Latest Articles

Dinner at Spur Gastropub (Seattle, WA)

Dinner at Spur Gastropub (Seattle, WA)

[Translate] Spur Gastropub is located in the Belltown section of Seattle, WA, run by award winning chefs/owners Brian McCracken and Dana Tough, the same team behind other popular, gastronome-favored places like Tavern Law and Old Sage. When you enter this understated nouveau-Western decor, you can’t help but notice the bar filled with great microdistillery spirits and the mostly young diners who are enjoying a couple of well-crafted cocktails and several plates of food. It’s a cozy space that has both modern and rustic. Wood trim and natural log tables coexist with hip light fixtures and ambient projections of black and..
Delicious and Beautiful Pastries at Thomas Haas Patisserie (Vancouver, B.C.)

Delicious and Beautiful Pastries at Thomas Haas Patisserie (Vancouver, B.C.)

[Translate] Thomas Haas is a fourth generation pastry chef who grew up in his family’s pastry shop in Germany. It was located in the Black Forest village of Aichhalden. It all began when his great-grandfather opened the Café Conditorei Haas in 1918. Every generation after that continued the tradition of the family’s Black Forest cakes and other local sweets. Following in their footsteps, Haas trained in his native Germany, and then headed to Switzerland, France, and North America to gain more experience. He worked in several Michelin-starred restaurants in Europe before moving to Canada as executive pastry chef at the..
Fantastic Lunar New Year Tea at The Urban Tea Merchant (Vancouver, B.C., Canada)

Fantastic Lunar New Year Tea at The Urban Tea Merchant (Vancouver, B.C., Canada)

[Translate] The Urban Tea Merchant is found along the glamorous and busy business district (I would say it’s an equivalent to NYC’s Madison Avenue in Midtown). The Urban Tea Merchant is well known in Vancouver since 2004 for carrying exclusively the line of teas and teawares from the luxury brand TWG from Singapore. On the ground floor, you’ll find the retail shop, where you can buy teas, gorgeous teapots and accessories, and even tea-infused macaroons. Toward the back of the shop upstairs is the hidden tea salon, where you can have lunch, brunch, desserts, cocktails, and, of course, tea service...

Highlights of 2015

[Translate] 2015 came and went much quicker than I could ever imagine. Despite the year breezing by, I am grateful for having the opportunities to travel to six international destinations (while still being employed full time), meet interesting people while traveling and collaborating with several brands. Wales, United Kingdom I started off traveling to Cardiff, Wales, United Kingdom during late February/early March with Visit Wales. Landing at Heathrow Airport in London and take the leisure train ride over, seeing the rolling green hills that gave me a preview of the lushness of the landscape and the many adorable, fluffy sheep..

Dinner at Ben & Jack’s Steakhouse

[Translate] On Christmas Eve, my family and I headed to Ben & Jack’s Steakhouse for this holiday. In a city with many options for steak, Ben & Jack’s serves the one of finest steaks and seafood at their dining destinations. Ben & Jack’s steaks are all USDA prime and dry-aged on the premises. When we started our drinks ranging from well made drinks for my mother and brother, a fruity and sweet Brazilian Cosmopolitan and clean and refreshing margarita, respectively. I had the bold, delicious Pinot Noir from Robert Mondavi for my upcoming rib eye steak and my father wanted..

Beautiful Bûches & Other Baked Goods for Christmas from Maison Kayser

[Translate] Despite the fact it feels like spring with temps up to the 60s (or above 15°C), Christmas is less than 12 days! If you’re too busy to bake or not a baker and live in the NYC area, Maison Kayser is there to help you. This year, the internationally renowned French bakery has three beautiful bûche de Noëls, also known as yule logs ($42 for the large cakes shown on this post or $6 for individual slices) that brings fashionable style to the holiday table and also appeases your mouth. The Bûche Kayser is for the chocolate lover. Layers..

Travel

Nordic Bakery (London, UK)

[Translate] Nordic Bakery’s Soho location interiors; Cinnamon buns; Spinach & ricotta quiche; Karelian pies Nordic Bakery was one of my favorite bakeries during my stay in London. I had received their cookbook a few years ago and was intrigued about their unique food and recipes that it stayed in the back burner of my mind to visit to this bakery one day (which finally happened). My first visit to Nordic Bakery was at their Soho location when I was shopping for food souvenirs for friends and family nearby at the legendary Fortnum & Mason. I liked the bright natural light..

Dinner at Camino (London, UK)

[Translate] One of my dinners in London was at Camino. It’s a mini-restaurant chain of four Spanish tapas restaurants, a sherry bar (Bar Pepito) and Cava bar Copa de Cava, all in London. I went to their restaurant in King’s Cross as it was very close to where I was staying (at St Pancras Renaissance Hotel). I started my evening with a glass of dry yet fruity Beronia 2013 Rosé (£6.50) and a shot glass of briny marinated olives (£2.50) while making up my mind what to eat for the rest of my dinner. (more…)

Paul A Young Fine Chocolates (London, UK) – One of the Best Chocolatiers in London

[Translate] Exterior and Interior of Paul A Young Fine Chocolates Soho location; Pecan and Salted Caramel Cocoa Pods; Paul A Young himself During my stay in London, I visited Paul A Young Fine Chocolates in Soho. Paul Young is a London based chocolatier who worked in the restaurant ranks under Marco Pierre White (White is a celebrity chef in London, godfather of contemporary international cuisine, and earned many Michelin stars) at Quo Vadis and Criterion as head pastry chef prior to him opening his chocolate shops. Paul opened his first shop in 2006 on Camden Passage in Islington with his..

Historical, Luxurious St. Pancras Renaissance Hotel & Booking Office (London, United Kingdom)

[Translate] Inside Hansome Lounge, the lobby of St Pancras Renaissance Hotel During my trip to London, I had the opportunity to stay at the historical, luxurious St. Pancras Renaissance Hotel in King’s Cross. King’s Cross in London is currently an up-and-coming neighborhood where both locals and travelers would meet since the railroad stations are here. This hotel was built in the 1860s, when the thriving Midland Railway, which connected the industrial heartlands of the East Midlands and Yorkshire with London, chose to build its own railway and station. William Barlow owned the property and appointed architect, George Gilbert Scott to..

Sublime Sophistication at The Ledbury (2* Michelin, London, UK)

[Translate] View of Tower Bridge from London Bridge*; Table setting & menus; Partial interior of dining room; W checking his phone while getting his Riesling; My plate of amuse bouches The Ledbury was one of my favorite meals in London. Not just because this is in a beautiful neighborhood of Notting Hill, a two-starred Michelin restaurant, and World’s 50 Best Restaurants (#13 in 2013), under the helm of Brett Graham, being surrounded by the well-to-do, ladies who lunch, and a large round table of wine pros having a serious wine lunch, but because I finally had the pleasure to meet..

Not Afternoon Tea at OXO Tower Brasserie (London, UK)

[Translate] OXO Tower Brasserie is found on the rooftop of an award-winning, riverside landmark building named the OXO Tower, found on the South Bank of London. This tower houses some of the most innovative and internationally renowned contemporary designers, and exhibition venues gallery@oxo and Bargehouse. The area is sort of what reminds me of Williamsburg, Brooklyn back in the late 1990s, where it’s an industrial area but revamped to an artistic hub. Shoppers and diners who go up to OXO Tower Brasserie are definitely the well-to-do locals, as I recalled smelling a strong scent of a woman’s Dior fragrance when..