Food Reviews

Restaurant Manitoba (Montreal, Canada)

Interior of dining room and open kitchen Pouring out of a magnum sized bottle of Sylvaner Restaurant Manitoba is a restaurant I’ve been meaning to go for a long time. I’ve first heard about this place when I was in Montreal four years ago. However, I didn’t have enough time to change plans and squeeze a stop by for a quick bite. Manitoba is located out in the industrial neighborhood of Mile-Ex (think of New York’s current equivalent of Bushwick, Brooklyn). (more…)

Mamie Clafoutis (Montreal, Canada)

Interior of retail side of the bakery Boules of bread The final bakery I’ve visited in Montreal was Mamie Clafoutis. This bakery started in 2008, by Nicolas, a pastry chef and Joseph, a baker, originally from France. They moved to Montreal to build their dream, committed to find and share their fond childhood memories. The first bakery opened its doors in Outremont. They use traditional skills and using the best ingredients and organic if possible, like the Canadian flour from La Milanaise Mill. (more…)

Brunch at Salmigondis (Montreal, Canada)

Exterior Caffeine (cappuccino) + Vitamin C (fresh grapefruit juice) Like most local farmers markets, it’s best to go on the weekend and I went to the beloved and famous Jean Talon Market. It’s so easy to be seduced by the gorgeous summer produce (oh, the perfectly ripened Quebecois strawberries! The sweet peaches! Rhubarb!) that’s available at multiple vendors’ stands. But I had to restrain myself from buying the glorious fruit since I am not permitted to bring this home but I did pick up some really flavorful goat’s milk cheeses and sheep’s milk butter. (more…)

Boulangerie les Co’Pains d’abord (Montreal, Canada)

Exterior of the bakery (Rachel location) Partial of the interior Sheet pan full of fresh baked brioche, chaussons aux pommes (French style apple turnovers) One of my favorite bakeries (boulangerie, to be exact) for my morning viennoiserie would be at Boulangerie les Co’Pains d’abord. This particular bakery makes their heavenly, buttery breakfast pastries from scratch in a compact kitchen in the back of the retail/café space. I had the honor to observe and photograph the hard working, busy but friendly bakers and staff members during an early, busy Saturday morning. Everyone at the kitchen is at least busy rolling; moving..

Sublime Dinner at Restaurant Beau Mont (Montreal, Canada)

Entrance Lounge area Restaurant Beau Mont feels like you’ve walked into one of your charming, well-heeled artistic or fashionable friend’s spacious apartment for dinner. One who cares and loves food deeply and has the food philosophy of using the best, locally sourced ingredients, cooks it well but simply and make the dishes look beautiful yet effortless even though it’s not. That’s how I felt overall when I dined here. Beaut Mont is led by the same team of the famous Montreal upscale and avant garde restaurant Toqué! While it feels a little bit relaxed compared to its older sister restaurant,..

Hotel Reviews

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…)

Yan Ting at St. Regis Singapore

Yan Ting at St Regis Singapore is a very comfortable restaurant that can impress both visitors (like myself) and locals. The latter crowd are definitely affluent or some who want to celebrate an occasion. The dim sum menu is traditional and it is covers a lot of categories.  I’ve eaten with a few friends that afternoon and how the dim sum brunch works is that we each have our own pot of soup double-boiled fish maw soup with black garlic (原盅黑蒜炖花胶) and wok-baked Boston lobster with XO sauce (XO酱焗波士顿龙虾). We get to choose as many dishes as we want. The..


Wonderful Stay at Fairmont Le Château Montebello & A Visit to Manoir-Papineau National Historic Site (Montebello, Canada)

If all of you are wondering why did I go to Montebello? It’s because it’s close to Ottawa (about an hour away by car) and I wanted to be away from the city (any, not just New York). Fairmont Le Château Montebello Montebello is located on a bank of the Ottawa River with its own marina. This grand log-built hotel provides rustic luxury, local flavor, beautiful grounds, great views, and heaps of activities to do for both summer and winter. It’s an annual family destination for many well-heeled Canadians (or tourist within the northeastern part of the U.S., it seemed)...

Recent Recipes

Pistachio Oil, Yogurt Lemon Cake

Nounos Creamery is a family-owned creamery in based in Southampton, Long Island, NY. What makes their Greek-style strained yogurt distinctive are the cute glass jars besides the very delicious yogurt. These yogurts come in various flavors like plain, forest berries, orange fig to seasonal flavors like apple pie a la mode. The yogurt itself isn’t sweet. It has the thick, tangy characteristics that you’d expect from this style of yogurt. The fruit that accompanies the yogurt aren’t too concentrated nor sweet which really appeals to me. (I have eaten certain brands of Greek yogurt where I feel like I could..

Valrhona Chocolate Cake, Mango Ginger Lime Jam, White Chocolate Lemongrass Frosting

I’ve been a long time fan of eating and baking with Valrhona chocolate. This brand creates one of the world’s finest chocolate in the small village of Tain L’Hermitage, France since 1922. They are dedicated to creating unique, artisan quality chocolate with complex, balanced and consistent flavors. This mission of excellence continues as the gastronomic traditions of the renowned Rhone Valley find expression in every mouthwatering taste of Valrhona’s superb chocolate. Valrhona has created a range of unique and recognizable aromatic profiles by perfecting techniques for enhancing the flavor of rare cocoa beans, grown on land masterfully selected for its..

Apple Cardamom Yogurt Cake

This weekend was truly autumn. Leaves turning from shades of green to vibrant colors of reds, golden yellows, and orange. Autumn is also prime apple season. I’m not in the mood to bake a somewhat finicky pie but wanted to do an apple cake. I’ve tried out the Organic Valley Grassmilk Yogurt; a thick, tangy yogurt that has natural creamline on top that would make a perfect addition to the cake. The natural acidity would make for a tender cake and add some moisture and fat. (more…)