TsurutonTan | Dining in New York / Hawaii

If you love noodles, then you’ll love TsurutonTan! Both locations in New York and Hawaii offer ginormous bowls of goodness. Udon noodles, cold or hot, in broth or not, these are hands down a tasty experience. From sukiyaki to uni (sea urchin), the range of udon bowls are endless. On top of that, their appetizers are also a great start to the meal experience. Take a look at these bowls!

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The Pig & The Lady | Dining in Honolulu

A new hotspot in downtown Waikiki, Honolulu. The Pig & The Lady serve up vietnamese fare and it's hot and delicious! Their pho was tasty, their chicken fat rice was super hot, and their appetizers were all delicious. A line up outside the door means this place knows what they're doing. You can definitely make reservations, so don't think you have to wait an hour for a table. The cocktails were inventive, the staff were lovely, and the restaurant itself was bumping. It's a little on the louder side, but you'll be busy eating and stuffing yourselves. 

At their chinatown location, located in Downtown Honolulu, the food was superb tasting, and the ambiance was lively. The cocktail featured in our first image below was a rum, coconut, chili pepper and lime cocktail, topped with a basil leaf. It was definitely a unique drink, be sure to ask for a straw... it's a little difficult to manoeuvre with the excess amount of delicious coconut foam. The caviar on ramen eggs were to die for. They were our absolute favourite of the evening. A soft, marinated boiled egg with fried chicken skins and pickled shallots and topped off with caviar - the perfect combination! Find out all the foods photographed at the bottom of this post.

Food & Beverage: All In The Reflexes Cocktail - kohana rum agricole, coconut, lime, chili pepper, basil. Shakshuka - a middle eastern spiced tomato and pepper sauce, soft egg, smokey eggplant, goat gouda cheese, zataar spiced baguette. Crispy Soft Shell Crab 0 inspired from the famous fish dish from Hanoi, marinated in turmeric-galangal, aromatic herbs of dill, shiso, rau ram and mint, house pickles, roasted peanuts, rice vermicielli, mam tom bac sauce. Special: Uni pasta - absolutely to amazing. Sides: Chicken Fat Rice and Chicken Fat Bread - WARNING IT IS EXTRA HOT as it is both made with hot chili oil. P&L Pho - 12 hour roasted brisket, rare beef, stewed bone marrow, fresh ginger, calamansi, scallions, sawtooth herb, chili pepper water, fresh rice noodle. Vietnamese Ice Coffee. Yuzu Semifreddo - cocoa coffee crumble, fresh strawberries, charred pavlova, sugar cured yolk, strawberry yuzu sauce.
Made by: The Pig & The Lady
Location: 83 N. King St / 808.585.8255

Anglers at Dolphins Resort BC | Dining in British Columbia

I had a pleasurable experience at the Anglers restaurant in Campbell River. It was a quaint spot with amazing views of the river, with optional seating outside on their patio. The food is fresh and unique. The ingredients are well prepared daily and the chef has a great eye for plating. Needless to say, I was surprised at how sophisticated Anglers really was, especially having come from Vancouver into the tiny town of Campbell River. (Don't underestimate!) All the flavours were there, the presentation was beautiful and the service was fantastic. Also be sure to have their house made bread (made daily!) It is absolutely delicious. 

Food: House Cured + Smoked Meats, Variety of House Pickles, Horseradish Aioli, Craft Beer Mustard, Celery Root, Lavosh Crackers. House Togarashi Crust, Smoked Strawberry Ponzu, Sesame Sticky Rice, Grilled Bok Choy, Wasabi Cucumber Pearls. Dark Chocolate + Espresso Torte with raspberry coulis, and a special of Pavlova. 
Made by: Anglers
Location: 4125 Discovery Dr, Campbell River BC.
 

Royal Dinette | Dining in Vancouver

It's hard to believe Royal Dinette has yet to be published on The Gourmoo. Well here we go! 

We cannot count how many times we've visited this Downtown restaurant in Vancouver. Owned by Farmer's Apprentice, its sister restaurant is just as amazing. The Royal Dinette features local ingredients, creating a fresh, farm to table experience. The restaurant is spacious accompanied with a comfortable and chic ambience. It's a fun place to try new dishes that are created almost every day (as the menu changes quite often).

The cocktails (happy hour is a must) are classic and inventively delicious. If you're looking for a unique dining experience and unique menu, Royal Dinette is your place to go.

Below there's a look as to what you might find at this establishment. All the photos are from many visits put together. All their pastas are made in house - they even make their own gluten free pasta which is actually quite fantastic! Their salads are very fresh, sometimes you can find cheese or fish in them - very delectable.

Food: all food varied (take a guess or just go and see for yourself!) 
Made by: Royal Dinette
Location: 905 Dunsmuir Street, Vancouver BC.

Hida Takayama Ramen | Dining in Vancouver

A hidden gem in the middle of downtown Vancouver, Hida Takayama Ramen hides itself in the Robson Public Market. Practically abandoned, this mall doesn't have much left in it other than a fresh produce stall and various venders on the main floor. But the second floor holds the food court, a brightly lit and not so wonderful looking. However, go to the back of the food court and you'll find some very well, homemade ramen. Claimed to be the only restaurant that makes their OWN noodles, Hida promises a hot bowl of ramen and more. 

Of course you get your char su, spring onions, deliciously hot broth and a fantastically made ramen egg if you wish with your ramen, but the kicker: there's a larger portion option and various house specials. Tsukemen - ramen noodles that you dip into a sauce of your choice (sesame, soy, spicy), or try their Tanmen or DanDan noodles. Read more here for their menu.

They also offer pork buns - which are actually quite on par! The ratio of bun to meat is almost equal and it's light and fluffy and served warmed. Their gyozas are crispy on the outside and served hot! 

We do have to talk about the White Sesame Ramen that they offer. It is definitely the most creamiest and sesame-tasty ramen we've ever experienced. There are places where you grind your own, but here the broth is already filled with sesame and topped with sesame seeds. The sesame ramen is quite the treat. 

Hida Takayama makes you wait about 5-10 minutes depending on how much you've ordered with friends or if you're on your own. They make sure that each of their dishes are served with perfection. Noodles are not soggy and don't get soggy and the broths are great - just what one would expect from a ramen establishment. 

Food: Spicy Miso Ramen (large), White Sesame Ramen (large with egg), Pork Gyozas and Pork Bun
Made by: Hida Takayama Ramen
Location: Robson Public Market 2nd Floor, 203-1610 Robson St Vancouver BC Canada

Market Table | Dining in NYC

New Yorkers! If you’re looking for a fun, fresh and tasty place for lunch, Market Table is a great spot to hit up in the West Village.  Last October, I visited my family in New York City, and we had a fantastic lunch here. All the ingredients were in season and delicious. It was very much comfort food but with a twist of sophistication. We started with the quinoa hushpuppies, which were very hot to the touch but extremely unique and paired well with a spicy aioli. We all ordered our own dishes. I had the seasonal butternut squash risotto side dish that was being served at the time. As a side dish, it was a great portion and not over cooked, and the flavours were all there. That butternut squash really shined throughout the dish. Others had the cheeseburger, the grilled flatbread with truffle mushrooms and caramelized onions, and lastly the beef carpaccio with alfalfa sprouts and croutons. All very delectable! 

Overall, the restaurant was very accommodating and helpful with making wine and food choices. We enjoyed the large windows that surrounded the room; it was such a delightful experience.
I would definitely go back any day for a superb lunch. I would also love to try their dinner menu!

PS: Their cocktails are very good and at the time they had a special cocktail of the day! Be sure to make reservations as they do get booked up very quickly. Bon Appetit! 

Food: Quinoa Hushpuppies, Cheese Burger, Truffled Mushrooms and Caramelized Onions Flatbread, Butternut Squash Risotto, and the Beef Carpaccio. 
Made by: Market Table
Location: 54 Carmine Street, New York, NY

Chambar | Dining in Vancouver

If you're looking for a great place for brunch, lunch and dinner, well Chambar is one of the many options in Vancouver. It's great for those who are about to see a show at Rogers Arena, as it's just minutes away from the restaurant. Perfect for cocktails and a great meal.

The menu isn't always changing but it's definitely always consistent with their flavours and service.

The restaurant had a huge makeover - and I mean enormous, as it's now got a huge patio and two floors to the public.

The old fashion is always a great drink at Chambar, as well as their seasonal cocktails that they offer. The frites are real yummy with the aioli that it comes with. With a French influence throughout the cuisine, mussels are always a staple at this restaurant. There seems to always be a duck dish whenever I go, and that's exactly what I get. This one particular time, they served the best cherry clafoutis I've had... it was to die for.

There are plenty of small plates for sharing as well, like the shrimp you see below in a delicate sauce. Overall, the menu is filled with choices for everyone and their tastebuds.

Ladurée Harrods | Dining in London, England

If you ever have the chance to dine at Ladurée (anywhere) for breakfast, be sure to do so. But by far, the top spot isn’t in Paris from my experience. In London’s infamous department store, Harrods houses La Durée and has been for quite some time. Established in 1862, this tearoom is beautifully lit and filled with macaroons, pastries and wonderful brunch and lunch menus. As you can see, this one morning for breakfast, I had a very delectable eggs benedicte. The hollandaise sauce was gently poured over my two perfectly poached eggs, and the coffee, c’est parfait!

Be sure to treat yourself to a macaroon. They are each made to perfection (and flown in from Paris daily every morning…)

Food: Eggs Benedicte, Café
Made by: Ladurée Harrods, London
Location: Harrods, 87-135 Brompton Road, Knighstbridge London

One of a kind at the ECC | London, England

Hidden in London’s Chinatown, there lies a secret cocktail club… the ECC is one of many cool places to be sure to visit when you’re there. I’m sure there are many other cocktail bars that are just as fabulous as this one, but here are a few things you need to know:

The Experimental Cocktail Club is necessary to make reservations for on the busier days of the week; they are open from 6pm – 3am. Bookings are only by email and they have a certain time of day their reservation desk is open. There is a cover charge after 11pm, but I highly suggest going for a pre dinner drink in order to enjoy the atmosphere in this institution in a more comfortable manner. It is a one of a kind spot for that inventive cocktail you’re looking for. If you’re not sure what you’re interested in, ask your server. Or better yet if you get to be at the bar you can have in depth conversations about your favourite bitters and flavours from the bar tenders themselves. Perhaps they'll put a twist on your cocktail. 

Lastly, it’s not a knock on the door some days. When they are really busy and maybe full, the Maître D will be standing outside on the street – which you’ll be told to find through your reso that you’ve made.

But seriously though, for you cocktail lovers out there this is a bar you cannot miss. Every month, their menu changes and it’s always a pleasant surprise. 

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Cocktails made by The ECC in London.