I have learnt never to expect to have a good hot chocolate when I go out in Houston. There are few surprises, as they are on the whole really not that great. But if there is anywhere where I would expect to find a good hot chocolate it would be Rice Village. There are quite a few options in this area. Mercantile has a decent hot chocolate, a new Italian café called Fellini does a thick hot chocolate (review coming soon). Then of course there is the ever popular Chocolate Bar that makes a hot chocolate for serious sweet tooth chocolate lovers. I’m still testing […]
With a name like Bernard Callebaut, this Canadian chocolatier had no choice but to go into chocolate. It seems like a classic chocolate name to me. His family began making chocolate in Belgium 1911 but he chose to move away and settled in Calgary. There are now 31 Bernard Callebaut franchised chocolate shops across Canada and in the US, including one in the Byward Market in Ottawa.
But his story is surprising and a little sad, as Mr. Bernard Callebaut who originally started Chocolaterie Bernard Callebaut, doesn’t own the chocolate brand or even work there. A few years back he lost […]
When I lived in France of course I knew of LaDuree. It is a French institution, the home of the multicoloured macaroon. I visited LaDuree once in Paris, just a few weeks after I first arrived and never returned again. The macaroons were nice (but not the best you can get in Paris), definitely some of the most expensive, the atmosphere was great, but it was a tourist magnet. When you live in Paris you quickly get tired of all of the tourists and make a point to not go into those areas where they predictably are found. So LaDuree […]
Did you know that Dim Sum was invented by a doctor? He was treating typhoid epidemics around China. A believer in both scientific and herbal medicine, and weary that many of his patients were not getting enough nutrition on top of being sick, he created these little packages filled with different herbs, ginger, ground meat and encased them in a layer of thin dough to make them easy to eat. Years later, according to our guide Raheem, other cultures have borrowed this idea and made it their own; the perogies in Poland, samosas of India and even the tortellini in […]
I found myself sitting between a large basket filled with freshly baked baguettes with golden crusts and, on my other side, a series of trays covered in mini loaves of olive, multigrain and pain de campaign breads. I would reach for one (or all) of each if it wasn’t for the glass windows protecting them from me. Its 10am. I had breakfast hours ago but the tourists that have taken over the place were just getting started. The room was full, as was the terrace out front. Separating the two, taking over the entrance of Maison Kayser, were the goodies, […]
New York City is such a fascinating place. You walk through and feel that every building, every corner has a story of some sort to tell. It may not look historic like Paris or Rome do, but there are stories, perhaps more stories. The Jane Hotel is one of those stories. It was originally built as a hotel for sailors with cabin-like rooms. The survivors of the Titanic even stayed in this hotel in 1912. I didn’t stay in the Jane but I did venture over that way for breakfast this morning, to the Café Gitane housed just inside the […]
A few years ago we walked along the High Line, north to south, on a beautiful Friday afternoon. The High Line is a 1.45 mile-long park built on an old elevated section of now disused railway line, that’s open from 7am to 11pm daily. It is covered in plants and trees, and has plenty of benches and chairs to sit and enjoy this unique space. I remember that walk clearly because during our walk, we encountered a large group of zombies, yes zombies. There must have been 50 of them, painfully dragging themselves, or what remained of themselves, along the […]