Again, today I have a pastry class, so I won’t have time to write a long entry. But I still want this to be exciting, entertaining, and somewhat valuable to you all; therefore, I’m going to talk about my top 10 favorite restaurants aboard.
I’ve been very fortunate to get to travel around the world with my family. To me, nothing is more exciting that discovering a country’s culture through their cuisine. Every country has its charm and its different ways of going about their cooking – some eat their bread with butter and some eat their bread with oil.
I believe a market, be it produce or farmer’s, is the quickest road to learning about that country’s food. You could just walk around and see what kind of products they have readily available, what the locals buy, and what strange –looking things they have. Apart from wandering around the market, I believe it’s also the best to let the local advise you about which restaurants to visit. True, the concierge has been properly trained for this job and they have the knowledge and technology to guide you around the area. I admit they are very useful, but, sadly, you often end up in a restaurant that he/she had previously advised 30 other customers from your hotel. So, either specify that you want to eat at a neighborhood gem or let your friend be your guide!
Here are 13 of the places that I’m majorly craving right now, not in a particular order:
My absolute favorite Italian restaurant – if you like large plates of home-style pastas and pizzas, where the chef does not hold back on the cheese, the garlic, or the seasoning! Also, back in the days, Princess Diana used to frequent this small local joint often! My favorite dishes are the garlic bread, Rigatoni Amatriciana (Pancetta, Onions, Tomato Sauce, Fresh Basil,) and rigatoni con broccoli (fresh Broccoli, Pancetta, Cream Sauce, Parmesan, Fresh Basil.) Ain’t nothing fancy about these dishes but, boy, they’re good! (FYI, it’s SO hard to find a decent pic of this place!)
15 GLOUCESTER ROAD, LONDON SW7 4PP.
Swanky décor, stylish crown, and succulent Japanese dishes – what more could you ask for! Out of the many upscale Japanese restaurants out there, such as Nobu, and Megu to name a dfew, Zuma is my favorite. I love the décor, I love getting dressed up to go there, and I love celeb spotting. But none of that beats the thrill of putting a piece of their melt in the mouth black cod into your mouth..and, yes, I do make an exception and eat swimming things here. It’s THAT good!
5 Raphael Street London SW7 1DL, United Kingdom 020 7584 1010
It’s funny, now that I think about it, that most of my favorite restaurants are in London -probably because I spend years in the UK. Anyhow, everyone always gives me a puzzled look when I say, proudly, that my favorite place for dim sum is Royal, China in London. Yes I’ve been to all the famous dim sum places in HK, and I still love Royal China the most. I have to admit thought it’s partly because the service is much nicer, and there aren’t people serving dishes over your head, HK-style. But, seriously, the food there is awesome, so awesome that I had to leave the Heathrow during my 5 hours layover just to go grab a quick lunch there and came back to catch my flight home. I really miss their roast pork puff, fried dough cheung fun, and taro pie.
13 Queensway, London – 020 7221 2535
A shop with such amazing pastries and a LONGGGG history =the first Richmond Maids of Honour shop can be traced back to the early 18th century. One of the most wonderful joys in life is taking a bite out of their creamy yet light as air sponge drop that’s filled with fresh cream and jam.
288 Kew Road. Kew Gardens. Surrey TW9 3DU
Ippudo is my absolute favorite ramen and ramen is probably one of my favorite thing to it. Boy, I would go to Tokyo just for it (if I had the time and the money, that is.) As I already talked about it in my Japan entry, please read about it here -https://mysousvidelife.wordpress.com/2010/07/16/tokyo-guide-for-the-non-fish-eaters/
1-3-13 Hiroo, Hainezu Ebisu, Shibuya-ku, Tokyo
Macarons are my obsession and Ladurée makes the best ones; although Pierre Hermé comes very close, nut the rose macarons at Ladurée still win, hands down! Also, everything about their candy-colored salon is just too cute for words.
75,avenue des Champs-Elysees, 75008 Paris, France. Tel: 01.40.75.08.75.
Amazing service, elaborate table-service-style buffet, and great food – what’s not to like! I had the most amazing boxing day buffet here last year. We entered the restaurant and were greeted with a bunch of festive things on our table such as party hat, a wish bone, and a little present. Oh did I forget to mention the essential detail that it was free-flow Veuve Clicquot? Need I say more? Unless the free-flow champagne part doesn’t do the trick, I’ll let the pictures do the talking.
5 Connaught Road
Lady M is super tiny but super classy. The all-white shop displays the beautiful gem-like cakes like a piece of jewelry, on different level stands with plenty of space around each cake. This tiny bakery will always have “the original” mille crêpe in my book -only because I first had it there long before it’d gained immense popularity in Thailand.
41 E78th street between Madison and Park
Although Sarabeths and Balthazars have an all-around better brunch; I’m a sucker for French-toast, which is why I chose to talk about Norma’s. This place serves the most elaborate French toast you could ever find e.g. chocolate decadence frech toast covered in strawberries, pistachio, whipped cream, and valhrona chocolate sauce with asparagus and wild mushrooms!
119 W56th, NY
A mound of crispy flavorful Korean-style fried chicken with sochu, anyone?
213 W35th St, NY
Go to this tiny spot to watch the owner, Chika, works her magic as she prepares desserts right in front of your eyes. If you are a fan of having something that tastes nothing like it looks, you must go here -her cheesecake is served as a white minimalistic sphere which contrasts with the delicate flower-patterned tea set. She also has the most amazing ice-cream scooping technique EVER! You gotta go see for yourself! Prepare to go early though since the place is tiny and there’s always a line!
203 East 10th Street, New York
If you would like to overload your senses with too many tempting restaurants at once – go here. Home to the food network recording studio, you know that people there take their food very seriously! Come hungry and leave happy (with the emphasis on the hungry part!)
Address: 75 9th Avenue (Between 15th and 16th Streets), New York, NY 10011
Best burger, hands down!