Food Finds at the Brussels Christmas Markets

I confess: Even if I thoroughly enjoy shopping for winter trinkets at the Chrismtas markets, I honestly and unequivocally go for the food.  And I’m willing to bet good money that most visitors share the same laser-focused goals as I—to savour the atmosphere that’s thick with holiday fuzzies, and to enjoy a variety of scrumptious food, …

Brunch at Andaz Amsterdam

We’re grounded for the months of January and February.  At first, I dreaded the thought that we won’t be able to do our usual winter weekend getaways during the darkest and dreariest months of the year.  In 2012, we broke the long winter stretch with weekend trips to Barcelona and Tromso.  In 2013, we saw snow-covered Budapest …

Kempinski Hotel Ishtar Dead Sea

It took all of 8 seconds for Kempinski Hotel Ishtar Dead Sea to line up a welcome team for my husband and I.  The personal and warm welcome—the best I’ve had from a hotel—was but a start to an overall exceptional stay.   I almost had tears of joy at the gate of Kempinski Hotel Ishtar. …

Budapest Cheat Sheet

Ending the Budapest series with a functional cheat sheet that I’m hoping you can use as a quick printed reference in your trip, or to help you in your overall planning.  Download the printable guide here. WHERE TO STAY: Stay in the Pest side especially if it’s your first time in Budapest. Save: Opera Garden Hotel …

Cooking class in Barcelona

If you only have a weekend to spend in Barcelona, I will recommend the following itinerary: Day 1:  Get an overview of the city by visiting all of Barcelona’s highlights—very doable in one day; and Day 2:  Immerse yourself in a more hands-on activity like learning what the Spaniards possibly do best: cook amazing food. This is …

Enoteca: Paco Pérez’s obra maestra

In the past decade, the Spaniards were able to achieve a level of distinction and authority in the culinary world that no other can rival.  Every year since 2002, a Spanish restaurant has placed as one of the Top 3 restaurants in the world.  In fact, Chef Ferran Adria’s El Bulli ranked No. 1 for 5 …

Getting a Noma reservation

Getting a reservation in Noma is almost impossible.  Almost, but not entirely.  I personally do not know anyone else in my network who has been to Noma, but I am testament to the fact that regular people—not just journalists or food critics—can secure a table.  With a lot of preparation and a little bit of …