Food Reviews

Preview Opening of Boucherie Gramercy Park (NYC)

[Translate] Earlier last week, the French steakhouse bistro Boucherie opened a new location in Gramercy. If you ever stopped by their original location in the West Village, it’s a similar look and feel. The yellow, dim lights that reminds me of a romantic Parisian bistro but this place has a charcuterie counter right off the entrance of the new location. The cocktails were strong and the drinks are created by head bartender Anthony Bohlinger formerly of Maison Premiere. The Birds of Paradise, a tall drink made of Beefeater gin, Sotol, Bigallete thyme, fennel, beet, lemon and egg white that isn’t..

Solid Dinner at Flinders Lane (NYC)

[Translate] A few evenings ago, a friend and I had a solid dinner at Flinders Lane. This modern Australian restaurant draws a heavy influence on southeastern Asian cuisine, especially when reading through the tightly edited menu. The décor pays homage to the gritty history of Flinders Lane, a former rag-trade district in Melbourne, with concrete walls and floors, bare bulbs suspended from skinny metal cages and a mural of adjacent Hosier Lane in its neon-graffiti glory. (more…)

Comforting Bowls of Mixian – Weekend Lunch at Little Tong (NYC)

[Translate] The brutal cold winter in New York City makes many people yearn for a large steaming bowl of soup and noodles to warm themselves inside and out. While there are many options for that general food category, I was curious to eat at Little Tong with a few friends. Little Tong, run by chef Simone Tong, specializes on mixian rice noodles and overall this place is worth the hype. (more…)

Dinner at Char Sue (NYC)

[Translate] I’ve recently had a dinner with an old college friend of mine Char Sue since we haven’t seen each other for several months. Char Sue is the kind of place where you would want to hang out with a few friends and have a casual dinner. The Asian inspired food menu tends to be on the heavier side since it’s catering to the Lower East Side neighborhood where you’re primarily surrounded by bars and you would want to pad your stomach with something carby, fatty and preferably, delicious before you start imbibing. While we aren’t going for a night..

Solid Tapas Brunch at Lamano

[Translate] Over this weekend, a friend of mine and I made the treacherous trek out in the Arctic frozen city for brunch at Lamano. What I like about Lamano that it is tapas and you can eat small plates and since we both traveled to Barcelona a few years back, it brought moments of nostalgia. While the tapas served for brunch are classics, they were done very well. We started off with brunch focused cocktails of a Sherry Mary and a peach Bellini. Lamano’s unique take on the Bloody Mary was interesting. It replaced the tomato juice with beet juice..

Hotel Reviews

Mandarin Hotel Boston – Excellence & Luxury in the Back Bay

[Translate] During our holiday weekend getaway to Boston, we stayed at Mandarin Oriental located in the Back Bay neighborhood. This hotel is luxury at its best. When you enter the spacious lobby, which was designed with local granite and artwork, a traditional New England color scheme and the principles of feng shui. The lobby’s long, gas fireplace is a wonderful place to relax surrounded by fresh flower arrangements, tasteful Christmas decorations, and personable staff ready to create a quiet oasis within the busy city hotel. It’s situated in the heart of an equivalent to Manhattan’s 5th Avenue shopping area; near..

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…)

Recent Recipes

Chinese New Year Dinner 2014 – Traditional Dishes & Spice and Herb Salt Crust Duck

[Translate] Happy New Year! Good luck in the Year of the Horse! 恭喜發財! 馬年行大運! My family and I ended up serving a mix of traditions, so to speak, for our new year dinner. The dessert you see above, is a rich and delectable macadamia shortbread brownie. The buttery, delicately crisp shortbread just melds with the fudgy brownie perfectly that if I left my weight consciousness at the door, I would have eaten the entire batch by myself. Of course, we did make and ate the simple traditional sweet of nian gao (my recipe). Chewy and tasty, and symbolically give us..

Whole Tea Smoked Duck Recipe

[Translate] I recently received an incredible package of local, humanely raised duck products (whole duck with its head and feet intact and duck breasts) from Crescent Duck*, located in Long Island, NY. Crescent Duck Farm grows only premium Genuine Long Island ducklings. What is particularly great about Crescent Duck Farm is it’s a family owned farm since 1908. The birds are fed only natural grains without hormones or artificial growth stimulants. What I’m really excited is the fact I get to cook with the Chinese style whole duck since type of duck is pretty hard to come by that is..

Thanksgiving 2013 – Roasted Aioli Turkey, Braised Pork Belly, Tomahawk Steak, Cranberries, Scallion Biscuits & Many More

[Translate] The meats of the night: Roasted aioli turkey, Grilled Pat LaFrieda tomahawk ribeye steak, braised pork belly (东坡肉) Thanksgiving in my family always mean to go big or don’t bother trying to cook. I mean, it’s the holidays so there’s no need to heed to our waistlines and calories and just enjoy the food. My brother wanted a roasted turkey so I remembered reading from Thomas Keller’s mayonnaise turkey several years ago and thought this might be a good time to experiment this idea. I dry-brine the turkey first and made my own mayonnaise. It’s made with egg yolks,..