2013: Best Foodie Moments

2013 has been an incredible year for me in terms of food. I’ve dined at restaurants which had a combined total of 20 Michelin stars this year alone. My trip to Japan opened my eyes to an incredible world of perfection, simplicity, and psychotic attention of details that I could never imagine to exist. My trip to Las Vegas and Chicago let me sample some of the creations dreamt up by some of the world’s leading chefs that are still making headlines in the industry today. Something closer to home – I now have a favorite restaurant in Vancouver! I am lucky enough that I was able to experience all this with my taste bud.

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Posted in Insights

Pidgin

Just as I was getting bored of these so called “Pacific Northwest” menus around the city, one of the city’s best concierges, namely the anti-gentrification protestors, debuted with this convincing recommendation. Awarded the 5th position in Canada Best New Restaurant 2013, it was the first restaurant that reminded me how far food could push my palate ever since I came back from Tokyo…

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Cuchillo

Vancouver is a melting pot for a variety of cuisines from different cultures, but Mexican is not one of them. After my visit to Topolobampo in Chicago, I yearned for a restaurant just like that, but nothing in Vancouver was remotely close. Thanks to the Downtown Eastside anti-gentrification activists, which had again made headlines, I caught wind of Cuchillo. Not only are they professional activists, they were also a top notch concierge service. In terms of restaurant recommendations, they weren’t wrong about Pidgin, because it is now one of my new favourite restaurants. I once again put my trust in their recommendations, got some friends, and headed over.

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Seattle: Shiro’s Sushi

When I heard that one of Jiro Ono’s apprentice had his own shop in Seattle, I immediately made a priority to visit it. Only about five months after my Japan trip, I was already missing those ultra fresh pieces of fish unavailable anywhere in Vancouver. Shiro’s was pretty darn close.

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Posted in Japanese, Reviews, Seattle, Sushi

Chicago: L2O (**)

My last supper of this trip was also the most memorable: this was my 20th Michelin Stars where I’ve dined at in this year alone. L2O was one of the finest dining spots in Chicago that once stood toe to toe with Alinea with 3 Michelin Stars. Although it received 2 Michelins Stars during my visit, it was only one of the two restaurants in the city with that rating. L2O featured some of the most intricate dishes I’ve ever seen in my travels and its tasting menu was eye opening.

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Chicago: Johnnie’s Beef

Besides hot dogs and deep dish pizzas, one of the other signature dish of this great city was the Italian beef: a sandwich of sliced, juicy roast beef just dripping with meat juices. I picked one of the best in this fiercely competitive city: Johnnie’s Beef. A bit out of the way, so I would require the proper transport…

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Chicago: Hot Doug’s

Ah yes, how could any foodie visit Chicago without lining up at Hot Doug’s? Famous for its crazy hot dogs with premium ingredients without breaking the bank, it was covered in numerous TV shows and media. I made this my “must go”.

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Chicago: Urban Belly

At this point, I lost count of how many tasting menus I’ve had during this trip. One thing for sure was that almost all of them were either French or (modern) American. Wanting to break that mold, I took the L away from downtown Chicago and went to Urban Belly.

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Posted in Asian, Chicago, Reviews | Tagged