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Tastings Social Presents Mountain Bird (NYC)

[Translate] Tasting Social presents Mountain Bird is the relocated home of the critical, poultry-centric restaurant Mountain Bird. The co-owners and husband-wife team of Mountain Bird, Kenichi Tajima, a native of Japan who cooked at Payard Pâtisserie and Bistro and at Tastings, and Keiko, who works the front of the restaurant. I don’t normally make the trip up to East Harlem for food since it’s quite a schlep. However, Mountain Bird is a cozy restaurant that has the relaxed yet old time feeling feel with the butcher paper lined tables and the white plates and cups monogrammed in gold. The food..
Apple Cardamom Yogurt Cake

Apple Cardamom Yogurt Cake

[Translate] 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…)
Dinner at Tin Lung Heen 天龍軒 at Ritz Carlton Hong Kong (2* Michelin)

Dinner at Tin Lung Heen 天龍軒 at Ritz Carlton Hong Kong (2* Michelin)

[Translate]   Since we’re staying at Ritz-Carlton Hong Kong and thoroughly enjoyed afternoon tea (my post here), we were curious about Tin Lung Heen. This is a high end Cantonese restaurant and earned consistently a 2* Michelin rating since 2013. Its floor to ceiling windows give a birds eye view over Victoria Harbour, and it is so high up that it is actually at or above the level of the clouds. This can be experienced when the clouds on occasion completely envelop the building, and the windows appear opaque due to the mist. To access the restaurant, take the express lift from..
Ritz Carlton Hong Kong – Amazing Presidential Suite & Fantastic Afternoon Tea at Café 103

Ritz Carlton Hong Kong – Amazing Presidential Suite & Fantastic Afternoon Tea at Café 103

[Translate] Ritz Carlton Hong Kong, relocated and opened in March 2011, is located on the top of Hong Kong’s tallest building (on floors 102 to 118) of the International Commerce Centre (ICC), with 484 meters or 1588 feet of the 7th tallest building in the world and the highest skyscraper in Hong Kong. If you don’t suffer from vertigo, it offers a stupendous panorama of Hong Kong island, Kowloon, the loops and swerves of Victoria Harbour that separates the two and the mountains that coddle both. You won’t see as astonishing a vista as this anywhere else in Hong Kong...
5* Luxury at the Flagship Mandarin Oriental Hong Kong

5* Luxury at the Flagship Mandarin Oriental Hong Kong

[Translate] Mandarin Oriental Hong Kong is a legendary, luxury hotel in Central, Hong Kong. It is the flagship of all of the Mandarin Oriental properties. It passed its 50-year anniversary in 2013 and it’s a decades-long favorite of visiting dignitaries and celebrities like Margaret Thatcher and Henry Kissinger. When you enter the main entrance, you are greeted by professional staff and a bustling reception area where business people and well-to-do locals are checking in. The lobby is adorned with sleek, signature black marble walls, glamorous crystal chandeliers, and beautiful Asian inspired decor. The hotel has form of 10 different restaurants..
Dim Sum at Lung King Heen at Four Seasons Hong Kong (3* Michelin)

Dim Sum at Lung King Heen at Four Seasons Hong Kong (3* Michelin)

[Translate] Lung King Heen (龍景軒) at Four Seasons Hong Kong is the only 3* Michelin Cantonese restaurant (an accolade held since 2009) and currently ranked 20th World’s Best Restaurant in Asia, located in the bustling Central district. When we arrived to the fourth floor and enter the restaurant, the staff was welcoming. The restaurant itself is adorned with discreet Chinese motifs, polished woods and – a standard for any high-end hotel eatery in this city – views of Victoria Harbour. This restaurant is very popular and primarily filled with affluent locals. If you want dinner reservations, you should book about..

Travel

Prestigious Luxury at The New York Palace Hotel

[Translate] I had the good fortune to visit the New York Palace Hotel recently. Granted, I’ve eaten the wonderful, whimsical, and delicious confections of Chef Michel Richard’s at Pomme Palais during the holiday season. But that evening of potently good cocktails, dining at Villard Michel Richard, and go up to one of the hotel’s signature Tower suite, the Jewel Suite, it’s incomparable. The New York Palace is an historical landmark that is a combination of the Villard Houses and the Helmsley Tower. The Villard House was built in 1882 and was originally owned by Henry Villard, a well-known railroad financier...

Flour Bakery (Boston, MA)

[Translate] Entrance to Flour Bakery (Back Bay location); Interior; Sweet orange rolls and Doughnut sugar muffins Flour Bakery (the bakery currently have 4 locations) was our first stop on our weekend holiday trip to Boston. What prompted us to go there first is because of the delicious memories I had when the James Beard nominated Chef Joanne Chang cooked at the James Beard House for afternoon tea. Since then, it was bookmarked in my brain to visit Chef Chang’s bakery and it finally happened. We went to the Back Bay location since it’s close to our hotel, The Mandarin Oriental...

M Bar & Lounge at Mandarin Oriental Boston

[Translate] Mandarin Oriental’s art book; cover and inside During my stay at Mandarin Oriental Boston, I had received a copy of the hotel’s beautiful (albeit heavy), hardcover art book. Flipping through the pages of the gorgeous photographs of the brand’s various locations, I can’t help but be inspired and hope to travel to their international locations, especially in Hong Kong. Toward the middle-end portion of this book, when I came across the photos of the colorful cocktails (seen above) and made me wanted to have a drink downstairs for my nightcap for the evening. We took the elevators down to..

Holiday Afternoon Tea at L’Espalier (Boston, MA)

[Translate] Entrance to L’Espalier; Interior of main dining room; the legendary cheese cart Steps away from the luxurious hotel I stayed in Boston, The Mandarin Oriental, is the equally elegant, AAA Five-Diamond awarded restaurant (and James Beard Award to Chef Frank McClelland), L’Espalier. This restaurant is actually one floor above a bank. You would walk through the doors and be checked in with a host, then you get whisked up viewing the stately bank while riding up to the elegant dining room. I had to have afternoon tea with them to see and taste how a fine dining restaurant would..

Bold, Gusty Italian Inspired Food at Coppa (Boston, MA)

[Translate] Interior and Menu of Coppa Coppa is a very popular, Italian-inspired restaurant run by the chef/owners Ken Oringer and Jamie Bissonnette. This small plates restaurant serves platters of salumi, housemade pasta, and pizza crafted from local, seasonal ingredients. Coppa offers a certain urban charm. It sits on a quieter corner behind Peters Park. The intimacy of the space works well as there is little car traffic. Inside, Coppa’s wedge-shaped room with simple black-and-cream-colored décor is also appealing, especially with the taxidermy pig head donning, when we were there, a Christmas hat, and seats about 40. We were aware of..

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..