BAM! Tapas Sake Bar – a cacophony of colour and flavour

bam-opener

Having sampled some amazing modern tapas restaurants in Spain, Japan and Singapore over the years, I confess that I am rather partial to this genre. Tapas is a celebration of life with its cacophony of colours and tastes – all enjoyed in a casual and energetic setting. BAM! on Tras Street met all these key benchmarks and then some. With such an explosive name, my expectations were, ahem, loaded. Continue Reading →

Best Yakitori in Tokyo? – Yakitori Hachibei Restaurant, Roppongi

hachibei yakitori tokyo bacon

Since are so many choices when dining in Tokyo, why do I keep coming back to something so simple like Yakitori? Yakitori is ostensibly the most basic of foods – meats and vegetables, grilled on a stick. Many cultures have something similar like Thai moo ping (grilled pork on a stick) or Turkish kofte (grilled lamb kebabs) but I would argue that the Japanese version of a meal on a stick is by far the best. The Japanese obsession with detail elevates even the simplest of dishes and yakitori is no exception. As such, whenever I am in Tokyo I am perpetually on the hunt for a new yakitori place to try. Continue Reading →

The Best Steamboat I have Ever Eaten, Man Fu Yuan

MFY-flambe

There are some friends who you simply trust explicitly when it comes to food recommendations. My friend L is one such person. So when she raved about the best steamboat meal she’d ever had, and added the caveat that she had been introduced to this gastronomic revelation by none other than Wong Ah Yoke, chief food critic of The Straits Times, the main English newspaper here in Singapore, I knew it was something I had to try for myself. And soon. Continue Reading →

The chicken and all its good bits – dining at Yakitori Shinka in Tokyo

10-seat room at Yakitori Shinka

On a recent trip to Tokyo, this ten-seat restaurant in Nishi-Azabu (near Roppongi), was the only place I booked in advance.  I had read that the chef pairs his food with wine, as well as sake, and that lured me right in. Continue Reading →

Kenzan – Japanese fine dining with a delightful European twist

Sabuton

While it’s easy to find great food in Tokyo’s Ginza, Akasaka belt, hunting down those gems pretty much unknown to foreigners is that much more fun. Kenzan is one such jewel. Nestled in the prime residential district of Shoto, Kenzan offers its unique blend of Japanese fine dining with a delightful twist. Continue Reading →

Savour South East Queensland, Australia

Urbane dish

Prawns – Courtesy of Urbane Restaurant

There has been a flourishing in South East Queensland food scene.  Gorgeous, bountiful local produce, which there’s never been a shortage of, is making its ways to the creative, able hands of extraordinary chefs, and to the tables of some tremendous restaurants. Continue Reading →

Pleased to Meet You, global trendsetter, Western Australia

pleasedtomeetyou

One of my favorite places to eat, on past trips to Perth was Harvest, a wonderful laid-back space in North Freemantle. Brunch at Harvest was a must on many a visit. Sadly, Harvest closed down in 2013. So, when I heard that owner Clint Nolan had opened a new place, this time in Northbridge, I marked it down as one of our possible must-try restaurants for our March 2014 trip. And then, later, when I started reading some of the early reviews and blog posts about Pleased to Meet You, it quickly became the one restaurant in Perth that I knew I simply had to try. Continue Reading →

Looking for the best sushi in Bangkok? Try Isao Sushi

isao sushi bangkok

I miss living in Bangkok. I miss the Thai food, the Thai massages and the beaches. But one of the things I miss most is Isao Sushi. Sushi???? As one of the most missed things from Bangkok? Yes, indeed! Continue Reading →

One perfect day in Hunter Valley, New South Wales

Braemore vineyardBraemore Vineyard – Courtesy of Thomas Wines

The Hunter Valley Wine country is New South Wales’ largest wine region.  Its proximity to Sydney, a drive less than two hours away, makes it a perfect escape from the city.  One day in the Hunter can pack a lot of activity and ignite the senses without wearing you out as a visitor.  It’s an ideal detour from the joys of Sydney’s harbour and beaches. Continue Reading →

Knee Deep: The best vineyard restaurant – and maybe the best restaurant – in Western Australia

margaret-river-knee-deep-dessert

A year ago, a foodie friend has posted some pictures from a meal he was having in Magaret River, the picturesque wine region that is 3 hours south (by car) of Perth, in Western Australia. He was raving about a chef and a vineyard restaurant that neither I nor my wife had heard of. And since we both trust said foodie friend, we made it a point, on our recent trip Down Under, to check out Knee Deep Winery and have lunch at the vineyard’s restaurant. Continue Reading →