Tearing into sweet, nutty pretzel lobster tails at @DominiqueAnsel Bakery. Really enjoyed meeting the baker for the first time. He has a very warm, welcoming vibe. So nice. Was fun listening to him talk about his values in food. Finally tried his frozen s’more too! (at Dominique Ansel Bakery)
Have not seen that before…
Braised pork “Grandma recipe” @ Jian Guo 328 in Shanghai
One dish that can’t me missed is this pork dish which is one of the better ones I have had in some time. In a time where concerns over things as simple as cooking oil abound in Asia, this restaurant tries to stand out with its use of higher quality product and no MSG. It helps that the dishes taste great and their combination of portion / size and cost make it easy to try a bunch.
I would also recommend the scallion sauced noodles, a dish that I would show if I thought a photo of this simple offering would do it justice. It is only RMB 18 in a city that has gotten more expensive over time. I have had a similar dish at Ding Tai Fung in Taiwan and I can safely say this one is even better.
I spent the Mid-Autumn Festival in Shanghai this year. Though I have been to the city numerous times in the past, I wanted to try something new for this holiday as the weather was nice and the city surprisingly not too crowded (for once). After some searching, I came across this article from the NY Times:
I like reading their 36 Hours series though I can’t say I always agree with their picks. This one, Jian Guo 328, was spot on. The place is a hole in the wall, but the publicity from the Times article and others have made it a much harder place to book. Call ahead for the 6pm or 8pm seatings for some good home cooking Shanghai style.
Ripped this photo off from Mrs. CB…too bad my iPhone doesn’t always look like this.
Our trip to Maldives included a layover in Singapore, transfer via speed boat and a domestic hop through Kooddoo Airport with its lone check-in counter and not much else. This was the only baggage cart I spotted in the vicinity of the airport…nevertheless, one American traveler on my flight held out hope there might be a VIP lounge awaiting him when he arrived.
On a quiet strip between Roppongi Hills and Midtown is Warayakiya, which has to be one of our favorite izakayas in Tokyo.
They feature a more rural cuisine that originated from the Kochi Prefecture in Shikoku; one of the trademarks is the use of straw in their grill.
Due to the high temperatures of the grill, meat and fish cook quickly and with a unique sear. The sliced chunks of bonito is a favorite there with a smokiness on the outside contrasting with tenderness inside.
We waited 90 minutes for this? But when does the ride start?
Gourmet popcorn is seemingly the latest craze to hit Tokyo. At KuKuRuZa, a small shop recently opened in Omotesando Hills, lines of people gather each day for the chance to purchase this popcorn made by a small Seattle company with flavors ranging from Hawaiian Salted Caramel to the more exotic Truffle Fromage Porcini.
This weekend, Mrs. CB and I decide to sample some of the best desserts and pastries that Tokyo has to offer.
We first headed to Kyobashi to visit Hidemi Sugino, the shop by one of the more famous pastry chefs in Tokyo. He is known for his mousse cakes, achieving great flavor and delicate shapes despite using less gelatin and sugar.
Next, it was off to Midtown for Sadaharu Aoki, famous for combining Japanese flavor and artistic flair with traditional French pieces like the macaron.
The Dean & DeLuca in Midtown is also a good stop, as they also gather some excellent desserts from across Tokyo and sell them in their shop each day so that you can avoid the hassle of tracking them down and waiting in line yourself.
At the end of the afternoon, we were able to assemble an amazing dessert buffet to share at home.