On food & travel: Aptece food tour of Portugal competition

This post is an entry to the Aptece Food Tour of Portugal competition: “How is food your main reason for traveling and what are your expectations for the food tour?

My curious belly holds a lot of sway when it comes time to decide on a new travel destination.  Research into the country in question typically starts with what the local specialties are and how it is emblematic of its native land.  Truth be told, I’m not sure what one can’t learn about a country from its food.  You can glean a bit about the history, culture, traditions and its people from one bite – though I always recommend taking many more, just to be sure :) Continue reading


Seafood & summer

If there is a particular group of food that defines summer for me it’s seafood.  Growing up in New England,  a meaty lobster roll with a buttery corn on the cob was never too far from reach.  Nor were east coast oysters, fried clams or crab cakes.  Weekend gatherings for clambakes and BBQs after a few hours clocked in at Singing Beach is my idea of the perfect New England summer spent with friends and family.

Now that I’m in London I’ve embraced picnics in the royal parks and bustling street food markets as my English summer time staple.  But this past weekend – perhaps from from all the seafood porn on my Instagram feed – I was inspired to spend an afternoon trying out a new recipe of linguine with mussels in a saffron-infused white wine broth. Linguine-saffron-mussels-horizontal-Joanna-Yee-

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Fresh Fujian noodles

Sating my noodle head cravings with Fujian noodles

I come from a long line of noodle heads.  Before communism claimed south Vietnam, my maternal grandfather had built himself a small but respectable business as a noodle maker and before long a noodle soup street food vendor in one of the alleyways of Saigon.  As a father to nine daughters and four sons, he had bred a size-able production line of noodle lovers and makers.

I have never met my mother’s father.  He passed away before he had the chance to emigrate to America with the rest of his family but my aunts often say that he would have loved my penchant for noodles.

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Fera at Claridge's amuse bouche

Photo essay: the colors of Fera at Claridge’s

A few weeks ago I had the pleasure of enjoying a long lunch with a new friend and fellow expat, Julie of A Lady in London, at Fera the new restaurant in Claridge’s hotel.  Everything about the restaurant caught my eye, from the dark, burlesque-like entryway into the restaurant to the aquamarine dining room, further contrasted by the moodier bar.  And while Chef Simon Rogan’s menu is the main draw, I couldn’t help but marvel at the feast of colors from each dish and the beautiful dining ware that accompanied it.

Here’s a visual account of our three course lunch, which were primarily selections from the sea.  For a complete review of Fera at Claridge’s visit Julie’s post here.Fera at Claridge's, London

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A cacao-inspired brunch at Rabot 1745

It was 10:30 am on a Saturday morning.  There was a thickening crowd of people in Borough Market as I made my way to Rabot 1745, a restaurant with a cacao-centric menu, for 10:45 am reservations.  The food stalls were open and alive with energy while some of the restaurants were slowly awakening.  Elliot’s Cafe, one of my favorite lunch spots in the area, already had customers, with beverages in hand, sat outside people watching, the oyster restaurant I’ve been meaning to try stood still and a few doors over a line, formed by over 30 coffee drinkers, congested the street outside Monmouth Coffee.  I wondered if I should share in the knowledge that there’s another place they can procure that wonderful coffee just a few steps away without the drag of a line, where I would soon learn also serves a pretty spot on brunch.

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Payday lunch: NOMA, Copenhagen

Taking a day trip to Copenhagen purely to lunch at NOMA isn’t completely as frivolous as it sounds.  In April, I met up with 3 friends from Boston for a unique experience of a 20 course lunch at what has consistently been deemed as the World’s Best Restaurant (most recently in 2014).  Coincidentally, all 4 of us were at the end (or beginning, depending on your outlook) of a personal journey.


The adventure begins

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