Category Archives: Food

Travel – Fall Vacation: Paris Part III

I just realized that I forgot to post these two pics that were from our the first day, so I’m posting them here – lunch at Cafe George V. Food was decent but service was slow. I also find the portion to be on the small side. (Yes, I’m a glutton! WARNING: Picture heavy post!)

Café George V light Beautiful lights at Café George V

Baked scallop from Cafe George V ParisBaked scallops

For the fourth day, we had booked a segway tour with Fat Bike Tours through Viator. G and I had previously gone on a segway tour in DC and we truly enjoyed it. I figured why not in Paris? The tour was approximately 3 hours and we covered a lot of ground. Our guide Andre was friendly and did a great job in explaining the history behind the landmarks that we stopped at. Should you decide to go, I recommend booking early (at least a week in advance) as each tour is limited to only 8 people!

Following are pics taken on the segway tour…

Wall of Peace ParisWall of Peace

Eiffel Tower from Wall of Peace

View of Eiffel Tower from Wall of PeaceView of Eiffel Tower from Wall of Peace

Les Invalides Napolean Tomb Paris

Les Invalides Napolean Tomb Paris Eglise du DombEglise du Domb, (The Dome Church) where Napolean’s tomb is located (dome is made of real gold!)

Air France HQ Museum Paris Air France Museum

Art Nouveau Doorway Avenue Rapp Jules LavirotteArt Nouveau Doorway on Avenue Rapp

Art Nouveau Jules Lavirotte 3 Square RappArt Nouveau Building on 3 Square Rapp

Unfortunately, the segway tour marked the end of our visit as one of my parents got into an accident as mentioned here and we ended up spending the rest of the day in the hospital. We were scheduled to depart the next day, which I did while the rest of my family remained to get care and treatment for one of my parents.

On the bright side, we saw most of Paris and I am fortunate to be able to share them with you. I hope you enjoyed my posts! (Shopping, Part I, Part II) Thanks for reading! 🙂

Travel – Fall Vacation: Paris Part II

On the third day, we started the day with a heavy breakfast and we had planned on taking the Palais Garnier’s (Paris Opera House) guided tour in the morning. Sadly, the tour was already fully booked so we switched our schedule and headed to Musée du Louvre instead (we had planned on visiting after the guided tour). (WARNING: Picture heavy post!)

Palais Garnier Paris Opera House View of the Palais Garnier from the Les Cars Rouges

It was raining when we headed to Musee du Louvre thus all pics were taken indoors, no outdoor pics of the pyramid infrastructure. 🙁 (that just means I’ve to go back!)

Musee du Louvre Paris

Musee du Louvre

Musee du LouvreMusee du Louvre

La Duree in Musee du LouvreLadurée in Musee du Louvre

Ladurée was definitely a place that I wanted to visit and buy macarons from but I didn’t get a chance to do that during this trip. While I did enter the establishment pictured above, we were looking for hot chocolate but didn’t find any so we left. We were also in a bit of a time crunch, having to rush back to the Palais Garnier for our afternoon guided tour.

As mentioned here, the guided tour was covered by our Paris Pass and since I enjoyed the guided tour for the Oslo Operahuset, (as posted here) I figured we should seize the opportunity to do the guided tour of the Palais Garnier, too. The building is a living history monument as described by our guide and I couldn’t agree more. It is rich in history and ornately decorated, a stark contrast from the Oslo Operahuset which emphasized utility and functionality (Scandinavians!). I highly recommend the guided tour as it gives one access to the opera hall and certain areas that are closed off to the public on a self-guided tour.

Platée Paris Palais GarnierCharacters from the Opera Platée (ingenius story!)

Palais GarnierInterior of the Palais Garnier

Palais Garnier ComposersThe hallway with composers near the gift shop

Marc Chagall ceiling painting Palais Garnier featuring composers for OperaMarc Chagall’s painting featuring 14 opera composers

The original ceiling painting inside the OperaModel size of the original ceiling painting

Palais Garnier Paris Opera House interiorOpulent and beautiful ceiling of the Grand Foyer

Opulent and ornate details of the Grand Foyer Palais Garnier Paris Opera HouseHallway of the Grand Foyer

Academie Nationale de MusiqueExterior on one of the wings of the Palais Garnier

By the time we were done with the tour, we were starving so we went to a nearby restaurant, Opéra Mandarin to fill our tummies. Yes, we had Chinese food in Paris. My dad can’t go too long without Chinese food! 😉 (I’m sure G would’ve preferred pizza instead though! And should you be wondering, yes, he came to join us for 2 days in Paris!)

We ordered 6 main course and a two bowls of dumpling soup to share, which we finished. Food was authentic and delicious, although from reviews as I was researching the name of the restaurant to write this post indicates that food was a hit-or-miss. Well, I’m of Chinese ethnicity and I vouch for it!

Late lunch spread at Paris' Opera MandarinOur late lunch spread at Opéra Mandarin

Once we were gastronomically satiated, we hop-on the Les Cars Rouges at the Palais Garnier and headed towards the Eiffel Tower. Here are some shots from the bus ride…

Arc de Triomphe Paris Champs Elysee

Champs Elyssee

Arc de Triomphe Paris

Arc de Triomphe

It was almost dusk when we finally arrived near the Eiffel Tower. My dad and my sis only went up to the first level while my mum, G and I went up to the second level as well.

Eiffel Tower at dusk ParisEiffel Tower at dusk

Gustave Eiffel 1832 - 1923Gustave Eiffel, the architect behind the famous landmark

Eiffel TowerEiffel Tower at night

View from Eiffel Tower

View from Eiffel Tower Paris at nightNight view from Eiffel Tower

Paris Eiffel TowerView of the Eiffel Tower from Bateaux Parisiens

When we were done, we took the Bateaux Parisiens boat cruise which was also included as part of our Paris Pass. It was only a skip away from the Eiffel Tower. I didn’t take much pics aside from the Eiffel Tower as at that point, I was already starting to feel under the weather. 🙁 It was just much colder than I had anticipated! We adjourned home shortly after that, which concluded our third day in Paris.

Stay tuned for one the last part and thank you for reading! 🙂

Travel: Fall Vacation – Paris Part I

I’m finally done sorting and editing my pics from Paris, so here it goes! For our 5-day stay, we rented an apt from AirBnB that has a loft in Le Marais. It was a great location (thanks to my sis’ suggestion as she had previously visited Paris) and we enjoyed our stay in the apt as the owner was flexible and easygoing. (WARNING: Picture heavy post!)

View from apt in Le MaraisView from our apt in Le Marais

As mentioned here, we arrived in Paris early in the morning, so we went to get some drinks to warm ourselves up as it was rainy and cold upon our arrival.

Hot chocolate in Paris!My hot chocolate

After our shopping, we headed to Hard Rock Cafe to pick up our Paris Pass that we had purchased from Viator. I had previously bought the Visit Oslo Pass from them for G and my trip to Oslo, and I decided to use them again as it was cheaper and hassle-free to use.
Paris Pass Paris Pass

We bought the 2-day Paris Pass that enabled us access to over 60 tourist attractions in Paris which included the use of the hop-on hop-off bus and public transportation within zone 1 to 3. In my opinion, it was well worth it as we were able to skip lines (and we did!) to the attractions that we visited. We only had to stand in line for Musee d’Orsay as there was a line even for fast-tracked!

Paris Guided Tour Opera House Eiffel Tower Metro ticketParis Attraction and Metro Ticket stubs

Unfortunately the Eiffel Tower was not covered by the Paris Pass, thus we bought tickets for that but the guided tour for the Palais Garnier (Opera House) was included. On the days that we didn’t use the Paris Pass, we bought bulk tickets in 10 for the Metro as it was much more economical – it worked out to €1,27 per ticket vs €1,70 per ticket one-way.

We started our second day by stopping by for breakfast at a cafe nearby as we were walking towards the St Paul Metro. (Unfortunately, I can’t remember the name of the cafe!)

Fish Soup ParisFish soup (to share)

Roast Duck Paris MaraisRoast Chicken (my mum’s)

Roast Duck Marais ParisRoast Duck (my dad’s)

Pasta with Breaded Chicken Paris MaraisPasta with breaded chicken (mine – the chicken was too dry)

Leg of lamb Marais ParisLeg of lamb (sis’)

After we stuffed ourselves, we headed to Saint Chapelle, nicknamed the “jewel box.” A classmate from my dance class highly recommended it and after seeing pics online, I knew we had to visit!

Saint Chapelle Paris

Paris Saint Chapelle

Paris Saint Chapelle

Paris Saint Chapelle

Paris Saint Chapelle

Paris Saint Chapelle

Paris Saint Chapelle

Paris Saint ChapelleSaint Chapelle

Each window panel in the Saint Chapelle represents a story in the Bible from the Old Testament to the New Testament. I highly recommend this little gem as one can still admire the beauty and the fine artwork even if one is not Christian.

From there, we headed to the famous Notre Dame, which was only a short walking distance from Saint Chapelle.

Notre Dame ParisNotre Dame of Paris

Alas, unbeknownst to me, entry to the Notre Dame was free and there was a super long line in spite of the rain and I was hoping that we could skip the line with our Paris Pass! Instead of standing in the rain moving at a snail’s pace to enter the Notre Dame, I decided that we should instead visit other attractions, so as not to waste our precious time. Thus, we hop-on the Les Cars Rouges and headed to Musee d’Orsay.

Musee d'Orsay ParisMain facade of Musee d’Orsay

Pics are not allowed in the museum but I sneakily took some anyways! The former train station has gorgeous architecture inside and out, so I couldn’t resist! (Besides, I saw many others who were not-so-secretly snapping pics!)

Musee d'Orsay Paris

Musee d'Orsay

Musee d'OrsayThe gorgeous interior of Musee d’Orsay

While we were there, we went to the Fashion in Impressionism exhibit (which The Londoner posted here) aside from viewing the general exhibit as it was covered with under our museum pass. (I was good this time and didn’t snap any pics but it was also WAY too crowded!) As we exit the museum, the skies had cleared up and I was able to snap a pic of a boat cruise on the Seine River (which we ended up taking the next day).

Seine River BoatSeine River Boat Cruise

We took the Les Cars Rouges again and then switched to the Metro to return to Marais near our apt for dinner. We picked Cafe La Favorite for dinner as there was a good crowd but it wasn’t too busy either.

La Favorite Paris MaraisCoaster

Cafe La Favorite Light Decor Paris MaraisLight decor

Food turned out to be pretty good. My sister and I ordered a fungi pizza to share but it wasn’t filling enough so we ordered a Nutella pizza as well once we were done. My parents both had different variations of salmon – burger and fillet. For dessert it was a fruit salad to share amongst us.

Cafe La Favorite Paris Marais Funghi PizzaFungi Pizza (to share with my sis)

Cafe La Favourite Le Marais Cheeseburger

Salmon Burger (my dad’s)

Smoked Salmon Cafe La Favorite Le Marais ParisSalmon Fillet (my mum’s)

Pizza with Nutella Cafe La Favorite Paris Le MaraisNutella Pizza

Fruit Salad Cafe La Favourite Paris MaraisFruit salad (to share)

And with that concludes the first part of my Paris posts as we adjourned back to the apt to call it a night. More to come soon!

Thanksgiving Feast…Ghanaian Style!

A newer colleague/friend of mine invited me over to her house for Thanksgiving this year. She’s from Ghana and I was intrigued when she told me about the menu that they were serving for Thanksgiving. Being the glutton that I am, I took up the opportunity to taste some Ghanaian food on Thanksgiving!

While the turkey and stuffing was typical of most Thanksgiving meal, the rest of the dishes were not, which made it a unique experience for me. Thanksgiving Turkey Ghanaian style

Turkey with Stuffing

Rice with beans Waakye

Waakye (rice with beans)

Thanksgiving Ghanaian Style - Beef Stew

Beef stew

Thanksgiving Ghanaian Style - spaghetti

Spaghetti

Thanksgiving Ghanian Style - Hard Boiled Eggs

Hard boiled eggs

Thanksgiving Ghanaian Style - Yam Balls

Yam balls

Jollof rice was also served but I didn’t get a chance to take pictures of as it was being heated when I snapped pictures of these and when it was done, I was too busy stuffing my face and forgot! 😛 In any case, from my observation, the diet was carb-heavy and I tried to stick with a balanced meal. Here’s what I had…

Thanksgiving Ghanaian Style - My meal

My Thanksgiving meal

There was also mashed potatoes and mixed veggies (carrots and green beans) which I didn’t snap pics of which I did eat. That was my first helping followed by a second helping of many more yam balls and mixed veggies. Those yam balls are addictive! It is soft and chewy and they taste SO good. Needless to say, I packed some (ahem, make that a lot) with me as leftovers and had them for lunch! And should you be wondering, it was not a typical sit-down meal either as it was more buffet-style with people coming and going throughout the night.

I am thankful to have wonderful friends from different ethnicity and backgrounds who help foster me to become a global citizen! Thank you for reading! 🙂

Side note: I was awake early this morning (unplanned at 3ish am) and looking at ZARA’s Black Friday online sales and pondering if I should hit the stores for the Black Friday sales. While I was very tempted, I decided that there is nothing that I truly needed thus it was best I stayed away from temptation and back to sleep I went at 6.30am. Can I get a pat on the back for that? 😉 However, if you were shopping, I hope you scored some good deals!

Travel – Fall Vacation: New York

My family (minus my brother) came to visit me in early October (in DC) before we adjourned our family vacation to New York and Paris. My brother was able to meet us in New York as he managed to request for his flight schedule to New York to be at the same time as we were visiting. (Yes, my brother is a commercial airline pilot.) We were there for 3 days before we departed to Paris (minus my brother as he flew back).

It rained almost the whole time while we were there and since we have all done all the touristy attractions, we stuck to a relaxing schedule of eating and shopping. It was however, the first time for us with the exception of my brother to visit Chelsea Market a chill place with restaurants and a few retail stores thrown into the mix. (WARNING: Picture heavy post!)

Chelsea Market New York Signs

Direction Board

Chelsea Market New York Clock

Clock in Chelsea Market

Chelsea Market New York Fall Pumpkin Decor

Chelsea Market New York Fall Pumpkin Decor

Fall Pumpkin Decor in Chelsea Market

We also went to Times Square as my mum wanted to snap some pictures. I’m only sharing two of which one is from last year’s Thanksgiving!

Times Square New York

New York Times Square Lion King

Times Square New York

Artsy shots of the subway on 49th Street…

New York Subway 49th Street

New York Subway 49th Street

…and of course, some delicious Korean food that we had in New Wonjo in Koreatown aka K-town. (I didn’t remember to snap pics of other meals that we had!)

Side dishes from New Wonjo in Koreatown

Side dishes while waiting for BBQ meat to arrive

Sundubu Jjigae New Wonjo Koreatown New York

Sundubu Jjigae with Mushroom

Food was delicious and service was good. I had never had Korean BBQ before and it was great to have that with my family as there were enough of us to order a variety of dishes to share! And, last but not least, here’s what I had with my bro last year around Thanksgiving…

Noodles from Pocha32 Koreatown New York

Seafood Stew from Pocha32

Okay, I’m officially hungry just from editing and posting this! I will have Paris pics up soon, I promise!

Hope you had a good weekend! 🙂