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Valentine’s Day Pastries from Ladurée

[Translate] This year for Valentine’s Day, Ladurée has a couple of options for the luxe French pastry admirer in your life. L’Amarante ($25), is a small heart-shaped cake made of light, soft almond biscuit that’s intensely flavored with Morello cherries. It’s cloud-like from the Morello cherry “blanc manger” mousse and cake, and the tart-sweet cherry flavor just sings at every bite from the cherry jam. It’s a great alternative to all the chocolates one would receive for Valentine’s. For something cute, the “I Love You” macaron box ($25) is more than just a pretty pastel blue and pink box printed..

Maison Kayser February 2016 Preview

[Translate] February is a busy time of the year. We have Lunar New Year (for us Asians who celebrate it), Valentine’s Day, and the assortment of food holidays like World Nutella Day (February 5th) and Pistachio Day (February 26th). Maison Kayser is helping out our busy lives by creating some beautiful and/or adorable pastries to bring to friends, family, and significant others. Maison Kayser’s Bread of the Month is candied ginger and dark chocolate viennois ($4.95 each), a soft, fluffy-crumbed bread that is not too sweet and has a good ratio of dark chocolate chunks and medium sized chunks of..
Dinner at Chambar (Vancouver, B.C., Canada)

Dinner at Chambar (Vancouver, B.C., Canada)

[Translate] Chambar a huge, gorgeous, casual fine dining restaurant in Vancouver. The dining area has the brick walls, wooden beams and vaulted ceilings, and wood and black leather tufted banquettes, strong and masculine, balanced by colorful floating light fixtures. The atmosphere is definitely lively and it sets up for a fun meal. The menu reads international cuisine. Chambar draws influences from various cultures while sticking to flavors they are familiar with. The menu is seasonal and culturally influenced while incorporating a little farm to table. We started with unique cocktails like the Beety Street (a not too bitter with a..

Starbucks Reserve Roastery & Tasting Room (Seattle, WA)

[Translate] The original Starbucks store was founded in 1971 just 9 blocks away from the relatively new Starbucks Reserve Roastery & Tasting Room on Pike Street. This shining crown jewel of Starbucks is a bold leap for specialty coffee as a whole. This location is worth stopping by to check out the beautiful, vast space. (more…)
Fantastic Coffee at Victrola Coffee Roastery (Seattle, WA)

Fantastic Coffee at Victrola Coffee Roastery (Seattle, WA)

[Translate] When in Seattle, you should have seafood and coffee or you’re wasting your time in this city. Victrola Coffee Roastery is a local Seattle coffee roastery established in 2000. In a city filled with many coffee shops (hello, it’s the home of the corporate coffee mecca that has the green mermaid as its mascot), what we really love about Victrola committed themselves to sourcing and roasting only the best. With a passion for great coffee, they can’t wait to share their hard work and passion with you through one of their delicious blends or single origins. The Pike Street..
Delicious, Casual Vietnamese Steakhouse Fare at Seven Beef (Seattle, WA)

Delicious, Casual Vietnamese Steakhouse Fare at Seven Beef (Seattle, WA)

[Translate] Seven Beef is the newest restaurant by Chef-Owner Eric Banh and his sister, Sophie and with Executive Chef Scott Emerick helm the kitchen. Seven Beef occupies a 4,000-square-foot building that once housed an architect’s office. The centerpiece is the dramatic open kitchen equipped with a wood-burning oven alongside a combi-convection oven. What you don’t see is the cooler in the back that houses the restaurant’s sub-primal cuts of prime, grass-fed beef, delivered weekly by Heritage Meats from their ranch in Rochester, Washington and have a young butcher to break down the animal everyday. (They will cut a three pound,..

Travel

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

[Translate] 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..

Dinner at Smokehouse (London, UK)

[Translate] 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..

Lunch at Duck & Waffle (London, UK)

[Translate] Interior & Views of SE London at Duck & Waffle When I was in London in April, I had lunch with the vivacious and fellow Londoner, travel blogger and friend, Federica of The Daily Out at Duck & Waffle. What drew us to this particular restaurant was the stunning views of southeast London from high up on the Heron Tower, where this restaurant is located. The fare served here is upscale comfort food (it’s prevalent in New York City as well as in London) except the Executive Chef Daniel Doherty has interesting touches on the menu that I have..

Chiltern Firehouse (London, UK)

[Translate] While I was in London, I had dinner at one of the hottest restaurants in town, Chiltern Firehouse under the helm of Executive Chef Nuno Mendes. This hotel and restaurant is owned and operated by André Balazs, the famous hotelier behind luxurious, global properties that are chic and places where everyone wants to be seen like the Chateau Marmont in Hollywood. This grand, Victorian firehouse with large doors and high ceilings, lit by filament lightbulbs, brick tiles on the walls, wooden floors that spill over to tiled flooring and green velvet benches giving a very modern feel with traditional..

Breakfast at Plum + Spilt Milk (London, UK)

[Translate] I had breakfast with the popular travel blogger, Julie of A Lady in London, at Plum + Spilt Milk. This restaurant is located in the upscale boutique Great Northern Hotel in King’s Cross, overseen by Chef Mark Sargeant. This hotel restaurant is swanky with its dark navy blue walls, dark wood, and curving cream colored leather booth seats mixed with striking pendant light fixtures. The restaurant’s name comes from a nickname given to the original LNWR dining car, painted in the railway’s traditional livery colors. I arrived a bit earlier than Julie, I took some time to catch up..

Afternoon Tea at The Palm Court at The Ritz (London, UK)

[Translate] While I was in London, I was fortunate to have a reservation afternoon tea at the historical and legendary Palm Court at The Ritz (£47.00 per person or $78.96 at the exchange rate of £1 = $1.68 US). The local Londoners would pretty much tell you if you want a traditional afternoon tea, you should go to here. The Palm Court at The Ritz is absolutely stunning. It is a destination for glamorous guests from high society to “see and be seen” dating back to 1906. The Palm Court is a dramatic room with high ceilings and its walls..