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Over the past 2 1/2 years I’ve had extensive domestic travel for work, travel that took time away from my presence here. But the prize for spending that time away from home, engaging in my profession, translated to the accumulation of airline miles and hotel points that have been used for some wonderful leisure trips.

During the past 18 months I have the good fortune to be able to fly in the pointy-end of the plane on some terrific international airlines – Emirates, Qantas and Cathay Pacific for starters. I was able to travel to Dubai and Hong Kong twice, staying at a variety of wonderful hotels. Australia was sandwiched in the middle (my third trip to that country), with wonderful stays in both Melbourne and Sydney.

Of course, all of the air travel, airport lounges and hotels were filled with fabulous culinary offerings and fine beverages – heaven forbid that I should ever miss a meal. But it wasn’t all glam and glitz. There were off-the-beaten path culinary explorations within the various cities – particularly into the ethnic sections and working class areas where locals reside, places where travelers make only a rare appearance. Meanderings accompanied by fun and funny adventures, a few misadventures and, of course, lots of food.

My question to you, dear reader, is this: Which parts of the world, which adventures – and oh, there were many – do you have an interest in hearing more about? Please tell me in the comments section which destinations are of most interest to you for future posts and articles.

Thank you in advance for your input!

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I had the opportunity to dine at Le Cirque during a recent trip to Las Vegas. This New York City fine dining outpost is located in the lovely 5-star Bellagio Hotel and Resort, and is one of the cornerstones of the hotel’s dining experiences. My expectations for the restaurant were quite high, but both the floor staff and kitchen fully delivered with an amazing meal and a very memorable evening.

My recommendation is to definitely go with the Le Cirque dégustation menu rather than ordering a la carte, and certainly do opt for the lovely wine pairings. You will not be disappointed. Unlike some tasting menus, you will have an element of control in the selection of your dishes while still experiencing the full range of what the chef and his staff can create. The exemplary service from the wait staff and sommelier at Le Cirque is professional and attentive without feeling at all intrusive.

Amuse bouche - uni 'ice cream' with ginger-lemon grass gelee -- Le Cirque Restaurant

An amuse bouche of uni with caviar – Le Cirque

Although I ordered the snow crab as my starter, I was surprised when the waiter brought a lovely amuse bouche of uni with lemon grass gelée and a fennel puree. It was sublime, as was my actual starter of snow crab with turnip, apple, avocado and pomegranate.

Sautéed foie gras with pear confit – and a salty caramel sauce – did not disappoint. It was delicate and (more…)

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