Latest Articles

Savory Choux Pastry, Pâté with Bonne Maman Raspberry Preserves

Savory Choux Pastry, Pâté with Bonne Maman Raspberry Preserves

[Translate] One of my favorite preserves brand is Bonne Maman. They use time-honored traditional French recipes, their preserves and jellies are made with natural ingredients and feature the finest quality fruit. They are Non-GMO Project Verified, have no high fructose corn syrup, no artificial coloring or no preservatives added so you taste the pure essence of the fruit. Besides having the great preserves, also being able to find them at almost every grocery store. (more…)
San Carlo Osteria Piemonte (NYC)

San Carlo Osteria Piemonte (NYC)

[Translate] The dining scene in New York City never ceases to amaze me. It’s a city rife of Italian restaurants some are by big celebrity chefs that are great (and sometimes carry a hefty price tag to go along with it) and mediocre restaurants that you wouldn’t care to return to. However, there are a few hidden gems like San Carlo Osteria Piemonte that recently and quietly celebrated its one-year anniversary. This Italian restaurant is not the typical Italian joint that tries to cover all the bases of Italian cuisine — it focuses in the Piedmont region of northern Italy,..
Lunch at Patisserie Chanson (NYC)

Lunch at Patisserie Chanson (NYC)

[Translate] Patisserie Chanson is a newcomer for the high-end pastry shop and bread bakery. Don’t mistake this modern bakery for the standard retail and dine-in space, Chef Rory Macdonald has bigger ambitions to open a subterranean dessert bar for sweet tasting menus soon. Since I’m patiently waiting for the dessert bar to start service (and I’m super curious what that would be since the pastries and desserts are both beautiful and delicious – more on that later), my friend and I stopped by for lunch. (more…)
Lunch at Eastern Standard (Boston, MA)

Lunch at Eastern Standard (Boston, MA)

[Translate] What I’ve heard about Eastern Standard is the good cocktails and it is close to Fenway Park. Though I’m not a baseball fan, it’s fun to see the diners and locals (some wearing the Red Sox’s jerseys) hanging out at the large bar before the opening day game taking in the excitement. This decade-old restaurant is a big, bustling brasserie that isn’t overdone or self-conscious. On one side is the dining room, with burgundy banquettes and white tablecloths crowded with thick, red-rimmed china platters filled with food. On the other is a large bar, a length of white marble..
Great Cocktails at the Backbar (Somerville, MA)

Great Cocktails at the Backbar (Somerville, MA)

[Translate] When my friends and I tried meeting at Backbar, it is not particularly easy to find. First look for the nondescript red door in an alley located behind Journeyman restaurant. Once you find the door, walk to the end of the hallway and you’ve made it. This place is run by manager/co-owner Sam Treadway that serves up seriously made drinks but it’s not pretentious in regards to the atmosphere and the staff. The space is sort of looks like it’s decorated by a cool, young man in his late 20s/early 30s graduated from school and starting his career. Seen..

Travel

The Broken Shaker at Freehand Chicago

[Translate] Another hotel bar in Chicago’s Millennium Mile that has really great drinks is The Broken Shaker at Freehand Chicago. The atmosphere is much more casual and laid back but the drinks are a little wacky and ingenious but seriously good and balanced. There are some bar food served at this establishment but we stayed here for the drinks since we had dinner right afterwards. (more…)

Dinner at NoMI Kitchen at Park Hyatt Chicago

[Translate] Entering the sleek and modern lobby of Park Hyatt, we were whisked by the hotel staff to the seventh floor where NoMI Kitchen resides. It’s a beautiful restaurant that has a large bar/lounge area that opens up to NoMI’s sushi area that shares the semi-open space with the Western style kitchen and the dining room. If you are fortunate to have a table near the windows looking out to the stunning, open view of the Water Tower and parts of Millennium Mile. (more…)

Creative Breakfast at Mortar & Pestle (Chicago, IL)

[Translate] If you’re searching for a really creative breakfast in Chicago, I highly suggest going to Mortar & Pestle in the Lakeview neighborhood. This daytime restaurant is spacious with a cozy, rustic look. There’s a long wooden communal table in the center of the room surrounded with two tops and four tops. The menu is eclectic since it varies ranging from fried cheese curds, classic English breakfast, chicken paprikash to foie gras and eggs. As someone who’s jaded seeing and having the typical eggs benedict, waffles and pancakes for breakfast, I’m pretty stoked to see an interesting menu that crosses..

Afternoon Tea at Palm Court at The Drake Chicago

[Translate] If there’s a place to be to have afternoon tea in its most classic form and have great people watching, you should head to Palm Court at The Drake Chicago. There’s a harpist performing on certain times of the hour. Since its opening in the 1920’s, The Drake Hotel has maintained a British vibe becoming the home away from home for many of Britain’s royal family starting with the Prince of Wales who stayed there in 1924. Other royals — both British and non-British — have continued the tradition including Princess Diana and the Empress of Japan. Drake’s afternoon..

Dinner at Steadfast (Chicago, IL)

[Translate] Steadfast is a hotel restaurant tucked within the Kimpton Gray hotel in The Loop of Chicago. This ambitious restaurant for its globally inspired menu with nuances of an upscale American steakhouse. The cocktail program is strong since it’s owned by the restaurant group Fifty/50, the same people behind the Berkshire Room (where we had very good drinks during our stay and will be on a separate post) and other reputable restaurants and bars in Chicago. My friend opted the Knights of Columbus cocktail made with Famous Grouse Scotch, rosemary, stone pine, Angostura. It’s technically a tricky drink to because..

Entente (Chicago, IL)

[Translate] Entente is one of the few new restaurants in Chicago that I had strong, good feelings about when I’ve read preview articles on various Chicago based publications. The various reasons that made me think this restaurant would be very good or even great was knowing where the restaurant team worked previously. Chefs Brian Fisher (formerly of Schwa) and Mari Katsumura (formerly of Grace) putting their personal touches on a plate with a reputable Chicago-based restauranteur Ty Fujimura of Arami. Despite the fact the menu reads fine dining, the restaurant is not stuffy. The people who are front of the..

Recent Recipes

Blueberry Almond Buttermilk Pancakes with Blueberry Lemon Compote for National Blueberry Pancake Day

[Translate] I may be early for National Blueberry Pancake Day (that day in the U.S. falls on January 28th) but I always feel like there’s never a bad day to make a batch of these babies and eat them. There’s something comforting about having a small or tall stack of these warm, fluffy, slightly crisp cakes with a few bright bites of blueberries at home and at your leisure. I have collaborated with Driscoll’s to highlight their fresh, high quality blueberries and incorporate them into my blueberry almond buttermilk pancakes. I wanted to emphasize the blueberries even further by making..

Cranberry Orange Pecan Rolls

[Translate] Holiday treats with the pan of un-iced cranberry orange pecan rolls Happy Boxing Day! Hope many of your friends and families had a great holiday. Many of us usually think cranberries are for the holidays but I think of them as a great sweet-tart fruit that could be used year round. I finally found some time from my crazy schedule to use cranberries (what some people consider as “America’s original super fruit”) to bake cranberry orange pecan rolls for my family. (more…)

Fourme d’Ambert Blue Cheese, Thyme, Cayenne, Tomato Jam Popovers

[Translate] Recently, Cheeses of Europe generously sent me a package of Mimolette and Fourme d’Ambert from the best cheese shop in New York City, Murray’s Cheese (as part of “Make it Magnifique” campaign). It felt like Christmas since I love cheese! Mimolette’s bright orange paste and dusty exterior tastes something akin to gouda. Sweet-salty, caramelized flavor but has the texture of Parmigianno Reggiano (hard, dense and easily shaved). The Fourme d’Ambert is a mild, earthy, cow’s milk blue cheese. It is creamy and lacks the spicy funk in Roquefort. The latter is a good thing, especially for some of my..