It all started when Eve announced she would be going to China after winning a scholarship from her school, MIT, to help a private development improve biodiversity. In the months following her announcement, I had been planning to come with her, however the greatly anticipated opening of my restaurant "The Laughing Man" owned by Hugh Jackman in Tribeca was preventing me from booking a ticket. I would call David, the other owner of the space on Duane St, an existing coffee shop that wanted to expand into food (thats where I come in) and ask him if the construction would not be finished until after the trip. "I don't know, and we just don't think it's a good idea for you to leave right now in case we need you to train the chefs and get things rolling." Needless to say I could not book the ticket. Coincidentally my friend Roman was booked to fly to the Virgin Islands on the same day Eve was going to China. The night before they both left, I made the call, and bought a ticket to the Virgin I...

This was the second time we have gone to the islands, and after hopping around a bit to Oahu we settled in for three weeks in Kauai. We came on this relatively short trip because it was actually cheaper to fly here from Japan than directly back to the US! Either way after a long trip in Japan, and a few spots of chilly weather we welcomed the bright sunny change of scenery. As usual when we got here my first question was: "What food can I learn about?" I started with all of the top poke places, although I had already ventured into this dish years ago when we lived on Maui for five months. I was after something new, something big, something ancient. And then it hit me, I needed to find someone cooking a whole pig, and learn the legendary LauLau. I roamed around the different coasts of the island, trying to find some connection to locals who may be engaging in this festivity. There were lots of LauLau stands and restaurants, but these were mostly very touristy and the cooking was not don...

What and amazing place. A rich history, food culture, Amish presence, beautiful nature, and an interesting blend of political viewpoints. Here you will find sweet heart warming farmers alongside "yee haw" gun toting Trump supporters. Either way though Pennsylvania has a certain charm. It does depend on where you go because the state is quite varied in its contents. It's a mixed bag. For the purpose of today we will be focusing on the region in and around Gettysburg, where you will find the most antique stores in the US per capita, beautiful old architecture, rolling farmlands, the battlefield, and a very interesting Pennsylvania Dutch food culture. For a little context I have been visiting here for over ten years because of my girlfriend Eve, her family lives in the small town of Hannover not too far outside of Gettysburg. Whenever we visit, I always try to spend some time with the Amish, buy fruits from little farm stands, eat at tiny greasy spoon diners, visit quaint bakeries, and go...

My history with this country started at twelve years old, when my parents sent me to an athletic summer swim camp for two summers in a row. Although I had a great time, and enjoyed much of the outdoors, my exposure to the cuisine was extremely limited. I will say however that I befriended the camp cook and gathered wild blueberries for him to make pies for us to share on the down low. Years later, I would return to the friendly forested country multiple times to enjoy the local delicacies, beautiful cities, bustling night scene, and of course the majestic nature. On our last trip there we went to Montreal, which had the feeling of a European city, and had a unique culinary identity. In the old town with cobblestone streets and famous restaurants there is an emphasis on local seafood and meats, fresh quality, and transparency of ingredients. You will find many desserts made with maple syrup, unique bagels that rival those of NYC but are completely different, wild game, and poutine-a-ple...

When we arrived in Budapest it was a last minute decision because we were traveling through Europe and we were in the neighborhood. I didn't know what to expect, and although I had heard about the city my knowledge was limited to goulash and not much else. Based upon the small amount of touristy research we had done, we headed straight for the Central Market Hall to get a crash course in local food. Rows upon rows of hanging peppers, pickles, meats, hand crafted cheeses, street food stalls, and mysterious aromas all under an eighteenth century partially enclosed glass window and copper facade.  We had a wonderful day, trying everything we could, and stocked up on all the various types of smoked paprika and other spices that the country is known for. Budapest is a split city, with the large Danube river separating "Buda" from "Pest" which is a long story involving many wars and the city ultimately being reunited as one. Crossing the bridge onto the western bank we found an ancient hot s...

Nestled in a long chain of islands lies a unique Hindu culture. One with many Gods and demons, for which people pray for almost every aspect of daily life. Each morning before the busy day starts business owners would place a small bamboo leaf boat filled with candles, incense, prayers, and food outside of their shops for protection and good luck. Living here for several months, Eve and I would travel the island, working as restaurant consultants for eco retreat centers. Usually they would exchange money or lodging plus food for help with their menu, kitchen design, staff training, cocktail menu, or all of the above. I handle the staff, kitchen, and menu, and Eve takes care of the cocktails, bar, and graphic menu design. The people here are very unique. They have a blend of kindness, traditional values, modern influences, and religious piety. The locals are content living day to day, fishing, farming, taking care of their family, and being happy.  The thing about island folk from anywh...

I have always wanted to travel here. It was such a journey to say the least, and as usual things were not as I thought they would be. Japan is the closest thing to a utopia that I have ever experienced in my life, not perfect, but damn close. Imagine a place where five year old children can be trusted to take the subway in a major city by themselves, police struggle to find things to do with their time, and little old couples pass down ancient traditions in pristine mountain ranges. Japan is a mix of old, new, fast, and slow. For every craft you can imagine there are families that have done that one thing for generations. In Japan I have had some of the best: coffee, burgers, ramen, sushi, pastries, tea, beef, fruits, vegetables, among many other things. We visited ancient sake and soy sauce breweries that were hundreds of years old, and met a sweet old couple in the mountains that made food wrapping paper out of thinly sliced cedar wood or "Sugi" which is naturally antibacterial. This...

 Eve and I had to leave Peru to reset our Visa's, because we were there for too damn long. To extend our stay in Peru, we decided to fly over to Mexico for a few weeks. First stop was Mexico city, where we found hip little areas saturated in delicious street foods. From there, to Tulum, where we swam with turtles, and in Cenotes, underground caves filled with water. Tulum is a food hotspot in Mexico despite it also being a touristy getaway. We found that it had something for everyone, with lush hotels and top dining locations to badass tortilla stands and fresh coconuts on the corner. The beaches were gorgeous. Speaking of top dining, we were thrilled to experience "Hartwood", a restaurant on the ocean which uses local ingredients, cooks everything with fire, and is almost off the grid in sustainability. We had one of the best meals of our lives here. Slow cooked pork.. check them out here. Funny story, we were so into our meal that we did not even realize we had parked in a bad spot,...

I arrived in Santiago, where I met some interesting college kids and went out for some drinks. After being here for a few days I went north to the mountain town of Los Andes, where I stayed with a beautiful family. They spoke mostly Spanish so it was great for me to practice mine. Here I climbed the surrounding mountains daily a and got fresh eggs and cow's milk from a high altitude farm. After a few weeks here, I departed and went back to Santiago, then a quick flight to the north took me to Caldera, Playa la virgen, a beautiful turquoise beach on the side of a desert. After having amazing ceviche and doing cultural food exchange with a few new friends I went a week later back to Santiago, and then finally to the west coast, Valparaiso.  Here, in Valparaiso, I experienced a city reminiscent of San Fransisco. Steep cable cars pull you up the hills, and rainbow colored houses on stilts cling to the mountain cliffs. The buildings are all covered in beautiful legal graffiti and murals. I...

Everyone told me Sicily would have the best food in Italy. So far I have to agree. I must go back and travel there more to be sure. I flew here for two weeks, landing in Palermo where I found the best pizza by the slice I have ever had, risen with yeast from the air for three days. I basically got on a bus, and after much confusion and frustration with the Sicilian bus system, I ended up going west to Catania. I had no intention of going here, as I was expected by a lovely couch surfing host near Modica in the south, but I decided to at least get half way there. It was a great mistake as I ended up wandering into an amazing taverna on the way to my hotel. There was a miscommunication with the wine, and shortly after I was tied in to drinking a whole pitcher, for less price then a glass in NY. It was dark red, almost purple, and delicious. Then after a dizzying display of tasty little appetizers on a plate I was shocked with some of the best pasta I have ever eaten. Fresh large macaroni...

We flew to Belfast from Scotland, and stayed there for a few days. We walked around the city, went to the christmas fest, and ate some good pub food and guiness. We even found this awesome cafe that is full of local art, mismatched couches, and you pay what you want to! The menu consists of tasty soups, pastries, and really good coffee and tea. We then left the city and headed west to a small town in Northern Ireland for over a week and stayed with the family of chef Brenda, a good friend of mine. Her mom, three brothers and extended family made sure we tasted home cooked Irish food, saw some beautiful countryside, and drank some good beer. After relaxing there we drove west to the coast and stayed in a lovely little town called Galway. It was a coastal city with great seafood, and part of the city was fairly ancient. It had lots of cobblestones and old stone houses with thatched roofs. We came to this village for one purpose: To visit the nearby cliffs of Moher. And we did, they were...

I arrived in Edinburough after flying from Liverpool, and was immediately struck by the visual display of gothic architecture. There is a valley that runs through the city with large bridges connecting the old city to the new. Hills upon hills of ancient four story brownstones mixed with young college students, sharp black churches piercing the sky, and amazing food. When I think of Scottish cuisine one flavor reigns supreme – smoke. Smokey whiskey, soup, meat, cheese, beer, you name it, its smoked. My favorite dish was Cullen Skink, a creamy potato and smoked haddock soup with fresh herbs and crusty bread. Of course the country is well known for its whiskey, amazing beers, and distillations, but lets address the elephant in the room – Haggis. My first introduction to this strangely legendary dish was in a bar called “the end of the world tavern.” I ordered the haggis which was served with mashed potatoes, turnips, and whiskey gravy. It was so good! It tasted like bone marrow, or any s...

Fish and chips. Bangers and mash. Crumpets. This is what people usually expect when they hear of eating in England, and to be honest for the most part they are right. But it can be good… so good.. and there is so much more. For example lets take the beer for example, every place you go to in England has local microbreweries that make amazing brews. Also it is an island so if you look hard enough, fresh seafood is not far away. We started by spending the first night in London at one of my client’s house from Tribeca in NY. She is lovely and was happy to put us up for the night before we pushed on to Birmingham the next day. London is pretty, like NY but no high rises, and lots of beautiful brown stones. There is good food here from all over the world. When we arrived in Birmingham we were there for Eve’s school (which is why we were in Rome) and so I left her there to study and pressed on to Wales! I stayed in Aberystwyth for about a week with an awesome couchsurfer and met some amazing...

A less known about culinary powerhouse, Croatia boasts some of the best seafood and most expensive truffles in the world. We decided to come here after our stay in Rome because we were running out of our three month visa in the E.U. and Croatia is one of the most awesome close by places we could fly to. We had three weeks to be in the country before venturing north to the U.K. so we kept it simple and went to two locations: Split and Istria. In the city Split we found the most amazing seafood and ancient coastal castles. In Istria country we stayed at an amazing air BnB, “the spaceship”. This lovely family dubbed their out of the way cliffside home this name due to it being on the top of a small mountain, and the artistic, silly, loving nature of the three little boys, the master baker mom, and the master chef and artist dad. They grew their own veggies, olives, goat milk, eggs, baked bread, and their friends made the most delicious red wine of the deepest color purple. We ate together...

After about two months of traveling through the sacred valley of Peru, and up to the northern beaches, I have a story to tell. We flew into Lima, and after sampling some Civiches there for a few days travelled to the sacred valley through Piura airport. At a very high altitude, this airport and the surrounding mountains required some coca tea (which helps with altitude sickness.) We met and stayed with some amazing couchsurfing hosts while hopping in cheap breezy busses that brought us from one farm-encapsulated town to another. We did all this traveling mostly through the never-ending green fuzzy snake of the sacred valley. Huge mountains all around, colorful people, and simple hearty food. Lots of chicken stews and rice, civiche of tuna with lime, and fresh coconuts. I also love the sauces that are made from cheese and potato, or peanut and hot peppers. I learned a few local specialities from my hosts and a couple restaurants, but mainly as always from eating. Highlights of the trip...

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