Food and Wine, Health & Beauty

Urban Remedy, Thistle, Splendid Spoon

去年底我回台灣時, 去台南參加了一個五天的排毒營, 很想念那幾天每餐吃得很乾淨簡單, 美味又不減任何營養的蔬果汁和蔬菜湯, 那身體輕盈的感覺, 回到美國後, 很難持續.  因為每餐要準備一人份的Raw Food和蔬果汁, 能做的變化有限, 但要我每餐都吃一樣的, 吃幾天就膩了.

最近常在臉書上看到許多不同公司出產的Ready-To-Eat-Meals-Delivery-To-Your-Home的廣告, 一一點進去看後, 發現這個市場還真大啊, 例如 Urban Remedy,  Splendid Spoon ($25 off your first order LINK), Thistle ($20 off your first week code SABRINA563), 以上三家都是Vegan; 另外還有一些公司是標榜食材都幫你準備好 (買好/洗好/切好/包好), 你根據食譜步驟就可以很快做一頓飯, 例如 FreshlyPetes Paleo, Sun Basket, Gobble, Blue Apron, Good Eggs, Home Chef, Plate Joy, Terra’s Kitchen, eMeals, 隨手舉幾家, 很方便, 食材應該也比微波食品要講究多了, 就靠上面幾家公司出的菜色, 換來換去也不至於膩. 我覺得食物的風格可以再多一些選擇, 即便Raw food類的沙拉,不論是食材或沙拉醬, 亞洲風的可以多一點, 這樣我們華人的接受度可能會更高一些.  我覺得日式/韓式/台式/越氏/馬來氏等菜, 很多都可以用在這種商業模式上啊, 怎麼就是沒看到有一家公司專做亞洲食物呢? 你有試過哪一家的菜單嗎? 在留言處和大家分享一下吧.

這次只是湊巧, 先選了Urban Remedy’s Meal Plan來做第一個嘗試, 它包含一天三餐外加小點, 一次三天份, 全素食, 不含 common inflammatory foods like white sugar, gluten, dairy, preservatives, and artificial flavorings. Infuse your cells with the power of plant foods, and experience the cleanest organic, non-GMO, fresh vegetables, roots, nuts, seeds, oils and superfoods. 他目前有四組菜單可選, 亦可單買果汁或沙拉.

他是透過UPS送到家門口, 結果比預定的時間還晚到, 還好裡面放很多冷凍冰包, 我開箱的時候裡面的溫度還是冷冷的, 就直接放到冷藏室去.  (上圖是三天份的食物, 下圖是第一天的食物).  吃完之後我覺得, Hummus很好吃, 湯和沙拉還可以 (我覺得沙拉的食材選擇和醬汁味道可以再豐富一點, 例如加一些水果或果乾), 果汁不好喝 (味道都差不多, 都很acid, 而我剛好不喜歡Stevia的味道). 我應該不會訂第二次了, 因為不合我的口味.

第二次我改選 Thistle, 這家的選擇最有彈性, 你自己勾選你要的餐 (早餐或午餐或晚餐或果汁), 然後一週要幾天, 你要全素或肉食, 還有加選的選項, 然後讓你選擇你是星期幾開始, 任何一週你不想訂餐就直接上網, 事先做取消. 而且為了保持食材新鮮, 即便我訂的是一週三天, 週一到週三, 他居然還分二次送貨, 週一送二天餐, 週三再送一天餐, 不僅如此, 它還讓你選你要幾點送到, 我選早上八點前, 它7:10am就放在家門口了.  更棒的是, 每個餐都有明確的標示成分, 熱量, 加熱方式, 和是哪一頓的餐. 它的飲品是用玻璃瓶裝.

雖然它的東西比上家公司的好些, 但我想我應該也不會再訂了.

我第三次改選Splendid Spoon, 他是一週五天, 每天早餐和午餐外加一個蔬菜排毒湯, 你可以把蔬菜湯當晚餐, 或者晚餐你自由吃.  他是一次一週的預訂方式, 但是你隨時可以終止. 如果你標示不吃辣, 所有會辣的餐都會特別標注出來, 讓你手動改選其他餐點.

我從來沒有想過有一天我會成為Vegetarian or Vegan, 我也不知道未來會不會, 但我有意識到, 當我年紀越大, 我似乎對豬牛羊肉的興趣越少, 海鮮, 雞鴨, 雞蛋和牛奶也吃得不多, 不過我還是喜歡Keep my options open, 不自稱自己是素食主義, 就不用侷限自己!!! LOL

不過我相信要是家裡有人很會弄美味素菜的話, 我應該也不介意餐餐吃素啦.

對肉的品質有嚴格要求的, Meat the Butchers可以在二天內將從未冷凍過, 完全吃草, 沒有打賀爾蒙的新鮮牛/豬/羊/雞和海鮮送到府上,

至於那些將食材準備好, 自己根據附上的食譜煮飯的公司, 我還沒實驗過, 不過我在網路上看到留言, 有人試過五家: Hello Fresh, Home Chef, Martha & Marley Spoon, Blue Apron, and Plated.

Events, Restaurants, Trip to Taiwan

André Chiang’s RAW Restaurant in Taipei

img_8805

這次回台有幸來到這家號稱全台灣最難訂到位的餐廳朝聖, 直接證明了: 你是誰不重要, 你認識誰才重要!!!
img_8859img_8822img_8824img_8828img_8825img_8855 img_8812
img_8814這次的活動是由Amanda Lin主辦的, 她的臉書粉絲團每個月都會挑選一個餐廳聚餐, 她是餐飲界的名人, 我是她的粉絲團一員, 於是乎, 我就剛好跟上了十二月份在RAW的聚餐囉!!  更幸運的是, Amanda特地把我排在廚房外面的主廚桌, 只因為她眷顧我是老遠從美國回去參加, 而且也只能趕上這一次的活動, 太感謝她了!!!
11RAW雖然不是米其林星級餐廳, 但是主廚老闆是新加坡米其林三星的江振誠, 想必也有一定的水準. 餐廳說大不大, 全部坐滿大概五六十人吧. 這次的聚餐是用包場形式, 一共六十位美女佳麗, 菜單也是特別設計的, 八道菜加一個甜點. 整個經驗非常好, 準時上菜, 服務生對每道菜都詳細介紹, 每道菜不是像幅畫, 就像變魔術一樣, 而食物的滋味, 也令人驚艷, 佩服他的創意, 巧思, 和用心, 把許多常見的食材, 變得特別.
img_8831麵包是熱的, 我很愛, 但只吃了一塊, 因為怕吃太多, 等下後面的好料會吃不下 (右上角是濕紙巾)
img_8832

這道菜是以清粥小菜的概念來呈現, 一杯看似清粥的飲品和一口菜.
img_8833烤玉米 – 最裡面是用最嫩的玉米筍, 外面貼著最嫩的玉米粒, 配上芝麻粒, 用烤的方式 非常香.
img_8834鮑魚裹著西方的羅勒配上東方的九層塔
img_8835烤過的皎白筍切成紙般的薄片, 下面是生魚丁和小黃瓜果凍丁.
img_8836 img_8837

牛舌餅 – 底層是起司, 中層是生牛肉片, 上層是日本的細蔥, 碗裡是蛋黃配上某種醬汁. 我先吃一口原味, 然後再把混勻的蛋黃滴在上面再吃, 超級美味的, 那個味道在舌尖上環繞, 害我後來看到旁邊的女生居然只吃一半就讓服務生收走, 很想要那個服務生拿來給我吃. :p
img_8843 img_8844

這個有田燒是他們特別從日本特製而來的, 因為保溫效果好. 碗底有鍋吧, 好像是臺米九號配上肥肉丁和香菇, 攪拌後小常一口, 眼睛一亮, 心裡想著, 天阿, 這滷肉飯也太太太好吃了吧, 很想跟老闆說, 來一碗大碗的!!!
img_8851 img_8852

切的超薄細絲的花枝, 配上細細的昆布和小綠葉菜, 熱湯一淋下, 就像變魔術一樣捲起來了.
img_8862燙過的高麗菜葉再輕炸過, 配上red quinoa with一小塊牛肉, 泡沫是Wasabi, 忘了前面那個醬是什麼. 牛肉切四塊, 先吃原味, 再吃沾了Wasabi泡沫, 再吃沾了那個醬, 就有不同風味.
img_8871 img_8872

這道甜點 – 白色的杏仁麻糬, 下面墊著堅果類的細塊, 撒上現磨的日本花生粉, 淋上擂茶.
img_8875這是象徵著主廚最愛的鳳梨口味的剷冰
img_8877六十位美女貴婦佳麗!!!

Recipes: Salad & Soup

Fennel, Crab & Orange Salad

14915206_10154762940460625_5218395928022490790_n

十一月初的一個週末和朋友去Berkeley的Zut! On Fourth的餐廳享用Brunch.  我點了ROCK CRAB SALAD (上圖) – pickled calamondin, cucumber, shaved fennel, avocado, capers, butter lettuce with buttermilk scallion vinaigrette, 口感清爽美味, 很對我的喜愛, 所以回家後就想要複製看看 (順便省下一盤沙拉的$18+taxes+tips).  上網查了buttermilk scallion vinaigrette沙拉醬汁的做法, 味道卻跟我記憶中的不同, 後來改試Citrus Dressing, 味道比較豐富, 層次明顯, 做給朋友吃的反應不錯, 便可以放上來和大家分享.

把所有的食材放在大碗中, 淋上沙拉醬汁, 拌勻再裝盤的味道會比較均勻, 但是樣子好像就沒那麼美, 所以我改用堆積木的方式, 一層層堆起, 再淋上沙拉醬汁, 方便我拍照留念.

15241739_10154823879425625_2125524102161347986_n

  • 1 bulb of fennel, trim and thinly shaved in ice water
  • butter lettuce or little gem lettuce or watercress
  • orange segments (save the juice for dressing)
  • cucumber, thinly sliced
  • red radish, thinly sliced
  • ripe avocado, sliced
  • white crabmeat (Costco有賣新鮮蟹肉罐頭)
  • Some capers
  • Citrus Dressing – Orange juice, Extra Virgin Olive Oil, honey, white wine vinegar, chopped mint, salt and freshly ground black pepper

我沒特別標示份量是因為你想多吃哪樣就多放一點, 不想吃的就不要放.  Citrus Dressing的各項份量我也沒有特別量, 基本上白酒醋和蜂蜜不用太多, 柳丁汁和橄欖油和薄荷葉可以多放, 然後嚐一下味道再斟酌. 最後把所有準備好的食材裝在大碗裡, 拌勻沙拉醬, 就可以享用了.

Events, Health & Beauty, Hotels, Restaurants

2016 Las Vegas

朋友去賭城出差幾天, 邀我一起去玩 (她去工作, 我去玩).  我去賭城喜歡住在沒有賭場的飯店, 因為人口單純, 環境安靜, 室內空氣好. 但是賭城沒有賭場的飯店不多, 寫出來給大家參考.

以下資料取自Travel+Leisure, Hopper,

  1. Mandarin Oriental

    Few hotels except the most luxurious hotel-within-a-hotels (think the Mansion at MGM Grand or Paiza Club at the Venetian) manage to make their guests feel so sequestered on the Strip. The deeply serene 392 rooms—which start at 850 square feet—are sleek and Asian inspired, and accompanied by the best service on the Strip. As private as the 47-story tower feels, though, it is connected to the best shopping on the strip, at Crystals, by a sky bridge, and the glass façade is a quick walk to Aria, should you want to indulge in a bit of gaming. Don’t miss high tea in MOzen Bistro or an afternoon ensconced in the spa.

  2. Vdara at CityCenter

    Consider Vdara to be a 57-story, all-suite, LEED Gold-certified break from Vegas vices. You won’t find smoking or gaming inside the glass façade of the crescent-shaped tower, but you will find some of the most sophisticated public art from CityCenter’s massive collection, from a 32-foot-long Frank Stella piece at reception to Peter Wegner’s “Day for Night, Night for Day” series in the concierge lobby. Open floor plans have fully-equipped kitchens and media hubs.  From walls of horizontal windows, many suites look over either the Bellagio fountains or CityCenter.

  3. Four Seasons Hotel Las Vegas

    Tucked away on floors 35-39 of Mandalay Bay, Four Seasons Hotel Las Vegas recently renovated all its 424 guest rooms and suites. The vibrant, modern, Art Deco-inspired transformation is a little retro and a lot high-tech. From their towering perch through floor-to-ceiling windows, guestrooms have sweeping views of the Strip. Tip: If you’re over the Strip view, ask for the Sunrise/Sunset Suite, with dramatic views all the way west to Red Rock National Conservation Area.

  4. The Signature at MGM Grand

    The three towers of The Signature at MGM Grand are a gated enclave of 576 rooms (guests have their own entrances, check-ins, pools, fitness rooms and staff). Helpfully, the walkways from all three towers get you the restaurants, entertainment and gaming of the mega hotel casino, and away when you’re ready to retreat (they’re only available to Signature guests). Some of the very few guest rooms on or near the Las Vegas Strip with balconies, the rooms – all non-smoking – feel like high-end residences, with high-tech kitchens (think appliances from Sub-Zero and Miele), Jacuzzi tubs and even services like in-room massage.

  5. Delano at Mandalay Bay

    The unfortunately named THEhotel at Mandalay Bay—the boutique tower adjoining Mandalay Bay—was in real need of a refresh, so the folks at MGM Resorts did one better and made it a Delano, with all the style and breezy sophistication of the Miami original. The more than 1,000 non-smoking suite each measure at least 725 square feet, big even by Vegas standards, and the white on white décor is all very serene. When you do want to gamble, just take the dedicated hallway into Mandalay Bay.

  6. Trump InternationalOne of Las Vegas’s shimmering landmarks, the Trump hotel is composed of 64 storeys of golden glass rising above the Strip. Quiet, unobtrusive luxury is Trump’s speciality, and this can be found in its vast spa complex, its stylishly appointed guest rooms complete with kitchens, and in its heated pool lined with private air-conditioned cabanas and plasma TVs.
  7. Elara, a Hilton Grand Vacations Hotel

    Connected to more than 170 shops in the Miracle Mile and across from City Center plus a lively bar and lounge—where stars align.  Their luxurious studio, one-, two-, three- and four-bedroom suites allow guests to escape to somewhere far away—that also feels a bit like home. Retreat to comfortable luxury in airy contemporary spaces.

    Enjoy marble accented bathrooms, suites with kitchens and stainless-steel appliances, expansive living and seating areas, over-sized jet-stream tubs and showers with rain shower heads, room automation system, wireless high-speed Internet, on-demand movies, and a state-of-the-art fitness center open 24 hours a day!

  8. Travelodge Las Vegas South StripFor budget-minded travelers who want to be in the midst of the excitement of the Strip, the Travelodge Las Vegas South Strip hotel is ideal. It’s within one block of MGM Grand, Planet Hollywood and New York, New York. The Travelodge Las Vegas South Strip features a business center, free Wi-Fi Internet access throughout, year-round outdoor pool and laundry facilities on-site. Hotel guests also enjoy complimentary continental breakfast, in-room safe, free parking and flat-screen television with cable service including HBO.

Cirque_du_Soleil_will_create_the_Toronto_2015_Opening_Ceremony去賭城我不賭博, 就愛看秀和享受美食. 頭幾名值得看的秀都是太陽劇團主導 (Cirque du Soleil).  Cirque du Soleil is a Canadian entertainment company, founded in 1984, and it’s the largest theatrical producer in the world. They offers eight shows in Vegas.

Screen Shot 2016-04-08 at 9.40.05 PM

Screen Shot 2016-04-08 at 9.40.22 PM

之前去賭城看過 O, KA, Mystere, Thunder from down under (我覺得性感品質和舞蹈水準比較適合年輕人). 這次去看 Zumanity (性感和舞蹈是有水準和藝術的), Le Rêve – The Dream (整個排場道具, 舞蹈, 戲服, 讓人難以想像的棒).

這次去品嚐了二家名廚的餐廳

Gorden Ramsay’s Steak at Paris

Processed with PICSPLAY

Processed with PICSPLAY

Processed with PICSPLAY

因為我是臨時起意去, 卡到七點的秀, 沒辦法點有名的Beef Wellington, 因為它要等四十五分鐘, 所以就點了幾個份量小一點的前菜, 除了麵包和湯的味道很特別以外, 其他幾道雖然味道都不錯, 卻未讓我驚艷.

因為前一晚連看二場秀, 今晚打算好好享用一頓, 而不看秀了, 既然如此, 就來去Nobu at Caesars Palace朝聖吧.

Processed with PICSPLAY

Nobu-5

Processed with PICSPLAY

Processed with PICSPLAY

Processed with PICSPLAY

Nobu晚餐是五點就開始, 我建議那時候就去, 吃完剛好去看七點的秀 (除非你點Omakase). 我這次選九道的Omakase, 外加二杯Cocktail, 吃了二個鐘頭, 每道菜都很精緻, 擺盤細緻, 道道美味的複雜, 量少多樣是我的最愛. 我五點出頭到, 餐廳裡人不是很多, 所以還蠻輕鬆悠閒, 坐在Sushi Bar 還能跟廚師聊聊天.

我覺得吃日本料理, 選擇Omakase最物超所值, 因為變化多, 又能充分品嚐到餐廳的食材和廚師的能耐, 是最有意思的吃法.  這家餐廳的Cocktail的選擇很多, 對於不太喝清酒或者紅白酒的人, 也是加分處.

在賭城, 好吃的餐廳太多, 可惜荷包不夠深, 只能偶一為之.

去飯店附近的South Outlet逛逛, 讓我逛到一家SAS鞋店, 裡面居然有好看又好穿的淑女鞋, 而且是在義大利或美國做的, 鞋寬不僅有一般的B or M, 也有Wide. 後來才發現灣區也有它的分店, 不過Stevens Creek店裡面的鞋款實在醜到爆了, 據店經理說, 她是根據她店裡的客群挑選進的鞋款, 我想我肯定不是她的客群.

Restaurants

Morimoto in Napa

一月份在Livingsocial上看到Morimoto Napa新餐廳的Chef-Created “Omakase” Meal的Deal, 有二種選擇 Five-Course Lunch (原價$240, 特價$150) or Nine-Course Dinner (原價$420, 特價$360) FOR TWO (不含飲品). 冷靜幾秒就馬上下單, 因為我知道這種好康不一定會再有, 如果沒有買, 不知何時才有機會去了.

我選擇午餐, 去過之後真的慶幸有買這個Deal, 因為除了Toro Tartar, 其他幾道都不在午餐菜單上, 甚至晚餐菜單也找不到, 實在太值得了.  以後想再去, 只有晚餐時段有Omakase, 而且一人是$120 or $160的選擇. 結帳的時候發現一件有意思的事, 一般餐廳在帳單的最後會列出建議小費的%和金額 (省得你算錯), 常見的是10%, 15%, 20%, Morimoto的建議是18%, 20%, 25%, 很大氣! (經濟有復甦這麼快嗎)

1939898_10152399614230625_292965232_n 1003593_10152399614165625_181407803_n
1902739_10152399614015625_2081096092_n 10153908_10152399613070625_1204461726_n
1185296_10152399613345625_179878225_n 1947868_10152399612945625_1071950811_n
室內設計材質大量使用木頭和水泥, 不同顏色的木料帶出層次感, 也溫柔了水泥帶來的冰冷但摩登的優缺點. 服務人員的態度和知識專業的沒話說, 推薦我喝White Lily真是正中要害.

485467_10152399613875625_1951907212_n 1465113_10152399613670625_1103336402_n
左邊是Toro Tartar, 右邊是Wagyu Beef Carpaccio.

10009830_10152399613530625_1576196573_n 10012619_10152399613575625_1445316412_n
左邊是Egg Custer with Shitaki murshroom, 右邊是White Lily.

983621_10152399613420625_1377069962_n 984056_10152399613485625_1626272434_n
左邊是Morimoto Pork Chop Applesauce, 右邊是Braised Black Cod.

1932431_10152399612750625_341998756_n 1975009_10152399613265625_1885560130_n
左邊是最後的甜點, 口感層次多 很特別, 右邊是別桌點的生魚片, 我剛好路過拍下來.

Morimoto 圖片取自這裡

沒見到本尊, 但買了有本尊簽名的書Morimoto: The New Art of Japanese Cooking, 算是彌補一下囉. 這本書內容很不錯, 全部都是Morimoto親自示範, 照片美麗, 會讓人看了想試做看看.

 

Morimoto Napa 610 Main Street, Napa, CA 94559.
707-252-1600

Lunch Daily from 11:30 to 2:30pm

Dinner 週日到週四 5:00 to 10:00pm, 週五和六到11:00pm.