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Family friendly wineries and microbreweries in Margaret River, Western Australia

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Some of the things I was genuinely worried about when planning our family holiday in wine country was whether our son would be cool with letting papa, mama and his grandparents visit some wineries, for meals and also for cellar door tastings. I honestly should not have worried because, as I discovered, many of the best vineyards—and microbreweries as well—cater not just to old farts like me, but also to young visitors. 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

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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 →

Fresh and zingy coleslaw

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My 5-year old son tried coleslaw for the first time the other day, and he absolutely loved it! I seriously don’t know what took me so long. He generally loves crunchy vegetables, and enjoys dipping cucumber and raw carrot sticks in Japanese goma dressing or Korean bean paste, arugula in vinegrette and chomping on the cold iceberg lettuce cups in Chinese restaurants that are served with steamed ginger chicken. As any mother would be, I’m thrilled by his enthusiasm about raw cabbage and carrots! But instead of drenching the vegetables in store-bought dressing, I tried my hand at making my own, and am happy to report that the slaw was a roaring success. Continue Reading →

Keeping the kids happy in Margaret River, Western Australia

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Once upon a time, my wife S and I visited Margaret River, located three hours (by car) south of Perth, Western Australia, on an almost annual basis. In fact, we had some of our best and most romantic holidays there. We’d almost always rent a house or cottage, spend the day visiting wineries, checking out local food producers and end the day with a homecooked meal, washed down of course with a new and yummy discovery. Continue Reading →

Michelin Starred Dim Sum at Tin Lung Heen, Ritz Carlton Hong Kong

Tin Lung Heen Ritz Carlton Hong Kong

When I go to Hong Kong I cannot get enough of dim sum. With the tradition of dim sum originating in Southern China, there may be no better place in the world than Hong Kong to experience this classic Cantonese weekend “brunch” ritual. And while I do have a few “go to” favourite spots for dim sum, I am always up for trying new places. Having heard about Tin Lung Heen from a great many foodie friends, I was sure this would be on my list for this Hong Kong trip. Continue Reading →

Nespresso Aeroccino hack

Nespresso hackI come from a family of coffee drinkers. Every morning like clockwork, each person walks up to the Nespresso machine to get his or her first fix of the day. Personally, I’m not really a fan of Nespresso but do I love the Aeroccino – it’s quick, convenient and can do much more than froth milk for your latte.
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Leek and potato gratin

Leek and potato gratin

My brother D, is your typical meat and potatoes kinda guy. He is always hankering after a good slab of beef, and some weeks ago, for our regular Sunday dinner at my mum’s, he treated the family to some amazing Wagyu steaks. My job was to cook some sides to complement the meat. I instantly thought of having the simplest salad (tomatoes, cucumbers, extra virgin olive oil, salt and pepper) and baking up a tray of this awesome leek and potato gratin. Continue Reading →

Recipe: Roasted bone marrow over porcini risotto

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Back in November last year, I wrote about a dinner I hosted to celebrate the wedding anniversary and birthdays of my brother and his wife (yup, all 3 on the same day). The menu was one I was particularly proud of: uni encased in tomato jelly; slow cooked prawns with scrambled egg and crab roe; foie gras with roasted figs and bocconcini; roasted bone marrow over porcini risotto; charsiu pork medallions with roasted brussel sprouts, spaetzle and pomegranate seeds; Japanese short rib curry; and matcha tiramisu. When I first wrote about the meal, and shared the recipe for the uni jelly, I promised to share some of the other recipes too. Unfortunately, things got in the way and I’m only now fulfilling part of that promise. Continue Reading →