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October 21, 2012 10:06 AM Food & Wine  |   Link
On the search for good cornbread recipe

I'm constantly surfing for some great recipes and here I will document some of the ones I want to try:

The Pioneer Woman: Skillet Cornbread

Simply Recipes: Southern Cornbread: Check out the comments for lots of Southern emphasis on ingredients and techniques.

September 08, 2011 10:30 PM Food & Wine  |   Link
Pilipino Food Workshop Part I

I've decided to tackle the collection of recipes my mom gave me a few years ago. I know some of them by heart but having them in writing is definitely a great treasure of all my pilipino food memories. I'm planning to invite a couple friends to go shopping with me at a local Asian market and then head to my house to cook something up for dinner or afternoon snacks. I'm planning to schedule these from month to month or when I feel like cooking.

1: Adobo Chicken with Jasmine Rice and Leche Flan
2. Siapao(Cha-siu-bao from chinese influence) and Mami(noodle soup)
My mom always served these together for some reason. Itís definitely comfort food. Iíve made these before with my mom supervising, but itís been more than 10years since Iíve done it.

3. Snacks: cunchita, puto(yes it is called this and no itís not a foul word in tagalog) I have never attempted these before so this will definitely be a big experiment.

4. Pancit(noodle dish) & lumpia(fried egg rolls)
Will probably do 2 versions of this pancit depending on the type of noodles I find at the market.

5. Pan de Sal(salt bread) major staple bread in the Filipino diet and will be my first time attempting at home and without my mom!

I have a bunch of other recipes, but these were the first ones that I thought I should really learn to cook. I will also document the process with pictures and/or video. I'm hoping my guests/sous chefs will also enlighten me with some feedback and what kinds of changes can make it better. I wish I had a bigger house/kitchen and I'd invite more than 2 or 3 at a time.

March 20, 2011 08:24 PM Food & Wine  |   Link
Meal Plan March20

Sunday: chicken apretada(Pilipino chicken stew) with white rice
Monday: beef stew
Tuesday: leftovers
Wednesday: chicken merlot with wild mushrooms
Thursday: leftovers
Friday: curry coconut curry
Saturday: off to Vegas baby!

March 08, 2011 07:13 PM Food & Wine  |   Link
Meal Plan March 6

Sunday - J and kids off to sis-in-law for birthday dinner, I eat pb&j sandwich.
Monday- Chili, cornbread, mixed greens with fig balsamiq vinegerette
Tuesday - leftovers
Wednesday - sweet & sour chicken
Thursday - leftovers
Friday - fish(it's Lent and so thinking maybe we have something vegetarian/fish on Fridays)

February 27, 2011 05:01 PM Food & Wine  |   Link
Week of Feb 27 Meal Plan

I went through my cookbooks last night and reviewed our schedule for the week. I even went through my old meal plans to see what kinds of interesting things I've made in the past. I had a ton of fun during my downtime and will try to take photos.

Sun,westlake beef soup & teriyaki chicken
Mon, kare-kare
Tues, J at school so I just eat sandwich or leftovers.
Wed, mushroom risotto & chicken
Thurs, J at school, maybe leftovers or get take out :)
Fri, polynesian chicken, gai lan

I'll probably be documenting what we eat since planning meals for a month will help avoid any repeats and reviewing all my handwritten chicken scratching and shopping lists takes too much time. I'll probably create a guide to my cookbooks and links to online recipes so I know where to get the recipes in the future.

Happy eating!

January 04, 2010 05:04 PM Food & Wine  |   Link
Manresa with Foodie Book Club

The most amazing food ever. A great way to start the 2010. A fun evening with girlfriends who enjoy good food, love to read & write about food and just know how to have fun!

I'll be posting more about my thoughts for each course.

May 01, 2009 07:48 PM Food & Wine  |   Link
Addiction to Sigona's

Sigona's is a local(Redwood City & Stanford,CA) grocery store, actually it's more like a permanent farmer's market stand. Many of the fruits and vegetables are locally grown and organic. Their house balsamic vinegar and olive oil are great. It's a family run business and every employee I've interacted with has been super helpful. The best thing is to sign up for their e-mail list where they send you coupons for "free" food and cheese(sometimes wine) when you buy $30 worth of groceries.

April 09, 2009 07:43 PM Food & Wine  |   Link
Meals Made Madly 1

Really simple dinner since playdate was later in the afternoon today. I usually have something like leftovers but just didn't plan well today.

Lentils with caramalized onions with some cumin and paprika.
Brown rice

B happily ate the same meal along with a whole pear. We were just amazed at how big a bite she was taking. We'll post a photo shortly.

April 03, 2009 12:43 PM Food & Wine  |   Link
Adventures in Housewifery Week 2

Again I was inspired to cook a nice dinner last night. I think I should start taking pictures to add to my archive of meals made madly(M3).

Last night included
Soup: brocolli soup(Gordon Ramsey style according to J) & loaf of filone bread
Side dishes: mixed veggies, roasted sweet potatoes, roasted mushrooms
Main: roasted chicken with rosemary
Dessert: strawberries

I've challenged myself to cook once nice meal a week that would be savored slowly and not rushed. I will start taking photos and either link to or write out where I found the recipes.

April 02, 2009 12:17 PM Food & Wine  |   Link
Dinner Then and Now

Before Baby
I'd like to get the chicken marsala with risotto and a glass of paired red wine.
45 minutes later
Hmmm. That was really good. This is so nice and relaxing. What's for dessert?

With Baby
*on the phone* Ok, hon. Made dinner when you coming home?
B, please don't throw the carrot on the floor.
No, can you bring home some toilet paper.
B, can you finish your cheese. Good job. No! Don't put the yogurt in your hair!
Oh wait, you need to pick up your drycleaning. Forget about the tp.
B all done?
Ok. I'll eat now so I can put B down. See you in a while.
*off the phone*

April 01, 2009 10:10 PM Food & Wine  |   Link
Unhealthy Fruit

How to make something that is healthy for you, unhealthy.

1. Take 1 pint of strawberries, clean, hull & cut up.
2. Sprinkle 2 T of brown sugar
3. Add 2 T of sour cream
4. Mix and serve immediately

March 26, 2009 09:01 PM Food & Wine  |   Link
Adventures in Housewifery

I was inspired today to make a 4 course meal for dinner. I bet you're wondering how I did that with a 17mo shackled to my ankle. Well basically have all her favorite toys and books closeby the kitchen and make sure she had a good snack. Of course she fussed, but when everything was simmering or roasting in the oven, I was able to spend some big chunks of time with her and that's what matters most. She knew I was cooking and when everything was done she wanted to sit in her high chair to sample the goods.

What I made...
carrot soup (from Saved by Soup),
tomato, cucumber, avocado salad, homemade dressing of evo & fig balsamic vinegar and some seasonings,
roasted garlic rosemary chicken with whole garlic cloves and steamed broccoli,
strawberries dipped in sour cream & brown sugar

I haven't been this inspired in many years, but I felt like I'm at a point where I can make these really nice dinners. So as usual I make sure that there is enough for 2 nights so I don't have to cook so often. Salads are a breeze so will just toss something different for tomorrow night. I usually cook about 3-4 dinners a week. I have a routine where I scour my recipes and cookbooks for about 5 minutes and then jot down possible menus for the week. One side of my shopping list has basic needs for breakfast, snacks and lunches. The other side are my entrees for the week with specific ingredients. I try to select entrees that share similar ingredients. For example onions or a bottle of white wine.

I figure out how complicated an entree and when I should make my meals based on my schedule for the week. So if I know I have late PM playdates, I make sure I sequence the cook/no-cook nights based on knowing the times.

Doing all of this has saved us lots of $ and you know of course in this down economy what we spend should matter. I generally shop at farmer's market, TJs or Sigona's and so have certain standards for quality of produce and meats. I guess it's all about priorities but you know I think spending $30 for a night out on mediocre(unhealthy) food just floors me when I know I can make a kick ass organic & healthy dinner including wine for that price.

Having this system in place has also given me more time to cook meals for folks in need(church, new baby, illness, etc.). So I'm looking forward to helping out and lastly I have so much more free time when I don't have to cook as often.

I've saved about several months worth of these shopping lists since they document meals we've had in the past year. There are clearly some favorite recipes and favorite cookbooks and at some point will probably do a spinoff blog maybe documenting my meal planning and preparation. I'm definitely having a fun time rediscovering old cookbooks and hoping to try out some really "old skool" ones published by the Menonite community. Talk about efficiency and being more health/earth friendly, those menonites have been practicing this as a faith and lifestyle.

My next adventure that I'm considering is a dinner coop. I've heard a friend do this and sounds quite fun. You only have to cook once a week. Several families cook for the others once a week and deliver the food(usually in the same neighborhood). Of course its hit or miss since everyone has various levels of culinary experience but just imagine only cooking once a week and trying out new stuff.

The other adventure I"m considering is the cook once a month. You cook one months worth of food in one day and just freeze everything. I think if my time becomes that limited that I can't cook a fresh meal every other day then I really need to rethink my priorities.

December 22, 2008 08:43 PM Food & Wine  |   Link
Wine Best Buys

This retired guy from the Bay Area was part of a readers wine review with $70 and a store from SFChron for his choices of values wines. Of course he has done his own research and has a website tracking it all. I am rather curious to try all the wines he purchased for the article.

Wine Best Buys
Shopping with Robert Cook

December 10, 2008 08:45 AM Food & Wine  |   Link
No Cow's Milk is Ok

Milk: Does it Really do A Body Good?

This article really helped me get over the fact that perhaps B really doesn't like milk for a reason. Ever since she turned 1 I try to offer it to her and she just spits it out. Luckily she enjoys yogurt, cheese and especially kefir. She has tried spinach(non baby food form) and trying to get her into more veggies. Trying to get her to eat a well rounded balanced diet is quite a challenge but it's also forcing me to learn more about nutrition and moderation. I think the article failed to mention that you can also get Vitamin D by getting a little bit of sun(about 15 minutes) a day.

October 17, 2008 11:53 AM Food & Wine  |   Link
Cake Ideas for B's Birthday

September 17, 2008 09:34 PM Food & Wine  |   Link
Food, Books & People

Just got back from a really fun mom's night out. Well it was my own time out type of thing. I go out once a week to do whatever I like. Sometimes I like to hang out at a local cafe and read or knit with a glass of wine or a hot cocoa. Sometimes I meet up with other friends. Tonight I joined a friend's food writing group/book club. It was great to actually hang out and just talk about food while eating food and talking about a book about food. I didn't think a group ever existed and I got so excited. Wow I can spare J all my foodie tendencies and just talk about food. Now my new challenge, can I conjure up a food writing experience to share with the group every 2 weeks. Ooh. I'm so glad they have a food topic otherwise I'd be all over the place.

Enjoyed a 2007 Don Miguel, Melbec from Argentina.

August 10, 2008 08:04 PM Food & Wine  |   Link
Another way to enjoy chocolate

Thanks @cwodtke for the reference to

Fried Bittersweet Chocolate

June 13, 2008 07:09 PM Food & Wine  |   Link
Wine Wish List 3

2005 Bodegas Piqueras Castillo de Almansa Garnacha Tintorera ($8)

May 02, 2008 08:54 AM Food & Wine  |   Link
Wine Wish List 2

Mud House, Sauvignon Blanc, Marlborough 2006 ($14) New Zealand
Kim Crawford, Sauvignon Blanc, Marlborough 2006 ($17) New Zealand
Coopers Creaak, Sauvignon Blanc, Marlborough 2006 ($13) New Zealand
Drylands, Sauvignon Blanc, Marlborough 2006 ($15) New Zealand

Covey Run, Riesling 2005 ($8) Washington, Columbia Valley
St. Urbans-Hof, Riesling 2005 ($12) Germany
Columbia Crest Two Vines, Riesling 2005 ($8) Washington Columbia Valley
Columbia Winery Cellarmasters, Riesling 2005 ($12) Washington Columbia Valley

May 01, 2008 09:29 AM Food & Wine  |   Link
Wish List for Wine 1

* 2003 Rosenblum Cellars, Edna valley Chardonnay, Paragon Vineyard

* 2004 Boony Doon Barbera d'Asti

October 09, 2007 02:15 PM Food & Wine  |   Link
Two Treats after Baby Born Requested

Ok I can't help myself with sweets right now. I really don't want the empty calories but the sweet tooth craving is sooo bad right now.

Sibby's Cupcakes - old fashion fancy cupcakes.
La Biscotteria - Italian sweets and pastries.

And on the savory side...
Lox on a sesame bagel with cream cheese and a slice of tomato

September 29, 2007 09:27 PM Food & Wine  |   Link
Food Porn

When I know there are alot of things I can't eat right now, I remember to visit Tastespotting to get my food porn in. The contributors make food look so sexy and I don't know if it makes it worse that I can't eat most of them. But overall just quite exciting to browse and dream about what I'll get to eat once Baby Jeli makes her debut... lox and bagels, sushi, soft cheeses, and maybe a cappacucinno.

February 21, 2007 08:25 PM Food & Wine  |   Link
Filipino Home Cooking

So I don't usually get all nostalgic except now I have my mom's handwritten recipes of her traditional filipino dishes. I never thought to check online websites since I wanted to get a feel for my mom's own cooking. Well tonight I experimented with kari-kari. The peanut butter stew with ox tail. I'm fortunate enough to have a pressure cooker which definitely cut down the cooking time. And strangely enough I found ox tail at Costco.

J really enjoyed it and the house still smells like the stew. It was all yummy goodness with a small patch of white rice. We made enough for two dinners so I can't wait to have it again. All the ingredients were basically the same as the above link but somehow I changed it bit after reviewing my mom's notes. I can't wait to share this dish with our friends. I'll take photos tomorrow.

February 16, 2007 10:34 AM Food & Wine  |   Link
NYC Places to Eat

Sunday late afternoon
Highline (Meatpacking District) nychighline.com
Cripsy duck crepes, coconut crusted shrimp, virgin strawberry margarita

After walking a few blocks passing so many Scoop shops, we wandered the streets to find a lunch place. We passed up a few of R's regular stops but opted for something that had a retro modern design and not so crowded so that we could catch up. The decor was really nice and with a view of some construction which we didn't mind, we enjoyed the nice waterfall display and the really relaxing trance/lounge music playing. The food was a mix of pan-asian fusion and we both opted for the tapas styled prixe fix meal. R had the scallops and these really good dumplings and lychee martini.

For an afternoon respite, we stopped into one of the cafes connected to ABC Home near R's old flat, for an apple & almond dessert along with hot belgian cocoa. The cocoa was absolutely amazing. They basically give you a cup of hot milk and a little canister of the pure rich liquid cocoa. It was absolutely beautiful to pour it and stir. The bakery was really down home with nice long wooden tables, nice lighting all around and locals just hanging out for afternoon break. We had a great time hanging out and and just chatting about living in Union Square. I really liked the long tables, I've been thinking about getting a built in bench/table setup in our kitchen. So we can fit more folks around the table. I like homey it felt like we were at home.

A Voce, dinner at 9pm was so European ;)
41 Madison Ave (at 26th St.), New York
3 star NY Times, 1 star Michelin

Right across the street from Madison Square Park. We grabbed a cab over to the restaurant and wandered around. We thought it would be on a corner but with a quick pan of where we were let off I spotted the restaurant. I really enjoyed the ambience and the music(trance/lounge). We were hungry and we definitely devoured the bread on the table with its amazing evoo and sweet balsamic vinegar. This had to be the really good balsamic because the sweetness was just like something you'd put on a dessert. The guys had wine and I had my club soda.

For our apptizers we got a mix of things, Vegetable Antipasti
mozzarella di bufala DOPeggplant agrodolce sweet pepper con capper, (the eggplant was amazing!), Crispy Calamari giardiniera vegetables, lemon sauce(lightly breaded and fried just right, and M had some brussel sprouts. I enjoyed it all and I was glad I didn't stuff myself too much on the bread.

For my main entree I had Braised Veal Soffritto creamy polenta, gremolata, orange. The polenta was amazing and veal was so tender and sweet. For dessert we shared Bomboloni
Tuscan doughnuts with chocolate sauce. They are basically creme-filled mini sugar doughnuts. M only ate around the edge of his and passed it on to R. R and I enjoyed it so much we could have licked the chocolate sauce out of the container.

We wandered over to SOHO to check out Mirabelle's but they were closed and we were cold and hungry. So we hopped into a quaint place a couple blocks away, Le Petite Cafe. Nothing out of the ordinary but it was a nice down home more local type cafe. We enjoyed our time sharing stories and catching up on missed times.

71 Irvine Place Coffee & tea Bar
Lentil soup, Salami Panino, cup of earl grey tea

Known for the best coffee in town by New York Magazine. A short distance from Gramercy Park and only across the street from a tea place that was in an inn that was unfortunately closed, we got a recommendation for 71 Irving. It was a bit crowded but we managed a window seat and for extra space for our coats and bags. The ambience was more local and down home than anything else. I really like the coziness although when the lunch crowd invaded it quickly got snug. The lentil soup was amazing, we both ate in silence to the hearty cup of soup. R also had a half sandwich but I waited for a full on panini since I knew I wouldn't be eating for a long time because airlines don't really feed you meals. I devoured everything and washed it down with a nice cup of earl grey.

However we were still craving hot cocoa, so we ducked into The City Bakery for sugar domes and their hot cocoa of the day which was Earl Grey Tea infused hot cocoa. We took it to go since we had to get back to Chelsea and get me to the airport. The drink was amazing. The City Bakery is having their 15th annual hot chocolate festival with a whole month of flavored hot cocoa. I'm looking at the card right now and it's a pretty wide range of flavors, ginger, beer, chili pepper, tropical, licorice, banance peel, bourbon, lemon, and malted milk.

The City Bakery, 3 W 18th St

So with all the eating there was equally lots of walking for the whole weekend. I went up as far as Lincoln Center to visit J & P and as far south as Lower East Side to hang with the girls from church who were also visiting, but also wandered with F to Tavern on Jane to meet up with folks and accidently ended up at another place somewhere in Greenwich Village(I think?). Anyhow, going up and down the stairs for the subway and wandering all over NY was a great way to get my exercise in since I was indoors for most of Saturday because of SCBWI.

I guess I miss NY now, let's see how I can get out there again.

January 26, 2007 08:44 AM Food & Wine  |   Link
Tea, comfort drink for the soul

Was reading an article about Bay Area tea places and will probably make a pilgrimage to these. I even want to return to Ray's Tea house since I ran out of some King's tea. I'm glad somebody has an appreciation for tea and it's great to see all the listings.

Tea's time
Bay Area artisan teahouses offer tastes to rival the complexity of fine wine

Another place not listed in a tea house in downtown Palo Alto called Neotte. It's more like a second office for most people since everyone's got their laptops open and plugged in, they also have free wifi. Very limited on snacks but the selection of tea is pretty amazing. They offer tea tastings and can do more traditional tea servings I think by appointment.

December 27, 2006 12:10 PM Food & Wine  |   Link
Update on Beard Papas

I can't believe this...they just opened up one in RWC near the new movie theatres. And just for kicks here's a list of all their cream puff flavors.

Don't bother clicking on nutrition value...because there is no nutrition value!

November 29, 2006 11:39 AM Food & Wine  |   Link
Questions to Ask Evaluating Restaurants

Now I have a checklist of things to remember and consider when evaluating restaurants. Oooh I can't wait to start really doing this more. I just can't seem to justify expensive dinners right now while I'm still enjoying cooking at home.

November 22, 2006 11:24 AM Food & Wine  |   Link
It's Crab Season!!!!

I would have posted this to a food blog I contribute to, Metafooder. However the disclaimer would be long and endless since the restaurant we hit up for crab during tihs time is owned by J's uncle.

R&G Lounge
631 Kearny, San Francisco

They have this amazing salt/pepper crab that is lip smacking good. Here's the description from their website: Live Battered crab deep-fried and sprinkled with salt and pepper seasonings.($25)

J and I have occassionally dine there and ate in silence. We order some bean sprouts and the crab, nothing else. We don't even bother with rice. One time we went with J's sister and brother-in-law and ate the plate clean, however there was alot of "fighting" over who gets the claw. When it's just the two of us we just eat slowly and freely, no "fighting", no conversation needed. So with crab in season again, we'll be hitting up this restaurant soon. We're just wondering if we should bother inviting some friends. I know K&T(and NO that's not Katie & Tom Cruise) enjoyed coming with us last February of afternoon crab feast.

Oh and we'll probably hit up my friend's resaturant, Princeton Seafood Company 50 Capistrano Rd, Half Moon Bay, perhaps on Friday before the jazz show at the Ritz. They are known for great seafood year round and all of it is local! Hopefully we'll remember to take photos.

November 11, 2006 11:19 AM Food & Wine  |   Link
What's a 2 Star Michelin Rating Like?

Manresa 320 Village Lane, Los Gatos, CA

We celebrated our 10th "first date" anniversary last night at a Michelin 2-star restaurant/Mobil Travel Guide 4-star restaurant. The dinner was truly amazing. We were 20 minutes early and Michael Kean, the general manager got us a table right away. The decor was nice, comfortable and inviting..not too plush, a nice balance of modern and warm. We were seated along one wall where we can see the door to the kitchen and get a good view of the wine storage and most of the room. The crowd looked a little bit on the older side wearing business suits. I had double checked opentable.com to read more on how to dress for the restaurant. I went for a safe outfit and wore all black with a hot pink shawl. J did the whole black look with a silver button-down shirt. Can't go wrong with black.

The room didn't feel overly crowded or noisy. I'm wondering if this is just a more sedate crowd or if it was because they didn't try to cram too many tables in the restaurant.

The restaurant location is actually quite quaint and tucked away in on a little street between University & Santa Cruz. Parking was a bit of a challenge since this part of Los Gatos is quite popular with all its shops and restaurants. I thought with the cooler weather there would be less folks, however arriving earlier than we expected we didn't mind waiting for a space to open up in the lot just behind the restaurant. There is no valet service.

This had to be the most memorable meal we've ever had. Considering our first date dinner was more of a college type fare with spaghetti, salad and soda which was over in 20 minutes. The time of our dinner party included a viewing of Toy Story. The Manresa experience was the extreme opposite on the spectrum of dining experiences.

When we were reviewing the menu we wanted to try the tasting menu and we didn't want our dinner to take 3-4 hours. We were starving since we ate so little during the day and it was already 8 o'clock. So we both decided to do the 4 course dinner and selected different dishes so that we could try the variety of food. Since we were celebrating we also opted for the wine pairing for our dishes.

After we browsed the menu and enjoyed the bread and sea salted butter, I manager came up to show us their latest prized possession, a nice white truffle from Italy. The truffle was a little bigger than a golfball and was sitting on a bed of uncooked rice in a nice black lacquer box. It was quite a beautiful presentation. For an extra $65 you can have a few shavings of this amazing fungi during the second course.

Amuse bouche
Spoon of acorn squash puree with evoo and a little crushed sea salt.

Slow cooked egg with something like sour cream and chives...(i need to learn more about how to taste seasonings and distinguish creams and stuff) This was quite heavenly. You had to mix it all around to make sure the dressing was incorporated with the egg.

Deep fried parmesan stick(similar to a cheesy churro), not too greasy and just a slight taste of saltiness.
This was paired with a Cava sparking wine. This was a nice way to start our celebration dinner.

First Course
Butterfish sashimi with a really nice olive oil dressing. The fish was really like butter, a slight transluscent pink color touched with a bit of olive oil, the serving was a good portion to be able to enjoy and to share.

Sweet onion-brioche soup with a slice of manchego cheese and slow-cooked egg. Poured into a bowl, the soup was amazing and the wine really brought out the flavors. The cheese and slow-cooked egg were really nice balance to the sweetness of the soup. The cheese gave the nice saltiness and the egg gave some weight and texture.

Second Course
Arctic char with some greens. This was a nice light fish that resembled salmon but not as heavy or oily. A nice balance with my super light chardonnay or was it a sauvignon blanc...can't remember.

The john dory on the plancha(style of cooking on a cast iron plate), drenched in Indian spices, yogurt & cucumber sauce. This dish was an amazing mix of fish in a slightly spicey sauce. The wine pairing was excellent and it truly brought out the spiciness but balanced with the buttery feel of the wine.

Third Course
Squab, nice medium rare really red. However the server warned us and said that if it was cooked well it would have become rubbery with no flavors. He was right, the rareness released the nice balanced flavors of the meat with its accompaniment and sauce. The dish was not salty and the wine pairing was amazing; a 2005 Jezebel Pinot Noir from Oregon. That was the only thing I wrote down because the wine was amazing.

My veal cheeks braised in apple cider, celery root and maitakes, roquefort was absolutely amazing. The earthy French syrah I had was a nice balance to the earthiness of my dish. The veal was tender and felt like it was melting in my mouth. We both ate in silence as we enjoyed our meals.

Enough time paced our courses and gave us a chance to enjoy our wine. James, our server was quite helpful in explaining our meal and the accompanying wine. He asked if we were there celebrating an occassion; we told him it was our anniversary. For our last course, dessert, he served both our plates with a little candle on them. It was a nice gesture and made our celebration dinner feel more festive.

Fourth Course
Chocolate marquis , cashews and white coffee ice cream. A highly sophisticated Snickers-like bar with white chocolate ice cream. The small portion was enough to close out the dinner but not too much to overpower the flavors from all the courses. This was paired with a nice velvety late harvest red wine.

Date cake with Tahitian vanilla ice cream with carmelized bacon and dried pear slice. I really don't even know how to describe this one. The carmelized bacon was an unlikely pair with the date cake but somehow it was a really nice touch to the dessert.

Great presentation of loose tea and served in individual teapots. I'm hoping for Christmas I can get a nice loose tea presentation box. We both had a lemongrass herbal tea. This was a nice way to top off our dinner and warm us up before we headed outdoor.

What was more amazing about this dining experience was the General Manager gave us a tour of the kitchen. Executive Chef Kinch was somewhat busy so all he could manage was a subtle wave to acknowledge our presence. Not too bad considering we've never been in the kitchen to see a kitchen's choreographed dance. One of the highlights of the kitchen was a professional stove that was imported from France. It cooks with even heat at various tempertures. The chef basically moves the pot over the French top(not open but smooth so fuel smell of gas doesn't affect the food) of the stove which was made of cast iron. You can read more from the SFGate Review.

After so much wine(we don't usually drink), we went for a walk on Santa Cruz Ave in the extremely cool November evening...it was getting close to midnight when we headed home. I guess dinner did take over 3 hours! But we really didn't notice the time since we were savoring each bite of our meal and enjoying spending quality time together.

4 Course Meal was $85 and another $52 for the wine pairing
Chef's Tasting Menu(seasonal and spontaneous) was $115 and another $72 for the wine pairing.

Next time we'll plan for an earlier dinner and try the tasting menu.

October 25, 2006 11:49 AM Food & Wine  |   Link
Moving On Over to...


for all food related topics. CW has posted many amazing links related to food and wine.

October 11, 2006 04:32 PM Food & Wine  |   Link
Tea Pot Wish List

Float Tea Lantern

Ooh so beautiful and simple and very much a great talking piece when doing afternoon tea.

Here's another one from Adagio Teas: ingenuiTEA
Globo Teapot

August 22, 2006 10:25 AM Food & Wine  |   Comments (0)  |   Link
Elu Party at St. Supery

We enjoy this winery so much. We were Divine Club Members for a while and remained on their mailing list. We went to their Spring Fling last year and had such a wonderful time meeting new people who enjoy good food and great wine. We've always enjoyed their Elu whenever we got one in the shipment. It's a meritage with a nice balance of all of the St. Supery flavors and body.

Elu Release Party September 30 at Rutherford

June 17, 2006 06:05 PM Business & Finance  |   Link
Work at SBUX = Gain Weight

Interesting article regarding high transfats in Starbucks food and beverages. Sounds like a consumer watch group is going to sue Starbucks about the unhealthy qualities of their drinks and especially their snacks.

Starbucks targeted over high-fat products
I remember writing about this a while ago regarding the high calorie and high fat contents.

April 27, 2006 04:14 PM Food & Wine  |   Link
The Article I Never Got a Chance to Write

I have it on my list of articles to write but didn't get to while I was in Hong Kong, but Jerry Yang does a great job of itemizing some of our favorite desserts. And the best thing is they are all available here in the Bay Area. There's a really cool dessert place in Milipitas Square that has these awesome chinese mango desserts with sago. Now that the weather is better, I'll email everyone one of these days for a dessert run!

Dessert Storm - Jerry Yang, SF Gate

April 24, 2006 10:26 AM Food & Wine  |   Link
April in Carneros

Had a wonderful day on Saturday with T&H in Carneros, Sonoma/Napa Wine Country. It's a twice yearly event where a little over a dozen wineries open their doors to wine tasting. In most cases these wineries are so small that they are only open by appointment. Their stock is limited but through events liek April in Carneros they are still accessible. So basically you get a map of the 17 or so wineries, you plunk down $25 and get a wine glass to take to each of the sites and a black wristband denoting you paid. Some wineries had 1-2oz pours others just poursed until you got a good tasting. I remember T got almost half a glass of barrel tasting at one of the wineries. The wine-aholic that I am, I got some of the winemakers to sign the bottles we bought. Most of the tastings were really good and was free to go back for seconds. Most of the venues had various merchants selling oil, cheese or mustard. Live music was present at many of the sites and in many cases there was also free food, either sausage or beef sandwiches. Some were nice an elegant wineries with tents and beautiful landscapes, others were just like garage-style warehouses where they store and also do tastings. We spent the whole day and probably stopped at about 7 or 8 winers, I can't remember. Lucky for us T drove, I don't think I could have made it back home. I think next time I'm considering staying in town. So next time you're here for dinner, we'll probably bust open some of the wines we bought.

April in Carneros

April 03, 2006 09:18 PM Food & Wine  |   Comments (0)  |   Link
Yummy Goodness

I know, I'm on weight watchers but really couldn't pass up the chance to make a special snack that we had while in Hong Kong. I guess I'm sentimental. Basically it's a thick slice of toast, slathered with peanut butter and drizzled all over with condensed milk. It's like a variation of peanut butter and jelly sandwich but instead of fruity sweetness you have this extra sweet creaminess on top and it is served open face. We ate this afternoon snack with tea back in HK and only after we had or were planning to go to the gym...you needed some way to burn off the calories. Eating it just now with J we began to reminisce of our old hangouts.

Here's a photo of it I found on Flickr.

Here's a better photo I took from one we made at home.

I guess I should take a photo of one that I make at home. However I do know of a couple HK style cafes in San Mateo and Milpitas that have them on their menu. I can't wait for the weather to get better to so I can truly enjoy mango with black sticky rice and coconut milk. If you're interested in a HK dessert run to Milpitas(there's a chain cafe from HK there) that serves up some of our favorite dessert, just email me.

Food & Wine  |   Link
Almost Homemade Cooking

I have a friend who just started working at Sous Kitchen. The concept is pretty interesting and has become rather popular in many major cities. NY Times featured it last week, "Meals That Moms can Almost Call Their Own."(fee)

Basically how it works is that you go to this restaurant quality kitchen and put together your meals. They set up various stations with all the ingredients and the recipe. You can make large or small portions and they are all fresh meats and vegetables. You can make several meals in an hour and just freeze them when you get home. These meals can serve anywhere between 4-6 people depending on the portion sizes. Since it's just me and J at home it would be quite expensive but what is really neat is you can customize the meals based on your family's taste. Also if you are in a super rush you can order certain meals to go and pick it up. And the best idea as well is if you have a family/friend having a baby or some medical surgery that renders family unable to fix meals this could be a great service for them to stock up on homecooked meals without the worry of buying all the ingredients and making it at home.

With most homes with 2 parents working, getting dinner fixed always seems to be one of those things that get pushed off to the side in favor of take-out or prefixed frozen/canned/boxed meals which are usually loaded with preservatives and other additives. Sous Kitchen sounds like an interesting concept and I'm hoping that I can try it sometime.

Sous Kitchen, San Carlos
Grand Opening April 5, 2006
5:30 Ribbon Cutting
5:30-7:30PM Open House
RSVP to grandopening@souskitchen.com

Ok I know this sounds like a ad, but I just thought it was interesting and my friend works there :)

April 02, 2006 08:54 PM Food & Wine  |   Link
Dunk Your Food Here

Had an interesting dining experience with our friends E&M at Le Fondue in Saratoga. It was our first time there and it was quite a treat.

For cheese we did Kirschwasser(Swiss, wine, and brandy). We dipped fruit, veggies and bread and it was quite nice. The brandy really gave it an interesting flavor.

For our main course we did the Le Fondue combination. We shared with E&M their Fondue Feast. We were able to sample buffalo, calamari, wild boar, elk, chicken, steak and various condiments all cooked in sake.

And then for dessert, bittersweet chocolate with a nice big plate of marshmallows, snickers, strawberries, banana, pound cake, grapes and probably some other things I can't remember now.

Saratoga Village is quite the touristy part of town but it's definitely a nice visit. With its variety of restaurants, boutiques, wine bars, cafes, and antique shops you can probably spend a nice afternoon strolling down the street. Not to far away is also the Japanese Gardens and various South Bay hiking trails.

March 29, 2006 12:28 PM Food & Wine  |   Comments (0)  |   Link
Emotional Eating

I know I can control this and I've started back at the gym...even signed up for boot camp again. And to top it off I'm on Weight Watchers again...but I've noticed that with the emotional rollercoaster from February I'm still a mess of sorts...and cooking all our meals don't help...gained some weight(about 10lbs) and it's so darn difficult...it doesn't help that I like to read food blogs like this on cupcakes. Let's see the results in 3 months.

February 07, 2006 03:55 PM Food & Wine  |   Link
When My Favorite Winery Has a Blog...

...I know my family is going to tease me like crazy. I remember one cousin joking that she wasn't surprised that my church has a blog(Taproot)...and btw just added podcasts(Resonate) to that list of technology.

Hey Bryan, why not a podcast of the Wine Club parties? Or even video? Would help bring more wine lovers to your site!

St. Supery Wine Club Blog

January 16, 2006 04:08 PM Food & Wine  |   Link
Hong Kong: Places to Eat

People are really into food in HK. But first and foremost, it has to be a good deal or be super fresh and interesting. Lunch specials usually consist of 3 courses: soup or salad, entree, dessert with cup of hot tea or hot water. Dinners rarely have specials but it doesn't hurt to ask. Don't be afraid to ask what others are having at the next table in most cases if you don't look asian or speak cantonese you will only get the limited English menu.

Here's a short list of the resturants I actually had kept business cards. However if you like I can recommend connecting with one of our friends there who is in the food/restaurant business who could recommend alot more authentic chinese food.


December 30, 2005 05:55 PM Food & Wine  |   Link
Wine or Whine about Madonna

Ok, this is totally something new for me. While I've received gifts of personalized wine the labels are usually just laser printed with a message and a name. But Celebrity Wines has this new line launched with Madonna's latest album.

Madonna Wine

I can't vouch for the wine but I think the art of the label would be nice if you're a collector. But I guess I can always scan my CD insert and paste it on an empty wine bottle :)

December 16, 2005 11:55 AM Whine  |   Link
Domestic Life and the Challenge of Not Being Martha Stewart

Wow this past week has been chock full of domestic activities. I just finished a light-hearted book on nesting.

It's definitely a fun book full of ideas, tips, vignettes of women living a domesticated type life and feeling a little bit more accomplished. Of course I realize it all goes out the door when you have kids as I have heard from close friends. However the recipes and short-cuts for entertaining or even gardening will prove useful someday.

So this past week I learned how to make cookie-cutter sugar cookies and with the lack of artistic abilities was able to decorate them for a community outreach activity. I was also able to do various baking activities involving recipes not found on the back of the Toll-House Chocolate Chip bag, banana nut bread, chili from scratch, and corn bread from scratch.

In addition, I was able to hem my own pants which has saved me some good money since I'm shorter than most petite sizes on the market. I'm starting to get a bit more familiar with my sewing machine and can claim 2 successful projects, even though they were just 2 aprons from Sewing for Dummies.

The garden is a mess but will definitely weed and mulch in the next week or so. Will be planning to add lighting and a better system for the fountain. It's been neglected for the most part this past year because of the redesign of the interior which as I speak is short of a couple of pieces of furniture and some lighting. Did manage to borrow a Christmas tree this year, with just 5 ornaments it's kind of sad looking right now, but hope to hit up Ikea or Kmart shortly for more. Feel free to send us ornaments if you have no clue what to give us.

While at times I envy Martha Stewart's abilities at making domestic life exciting and fun, I still fall short of the eye for detail, patience and creativity to really fully pull it off. I don't have all the entertainment ware and haven't even pulled out our nice stemware for get togethers. Although wine or champagne in styrofoam is definitely a path I won't go down.

Do you mind if I just serve salad in a bag sometimes? Or just get the pre-mixed cookie dough? And maybe oatmeal is the only thing good right now while the weather is chilly. I'll probably have to solicit the help of domestic experts shortly to help with adding the finishing touches at home, but for now I'm content and happy to serve up all the meals and doing laundry.

November 01, 2005 07:55 AM Food & Wine  |   Link
Artificial Ingredients in Organic Food

This is what I get worried about when big businesses want to take over the definition of "organic foods" while lobbying Congress.

"What is Organic? Powerful Players Want a Say" (NY Times, free reg required)

"The debate has been under way for several years. But last week, Senate and House Republicans on the Agriculture appropriations subcommittee inserted a last-minute provision into the department's fiscal 2006 budget specifying that certain artificial ingredients could be used in organic food."

It leaves a question in your mind, how organic is organic when you're paying at least 20% more for food at places like Whole Foods.

October 26, 2005 04:46 PM Food & Wine  |   Link
Don't Pet My All-Clad

I was rolling on the floor when I read this. It's funny because I was feeling somewhat like the writer when I was first researching my set of cookware. I spent 4 weeks studying prices, sales, and quality of cookware. From epinions to consumer report and various cooking/food sites. I think I did more research on the cookware than on deciding where to buy a house.

Is It Ok To Festishize Cookware? Mark Morford, SF Gate

August 24, 2005 10:33 AM Food & Wine  |   Link
Toaster Oven Savior

No One Ever Slaved Over a Hot Toaster Oven
NY Times.com
Melissa Clar, August 24, 2005

I'm going to have to try the dishes she made using her toaster oven. I've been grilling alot this summer since when the stove/oven heats up the whole house gets too warm. But I never thought to try the various features on my toaster oven(kitchen aid) except for toasting or reheating a slice of pizza(love how it keeps the crust crunchy).

July 05, 2005 04:27 PM Food & Wine  |   Link
Wahoo's Fish Tacos

While we were dating, Jeff and I frequented many of the Wahoo's Fish Taco joints at Huntington Beach and Costa Mesa...and we totally missed them when we moved to the Bay Area. While I was walking around Santana Row with my friend M I spotted one and a flood of memories eating bonsai burritos blurred why I was there.

Wahoo's Fish Tacos

Update: Earlier when I first saw Wahoo's I was tempted to go in and order something for myself. I decided to head back to SR with Jeff that same day. I could hardly wait for my Bonsai Burrito. It was absolutely wonderful. We had a side of nachos with the works and the true taste test of nostalgia was the salsa. Oh my gawd, felt like we were back in Costa Mesa again. Punk music blaring throughout, surfer videos playing, stickers all over the place (not as disorderly as HB or CM), and that same Wahoo's look and feel. Next time I'll wear my worn out Wahoo's t-shirt.

June 21, 2005 12:01 PM Food & Wine  |   Link
Did Ya Know...

I was bored waiting for my non-fat chai the other day at Starbucks(SBUX). So I was staring at the wall and found a brochure of the "nutritional" facts for each drink combination they serve there. I wish they had one for the food. However, I was totally amazed to see the calorie and fat content for the drinks.

Online Nutritional Information for Drinks | Food

So here are the top 5 unhealthy drinks at SBUX:
1. Vanilla Creme, with whipped cream, Venti, Breve: 890 cal, 70 g fat
2. Hot Chocolate, with whipped cream, Venti, Breve: 870 cal, 64g fat
3. Caffe Latte, Venti, Breve: 710 cal, 62g fat
4. Vanilla Creme, without whipped cream, Venti, Breve: 790 cal, 61g fat
5. White Chocolate Mocha, with whipped cream, Venti, Breve: 900 cal, 61g fat

My tall nonfat chai is 170 cal, 0g fat. I was really surprised with #5. That's like all your fat for a day and half of your calories for the day...all in just one drink. That's like 2 hours on a treadmill going 4mph or you can take a jumprope class for an hour which burns about 1000 calories an hour. I think I'll stick to tea which has 0 cal and 0 fat...or my nonfat chai here and there!

May 18, 2005 08:26 PM Food & Wine  |   Link
Cup of Hot Cocoa

I know I shouldn't but I've bought fat free powdered hot cocoa. Directions say put cocoa in cup and pour 8 oz of hot water or milk and stir. A few weeks back I went to see Basia down in LA. Unfortunately it was raining and cold and wasn't too interested in having wine or beer. So I ordered hot cocoa. I was imagining a nice big cup of creamy hot cocoa. What I got was brown water. The server actually dumped powdered cocoa in a 16oz styrofoam cup and filled it to the top with hot water. First we had to wait 10 minutes since they ran out of cups, and then the water was too hot to drink. Finally one sip...*bleh* And to think a glass of merlot was just $2 more than a cup of hot cocoa...argh! So here I am sitting in the kitchen with my hot cocoa, listening to smooth jazz, and catching up on email. Tomorrow: quest for the really good hot cocoa with a bit of spice.

May 16, 2005 06:36 PM Food & Wine  |   Link
May Afternoon at St. Supery

I'm a member of St. Supery's wine club. During the nice warm weather months, they host several activities for their members and others. This year we attended the Spring Fling. It was great food, company, and of course wine with a nautical theme and oysters galore. Our table must have had the most fun there with the laughter, and the mock sobriety walk to the Sauvignon Blanc table. Wherever in life we've come from, we all definitely had a wonderful time!

Here's the gang at St. Super May 14, 2005

Food & Wine  |   Link
Wine Industry Catches Up to the Flattening of the World

Courts Strike Down Ban on Wine Shipments
By HOPE YEN, Associated Press Writer

This is a big deal. Yes there are many distributors who will be out of business in many states. But let's get to the 21st century and Internet sales. Wineries can now ship directly to consumers in various states that banned direct sales of alcohol. So when the whole retail industry was jumping on board the online sales bandwagon, many wineries and other alcohol companies were severely limited on how they could sell wines online. So now it will be interesting to see how internet sales go for online wineries!

May 11, 2005 07:16 PM Food & Wine  |   Link
More-with-Less Cookbook

Interestingly enough I've been cooking all our meals. Somehow eating at home is such a treat after having such a cramp and inadequate kitchen and cookware. So here I am trying my best to be a domesticated housewife. Tory(HK friend) comes to the rescue with a very simple cookbook recommendation.

More-with-Less Cookbook

More than 25 years old and written by Mennonites about simple and frugal cooking.

I can't wait to get my hands on one. The reviews as pretty good on Amazon.

April 18, 2005 05:09 PM Food & Wine  |   Link
Planning that Next Plane Trip

Found this site from NY Times. Folks have taken photos of their in-flight meals from various airlines and shared them at www.airlines.net It's pretty fun to surf the photos especially of those in first or business class. You can't miss this site if you are planning a long plane trip. It's like getting a preview of your meal. Also my advice when traveling on long flights 8+ hours...order a special meal at least 48 hours ahead of time or at booking. You get fed before the general cabin and the food is not so bad, especially if you go Kosher or Eastern Vegetarian.

February 06, 2005 05:53 PM Food & Wine  |   Link
Strange things to eat

Last night over a family dinner for CNY we had snake. So it wasn't like in Indiana Jones and the Temple of Doom where a snake was cut open and eaten uncooked. It was more like a chicken soup with lots of different things in it including snake meat. I can't say that I didn't like it since I couldn't really tell what was in the soup except the chicken broth and pieces of chicken and other stuff.

Did I mention that while we were in Beijing we had camel. Nothing interesting, just camel meat in some kind of sauce with vegetables. We didn't know we were eating it until the waitress told us all the dishes which happened to be all cold. Very chewy but the flavor was unmemorable.

Never got a chance to have scorpian or any of the interesting meals that they serve on a snack street in Beijing, but I'm not that adventureous.

January 05, 2005 06:58 AM Food & Wine  |   Link
The VIP Chef and Famous Restaurants

Here and in China one of the things I noticed walking or driving around is how prominent the chef's portrait is for an establishment. Even around the block from our place there's a restaurant with the photos of their head chef decked out with many ribbons and medals. In China I remember seeing the portrait of their chef hanging above their front door. This wasn't your your typical 8x12 photo, no these were huge portraits possibly more close to 8 feet by 12 feet. You can be down the street and spot the portrait.

We went to some restaurants only because it was famous for having an imperial heritage or the first one to serve a particular popular imperial dish. But for the most part because we were part of a packaged tour most of our meals were pre-ordered. A majority of the time we got kung pao chicken(one time with the fagaro pepper), some kind of egg drop or hot and sour soup, bok choy with mushrooms, and slices of oranges/watermelons. The only time we had something noticeably different was our dinner in Beijing at an Imperial restaurant and we had something we thought was beef but turned out to be camel. It was kind of unappetizing since most of the food was cold and earlier that day we were just admiring a camel at the Great Wall.

We had one chance to order on our own and boy did it take a while since the menu was not in English. So we could have ended up with snake but opted for pheasant instead. The other time we were on our we decided to order room service or eat at the hotel. If anything we were just excited to have really hot food.

I didn't really drink wine or beer over the trip since I was recovering from food poisoning early in the trip and I was afraid of many unfamiliar things on my plate or cup. For at least 2 days I think I just ate saltine crackers and rice porridge.

November 16, 2004 07:43 AM Food & Wine  |   Link
She handed me a vegemite sandwich

Not for the faint of heart...and doesn't really go in the "wine" aspect of the "food and wine" category." However just the same it's about food.

I was visiting with some aussie/kiwi friends this evening and had my first experience with Vegemite... Yes I was a Vegemite virgin.

"Curiously familiar," I said with my mouth chewing on the cracker. "I think I like it."

Was I an Aussie in a former life? Why did this Vegemite mixed with margarine on a cracker tast really good? Wow, it's vegetarian friendly...but wait there's more, it's got lots of nutritional value. Could this be, a more nutritional spread to replace my Nutella?

October 27, 2004 09:26 PM Food & Wine  |   Link
Minimal Cooking

So you might not remember but our place is really small. I have no oven or dishwasher or even a microwave. Just a 2 burner stove. Here's a photo of the kitchen. After finding CitySuper we bought some groceries(some, since our fridge is just a little bigger than a dorm fridge) I started to really get into cooking. Yesterday I made an omellete and today for lunch I made our favorite lentils with rice. It was ok. I remember back in Napa in May I just had a hot plate, microwave, mini convection/toaster oven in a room the size of a small closet with a little sink. I was able to cook some elaborate dinner. I guess sometimes we get spoiled with all the gadgets that Williams Sonoma and other cookware stores sell you. We also have become dependent on modern appliances. But it comes back down to is what are you trying to make and what tools are really necessary to make it. Also with the dinky fridge I shop more often which means the ingredients are fresher. Which brings me back to kitchens and cooking technique.

Before I left for Napa in May I was really thinking of renovating the kitchen for more space. After Napa and especially after living here in HK, I don't think it's about space. It's about getting rid of junk. I probably have lots of things I only take out once a year and then it's really just for decorative reasons. But I remember watching tv shows about Galley kitchens on boats. Aesthetics are important as well to create a mood, but with simple dishware and stemware I think you can still pull off a nice dining experience.

What I noticed that with minimal space you can really cook up a storm. It's all about efficiency of tools and not wasting. I can imagine in Japan and other places with dense living space that's the case as well. Hopfully with more practice cooking here, I'll probably still remodel the kitchen back home but to modernize the space and increase the dining/socializing area. I'll have to read up on Galley kitchens as well.

October 14, 2004 09:29 AM Food & Wine  |   Link
Random Outing

We did something that we're not accustomed to. We did a wine dinner at the JW Marriott's California with Chef John Sarich of Chateau Ste Michelle. Wonderful opportunity to schmooze with HK elite including the chef and Watson Cellar's Rob Temple. A great opportunity to sample wonderful wine and food from the Pacific Northwest. We thought it would be too forward to take photo of the food so we just took random photos coming home after the meal. We did however get a polaroid photo(shake it...shake it...shake it....) from the restaurant included in this evening's photo shoot.

October 11, 2004 11:48 PM Travel  |   Link
Sushi Shota

So in addition to hitting up Lonely Planet's Hong Kong guide, our family and friends here have been recommending restaurants in and around Causeway Bay. Today we had lunch at Sushi Shota. They have a nice and simple offering for lunch. For 120HKD(less than 20USD) you can get 8 pieces of sushi, 1 roll, miso, a hot egg custard appetizer, coffee, tea, and dessert. You get to choose your sushi and roll too. The fish was very fresh and the variety of choices was manageable.

The restaurant was well lit in a contemporary Japanese decor. The music(equivalent to elevator music of easy rock from the late 80s and early 90s) was appropirate considering the older age crowd. Fortunately we beat the lunch crowd that came in just after 12:30. People here in HK generally have their lunch break anwhere between 12:30 and 2pm.

Sushi Shota
8/F, Kyoto Plaza
491-499 Lockhart Rd,
Causeway Bay, HK

Call to make reservations for a table(Tel:28343031). We came in at 12:20 and it was empty but within 10 minutes the whole place was packed. When we were leaving a waiting crowd started to form.

Hours:11:45-15:00, 18:00-23:00

Travel  |   Link
Chinese Desserts

One of my favorite activities here is eating dessert. I'm not talking large mountains of chocolate or plates of almond cookies or oranges. It's been dessert after dessert of lots of tropical fruit(mangos/lychee/jackfruit/coconut), coconut milk, rice, beans. Desserts here are either hot souplike concoctions or nice icy delights.

Besides all the tropical flavored ice creams I have fallen for sesame flavored ice cream. Next to mango, taro and lychee, I think it's my favorite. Alongside Haagen Daz and XTC my favorite ice cream and gelato places, there are various dessert shops everywhere that have both the custard and pudding type desserts as well as the shaved ice with fruit.

It's not that expensive as well. An ice cream sundae at HD would cost around 60HKD and my sticky rice with mango and coconut milk is only 20HKD. To save on the 10% service charge if you sit, I just take mine home to enjoy at home while at the laptop. I'll take photos next time to share what it looks like. You'll have to come here to taste it yourself.

October 06, 2004 07:31 PM Food & Wine  |   Link
Wine Librarians Association Meeting (FREE)

Could it be? Two of my favorite things in one association. Yes it is. Southern California has a sub-group of librarians with a professional interest in wine books. If you love books about wine and are a librarian, check this out!

We, the Wine Librarians Association, are putting on an event down there.
Danette Cooke-Adamson of Cal Poly has put on a great show coming up on
October 28. Now we need to fill the seats. The kicker is it's
professional development, intellectual and sensory stimulation, and wine
and food and it's all free. Are there listservs or blogs or places to
post this event. It's history, art, wine, food, librarianship,
forgotten geniuses and more, and, did I mention, it's all free.


June 10, 2004 08:08 PM Food & Wine  |   Link
UPS Notifications for Delivery

UPS Label

How would any driver test a receiver of this type of package? Do they carry around breath-alizers? I couldn't pass up sharing this interesting label of my latest wine club shipment.

March 24, 2004 08:19 PM Food & Wine  |   Link
French Laundry

While I am on my break in May, I hope to get the pleasure to visit French Laundry. Currently it's being remodeled and so I have to wait another week before they hopfully turn on their online reservations.

A really cool description of the dining experience at French Laundry by Megnut.

June 02, 2003 05:24 PM Food & Wine  |   Link
Love, Marriage and Food

We just celebrated our 4th wedding anniversary on Friday. From recommendations from friends at work we made reservations for The Village Pub in Woodside, CA.

Despite my being late, my husband was seated right away and offered a drink. The food and service was amazing. Melody our server was very helpful in assisting us on the selection. Since we're vegetarians(pesci) she was able to confirm that no meat products were in our meals. She was quick without being pushy to check for additional drinks to complement our meals & dessert. We didn't feel rushed and enjoyed everything in little under 2 hours.

He had artichoke/asparagus salad and I had scallops for first course. For the main entree, he had salmon and I had ahi tuna. For dessert we had the chocolate souffle; Decide early since the souffle takes a bit to arrive. Drinks: a nice subtle pinot noir & pre-dinner drink I had a cosmo. We're hoping to go back in the near future to try the caviar and champagne.

More details about The Village Pub:
Woodside Dining

March 31, 2003 08:07 PM Food & Wine  |   Comments (0)  |   Link
Dining with Caltrain

I've been talking to friends over the past few months about a new project I'm planning to begin in the next month or so. I will be trying to have dinners or lunches along the Caltrain path. Along with having those meals, I'm going to write up a review. Since I'm a vegetarian, it will probably be limited to non-meat dishes, but I figured it's a good start. Perhaps I'll build another blog just for those restaurants so others can also post their reviews.

Some known areas to dine:
4th & King
San Mateo
Palo Alto
California Ave (Palo Alto)
Menlo Park
Mountain View(Castro Street)

My goal is to provide weary travelers a plethora of options to choose from if their main form of transportation is Caltrain. This project would not take as long if the trains were running on the weekend, oh well.

Food & Wine  |   Link
Eating with a fork & spoon

Sometimes when I eat at an Asian restaurant and I see that spoon placed on the right side of my plate, I feel at home. I don't care anymore if I'm in public. Growing up I used to think eating with my spoon was so backwards and that it was only acceptable at home. Now if I see it there, I get excited and I use it like I was at home. In most cases it is not big enough to be a serving spoon so I use it.

I remember when I was Catholic school, I think in the 3rd grade, one of my filipino friends brought left overs from dinner for lunch. Of course she came to school with that nice adobo chicken or some crispy pata(pork shoulder) with a nice helping of rice, nothing like that could compare to a ham & cheese sandwich. During Lent she actually gave up eating with a spoon at school, thinking it was a sacrifice. Thinking back, I think that was wrong. She would equate eating with a spoon as a sacrifice. Gosh what kind of hardship is that. I guess it's like asking someone who has always eaten with chopsticks to give them up for some reason to eat with only a fork.

So now I wonder, why does it give me so much comfort to eat with a fork and spoon. Heck it's just easier to shovel the food on a spoon especially if the dish is some kind of stew with rice, then to have to balance grains of rice with hardly any of the nice stewlike sauce over it. Or maybe because I don't eat filipino food anymore(because it's basically non-vegetarian) that when I eat somewhere asian with a spoon readily available, I feel like I'm at home again.

Cultural issue? Not really when you live in the Bay Area. I even have my husband prefering a fork & spoon combination during a meal rather than chopsticks. I actually don't care, if people stare at me with my spoon. I don't chow down like a pig or anything, I just think I'm more graceful with a spoon.