Food Reviews

Theatrical Cocktails and Very Good Austrian Fare at Bar Freud (NYC)

[Translate] Being out in Greenwich Village, there’s many options for good cocktails. The relatively new spot that serves delicious (and strong) cocktails with a bit of dramatic flair at Bar Freud. This lovely bar/restaurant is owned by Chef Eduard Frauneder of Edi and the Wolf teamed up with his fellow Austrian Albert Trummer, the ever-inventive mixer of elixirs, and Mr. Trummer’s son, Jakob. (more…)

Pujol (Mexico City)

[Translate] What is arguably the most famous restaurant in Mexico City that would be Pujol owned and run by Chef Enrique Olvera. (He also the man behind New York City’s Cosme.) Seventeen years after putting its city and its chef on the world culinary map with its playfully elevated street food, Pujol, Mexico’s most celebrated restaurant is also taking cues of his New York City restaurant stylistically. The current location of Pujol has a casual, neighborhood spirit with the former’s intimacy. There is a wood-burning oven, terrazzo flooring, a private side room with record player and vinyl collection and a..

Azul Historico (Mexico City)

[Translate] Chef Ricardo Muñoz Zurita has several restaurants in the Mexican capital, and the best of them is Azul Histórico, located in the Downtown México hotel and retail complex in the Centro Histórico neighborhood. The setting is atmospheric: rough-hewn wooden tables sit on a stone courtyard of the 17th-century building, surrounded by trees draped with lights. The restaurant is a favorite among locals, who make reservations here for special celebrations and business meetings, as well as out-of-towners in the know. (more…)

Altesi Downtown (NYC)

[Translate] If you want of some tiny bit of solace from the craziness of SoHo, there’s Altesi Downtown. This Italian (Tuscan cuisine, to be a little more precise) restaurant is spacious and even though it has a fair amount of diners, it never gets too loud while we were dining there on a recent evening. The dining room features an elevated platform that can open to the street, offering quick alfresco dining. Meanwhile, further to the rear, a wine wall dominates the back of the restaurant as the seats transition into more of a cozy vibe. Visible from all seats..

Guzina Oaxaca (Mexico City)

[Translate] Oaxacan food is praised throughout Mexico for its rich moles, umami-rich insects, stewed meats, and deep nuances. Guzina Oaxaca (translated: Oaxaca Cuisine) is by proprietor/chef Alejandro Ruíz. Chef Ruíz is a native from Oaxaca and opened this restaurant in the affluent neighborhood of Polanco in 2014, to have the Mexico City natives (and tourists) believe in the fact that Oaxacan food can be upscale, despite the fact it’s culturally rich. The restaurant is decorated like I’m in an elegant beach-type of restaurant – light colors of creamy beige, soft greens, and warm wood, embroidered pillows; green cantera stone salt..

Hotel Reviews

Four Seasons Beijing – Noir Or Mooncakes & Afternoon Tea

[Translate] Lobby Four Seasons Beijing is one of the luxurious hotels in the bustling capital of China that opened late 2012. It’s a little bit off the main tourist hubs but it’s close to the city’s business and embassies as well as the capital’s popular shopping and entertainment hub Sanlitun. Having tea and many different dishes at the Opus Lounge We start our afternoon having tea at the sleek Opus Lounge filled with impressive artwork inspired by striking Chinese landscapes. This lounge is a grand two-story space that offers Asian and Western specialties during their daily afternoon tea. We peered..

Mandarin Oriental Shanghai, Pudong & Mid-Autumn Festival Afternoon Tea

[Translate] Lobby; Our Harbour City Suite and its huge bathroom; View of Huangpu River from the suite Mandarin Oriental Shanghai Pudong is luxury hotel brand, Mandarin Oriental’s first Shanghai hotel in May 2013. The hotel sits just east of the Huangpu River in the new Harbour City development, east of the Pearl Tower, and next to the newly opened Shanghai Metropolitan Marine Yacht Club. The 362 guest rooms come with opulent gold and teal decor, iPod docks and luxurious toiletries from London perfumer Ormonde Jayne. We loved our Club level room and its giant bowl-shaped bath tub to soak our..

Afternoon Tea at The Palm Court at The Ritz (London, UK)

[Translate] While I was in London, I was fortunate to have a reservation afternoon tea at the historical and legendary Palm Court at The Ritz (£47.00 per person or $78.96 at the exchange rate of £1 = $1.68 US). The local Londoners would pretty much tell you if you want a traditional afternoon tea, you should go to here. The Palm Court at The Ritz is absolutely stunning. It is a destination for glamorous guests from high society to “see and be seen” dating back to 1906. The Palm Court is a dramatic room with high ceilings and its walls..

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..

Prestigious Luxury at Lotte 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...

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..