republic, when dessert wines were sold on prescription as medicine. The tradition of growing grapes and wine production goes back to the time of the Dubrovnik Republic. A provision from 1424 determined the prices of particular wine varieties, with the exception of Malvasia wine of Konavle the price of which was not limited.
The best-known wines of the Dubrovnik region include red wines of the Pelješac Peninsula, the Plavac Mali variety, white wines - Pošiš from the Island of Korčula, the aforementioned Malvasia called nectar of gods, and the wines of the Konavle area with the characteristic flavour of the south.