The first time I went to Israel in 1978, my culinary adventures involved mostly falafel, schnitzel, and hummus. There was a dude ranch in the Galilee—run by a guy from Chicago—which served legendary fried chicken. That was then. And this is now: endless arrays of superfresh salads at Dead Sea spa resorts, stellar seafood along the Mediterranean in Tel Aviv, gourmet Italian near the Old City in Jerusalem. As for tapas in Barcelona: Nobody does it better.