If the music is too loud, you’re too old

How do you know you are getting old? Except the saying we once saw on a t-shirt in Manila: If the music is too loud, you’re too old!? You go to Amsterdam and you are more excited with restaurant scene than with coffee shops.


Amsterdam is BEAUTIFUL! Very European, very human, very nice place to live, very, very tolerant, very rich, very cool… probably because they send all the Nazi types down to Cape Town. Oh, I’m just being mean now.

Surprisingly for the weather in March we had four warm, sunny days and we did our share of cultural tour around the city. Let’s keep it short and just write about our top choices: No. 1. without any doubt is Indian restaurant Shiva http://www.shivarestaurant.nl

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We were lucky to stumble into this restaurant on a first evening, great food and excellent prices so we went back for a dinner on a last evening. My favorite dish was Kheer, cardamom rice pudding with saffron. Vegetable Korma is also a dish I would like for us to cook at home.

Kasteel Donker dark ale with an alcohol content of 11%. Kastel Donker

Smoked salmon and Le Grand Caractere cheese for breakfast. Crazy inexpensive at Albert Heijn Supermarket.

Lazy afternoon in the sun.

Great Ceilings Design. Rijksmuseum, Maritime Museum and Flower market. Amsterdam ceilings

Dinner at Mamouche, Moroccan restaurant.

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Morning Selfie, young, beautiful and sober.

The Story of dim sum

Dim Sum

Dim sum and tea make a charming combination not just on our tables, but in the tale of Chinese history.
While journeying the famous Silk Road, weary travelers and farmers would stop at teahouse for Yum Cha, or “sipping tea”, for some hot tea and relaxing conversation. As the tea’s ability in aiding digestion become known, a variety of light dish were served together with the tea.
This gave birth to the custom of Dim Sum or “a bit of heart”.

My story with dim sum is always the same, I go home with my pants unbuttoned.

pants down
If dim sum is well prepared with high quality ingredients there is nothing better to eat in this world.

Dim Sum has a bit of my heart too.

Filipino dinner at Pepeton’s

Kapalmuks, deep fried pig’s head

There is a huge stone in my stomach this morning. I’m to old to eat deep fried pork and Filipino chicken barbecue for dinner. Top that with barbecued squid, fried pig’s ears, fried fish, bangus belly, fried tofu, pancit bihon and two San Miguel Light. Ok I did have one spoon of Gising Gising, spinach stalks with chili cooked in coconut milk.

Fried pig’s ears

Barbecued pig’s ears

Kapalmuks, or thick face in Tagalog is the name for fried pig’s head. It’s tasty, crunchy and it is heart attack waiting to happen.

Everything good in life is either Illegal, Fattening or Bad

Ihaw Ihaw, chicken and pork barbecue on a stick has a sweet taste. Surprise, surprise, on one stick I noticed chicken stomachs. I get to eat them only in my father’s kitchen, and only if I specially order them. They are unhealthy for so many reasons, and I love them very much.

Filipino style barbecue

Barbecued chickens stomachs, Filipino style

Everybody else at our dinner table were like: yuck, that’s discussing. But passion is a passion so I ate both sticks. My husband was tearing the Kapalmuks with bare hands. We were chewing and eating like it’s our last day on this planet.

And something sweet for the end: Plantains (cooking bananas) with vanilla ice-cream

We were in a great company of our Filipino friends. Reuben told me, eat as much as you can, once you hit 45 years you can forget about this type of food. He’s so right. But! After dinner we were laying in our bed, not able to move, feeling like we have committed a mortal sin. Discussing the possibility of starting a diet! What a crazy idea, our brains were supersaturated with trans fat!

Pepeton’s Grill Resto Bar & Catering Service, Quezon City, Philippines

Tanabe, the best japanese restaurant in Manila

Nigiri sushi Tanabe restaurant

The finest and tastiest japanese restaurant in whole Metro Manila is located in Remedios Circle, Malate. The owner is always there during lunch and dinner especially. He’s standing in front of a open sushi section of the restaurant and command his team of cooks. We like to sit in front of that section, surrounded with regular customers, and watch his experienced hands while cutting fish. The food is always super fresh and masterly prepared. And yes the prices are light on the budget! Great place with great traditional atmosphere and super tasty food. They have a branch in Mall of Asia and the food over there unfortunately is not the same quality.

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Heralding the rise of the harvest moon, legend has it that great emperors offered sacrifices to the beautiful lunar goddess of immortality for a long, full life. This tradition is honored until today with the giving of Mooncakes to friends, colleagues and family during the Mid-Autumn Festival in China. Individually wrapped and encased in elegant boxes, these delicacies symbolize good wishes of longevity and harmony.

Sonja’s Garden

Sonja’s Garden restaurant is located in Tagaytay area. Philosophy is simple  – freshly harvested lettuce and arugula with condiments: fresh thyme, leaf or two of marjoram, mango, broad beans, hard boiled eggs, cucumber, jackfruit, pineapple and seasonal fruits. Served with Sonja’s dressing (basically mayo type dressing with spices) and freshly baked warm, homemade, wheat sesame bread. Toppings and dips like basil pesto, white cheese, anchovies paste, olives paste, mushroom pate and black olives comes with the bread.

Second course is tagliatelle pasta served with sun dried tomatoes sauce, chicken and cream mango sauce, ratatouille, fried salmon belly, shiitake mushrooms, capers and grated parmesan cheese.

For desert the best chocolate cake I ever had and tarragon tea. All you can eat. Not once we left this restaurant with our pants unbuttoned feeling dizzy from too much food.

Interior of the restaurant is beautifully green and pleasant. With white tablecloths, wooden chairs, fantastic chandeliers, plants all around and few water walls. The feeling of the garden is all around. Different dining experience of the Philippines.

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