You just know this city is not the same sleepy town it used to be when a party before Easter attracted the jet-setters to come out to Cygnus 27 for the first ever Cyg-nature Pure Michigan party. The vibe was energizing as DJ Todd Ernst painted the soundscape with the super hi-tech Emulator mixer and the crowd of smartly dressed socialites mingled with
Apr 22, 2011
Apr 18, 2011
|Philippines - Chicken Adobo with Garlic Rice and Fried Egg|
We've all been there. The amazing dinner followed by an all-nighter at a foreign beach watering hole. The one too many sake kampai's at a reunion with close college friends. That four-day wedding weekend in Bali. The boys trip to Vegas. Oktoberfest in Munich. Carnival in Rio. J'ouvert in the Virgin Islands. It feels so good... until the next day when your head feels like a 50-pound medicine ball.
In Manila where I grew up, the ultimate hangover cure is a combination of protein (cured sausage, sweet marinated pork or beef, adobo, corned beef, even deep friend fish), garlic fried rice, fried eggs and a vinegar dipping sauce.
Do you have any suggestions for the best global hangover food?
Apr 15, 2011
It was the first season finale West Michigan has been waiting for - The Spring Bling with Ice Brigade at the JW Marriott Grand Rapids. And did the fans of Ice Brigade show up! In fact, close to 600 gathered at the JW to watch the season one's final show. It was a big night for the area's first nationally televised series and the show's star, Randy Finch, couldn't have been more elated.
Live ice carving demonstrations, green screen photographers and a host of "characters" from Star War's Darth Vader and Storm Troopers to Lady Gaga and Elvis impersonators. DJ Todd Ernst provided the soundscape that got the
Apr 11, 2011
|Our one-bedroom discovery in Hell's Kitchen|
I hate to admit this, but I am hooked! This is coming from a hotelier. Airbnb.com is the real deal and if my first experience with this online booking site is a good indication, then hang on tight because airbnb could be the next Travelocity or Orbitz for the global traveler.
I am a big fan of vrbo.com; a global villa rental site which I have used in the past. Airbnb takes it down a notch where travelers can book individual rooms to huge villas around the globe. In fact, I saw one host who was offering a couch! The site even has categories for igloos and tree houses. Hey, why not? During my search for listings in New York area,
Apr 10, 2011
|Niman Ranch Pork Loin Schnitzel|
DBGB - Chef Daniel Boulud's hits another home-run with his East Village "lowdown French brasserie meets the classic American tavern." Don't mistake it, DBGB tops the list on the ambiance scale with interiors that make every diner feel like they are having a meal in the chef's kitchen. Besides the open kitchen, floor to ceiling shelvings with kitchen equipment surround the main dining room while the bar area is filled with chef Daniel's favorite culinary quotes written
Apr 9, 2011
One of my favorite aspects of traveling is discovering tucked away local hideouts for conversation and a glass of vino to complement the evening. This is how my brother, daughter and I discovered Ino Cafe & Wine Bar in the West Village. Owners Jason and Jennifer Denton were inspired by the small enoteca's serving great comfort food in Italy after attending a friend's wedding. The result is this 24-seat cafe with a two-butt kitchen, a wide range of Italian wines,
Apr 8, 2011
One of my missions on this trip to New York is to find a good, simple, home-cooked Italian restaurant. A neighborhood restaurant with a loyal following and reasonable prices that a monthly visit is not an unreasonable request. Batali's Babbo is still one of my favorites, however, shelling over $100 per person plus wine might be a bit much on a
Apr 7, 2011
Whisked from the beaches of Playa del Carmen to Nolita in NYC, this "authentic" Mexican taco truck sure is making heads turn in this "gallery" space dedicated to "Peace, Love and Tacos." Strands of yellow lights are suspended over cheap metal tables and folding chairs like an outdoor fiesta. In fact, this restaurant inside what probably used to be an artist loft complete with concrete floors and high ceilings, reminded me so much of home in the Philippines. Like Mexico,
I finally had the opportunity to witness how these amazing noodles are created without having to go to Xian, China. Here's a chef at the Sheng Wang Noodle House near the foot of the Manhattan Bridge; pulling and kneading his dough into these long strands of noodles.
Apr 6, 2011
|2:02 am, Ace Hotel lobby|
Apr 3, 2011
My friend Don "Big Daddy" MacKenzie presented me with this beautiful bottle of bacon-infused vodka after returning from his weekly business trip to California. I found myself along with Big Daddy, my wife and in-laws at the 24-hour Grand Coney diner devouring corned beef hash and country fried steak at 4 AM. Seven hours later, I was in my kitchen concocting Bakon bloody mary's to the delight of our brunch guests.
I took a sip of Bakon before pouring it into a glass with of spicy bloody mary mix. This 100% premium Idaho potato vodka was clean on the palate, and without a doubt, infused a smoky bacon flavor. I probably won't make a habit of drinking it straight up, but as a bloody mary, it is a carnivore's delight.
Bakon is unfortunately not available in Michigan. For now, you will have to figure out which of your friends could purchase a bottle from the roughly 20 states that have it available. Or better yet, I'm always game for a little home-cooked Sunday brunch. I'll definitely bring the bakon!