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Farine Bakery – A Piece of France in Shanghai, China

Farine Bakery – Exterior and Interiors Farine Bakery is an upscale French bakery owned by French chef Franck Pecol in the Xuhui District of Shanghai. This bakery is a godsend for any Western expat in Shanghai who craves excellently made artisan bread and pastries. The staff could crank out solid cups of espresso-based drinks, especially for this New Yorker spoiled by the Third Wave movement. All of their dairy and flour is organic and imported from France. The light and open space features a glass counter down one side, a small coffee bar and a handful of bar stools for..

Temple Restaurant Beijing (TRB), China

Entrance to TRB; View on my right from where I sat; Our amuse bouches Very recently, my family and I went to China, specifically the cities of Shanghai, Xi’an, and Beijing, for two weeks to see (and taste) the sights of those three cities. Our eyes were opened by the varying locals who reside there. The way they dress and carry themselves. The feel and look of each city is so distinctive even though they are about a two-hour flight away from each other. We have walked (sometimes hiked) a lot, seen a lot, and without a doubt, ate a..

Finger Lakes – Beautiful Region, Great People, and Good Food

This past weekend, I was generously invited and flown up (a very short flight clocking under 1 hour) to the Finger Lakes region by the Finger Lakes Visitors Connection and see and taste the area for three days. When I first thought of the said region, I thought it would be essentially very good local wine, lots of farms, and nature set in a cluster of sleepy, small towns. But meeting and talking to the locals it is a dynamic, thriving region that still has its “small town” charm and hospitality and have big plans to evolve to something better...

First Day at St. Thomas, US Virgin Islands – Mountain Top, Dinner at Fat Turtle, Night Kayaking at Adventure Center

View of various islands and a part of town at Charlotte Amalie, St. Thomas Last week the US Virgin Island Department of Tourism took me along for the fun, whirlwind press trip to visit two of its three islands — St. Thomas and St. John — with seven other digital storytellers. For both of these islands, you can’t help but be enchanted by the breathtaking views of the coastlines, the crystal sapphire blue skies, and the swirling or puffy white clouds. The things I’ve come to realize, from a native New Yorker’s perspective, is that everyone runs on island time...

Amazing Day Trip to the Hudson Valley with Buick (Part 2) – Dinner at Fish & Game

  Entrance to Fish & Game; Interiors on the lounge/ground floor Despite the fact we’re buzzed thanks to the wonderful whiskeys and bourbon from Hillrock Estate Distillery and the cheeses served with them, we headed back to our respective Buick and driver to dinner about 30 minutes away to Fish & Game. Fish & Game is owned by chef Zakary Pelaccio. He used to be in New York City proper for over a decade and had a mini Asian-influenced empire of restaurants, Fatty Crab and Fatty Cue that were very good (especially the watermelon and pork belly salad) but he..

Amazing Day Trip to the Hudson Valley with Buick (Part 1) – Montgomery Place Orchards & Hillrock Estate Distillery

Yesterday was arguably the most fantastic day trip I have been in a long time. The perfect summer day when it’s not so humid and hot, mixed with a gentle breeze, and puffy, friendly white clouds in the blue sky. Heading up to the historic and very charming Hudson Valley that’s about 2 hours from Manhattan in a shiny black Buick LaCrosse with our driver of the day, Eddie. Many thanks to the generous people of Buick/Drive the District and our hosts of the day, Montgomery Place Orchards, Hillrock Distillery, and dinner at Fish & Game. The dinner will be..

The Clove Club (London, UK)

Of all my snacking and meals I have had in London, The Clove Club is definitely one of my favorite meals that really stuck with me even months after eating there. The food is very different and exciting compared to the U.S. or New York City are having these days (see Adam Platt of New York Magazine’s interview.). The Clove Club is sort of out of the way for those who are residing on the west part of London but certainly worth the trek. When you enter the light blue doors of The Clove Club, the first thing you see..

Food Shopping at the Luxury Shops in London: Harrod’s, Fortnum & Mason, Pierre Hermé

Harrod’s Exterior One thing London is really great for (besides it’s burgeoning food scene) is their luxury shopping. It’s no secret that London has been doing the high-end shopping for centuries. Literally. A brief history about the legendary store: Harrod’s was founded by Charles Henry Harrod, first established his business in 1824, as a draper, at 228 Borough High Street in Southwark, London. By 1834 Harrod founds a wholesale grocery in Stepney, East London and by 1849, Harrods moveds to the current address in Knightsbridge area. In May 2010, the store was sold to Qatar Holdings, the sovereign wealth fund..

Dinner at Smokehouse (London, UK)

Exterior of Smokehouse; Interior and towards the kitchen Smokehouse located in the east side of London of Islington, is owned by Chef Neil Rankin that opened August 2013. I dined with the lovely, fellow Londoner Cassie as she suggested this place after informing her my crazy itinerary of eating. This gastropub is not the typical pub one would think of. It’s casual but prettily done and not overtly masculine. Candles indoors and fairy lights in the pretty garden, a few small antlers, blackboards boasting of many craft beers, and food menu. When you peruse the food menu, it’s eclectic but..