Mexican fancy dancy!

Happy #tbt!

This Mexican restaurant looks so fancy, doesn’t it?

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Tropisueño Mexican Kitchen is located in San Francisco, California. My boyfriend went on a business trip and dined at that restaurant. He ordered the Chile Verde, which consisted of: tender pieces of pork simmered in tangy tomatillos, green peppers, chiles, and herbs. Supposedly, this dish is a house favorite. Looks amazing! He really enjoyed it! A different touch to the traditional Mexican food! He mentioned he had a Mexican Coke in a traditional Coke bottle. Cool!

I’d like to visit this place whenever I’m in SF. The menu sounds delicious!

Tropisueño Mexican Kitchen
75 Yerba Buena Lane
San Francisco, CA 94103
415.243.0299
http://www.tropisueno.com/

 

South American steak

It’s #tbt! We’re going back a few years to my South American trip. On our first day in Chile, our travel crew dined at Restaurante La Vaquita Echá in Santiago, Chile.

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I enjoyed the restaurant and the atmosphere. They also had entertainment, which was fun to watch. This place reminded me of a rodeo!

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Our steak and potatoes came with a side of veggies. A very interesting variety of veggies. Yum! Very colorful, too.

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Cow collection! Pretty cool!

La Vaquita Echá
Ramón Subercaseaux 3355, Pirque
Phone (5602) 854 6025
http://www.lavaquitaecha.cl/index_en.php

Yummy sandwich at Banyan’s

Happy #tbt! Shout out to my friend for sharing this awesome picture of the sandwich he ordered from Banyan’s. Much mahalo!!

He ordered a BLT with a side salad dressed with balsamic vinegar. He said it was “excellent!” He loved dining here, as they offered free parking. Moreover, he enjoyed the atmosphere.

Unforunately, Banyan’s is no longer in business, but I wanted to share this anyway and give a shout out to my friend.

Enjoy your weekend!

FS x

 

#tbt in Roma!

Almost 10 years ago, my travel gang and I went on a Mediterranean cruise that embarked from Rome, Italy. We visited the following countries: Sicily (Messina), Greece (Athens, Mykonos, and Santorini), Turkey (Kuşadası-Ephesus), and Italy (Naples). We returned to Rome where we disembarked and toured the city for a few days before heading back to the States.

It was my first international trip and I was beyond excited. There were so many awesome memories with new friends.

On our first night in Rome, we dined at Ristorante Aqua Pizzeria. I was super excited to try authentic Italian food, one of my favorites! I LOVE pasta!!

So guess what I ordered? Pasta, haha!

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It’s seafood spaghetti! It was delicious! I wiped the dish clean! Pasta craving was definitely satisfied!

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I also tried wine for the first time! Exciting! Even though I wasn’t 21 yet, I was legal in Europe!!! Yea! It was a white wine and was pretty good. Next to the wine, is water. They serve it “with gas” or “no gas.” Basically, carbonated or non-carbonated.

Ristorante Aqua Pizzeria
Via Benci e Gatti 3, 00053 Civitavecchia Rome, Italy

I loved Italy! I would love to return again one day to explore the country more and grind more authentic Italian food!

 

Take me back to Japan!

It’s #tbt!

When we were in Japan last spring, my boyfriend’s brother’s friends, who live there, took us to try this awesomely savory grilled beef rib sushi at Itamae Sushi. Oh.My.Gosh! It was AMAZING!!!! The beef just melted in your mouth. It didn’t even need shoyu.

We had such wonderful memories on our trip. Everything about Japan is awesome- the food, shopping, the attractions, the city life… I love how the Japanese are so well-mannered. I admire that, a lot!

Try Itamae Sushi when you travel to Japan. There’s many locations in Tokyo.
http://itamae.co.jp/

Here are some sushi dining etiquettes, for your information:

  • You may be offered a hot, wet towel (called an oshibori) at the beginning of your meal. Use it to wash you hands and try to fold it back neatly the way it was offered to you before returning it.
  • Do not rub your chopsticks together. When not in use they should be placed parallel to yourself on the holder (if there is one) or on the shoyu dish. They should also be placed there when finished with your meal.
  • Don’t be afraid to ask for an item not on the menu as the sushi-ya may have special or seasonal items that are not listed. It is perfectly acceptable to ask, and often the itamae will appreciate your interest.
  • Don’t put wasabi directly in the shoyu dish. Nigiri-zushi (fingers of rice topped with fish or another topping) comes with wasabi placed under the neta (fish) by the itamae, and reflects what he feels is the proper balance of wasabi to fish. Some of us like a little more, and you can always sneak some separately on the fish or with it.
  • It is OK to eat nigiri-zushi (sushi) with your hands. Sashimi is only to be eaten with your chopsticks.
  • Pick up the nigiri-zushi and dip the fish (neta) into your shoyu, not the rice (which will soak up too much shoyu). The rice is like a sponge, and too much shoyu will overpower the taste of the food and could also lead to the rice falling into your shoyu dish and making soup, which is not a good thing.
  • Do not pick up a piece of food from another person’s plate with the end of the chopsticks you put in your mouth. When moving food like this use the end you hold, which is considered the polite way.
  • Eat nigiri style sushi in one bite. This is not always easy (or possible) in North America where some sushi-ya make huge pieces, but traditional itamae in Japanese sushi-ya will make the pieces the proper size for this. In North America, try your best and don’t worry if there’s possible way to fit the entire thing in your mouth! It’s not up to you to have proper sushi etiquette if it’s physically impossible.
  • Gari (ginger) is considered a palate cleanser and eaten between bites or different types of sushi. It is not meant to be eaten in the same bite as a piece of sushi.
  • Slurping noodles is OK, less so for soup, but a bit is fine, at least by Japanese standards.
  • In more traditional sushi-ya, if you are not given a spoon for your soup, do not ask for one. You are expected to pick up your bowl to drink the soup, using your chopsticks to direct the solid pieces to your mouth.
  • It’s nice to offer a beer or sake to the itamae (but of course not required). He may remember you and treat you well upon subsequent visits.
  • Never pass food to another person using chopsticks as this is too close symbolically to the passing of a deceased relative’s bones at a traditional Japanese funeral. Pass a plate instead allowing an individual to take food themselves.
  • Also, never stick your chopsticks in your rice and leave them sticking up. This resembles incense sticks and again brings to mind the symbolism of the Japanese funeral and prayers to one’s ancestors.
  • Technically one doesn’t drink sake with sushi (or rice in general) only with sashimi or before or after the meal. It is felt that since they are both rice based, they do not complement each other and therefore should not be consumed together. Green tea is a great option with sushi or sashimi.
  • With alcoholic beverages, it is considered customary to serve each other (if not alone) instead of pouring one’s own drink. Be attentive of your fellow diner’s glasses and refill them. If you need a refill, drink the remainder of the beverage and hold the glass slightly and politely towards a dining partner.
  • It is customary for the most “prestigious” person at the table to pour the drinks. Serving of drinks is very hierarchical in nature. Example: a professor who dines with his students would pour the drinks. Seniors would serve the freshman. If not by prestige, it would be the host of the evening or who made the invite. If you invited someone to dine with you, you become the automatic host.
  • Sake is available both chilled and hot, depending the quality and style. Experiment to learn what you like, but generally, higher quality sake is served cold. And some is quite good as well as sophisticated.
  • Belching is considered impolite at the Japanese table, unlike some other Asian cultures. This is a no-no for sushi etiquette.
  • “Kanpai!” (“empty your cup”) is the traditional Japanese toast you may hear. Do not say “chin chin” as to the Japanese, this is a reference to a certain male body part best left out of proper conversation.

References:

Ransom, Warren. “How to Eat Sushi (sushi Etiquette).” Sushifaq.com. N.p., 2016. Web. 3 Nov. 2016.

 

 

 

Shave ice at Uncle Clay’s

It’s #tbt!

Last year, I were walking around Aina Haina Shopping Center and came across Uncle Clay’s House of Pure Aloha. I was interested in what this place was. Found out that it was shave ice joint, made with all-natural flavors. Awesome! I’m all for the natural! I was stoked and had to try it!

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My boyfriend and I shared the strawberry and milk chocolate shave ice bowl. Oh.my.goodness! It was to-die-for! One of the BEST shave ice I’ve eaten! The ice was so smooth; it just melted in my mouth, combined with the wonderful flavors of all-natural strawberry and chocolate. Mmmm! I can’t wait to return to have another bowl!

Visit Uncle Clay’s House of Pure Aloha
Aina Haina Shopping Center
820 W. Hind Dr.; Honolulu, 96821
808-373-5111
http://www.houseofpurealoha.com/

Throwback Thursday- UFoodGrill?

Happy #tbt!!

Back in 2014, my auntie and I traveled with our travel crew to South America to embark on a cruise that started in Santiago (Valparaiso), Chile. We had a couple of layovers across the Continental US before arriving to our final destination- Chile. Our first stop after departing Honolulu was Salt Lake City, Utah. We had some time to chill at the airport before departing to Atlanta, Georgia. We arrived in Salt Lake in the early morning, so not a lot of places were open to grab a bite. However, UFood Grill was and the food looked awesome!

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…And it was! This is the Curry Masala bowl. It was amazing! I loved it! We need this place in Hawaii!!!!

UFood Grill
**various locations across the USA
http://www.ufoodgrill.com/

If you’re interested in taking a South American cruise, visit Princess Cruises. We went on the Andes & South America cruise that was for 16 days. The cruise embarks in Santiago (Valparaiso), Chile, and docks in the following ports: La Serena (Coquimbo), Chile | Pisco (San Martin), Peru | Lima (Callao), Peru | Puntarenas, Costa Rica | San Juan del Sur, Nicaragua | Cabo San Lucas, Mexico. The adventure disembarks in Los Angeles, California.

**Please note that routes are subjected to change.