Food Reviews

Boulangerie Le Toledo (Montreal, Canada)

Interior Seating area toward the back Many loaves of delicious levain bread Breakfast pastries One of the newest boulangerie-type bakeries in Montreal is Boulangerie Le Toledo in the Plateau neighborhood nearly four months ago. This vast space has 14-feet ceilings and has this charming vintage look for its open seating area that has a children’s play area, a large communal table with bench seating and the back area where there’s an elegant lounge area with a marble coffee table. This bakery is led by head baker/chef Riccardo Arnoult and owner François Barriere. The coffee beans are from Structure Coffee Roasters,..

Pourquoi Pas Espresso Bar (Montreal, Canada)

Cappuccino, vegan raspberry financier and artwork for sale There are many great third-wave style coffee shops in Montreal. Unfortunately, I had time for only one during my visit here and that is at Pourquoi Pas Espresso Bar. If you translated this cafe’s name it is, why not? It is a cute name and it makes sense to call itself as that. Why not go to a personable coffee shop with baristas who wouldn’t mind suggesting to you about places in the city that you could eat or check out or just talk about coffee? Besides the people (which is a..

St Viateur Bagels (Montreal, Canada)

Exterior of Mont Royal location Interior Mug of coffee An open secret that you might know about me is that I prefer and adore Montreal-style bagels over New York-style. This might be blasphemous since I am a native New Yorker. I enjoy Montreal-style bagels because it’s smaller in diameter and thickness so it’s not as doughy and heavy like its New York cousin. Also it’s more crisp crust ratio since there’s less bread. (more…)

Dinner at Restaurant Hà (Montreal, Canada)

Dining room Fried tofu In the neighborhood of the Old Port where restaurants skew expensive (but good) French or the typical mediocre casual eateries that one would tend to find in a touristy area. However, there is a Southeast Asian inspired restaurant called Restaurant Hà on Avenue du Mont-Royal that may make your night if you order wisely. (more…)


Hotel Reviews

Fantastic Stay & Dining Options at JW Marriott Bangkok

When we stayed at JW Marriott Bangkok for a few nights, we were floored from the moment we were checking in. We were welcomed like a dignitary with the seriously gorgeous phuang mala, a Thai flower garland symbolizing for luck and respect, on a tray draped in gold silk cloth while I was going through the usual check-in process. My entire party gasped in utter surprise and completely humbled by the fact they gave us these garlands and walked us up with our luggage to our Executive one-bedroom suite. (more…)

Fine French Fare at Tables Grill at Grand Hyatt Erawan Bangkok

Dinner at Tables Grill at Grand Hyatt Erawan Bangkok was a very solid fine French dinner in the middle of Bangkok. Sure there are plenty of non-Thai restaurants in this city but many would be mediocre but Tables Grill, helmed by Michelin-starred chef Hans Zahner was something worth noting since he taken over as Chef de Cuisine as of fall 2018. We had the pescatarian five-course dinner tasting menu was overall tasted and felt like a solid 1* Michelin. The ingredients used in the restaurant feature locally sourced vegetables from the Royal Project in Chiang Mai. (more…)

Very Good Stay at Oriental Residence Bangkok

My friends and I made it to Bangkok and the first hotel we stayed in was at Oriental Residence Bangkok. This boutique hotel and residence is located in the very heart of downtown Bangkok, right next to the U.S. Embassy, the Oriental Residence brims with quiet, understated luxury for business and leisure travelers. The modern luxury at the Oriental Residence, a pleasant space to linger for a little. The spacious lobby, complete with chandelier is very quiet except on mornings where everyone is going in and out for breakfast at Cafe Claire or out and about to explore the city..

Afternoon Tea at Pan Pacific Singapore

Whenever I travel to a foreign country, particularly Asian, I hope the hotel that serves afternoon tea would adapt its menu to the country’s cuisine either creating and offering separate afternoon tea menus or have a one menu that is Western or English style tea but have certain local ingredients in a certain food item. Pan Pacific Singapore offers the both Peranakan and English style afternoon teas and both are very good. Pan Pacific Singapore serves its afternoon tea at the Atrium. The Atrium looks cool with the streamlined architectural details and the seating pods floating over a reflection pool...

Ann Siang House (Sinagpore)

While I was in Singapore, I stayed at the lovely Ann Siang House is close to the  Central Business District, a 10 and 15-minute walk away to the Tanjong Pagar and Chinatown metro stops, respectively. The heritage property keeps its public spaces lean and clean. The entrance opens into a reception desk that abuts a minimalist lobby lounge-meets-breakfast room. Outside breakfast hours, guests may help themselves to filtered water in glass bottles, tea as well as coffee from the Jura coffee machine. (more…)

Recent Recipes

Pear Coffee Cake

I love coffee cake, especially those with huge knobs of buttery crumb topping and have it with a cup of coffee. When I came across the pear coffee cake recipe from the famed restaurant team of Eleven Madison Park’s book, I Love New York: Ingredients and Recipes it struck me as an interesting variation of that cake since I never had it made with fruit. Since it is a fancy recipe with no calories spared, I thought of toning down the fat content ever so slightly by replacing the crème fraîche with Icelandic Provisions skyr. Skyr is a cultured product made..

Lamb Persillade Savory Hand Pies

When it comes to the holiday season and I’m entertaining my family and friends, it’s a constant feeding, baking/cooking frenzy that I have to get up at the early hours of the morning to prep for the day of the big dinner (Thanksgiving, Christmas, New Year’s, you name it). The best way to keep the crowds at bay and away from the kitchen is to provide them with snacks and a drink. While it’s easy to provide them with bowls of fresh roast nuts and platters of cheese and charcuterie, I like to give them something savory like these lamb..

Whole Wheat Pistachio Yogurt Cakes and Pistachio Crust, Pistachio-Orange, Balsamic Vinegar Tarts with California Figs

I go through food moods that I will obsess on a certain dish or ingredient for an intense period of time and seek them whenever I go out to eat. Figs was (and sort of is still) my ingredient obsession ever since I was having an incredible lunch at Joel Robouchon in Monte Carlo and saw and ate slices of the gorgeous, gold leafed fig tarts on the dessert cart and the best ones I’ve had were from the large, juicy, super ripe figs from Cours Saleya market in Nice. Figs hold a special place in my heart because of..


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