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Bouchon

Thomas Keller’s Bouchon – A French Oasis in Sin City

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I moved to Sin City in 2004, which means the city had been running on a corporate operation for at least 30 years.  Gone are the days of the Mob-run Vegas, for better or worse.  I’m not an anti-corporate gal.  I’ve worked for a variety of them, anything from the start-up to the gigantic.  And every size has its advantages and disadvantages.

Bouchon

Star-chef restaurants in Vegas, like everything else, are corporate ventures; which means most of them are run very smoothly but at the same time impersonally.  While there are plenty of French restaurants, there are few that really have the ability to transport you to France.

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Paris photography: peonies

{Travel Diary} Paris. Chapter 3.

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If there was one metaphorical language that Paris speaks, it would be romance.  And the vocabularies to make up this language would consist mainly of these two words: food and flowers.

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Wandering the streets of Paris, you cannot escape the sensual journey that blooms in petals and paints the palette with macarons, baguettes, cheeses, and of course, chocolat.

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I hope these happy colors fill your week with joy, a bit of daydream into my Parisian days of romance.

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Laperouse Resto - Parisian Indulgence

An anniversary dinner at Laperouse

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There’s no use in hiding that I’m a food-lover almost above all else.  Childhood etiquette school & ballet training, the pressure to be thin as an entertainer, and the Asian predisposition to lactose-intolerance cannot keep me from my desire for French food.

Laperouse Restaurant - Paris

The Mr. understood this most of all.  And even though he is not mad for the rich French cooking (the Vietnamese-in-a-past-life will choose Phở over foie gras any day), he was sweet to indulge me to a seven course Parisian meal on our two-year-wedding-anniversary.

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Perfectly situated on the left bank facing the Seine, with an elegant table for two looking out of the most romantic royal blue window, white table cloths, mirror walls, gold moldings, amber-lit lamps and red velvet chaises posture Laperouse properly to its famous reputation.

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I am not always a complicated diner (a long-time food truck and street food fan) but we were in Paris and a girl could revel in the glamour of polished silver and shiny glassware.

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a wine adventure in Temecula

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All-girls wine tours have become such a popular activity in the recent years.  Groups after groups of grape-loving girlfriends have made much business for the valleys of Napa, Sonoma, Santa Barbara, and Temecula.  However, these wine tours are usually booked to celebrate the wedding of a girlfriend.  So when the five of us decided that we would invest in this indulgence for absolutely no occasion at all, besides perhaps the best reason which is to celebrate how fabulous we all are, it was more than unusual, it was special.

Temecula

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In actuality, it was more than special.  It was an absolutely unforgettable Saturday.  We started the celebration with champagne, discovered we needed to eat before we drank more so we asked our wonderfully patient driver to stop by a McDonalds.  Chicken nuggets and fast food french fries in the stretch limo? qui monsieur!  We continued the fun with stopping at four wineries in Temecula, drank everything from sparkling, rose, white, red, to even chocolate wine, ate a lot of bundt cake, and brought cannons of fun everywhere we went.

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London Portobello Market

Portobello Road Market


It’s quite a challenge to live in Vegas and be a vintage lover.  This fast-paced, indulgence-obsessed, modernity-prioritized city is all about embracing the new and ditching the old.  So when I found myself in London, I was not going to leave without doing some serious antiquing and vintage shopping.  I thought Portobello Road Market would be great for those two reasons, and it was, but I had no idea that it was also going to be the most fun strolling experience of this great city.

The scene here is so incredibly quirky, fun, and charming.  You will find anything from vintage cameras, old postcards to antique teapots.  But there are also a ton of vintage fashion for you to spend your afternoon admiring.

If you need some fashion inspiration, just keep your eyes open for the eclectic fun that the shop-owners take with their own styles.  Much of the merchandise was handmade and thus the shopping experience also becomes a cultural study of personal expressions.

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