Tuesday, December 31, 2013

Gatsby Gala NYE

Where are you celebrating the New Year?

Tuesday, December 31st, 2013
General Gala Hours - 8PM - 2:30AM


See you all there!

A House in the Sky

I am looking for a new book to read while I wait for Alma Katsu's third book to come out.

While I was browsing Chapters I found this book - A House in the Sky by Amanda Lindhout, and Sara Corbett. What do you guys think? Has anyone read it yet?

The dramatic and redemptive memoir of a woman whose curiosity led her to the world's most beautiful and remote places, its most imperiled and perilous countries, and then into fifteen months of harrowing captivity-an exquisitely written story of courage, resilience, and grace

As a child, Amanda Lindhout escaped a violent household by paging through issues of National Geographic and imagining herself in its exotic locales. At the age of nineteen, working as a cocktail waitress in Calgary, Alberta, she began saving her tips so she could travel the globe. Aspiring to understand the world and live a significant life, she backpacked through Latin America, Laos, Bangladesh, and India, and emboldened by each adventure, went on to Sudan, Syria, and Pakistan. In war-ridden Afghanistan and Iraq she carved out a fledgling career as a television reporter. And then, in August 2008, she traveled to Somalia-"the most dangerous place on earth." On her fourth day, she was abducted by a group of masked men along a dusty road.

Held hostage for 460 days, Amanda converts to Islam as a survival tactic, receives "wife lessons" from one of her captors, and risks a daring escape. Moved between a series of abandoned houses in the desert, she survives on memory-every lush detail of the world she experienced in her life before captivity-and on strategy, fortitude, and hope. When she is most desperate, she visits a house in the sky, high above the woman kept in chains, in the dark, being tortured.

Vivid and suspenseful, as artfully written as the finest novel, A House in the Sky is the searingly intimate story of an intrepid young woman and her search for compassion in the face of unimaginable adversity.

Anyone else have suggestions on what to read next?

Thursday, December 5, 2013

Tea Time

Fairmont Vancouver Airport

Afternoon tea at the Fairmont Vancouver Airport with two lovely mamas!

Spending some quality time with two beautiful mamas, congrats again A!

Bye for now.

Saturday, November 30, 2013

Capstone Tea & Fondue

Capstone Tea & Fondue

Date night at Capstone Tea & Fondue located in Richmond

I have a bit of a sweet tooth and because of that I always want to have dessert first before dinner. T likes to indulge my sweet cravings so after dinner we visited Capstone Tea & Fondue for dessert. I have never been to the Capstone located in Richmond, I've only visited the downtown one a few times. The place was quite busy when we arrived and we ordered the Chocolate Fondue for two.

The set came with fresh fruits - apple, grapes, pineapples and strawberries, banana cake, pretzels, graham crackers, mini marshmallows and assorted ice cream balls. I also had their Sakura tea and T had their Oolong tea. 

It's always fun to eat chocolate fondue, my favourite was the fresh pineapples and the ice cream balls. Now I think I need to buy my own mini fondue set so I could have chocolate fondue at home while I watch my TV series!

Capstone Tea & Fondue on Urbanspoon

Bye for now.

Monday, November 18, 2013

Yakinikuya Japanese BBQ

Yakinikuya Japanese BBQ

Yukke - Korean version of Beef Tartar. The raw beef is finely chopped and marinated in sesame oil and served with thinly chopped Asian pear and a raw egg. This was practically all A wanted to eat that night. In the bottom picture you can see that she's keeping the Yukke in her corner of the table (hehe).

So the four of us chowed down at Yakinikuya Japanese BBQ after a long day of work. A's been here before and she recommended that we try it, because on a cold and stormy night who doesn't love a good barbecue? 

G, being the only man at the table was in charged of barbecuing all the meat we ordered. Also because he was sick and highly contagious so he served us first and had to eat last (hehe) G also had coordination problems but we forgave him because he didn't burn any of the meat.

For appetizers we had the Tuna Tataki and grilled Squid. For the main course we shared the Sakura BBQ Combo for 2 - which came with Korean Style Kalbi (short rib), Special Kalbi, Negi-Tan (beef tongue), Pork Belly, Pork Jowl, side dishes, miso soup and steamed rice. We also added a plate of the Harami which is a tender beef rib. 

I enjoyed the food at Yakinikuya and also the service but what I enjoyed the most about that night was how we role-played for our other friend. We demonstrated what it means to give someone a lemon in Chinese culture. Apparently if you want to reject someone just give them a lemon... I mean not literally.

Good night.

Yakinikuya Japanese BBQ on Urbanspoon

Sunday, November 10, 2013

Happy Birthday T!

Ole Wings and Tapas

Korean food and Korean drinking at Ole Wings and Tapas. Games and Girls. Don't really remember much about the food, just the alcohol and the drinking games and picking on T - hope you had a good night and a memorable second round! Happy Birthday Baby Girl 

Bye for now.

Olé Wings and Tapas on Urbanspoon

Nook Pizzeria

Nook Pizzeria

Nook on Urbanspoon

Going to keep this short and sweet. I went to check out Nook on Robson with two really hilarious people, because my Monday Dinner Group is non-existent now. Nook is a charming little restaurant tucked away in the West End. G and I were stuck in traffic while A waited for us at the restaurant, lucky her she had the day off work! Stepping inside Nook I loved all the wood and the red tones it felt so cozy and the restaurant was buzzing for a Tuesday night! The three of us shared the Spaghetti Bolognese, the Rigatoni and the Prosciutto Pizza. We also tried a plate of their daily Salamis, I loved how they slice it right on the spot for you. The pastas were pretty good no complaints there, except that G complained that I didn't share the cheese with him. I think what I loved the most was the Prosciutto Pizza, the thinly sliced prosciutto and the arugula made a wonderful combination!

Nero Belgian Waffle Bar

We ended our night at Nero Belgian Waffle Bar because I could always eat dessert. (G wasn't very excited about dessert because apparently he's not a very sweet guy.) 

The three of us shared the Bananaella and the Liege Waffle. I love Nero's they were also super busy for a Tuesday night! 

I think the best part about the night was A's description of the iconic Peninsula Hotel in Hong Kong and other random buildings in Hong Kong. I think she should of been an architect instead of in Human Resources (*wink, wink*) 

Until next time! Bye for now.

Nero Belgian Waffle Bar on Urbanspoon

Wednesday, October 30, 2013

Happy Halloween

Have a safe and fun Halloween folks! See you all at the movies.

What are you're Halloween costume ideas?
Hipster Bunny is I.

See you next time.

Monday, October 28, 2013

Tea Time

It's tea time again.

How To Make Chai Tea
2 ¼ cups water
1 whole star anise
1 stick cinnamon
4 cardamom pods, cracked
4-5 black tea bags, or ¼ cup loose black tea
2 cups whole milk or half-n-half
¼ cup sugar
Press the cardamom pods until they crack. Bring the water, tea, star anise, cinnamon, and cardamom to a boil.
Boil for 3-5 minutes until the tea is black and has reduced to about 2 cups. Strain and add the sugar. Add the milk and stir until hot.
Follow link for recipe click here! 

Sunday, October 27, 2013

SweetSalt Bakery & Cafe

Sunday Fundays
This post is dedicated to the two Hipsters below

Sundays are great days for brunch, especially when it's a sunny Sunday! Flo found a new kid-friendly cafe that she wanted to test out, which is great for me because I get to play with her baby and eat at the same time! So after we tactfully made our way around all the Sunday dim sum-goers we found parking and strapped Ethan in his ultra cool stroller and made our way down to the cafe.

SweetSalt Bakery & Cafe is a quaint little artisan bakery that serves German baked goods, located on the corner of Fraser and 19th. What's really unique about this place is that it's family-friendly and they literally have a play-area for kids to hang out in! Look how happy Ethan is playing with all those toys while the mommy and I sipped our coffees! This is such a brilliant baby-jail according to Flo.

When we arrived at the cafe, there were already a few families in there with their kids grabbing a bite to eat. They have a good selection of baked goods, sandwiches, coffees, teas and they also have a kids menu which is great and easy for parents to decide what to order for their child.

Flo had the daily soup special with a bun - she shared it with Ethan, but he seemed to be more interested in hanging out in the play-area then eating. 

I was feeling more hungry so I had their soup and sandwich combo - the wanderlust sandwich was made with smoked salmon, capers, lettuce and onion and served on a bun of your choice. I also had their daily soup special which was a nice herb garden vegetable soup. 

What I really liked about the place was that it felt really clean and the big windows let in a lot of light and I loved how I can see all the baked goods being made. It's quite rare to find a cafe that is kid friendly with a small little play-area for the kids to just hang out.

Although, Ethan wasn't very interested in the food at least he had a blast playing with the mini kitchen set.His favourite thing to grab seemed to be the kitchen knife...

Enjoy, because I sure did! 

SweetSalt Bakery & Café on Urbanspoon

Eating in

This is what's happening in October.

Who doesn't love a home-cooked meal? Specialty dishes by Mama Yao

It has been a super busy month! My Monday Dinner group has been re-scheduling for the past couple of weeks, (cough, cough B & Q where have you guys been???) so no new foodie adventure (sad face) Hopefully someone will be free to eat with me soon!

Spaghetti Bolognese - courtesy of moi. 

I had to cook dinner for myself because my dinner group was too busy to have dinner with me.Oh and I ended up having Spaghetti for lunch almost everyday of the week because I made too much sauce!

Good night folks!

Sunday, September 8, 2013

Picture Perfect

Meet some of my favourite people.

After all these years your smile never fails to make me laugh.

Picture Perfect - See you all next time.

Munchin' around Vancouver

Acme Cafe
51 Hastings Street West, Vancouver BC
Acme Cafe on Urbanspoon

A had the Meat Loaf Sandwich - Meat loaf, BBQ sauce, grainy Dijon mayo, Swiss cheese, caramelized onions and arugula on a pretzel bun. I obviously had the Shrimp Melt - Shrimp, roasted peppers, and onions topped with Jack cheese open-faced sandwich on a half-Ciabatta.

I have been craving for a good sandwich and Acme Cafe satisfied my cravings. The Shrimp Melt was delicious, and the Cole-slaw, pickles and chips added such a wonderful touch to the whole meal. I love the vibe of Acme Cafe and their open kitchen and the display of pastries. Now I want to go back for some good ol' Mac & Cheese and a slice of pie - there will be a next time folks! (gotta take T here when he's in town again)

Continental Coffee
4295 Main Street Vancouver BC
Continental Coffee on Urbanspoon

I adore Main Street. A bunch of us hung out at the Continental for a couple of hours before going to dinner at the Grub. It's a great place to read and grab a cup of tea, just to hang out and people-watch. You'd be surprised with all the interesting characters that stroll along Main Street - see you when I see you.

Grub on Main
4328 Main Street Vancouver BC
Grub on Urbanspoon

Quaint little restaurant - had a little birthday party at Grub, quite an enjoyable evening. Lovely company and good food, what more can I ask for - probably more Sangria and dessert ha! Hope you had a good night A and thanks for organizing your own birthday - sorry this is such a late post!

Enjoy, because I sure did.

Tuesday, September 3, 2013

PAX PRIME - Seattle

 Penny Arcade Expo

I spent my long weekend at PAX, which by the way was awesome! E and I definitely have to come back again next year and join in on the cosplay! There were a lot of amazing cosplays and I just wished I took more pictures but I was too busy gaming and collecting my freebies. Oh and I got my first official PAX PIN yay!

Thanks V for the special guest pass!
Oh and for those of you who don't know what PAX is... (shame on you!) well here's a blurb:
In 2004, the folks at Penny Arcade decided they wanted a show exclusively for gaming. Sure, comics, anime, and other nerd hobbies were cool, and those activities all had their own shows… so what about games? From that idea spawned a small 4,500 person event in Bellevue, Washington, focused on the culture and community that is gaming.

Since then, the show hasn't looked back. Doubling in size each year until venue capacities were reached, in 2010 the show expanded into Boston for PAX East, drawing tens of thousands of attendees in the inaugural year. The shows in Seattle and Boston represent the two largest gaming events in North America!

My collection of buttons - Got my first official PAX Pin.

See you next year!

Gokudo Shabu Shabu

Hi everyone this is another article written by munchzilla for Gokudo Shabu Shabu. I have previously blogged about them here and now I get a chance to write an official article featuring Gokudo for Klip Magazine. How exciting! I love hotpot, especially a place like Gokudo where they serve you your own hotpot!

Gokudo Shabu Shabu Hot PotCome on in to test out your culinary skills!

Richmond is a very unique city with a culturally diverse community centrally located in Metro Vancouver. The City of Richmond was a host city for the 2010 Winter Olympic Games and it’s also the location of Metro Vancouver’s International Airport. Another major attraction with the City of Richmond is the abundance of Asian restaurants – Chinese, Taiwanese, Shanghainese, Vietnamese, Korean and Thai cuisine just to name a few.

Located in one of the central plazas in Richmond is the hotpot restaurant called Gokudo Shabu Shabu Hot Pot. Gokudo first opened its doors on July 2nd 2010 and has since attracted a crowd of diners who enjoy their unique concept of individual hotpot. Richmond is full of hotpot restaurants and many of those restaurants serve all-you-can-eat hotpot family style. Gokudo is one of the few hotpot restaurants that serve individual hotpot to each person at the table. This makes Gokudo quite unique amongst other hotpot restaurants in Richmond, which there are many.

For those of you who are not familiar with hotpot - the concept behind it is that you cook raw pieces of meats and vegetables in a boiling pot of soup and then dip the cooked food in different types of sauces. Eating hotpot truly demonstrates one’s own culinary skills and creativity. What’s great about having your own pot at Gokudo Shabu Shabu is that you, yourself is in control of how your food turns out – you can also cook and eat at your own pace. If you had to share a communal hotpot then that’s a different story altogether. Sharing a hotpot means that you might need to do all the cooking if your friends don’t know how to cook and run the risk of losing track of your food because everyone is sticking their chopsticks in the pot and cooking all at once.

Gokudo’s menu has a variety of fresh vegetables and meats for diners to choose from. They also have tasty hotpot combo selections for people who want a bit of everything. The hotpot combos include a meat dish, for example if you chose the Rib eye hotpot combo you will get a plate of thinly sliced rib eye. The combo also includes the House Special Soup base, rice, udon or bean thread noodles, a plate of fresh vegetables, a daily house special drink and the dessert of the day. Gokudo’s menu also includes other side dishes for diners to order.

They have a variety of different cuts of meat to choose from, some of their popular cuts of meat are the Sirloin, Prime Rib, Lamb and Pork Neck. If you are a seafood lover Gokudo’s menu also offers a Seafood Combo and side order dishes such as mussels, oysters, shrimp and fresh scallops just to name a few. All the meats and vegetables are all hand-picked by Gokudo’s management team to ensure the freshness of the food and the quality of the meats. They support the local produce markets in Richmond and instead of store bought sauces and soups - the Gokudo Team actually make their own dipping sauces and brew their own soups. If you’re feeling adventurous and want to cook with a different soup base, some of the more popular soup bases are the Pumpkin Soup Base and the Tomato Soup Base!

The next time you’re in Richmond and want to test out your culinary skills, grab a friend and stop by Gokudo Shabu Shabu for dinner! Doesn’t matter if you’re a meat lover, a seafood lover, or a veggie lover, Gokudo Shabu Shabu has something for everyone!

See you there.

 Gokudo Shabu Shabu Hot Pot 極道涮涮鍋 on Urbanspoon

Friday, August 23, 2013

The Jade Restaurant

Our epic dinner at The Jade Restaurant in Richmond.

Continuing with our Monday tradition, we decided that we needed a Peking Duck dinner. So after looking high and low for a decent Chinese restaurant in Richmond I decided that we should give The Jade Restaurant a try. I've been to The Jade with family for dim sum but never for dinner. Originally it was going to be four of us having dinner, but it went down to three and of course I over ordered. We had Peking Duck two ways - (crispy skin wrap and lettuce wrap), Roasted Squab, Black Cod Clay Pot, Garlic Pea Shoots and a Chicken and Coconut soup. 

Out of all the Peking Ducks I've had The Jade Restaurant is probably not the best - almost borderline bad. All three of us didn't like how tough and thick the pancake wraps were, especially the rim of the pancake wrap was very stiff. Also the pieces of duck was carved too thick and it made it hard to wrap. Usually the duck should be carved thinner and closer to the skin. The Roasted Squab and Pea Shoots were pretty good no complaints there. As for the Black Cod Clay Pot that dish no one really touched and it was a poor recommendation by our server - we asked for a recommendation because they were sold out of fresh fish and scallops.

Now lets talk about the service. It was a typical Chinese restaurant service - which means you get no service. It took 20 minutes for someone to take our order, none of the servers were very good at making eye-contact. It was near the end of our meal before anyone gave us new dishes - our old dishes were piled high with bones from the squab. It also took several tries to flag down a server so we could pay our bill because everyone was too busy standing around and not making eye-contact. Oh and one more thing one of the servers "complained" that we ordered way too much food for 3 people because he was having trouble finding room to fit each dish. In my defense the restaurant staff should be intelligent enough to know how to organize a table full of food and its just bad manners to complain in front of your customers. Anyways I am going to stop here, because we won't be back anytime soon, not because of the typical bad service but because the food quality was pretty poor.

Until next Monday.

The Jade Seafood Restaurant 玉庭軒海鮮酒家 on Urbanspoon