Tickets (Barcelona, Spain) – Fun, Innovative Tapas & Worth The Hype

[Translate] Tickets: Entrance; Busy rush at the door; Menu & tweezers I admit I was one of those people who was completely taken by Anthony Bourdain’s No Reservations episode when he and José Andrés dined at Tickets. The restaurant doesn’t look like it’s taking itself too seriously but serving seriously good food. Since I didn’t have the opportunity to go to the gorgeous beaches of Costa Brava and dine at the famous El Bulli prior to its closing on July 30, 2011, Tickets would be the next best thing especially dining with a few friends. As most of you might..

Alkimia, Barcelona, Spain (1* Michelin)

[Translate] At Alkimia’s foyer: Sign; Modern lamp; Looking at the dining area One of our upscale lunches was at Alkimia. Alkimia is walking distance from Gaudi’s awe inspiring masterpiece, La Sagrada Familia, which we have visited prior to having lunch here. Alkimia is a modern and sleek restaurant that almost like a fancy art gallery staging for the beautiful food that will be presented. This is a 1* Michelin restaurant led by Chef Jordi Vilà whose modern Catalan cooking that looks minimalist but it tastes so much more than meets the eyes. Spiced crisp topped with macadamia nuts; glass of..

Loews Philadelphia Hotel – A Historical Landmark & Luxurious Hotel

[Translate] At the lobby of Loews Philadelphia Hotel Loews Philadelphia Hotel is a national historical landmark (earned its status in 1979), as it was the first International style skyscraper built in the United States. This building was formerly the Philadelphia Saving Fund Society Building, or PSFS Building, the nation’s first savings bank. The bank commissioned the construction of a 36-story, 491-foot skyscraper that would provide for the banking and office activities of the Society, designed by architects William Lescaze and George Howe. The bank eventually failed and was bought by developers to turn into a Loews Hotel. Conversion into a..

Afternoon Tea at St. Regis New York: Astor Court

[Translate] Interior of Astor Court and its lounge; our full spread of afternoon tea Afternoon Tea at the St. Regis New York Hotel, an historic Manhattan landmark at 55th and 5th Avenue, serves as the perfect oasis from the frenzy of New York City to the calm of a centuries-old British tradition – for Mother’s Day. As my mother and I sat in the luxurious Petit Salon sipping various blends of teas and enjoying an assortment of pastries and desserts, it seemed like the chaos of the city just outside the hotel’s doors was hundreds of miles away. In fact,..

Four Seasons’ Taste Cocktail Party

[Translate] A few nights ago, I had the honor to be invited to Four Seasons‘ cocktail party launching their newest website Taste. Taste is essentially their platform to engage and inspire food connoisseurs like us with the luxurious hotel chain’s chefs and sommeliers’ of their recipes and inspirations. If you take a look at my photos and read the descriptions of what’s been served to us, the menu’s muse is the apple but applied in different mediums like duck, venison, and pork. All were executed well but my favorites are highlighted on this post. (more…)

Breakfast and Spa at Fiesta Americana Grand Resort and Dinner at Sheraton Hacienda del Mar Resort, Los Cabos, Mexico

[Translate] Sleeping by the beach at the Governors Suite, Preparing for breakfast on the beach, and Cabana with a view of the hotel Fiesta Americana Grand Los Cabos Golf & Spa Resort has been recognized with the AAA 4 Diamond Award for 2012. This is one of the few exclusive, luxurious properties in Los Cabos. There is comfort and elegance its 249 rooms and suites that this property offers and the breathtaking views from the many pools and beaches that goes out to the Sea of Cortés. On our agenda for that particular morning at Fiesta Americana Grand, we had..

Camel Back Riding and Real Mexican Food at Los Cabos, Mexico

[Translate] Trucks the droves us to Rancho San Cristobal and a view of the ranch The most interesting part of the trip beyond the picturesque beaches of Los Cabos, Mexico was camel back riding with Cabo Adventures. This particular activity is part of this company’s Outback and Camel Safari where we travel in one large group from various hotels around the area and eventually divided up into small groups (about 12 people) to Rancho San Cristobal, about a 20-minute drive from their home base at the marina. (more…)

Seasonal Tasting Menu Dinner at Manresa, Los Gatos, CA for My Dad’s Birthday

[Translate] Outside of Manresa I have heard about Manresa and its Chef-Proprietor David Kinch for the past several years from the food media and it’s been placed on my list of restaurants I must eat since then. (Within the past 6 months, Manresa was earned a 2* Michelin rating and a spot within The World’s 50 Best Restaurants.) With the timing of my then graduation from my Master’s program and my dad’s birthday, it’s just one of those very good reasons not to pass up this opportunity to celebrate and dine at Manresa. (I wrote back on my post this..

Love Apple Farms, Santa Cruz, CA – Lovely Farm on the Mountains

[Translate] Love Apple Farms’ sign, the nursery, seen from the farm’s offices, the garden, Love Apple Farms’ Co-owner, Cynthia Sandberg (in blue shirt) and Garden Manager, Sarah When my family and I planned to dine at the 2* Michelin Manresa (my post on that meal soon) earlier this June, I insisted that we must book a tour of the farm that grows the beautiful produce for this restaurant and that is Love Apple Farms, about a 15-20 minute drive from Manresa or about 1 hour and 15-40 minutes from the center of San Francisco. (more…)