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my 2 cents

Summer’s nearly over, so all that television binging is about to come to an end. But fall also marks the time for season premieres, so if you’re a true American, you’re right back on the couch, just like the potato you were a month ago. I’ve been on a Netflix binge lately (more on this later). And the awesome thing that allows me to watch (and I say “watch” in all hilarity) Netflix is my Apple TV. The hubs ordered the latest fourth generation Apple TV when it came out

You can’t go to Taipei and not hit up a street market or two, or three…or more. There are many street markets in Taipei, but as I was only there for three days, I only had the chance to hit up two. On one of the afternoons, I went to Ximending, which is more of a shopping district. (Okay, I admit, I wanted to go to UNIQLO.) I sampled a few street foods there, such as the fried chicken cutlet, grilled mochi, oyster vermicelli with pig intestine, and boba tea

I was told by a couple of Taiwanese-American friends that Yong Kang Beef Noodle served some of the best beef noodle soup in Taipei. In the evening after I gave my TEDxTaipei Talk, I rewarded myself with a trip to Yong Kang. I think the first time I ever tasted Taiwanese-style beef noodle soup was at Sanding in Houston. The broth is aromatic with remnants of five-spice, which typically consists of star anise, cloves, cinnamon, fennel seeds, and peppercorns. In a typical bowl, you’ll find beef (duh), bon choy, medium-width

People say the Din Tai Fung in Taipei is superior to any other outposts in the world, but upon my brief trip to Taiwan in late November to do a TEDxTaipei talk, the only DTF I’ve ever experienced is the one in Taipei. But then there are also multiple outposts within Taipei itself, so which one is supposed to be the best? I didn’t go to the main DTF, but instead dined at the one inside a mall. We went fairly soon after opening hour, and there was already a

Almost every time wee visit the Bay area, the hubs has to make a trip up to Santa Rosa to fill his beer quota at Russian River Brewing Co.. A few of Russian River’s beers have been named some of the top beers in the world, and because they’re not available in our home state of Texas, we usually stow a few bottles away in our check-in bags. We arrived about fifteen minutes before doors opened on a Saturday morning, and there was already a line about thirty people deep.

They call ‘em “crack wings” (though I prefer not to make light of something as serious as addiction), but yes, this fried chicken from written about San Tung before. I usually get the dried version because that was what was originally recommended to me, so I have no idea how the wet fried chicken tastes. With the dried wings, the skin is crispy and the meat flavorful. I also love their noodles with black bean sauce—chajiangmian—which can also be found in Korean cuisine. Consumer reviews online also rave about their

Even after Rodney’s Oyster House, I couldn’t get enough seafood in Toronto. On another evening, I met up Jenna, friend and co-blogger at NMO Diaries, for some ocean eats at Pearl Diver. Pearl Diver was sort of a newcomer on the restaurant scene at the time, and I’d heard good things about their seafood circus tower, which is a multi-level platter available for half off during happy hour. We ordered the seafood circus tower as soon as we arrived since it’s a popular item, and we didn’t want to risk

When I tell Canadians some of my favorite raw oysters to consume are the Kumamoto oyster—hailing from the West coast but originally from Japan, mildly briny, moderately sweet, medium in size—they gasp and say, “Oh no…Prince Edward Island oysters are the best!” I believe in equal opportunity. I love all oysters, even those fat, briny Gulf Coast oysters poo-pooed by so many. (Hey, don’t knock my third coast!) Anywhere I go, if the region is known for oysters, I’ll most likely be slurping down a few. (Okay, maybe more than

Recently, it was announced that my cooking show, Four Senses, would be entering its fourth season of production on AMI! To celebrate the milestone, I’m taking the next few weeks to reminisce on our friendly northern neighbor, Canada. Back in 2014, we were shooting our second season. One of the first meals I had on my return to Canada was tonkotsu ramen at Sansotei Ramen in downtown Toronto. Being from Houston where there are not a lot of Japanese, I tend to seek this cuisine when traveling to places with

While filming MasterChef Vietnam season 3, I met some folks from the Singapore Tourism Board; their job was to help the producers obtain permits for on-site shoots and make sure things ran smoothly during filming. As we were wrapping our first day’s shoot, Glenn and Junnie invited me to dinner to try some traditional Singaporean dishes. Of course, I said yes. How could I resist? On my travels, I love discovering new foods through the tastebuds of locals. Everyone talks about chile crab or chicken with rice when they talk

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