xoxo DiverXO – A Restaurant Review

“Welcome to DiverXO!  Be prepared to be delighted, entertained, and inspired by what our chefs have prepared for you today!”

I could imagine the pigs saying something along those lines when entering the restaurant.

DiverXOYes, these flying pigs right here

The fine dining experience doesn’t even begin at the restaurant… it actually begins at their website.  I mean take a look if you haven’t already… https://diverxo.com/ … it’s devilish, it’s daring, and they got a video of bizarre actors being uncontrollably excited by the food, yes that’s why I had to come to this restaurant.

Apparently the founder says that the restaurant doesn’t even make money before, in fact it was losing a bit of money.  I think that’s changed now, because the prices are standardised at 250€, whereas before there was an option for much less.  Mind you, for pairing option, that’s an additional 150€… and they still can’t break even?  I’m sure they do.  But they do put a lot into the aesthetics and high quality ingredients.

I have to say, the restaurant décor is truly inspiring.  The details are impeccable, and everything has direction and momentum, it’s like there’s action going on everywhere, even when there really is no action.  Like this photo below… Continue reading xoxo DiverXO – A Restaurant Review

Barcelona, the City of Gastronomy

The reputation for Spain and its marvellous food is undoubtedly some of the best and most creative food I’ve ever tasted.  The struggle to find a fitting title that Barcelona deserves gave me hesitation; it deserved its respects.  The City of Food wasn’t even thought of and would have been outright rejected.  The City of Taste was too simple and too surface.  The City of Flavor was a bit better as it brings out the meaning of tasting in depth that is all too important in Barcelona restaurants.

What about Gastronomy?  A simple definition look up indicates that gastronomy is “the art of choosing, cooking, and eating good food” (Merriam-Webster).  Perfect, this exact word was what I was looking for.  The good restaurants in Barcelona contained all the requirements of good food – flavorful, creative, generous and ideal portions, unique combinations of flavors, fresh ingredients, and the ability to ‘wow’ you when it touches your tongue.  Other bonus factors, while not necessary, include atmosphere, service, and presentation of food, and all the good restaurants excel in those criteria as well.  Go to a Barcelona restaurant’s website and you can just tell that they take their food seriously. Continue reading Barcelona, the City of Gastronomy

Shop, Shop, Shop in Paris

My trip to France was split into two parts – one was a few days in Paris at the beginning and one day at the end, and in the middle was my trip to Cote d’Azur.  If you’ve seen my older posts before, you will know that I’ve been to Paris once… although it was just for a two day weekend trying to cramp all the tourist attractions possible.  So if you’re looking for more info on Eiffel Tower, Sacred Coeur, the Louvre, Arc de Triomphe, the love lock bridge etc., I suggest you read my post C’est Paris!.  The purpose of my visit for Paris this time around is to act a little less touristy. Continue reading Shop, Shop, Shop in Paris

Hokkaido in November

Quick tips about Hokkaido:

Jr Train Map

  • The people here do not speak any English… like at all.  You’d expect the hotels to know English, but a majority of the staff couldn’t speak the language even one bit
  • As yen continues to depreciate, the value there keeps getting cheaper.  I was extremely happy with what I was getting for food and for shopping for the price I was paying
  • So yeah it’s a food paradise
  • Since public transportation is quite expensive, and since the weather can be a bit harsh in winter times, I would actually recommend renting a car if you have a group of three or more.  4 days rental was quoted at 29,000 yen including insurance
  • If you are traveling short distances and going with 3 or more people, you can consider riding a taxi too
  • Felt very safe the entire trip
  • If you want to see the autumn leaves, you should go there around Sept / Oct.  If you want to go for skiing / snowboarding, you should go there around December to February
  • Sapporo is a great city, but to appreciate Hokkaido’s scenery, you really have to go outside the city to other parts of Hokkaido

Continue reading Hokkaido in November

Seoul – Shopping Heaven

Quick tips about Seoul:

  • It is a shopping paradise
  • It’s also a food paradise (especially if you like spicy and KBBQ)
  • We didn’t do any sight seeing, but based on reading from blogs, books and other guides, there isn’t an astounding amount of cultural / historical / scenic things to do (as compared to places in Europe).  A bit similar to Bangkok.  They EXIST but it’s not abundant and should be able to cover in a few days for the major attractions
  • The people there know very little English.  In fact, the salespeople in the retail shops actually speak Mandarin much better than English so prepare to bring some sort of translation book if you can only speak English
  • Transportation is very convenient
  • Although the transition between different train lines is a fair bit of distance… so plan your time accordingly
  • Many 24 hour restaurants
  • Felt safe the entire trip
  • very affordable (compared to HK)
  • actually Seoul is pretty much like Hong Kong except they speak Korean there instead of Cantonese

It’s definitely a trip well worth going, especially if you are into Korean Pop culture.  I’ll show you the places we went (for shopping and eating) so you can have a rough itinerary for your next trip. Continue reading Seoul – Shopping Heaven