Thursday, December 25, 2014

I remember coming to Hello Dessert for the first time eons ago and how they don't allow photos.  Everything still looks the same and the menu seems to have expanded.  Still not sure about taking photos but I take them anyway! O:)
We ordered 3 drinks, popcorn chicken, and an appetizer assortment that came out to be about $40.  Needless to say that the prices are not cheap.  I got my favorite Mango Moo, which the name is funny enough.  The smooth and flavorful texture of mango topped off with bits of mango.  Ms. Lin Guide decided to try the avocado smoothie and it was good.  You can taste that they use real avocados.  
The popcorn chicken was not bad.  It was better than what I thought they would serve.  I like that they had basil chopped up and fried in the batch.  The appetizer assortment was just okay.  I wish they baked the garlic cheese bread longer so that the cheese could melt.  The fried mozzarella sticks were good but no different from your typical frozen food sold in markets.  I thought the calamari was just meh.  If you want a snack, just go for the popcorn chicken only.

All in all it was fun to take a trip down memory lane.  I still like the Mango Moo, so I'll eventually be back...

Hello Dessert
1698 Hostetter Rd
San Jose, CA 95131
(408) 453-5566
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Tuesday, December 16, 2014

Who doesn't love a good spicy popcorn chicken?  It's a typical Taiwanese snack to munch on with you milk tea.  I heard that Popcorn Chicken just opened up in the 99 Ranch plaza on Culver was comparable to the ones you get in Taiwan.  Of course I had to give it a try after hearing this.
After dinner at Sushi Wasabi, we decided to go towards that area as my BFF wanted milk tea nearby.  I had to stop in and check out their menu.  They offer a wide variety of pre-made products in a case for you to choose from.  There weren't any visible menus so it was a bit tough to distinguish the ordering sust and the prices.
Eventually I found a scantron test sheet reminiscent to my high school and college days that was the menu.  The list did not say how the food was prepared but you can mark how many you want to order.  I decided to get the spicy popcorn chicken and to try their fried pork chop.  The chicken was nicely fried but it was missing the oomph I look for in my popcorn chicken.  Honestly, I make a wonderful succulent popcorn chicken but my laziness always wins.  I think the one offered at I-Tea nearby is better, but depending on who makes it.
The fried pork chop is another common staple of Taiwan and it normally is slightly sweet from the marinade.  Here, they asked how spicy I would like the pork chop which I was a little taken back from being asked.  They said their pork chop is not sweet and my BFF thought it was slightly, but I didn't feel it really was.  The overall flavor was a little bland and I could see why they would offer to put spicy powder on top.
All in all, they seem to offer a good amount to choose from. The concept seems fun and has a very Asian vibe but I think they are a little off on execution.  Since they are new, hopefully they'll pick up the slack and flavors.  I'd be willing to give them another try as their prices are reasonable and service was friendly.

Popcorn Chicken
15333 Culver Dr
Irvine, CA 92604 
(949) 733-9999
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Monday, December 8, 2014

It's been a long time since I've been back up to the Bay Area.  During this trip, I'm making it a goal to eat all the good food I can! Actually that's always my goal! O:)

After a filling lunch at Hog Island Oyster Co, which has great expanded, I mosied on over to Humphrey Slocombe for some tasty ice cream.  I've been before and it was not bad in my memory.  It's got to be better than Ciao Bella, which was here eons ago.  Even though it was late Sunday afternoon, the place was packed!
They only had two employees that were both friendly but swamped.  I tried a bunch of flavors and sampled the 'secret breakfast' with bourbon and crisp flakes. The alcohol wasn't overpowering and had a nice hint of sweetness.  In the end I chose to get the Blue bottle coffee, candy capp, and matcha doodle.  The candy capp had that savory essence embedded amongs the sweet and smooth texture.  Personally I adore the candy capp mushroom on desserts.

The Blue bottle coffee was a safe choice, strong and flavorful.  I though the matcha flavor was subtle in the matcha doodle.  There were bits of snicker doodle embedded in the ice cream.  It's fun but I don't know if I'd get that flavor again.

All in all a great edition to the Ferry Building so that I can endlessly continue to snack :).

Humphrey Slocombe Ice Cream
1 Ferry Plaza
San Francisco, CA 94111
(415) 550-6971
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Saturday, November 8, 2014

Ever since the Fancy Food Show introduced me to the yummy Gimme all natural seaweed snacks, I ordered a case to munch on.  They are all organic snacks that are pretty tasty.  I personally like the cheese flavored crumbles.  Being Asian, we eat seaweed snacks all the time.  It's a new take on an old favorite.  The crumbles are small but very crunchy packed full of flavor.  They offer a few flavors and are very tasty when mixed together.  I recommend the teriyaki and cheese flavor together for a great mix of salty and sweet.  Pick some up at your local market or find the different flavors online.  ^_~

Tuesday, October 14, 2014

Right across from the L'84° Fiera Internazionale del Tartufo Bianco d'Alba is Dario's Gelateria Italiana.  They were offering a special flavor.  What else but Tartufo!!
Of course I had to stop in to delight my senses! We tried one cup first to make sure the gelato has the flavor and essence of truffle.
The Tartufo gelato was €3 and the lady scooped 3 generous scoops.  At first bite, you can taste the richness of the truffle flavor.  Each bite was delightful.  Ms. Lin Guide tasted honey and I felt like there might be a dab of olive oil to the texture.
I'm still hunting for chocolate with real truffles inside and not just shaped like one.  I'll eat anything with white truffles! :)

Buon Appetito!

Saturday, October 4, 2014

The food is always not bad a decent price at Sushi Wazen.  Today the service was very very slow, but always friendly.  I needed more sushi apparently before I leave for my European vacation tomorrow morning! :)

Sushi Dinner 
Crispy Yellowtail - seared yellowtail on crispy rice
Salmon Wazen style - kelp on top
Uni Wazen style - yuzu and sea salt
Sushi Wazen
22641 Lake Forest
Lake Forest, CA 92630
(949) 855-8330
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What do you do after a long flight and a 4 hr lay over?  Find something to eat and relax! I looked around and the selections are very very limited in Gate E of the Toronto Pearson Airport.

After a walk around, I decided I wanted to eat something made fresh and hot so I went for the True Burger Co. Bar & Grill.  Guess how much a combo is?  For a burger, fries, and drink it is $15! I upgraded to make it poutine style since I'm in Canada and the total was $20.   Swoon!!
My McDonalds breakfast was maybe 1/3 the price.  Well, what can you do at an airport?  The burger was not bad and loaded with mayo, mustard, and ketchup.  This could be I was starving as well.
The fries poutine style was very interesting.  I ordered it not knowing what to expect.  The board said bacon but the add on was just gravy and cheese curd.  Not sure if I was swindled or this is the add on.  The good thing was some of the curd melted and that was jackpot! 

All in all it was fine for a quick bite, but cost me a pretty penny!

Monday, August 18, 2014

 It's that time of the year again, time to get your lobster bibs ready and bring your appetite! Last year we turned heads with our plentiful box of lobsters.
Many people were envious and snapping pictures of our plentiful bounty! =D Maybe this year we will break another record.  I look forward to the scrumptious lobsters every year.  Bring on the fun and be sure to pack some sun block!
Event :
The Port Of Los Angeles Lobster Festival

Date :
Friday, September 12 - 5PM - 11PM
Saturday, September 13 - 11AM - 11PM
Sunday, September 14 - 11AM - 7PM

Location :
Ports O’ Call Village, San Pedro Ca
Free Parking at W 22nd St & Sampson Way
Website :

Ticket Price :
General Admission - $10.00 , but don't worry there is always a coupon! Click Here for $1 off!
Children Under 12 Admission is FREE

Lobster is purchased separately:
$20.00 for each Lobster or...

2 Lobsters for $34!!! Bring it on!! lol

First Class tickets for $41

Tuesday, August 5, 2014

As I never trek down to San Diego, I had to make my one day trip count! So what does SD really have to offer?  I did various searches on good eats but I decided to look up a tasty BBQ place.  Apparently they have a highly rated place called Phil's BBQ that is growing in locations in SD area.  Unfortunately none up in Orange County yet.  Supposedly Phil's BBQ is rated as one of the top ten restaurants in the US by Yelp.  I actually only found that out when I arrived and was waiting in the semi-long line.
Smile, you are on camera and on the internet while you wait.  I read all the reviews that discuss about the long wait.  Luckily this was the last stop of the night for us and I wanted to just order take out.  As I have never been here before, I didn't know if there were two lines so we split up and had one person check out if there is a separate line for take out while the other one waited in line.
You can always call in the order or move to the front of the line as there are two lines, one for take out and for dining in.  Once you get to the front of the line, the cashiers will hold up cute animal paddles to let you know they are available.
I didn't read too much about the reviews and am normally a bigger fan of baby back ribs so I decided to get a rack of baby back ribs.  They were a bit on the drier side for my taste.  The sauce was very flavorful but I wished that the ribs were smothered in it or if I had an extra side of sauce.  As for the meat, the ribs were not too meaty and I think I have been spoiled by the ones at Costco or Bludso where the ribs are plump and full of meat.  The BBQ sauce used here is more tangy and reminiscent to the styles you would find in Memphis.
Normally I do not get the beef ribs as they are very big and fatty.  Fortunately I am greedy and wanted a bit of everything.  Here you can buy by the single rib so I decided to try one.  Unfortunately, I only got one! I wish I ordered a full rack or more and forgo the baby back ribs.  The beef ribs were very flavorful and tender.  It melted in my mouth and was loaded with flavor.  This was definitely the winner of the night.
Many people recommended the Broham sandwich.  At first I was hesitant because I was full from the day and I am normally not a sandwich person.  I am all about the meat! ^_- This sandwich is jam packed full of pulled pork, some coleslaw, and slathered with BBQ sauce.  The meat was flavorful and the buns were crisp to the bite.  I could see why many people enjoy this sandwich.
All in all the food was tasty and definitely counts as a good BBQ place.  I am still on the fence for it to be named one of the top ten restaurants in the US... I have never thought of San Diego to be the birth place of BBQ.  I would need to head back to Memphis or take a trip to Texas for comparison.  For Southern California, it is not bad.  The beef ribs are pretty darn good and I would definitely swing by if I was ever down in San Diego and order myself a rack or two!
Phil's BBQ 
3750 Sports Arena Blvd
San Diego, CA 92110
(619) 226-6333
Phil's BBQ on Urbanspoon

Tuesday, June 24, 2014

Who doesn't love a refreshing milk or fruit tea to quench your thirst?  After a nice meal, Ms. Lin Guide and our friend decided to grab a drink and chat some more.  We found the closest place that looked good was 7 Leaves Cafe.  They are not your typical Asian milk tea place as they offer a little variety and pizzazz to their menu.
The staff was very friendly and offered samples before the purchase.  We actually got to try a great variety before we ordered.  They were so friendly that my friend and I each ordered 2 drinks.
They have the Strawberry Hibiscus Tea made with real fruits, hibiscus flower and rooibos tea. This was very light and refreshing.  Personally I wished it was a little sweeter as I have a sweet tooth when it comes to my teas.
We tried the Sea Cream Jasmine Tea has a light whipped sea cream on top, which was a little weird for my taste.  I don't think I can quite adapt to the salty cream mixed with the tea as I like drinks of a sweeter nature.  Still, I am glad that I was able to get a small sample to see if this would be a new drink that I might like.
One of their most recommended specialties is the Mung Bean Milk Tea made with mung bean, jasmine tea, and pandan leaves.  I am not a big fan of beans in general but I thought this was the most interesting and tasty drink.  The texture was not overwhelming and nicely flavored.  It was also sweeter than the other drinks so I did enjoy it.
We also tried the Sunset Passion made with hand squeezed passion fruit.  This was a little more on the tart side and didn't have the oomph that I was looking for.  In the end I decided to get the Strawberry Hibiscus Tea and Mung Bean Milk Tea.
Was this place mind blowing?  Not really but I would be willing to come back if I was in the neighborhood to grab a drink.

7 Leaves Cafe 
9786 Westminster Avenue 
Garden Grove, CA 92844
(714) 590-2790
7 Leaves Cafe on Urbanspoon

Friday, May 9, 2014

What is the number one thing that Ms. Lin Guide and I miss most about Paris?  It is the African Chicken! It sounds weird but believe me, it is the best thing and for a great price!
Where else can you get a full delicious meal for around 20 euros?  We use to love going to Chez Alex, but it closed down so we have tried all the poulet braisé places in Paris and found Babylone near Etienne Marcel.
This place can be a little deceiving.  It is open super late when everything else is closed.  I believe they open late and runs until the early morning.
There is a door that you ring the door bell to and wait for them to come and open the door for you.  Just because they looked closed, don't give up and ring the bell until they come and let you in.
Once you head inside you will see the decorative wall and all the photos of famous celebrities.  They usually have music playing and the servers are all dancing and singing happily as they work.  It feels very family run and a very fun and open environment.
Warning, this is Paris and they are very open.  There are some nude photos on the wall and the artistic wall has a very sensual fertility feel.  It is hard not to look at all the interesting photos and artwork around the restaurant.  You will see photos of Rihanna and more.
Now onto the yummy food.  Don't question what to get, you have to get your own plate of poulet braisé.  It is the best thing and what everyone else will be eating.  I am not a big chicken fan but I would fly thousands of miles just to get this! Oh wait, I do every year! lol
They have gotten very fast in getting the chicken done as more and more people discover the wonders of poulet braisé.  There are these 3 magical sauces that taste like ambrosia when mixed together and then enhanced by some heat.  They will warn you about the chili sauce if you have never had it before.  It is definitely not for the weak as it may burn your whole mouth, but definitely work up the courage to drizzle it in.
There is a trick on how you eat the chicken.  It may just seem like an ensemble of food.  You have the braised chicken and you will need to order the rice.  If you are hungy then you can order the alokos, fried bananas, to munch on as a side.  Make sure to ask for the Maggi sauce for the savory component.  I could be blinded by the label but I think the ones made in Europe taste more fragrant
I prefer to sauce my rice first.  First drizzle on the sauce one by one and then evenly add the Maggi for that extra flavor.  If you are able to hold your own on spicy food then drizzle a good amount of their chili to set your mouth ablaze with flavor.  Then mix the rice and start digging into the chicken accompanied with a mouthful of flavorful rice.
Ms. Lin Guide does it differently where she does not mix it in with the rice.  She starts first with the chicken and layers it over the rice.  Then she begins to drizzle all the different sauces one by one on top of the chicken.  You would think that there would be no difference in flavor but I made Ms. Lin Guide try my chicken versus her own concoction, but the flavors come out different.
If it is your first time having the poulet braisé, then you should try both ways with a little portion of the chicken so you can determine the best way to enjoy the heavenly meal!
34 rue Tiquetonne
75002 Paris France
+33 1 42 33 48 35

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