Food Reviews

Sidecar Doughnuts (Santa Monica, Los Angeles, CA)

[Translate] Sidecar Doughnuts is a popular doughnut shop that started in Costa Mesa back in 2012. The Santa Moncica location that we visited opened nearly three years ago and since been one of the places to get a very good, if not excellent, doughnuts in the Los Angeles metro area. What appealed to me initially are the flavors. It’s familiar yet creative enough and it doesn’t look gimmicky compared to other shops (e.g. I don’t need to see a cute panda face on my doughnut to want to eat one). What I liked the most based on that visit was..

Adda (NYC)

[Translate] I have to admit, Adda is probably one of the best Indian meals I have had in a long time. Though most of the fare served is traditional but it’s actually cooked perfectly (almost all). Robust spices that awaken the senses and some were spicy that one should expect and probably seek a glass of gently sweet mango lassi to soothe the palate. Adda is tucked in between a small row of small shops on Thompson Avenue, not far to the street leading you to the Ed Koch Bridge and it’s across the street from LaGuardia Community College. When..

Samwon Garden Korean BBQ (NYC)

[Translate] Samwon Garden is an upscale (but not that expensive) big, three-floor restaurant that is the first American location of South Korea’s oldest Korean barbecue chain. We started with a very good bowl of Korean fried chicken tossed in a sweet-savory soy and garlic sauce. Super crunchy crust and the meat was moist. The egg souffle topped with spicy cod roe was a popular dish around the various tables on our floor. The steaming hot pot of egg was cooked nicely and the cod roe added a touch of brine. (more…)


Hwaban (NYC)

[Translate] One of the few Asian restaurants I’m intrigued recently is the newly opened modern Korean restaurant Hwaban in Chelsea. Hwaban is easily the best choice if you want a refined, tasty meal and the serene atmosphere that has a generally casual air is much appreciated since there aren’t many options out there that fits the bill (unless it’s very expensive). Entering the restaurant without a sign indicating the restaurant, it’s a lovely yet minimalist decor. Lots of white with touches of warm wood and small vases of fresh flowers on each table for splashes of color. (more…)

Hotel Reviews

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

[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

[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)

[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..

Afternoon Tea at Four Seasons Tokyo at Marunouchi (Tokyo, Japan)

[Translate] Four Seasons Tokyo at Marunounchi. It’s in the heart of the business district and it is boutique hotel with 57 rooms. This hotel is designed by Yabu Pushelberg; Andre Fu designed the hotel’s restaurant Motif. It’s chic and modern; decorated with warm, neutral tones and accents of wood. It makes you feel comfortable but it’s all luxurious. We whisked up to the seventh floor to the hotel’s restaurant Motif for afternoon tea. Seated at lounge area of the restaurant, The hotel’s teas are by a German tea brand Ronnefeldt (this brand started in 1823). Since it was a humid..

Recent Recipes

Coconut, Adzuki Red Bean, Matcha Green Tea Layered Jelly

[Translate] For the past several weeks, it’s been a crazy, busy several weeks for me, primarily with work and planning my upcoming trip to London. I wanted to make a simple but tasty but minimalist beautiful dessert that also has Asian flavors since they were all in my pantry – matcha green tea, adzuki red beans, and coconut milk. Come to think of it, this sweet is pretty healthy since there is no cream or butter involved. This jelly is made with agar, a vegetarian alternative to gelatin that’s normally sold in powdered or flake form. There is generally a..

Raspberry Religieuse Recipe

[Translate] Recently, Driscoll’s was generous to send me some of their wonderfully sweet-tart raspberries for me to bake with. Inspired this weekend for the spring-like weather we were finally having in New York City, I wanted to bake something “happy,” if that make any sense. For me, one of my happy memories was when I was in Paris several years ago and brought my ravenous carb and sweet tooth, saw and ate my way through the city. One particular pastry that stuck in my mind that looked elegant and feminine when I passed by a few patisseries, which I found..

Savory Oatmeal with Crisp Prosciutto, Skellig Cheddar & Poached Egg

[Translate] The folks over at Kerrygold were sweet to send me a package of a few of their delectable light cheeses and their wonderful butter in aims to create a lighter, healthier dish. If you read this blog long enough, you’re aware that I don’t necessarily bridge the two unless I do feel insanely gluttonous. I like moderation and more on the lines of flavor trumps healthiness (especially desserts!). With that all said, I woke up one morning craving a bowl of savory oatmeal since I eat many variations of the sweet versions too often and had a craving for..