Wednesday, November 30, 2011

Keep Your Fingers Crossed

So for some reason I have found myself in a warehouse no less than 3 times in Hong Kong.  That's once a  month.  Weird, no?  After tutoring on Wednesday I head over to Kwun Tong to meet the guys from House of Fine Wines for a wine tasting...in a warehouse.  I had met Gregoir a couple weeks ago at the Conrad Christmas shopping fair, and I expressed interest in getting into the wine industry.  He invited me to the wine tasting so I could get a better feel for the company and what all goes into their small operation.  The wine tasting was very nicely done, but needed a woman/someone more organized  touch.  They had this young guy putting out crackers and he clearly wasn't feeling it.  I could be a proper host!! ME ME ME.  Anyway, there were seven of us, all ladies, and we sat around a large table while JC (who I incidentally met and have a FB picture with months ago at a Spanish wine fair) described the bouquet and flavor profiles.  We started with a sparking white from Spain, then a Sauvignon from Bordeaux, and finished with an organic rose from Spain.  Then we switched to the reds, one from Russia (I was the only one of the group who didn't find it offensive), a French something, an Italian Borolo, and as we were polishing off the leftovers they broke out an Australian Shiraz.  Asa.  Considering the amount of wine drank, I wasn't drunk at all.  I think it has something to do with the 8 lb of foie gras and truffle crackers I ate.  I even bought a tin of duck liver to bring home.  YUMMM.  Aside from the awesome wine and snacks, I got a chance to chat with the two women next to me.  When they found out I'm unemployed and live in San Po Kong, they got very excited and we made plans for Thai lunch next week!  Then I got to talk with Gregoir.  Apparently right after I met him at the fair, another young girl approached them about working for them too!  What is that about?  She went to their tasting last week, and apparently I've got more skills!!!  Yeah, what!?  He said something along the lines of he did his research on me and I've been around.  Not sure what that means, but I'm guessing in the wine biz that's a good thing!  He didn't want to chat last night in front of everyone, so I'm supposed to head down to TST to meet with him and Sean (owner) today.  Although I haven't heard from them yet....hm.

Can you believe it's December!??  Crazy.  The weather has finally taken a dip here.  I don't think we're going to break 70. The horror!  So now I'm just waiting to find out when I have to head to TST, then it's off to a jewelry gallery and Buffalo Club (I have no idea) happy hour.  Ohh and I talked with a recruiter yesterday (who was super sweet) and he told me definitely no one will be hiring until the new year, so don't even bother sending out your resume.  ha awesome.  Fingers crossed for wine!

Sunday, November 27, 2011

Are you sure it's almost December?

Because it was easily 80 degrees here yesterday!  I love Hong Kong!

Nina, Brad, Paul, Richy, Me, Cathy, Kenny
Saturday evening Paul and I met Kameron, Cathy, Brad, Nina and Kenny down in Stanley for the Food and Music festival.  Paul and I had been to the beaches in Stanley once and were disappointed by what we thought was downtown.  We weren't downtown.  But Saturday we were, and it was lovely!  The festival was a celebration of the reopening of Stanley Plaza.  The plaza has restaurants, grocery stores and a bunch of shops, and on the outside is a beautiful new pavilion on the water where all the food demos and music was held.  We came just in time to see Eli from Top Chef give a presentation on how to use nitric acid to make ice cream sundaes.  Because we're going to go home and do that??  I don't know, but the whole event was cute.  After the demo we checked out some of the food tents.  Paul and I tried a cheese plate and a smoked salmon dish, both of which were delicious.  Then the big star of the festival came out.  Richard Blais, Top Chef 2011.  He gave a quick demo then posed for photos with, well, us! Post event Nina, Kenny,  Paul and I head to Central and caught some live jazz.  Live music is oddly difficult to find here.  There's a huge lack of options, and/or interest I guess, so having an opportunity to see jazz was quite welcome.


Shrimp wasabi mini brunch burgers
Sunday Funday and Kenny wanted to check out the HK Aviation Club.  Turns out it's right near our place, so we made a brunch event of it!  Western food doesn't so much exist over here so we got dim sum.  I had profiled this place a while back for Foodie (which hits stands on Thursday) and wanted to try it.  Fusion dim sum if you will.  My favorite thing we had was definitely the mini-shrimp wasabi burgers.  Everything we had was really good, and super ridiculously cheap!  $200 for 4 of us which is ~$7 a head and we all walked out stuffed.  So if ever in my hood, check out....well I'll show you because the name is in Chinese.  We hit the aviation fair which was small but interesting, then ferried over to Central for some outside Hoegaardens on the water.  Have I mentioned I love Hong Kong?

November 27, 2011, TST

Post beers Kenny and Nina went to get pedicures and Paul and I visited the Shanghai Tang pop-up retail store.  I know this is all the rage with restaurants, but shopping??  I heard Shanghai Tang got booted from their space due to high rent, so what else would you do but open up tent on the roof of pier 6?  There were literally 4 tents on the top of the pier, each with a different theme; men's, women's, home.  Shop for amazing (although too pricey for this budget) clothes with an amazing view.  Good thinking guys!
Shanghai Tang pop-up


Random roof top rocking bull

Paul doesn't like the rocking bulll


We debated for a long time what to do for dinner post "shopping".  Since we had already gone out to eat once that day, I thought it would be nice to cook in.  And then we came up with the best idea ever; homemade tacos!  By the time Paul bought beers and avocados at Yata, I had gone upstairs, cooked minced lamb, created, rolled and cooked 4 tortillas, and assembled the yummiest dinner!!  Paul had tacos and I had taco salad complete with refried beans, cumin cheese and you-guessed-it-lamb.  


So I was pretty convinced that was one of the awesomest dinners ever, until I totally kicked my own ass with tonight's dinner.  We had leftover sour cream and I had seen a recipe a while back on eatliverun.com for paprika chicken.  Sounded like it would be up Paul's alley and pretty simple as well. I searched the hood.  5 grocery stores, endless frustration, and NO paprika.  Hm.  So I made due and it turned out to be amazing!!
Chicken Paprika (sans paprika)

chicken breast
chicken broth
onion
garlic
chili peppers
mushrooms
sour cream
tomato paste
and S&P
Served over noodleys and tis delish.  Paul will be pleased when he gets home for dinner.  If I don't eat it all first. 

Friday, November 25, 2011

50/50

After Thursday evening's festivities Paul and I were pretty exhausted so we had a quiet Friday night in.  Unfortunately we didn't have any face masks, but we did have good ole bootleg movies.  We watched 50/50, you know the new cancer movie.  Because nothing says date night like cancer.  The movie is absolutely wonderful, and both Paul and I can't figure out why.  A guy my age gets cancer.  His girlfriend sucks.  His mom is kind of nutty. His dad has Alzheimer's.  Nothing about this screams enjoyment yet somehow it's awesome.  I suppose you almost feel like its your friend with cancer.    I sat on the couch sobbing for half of the movie, "it's just so sad."  So yeah, if you haven't had a good cry for a while, check it out.

Now tis another grey Saturday.  Went for my morning run, hit Yata where they have a super deal running!  Buy 1 get 1 kimchi!  Asa!  Now I'm heading over to Diamond Hill to check out H&M.  I am going through a serious lack of clothing options, and that's the closest decent store.  Then Paul and I are going to get custom shirts made, because it's Hong Kong and that's what you do, then heading down to Stanley for the Music and Food Festival to hang out with Richard Blaise.  That's right, THAT Richard Blaise. <3 Top Chef.  

Thursday, November 24, 2011

First (of many) Thanksgiving in Hong Kong

The table 

All da food!
Kenny carving his first turkey
Like the Englishmen (I was corrected that it wasn't Europeans, it was the English!!) before us, Paul and I boated from our comfortable pad over in the dark side to the unknown.  Well not really, we were over at Nina and Kenny's just last week.  Regardless, we spent an awesome Thanksgiving night with our great new friends.  This was Nina's first time hosting Thanksgiving, and her turkey, stuffing, cranberry sauce, mashed potatoes, and brussels sprouts all came out flawlessly.  This was Andrew, Paul, Nina, Kenny and I's first Thanksgiving in Hong Kong.  This was also Helen and David's first Thanksgiving (they're Australian) ever.  Lots of firsts.  We had such a good time sipping wine, munching on cheese, chatting, and periodically checking in with Nina and Kenny's families back in the US.  Why don't we do Thanksgiving more often?



David, Andrew, and Paul cheers-ing with champagne from Nina's sister!

I love our new friends and feel such a connection with Hong Kong.  The lifestyle Paul and I have here is just totally different from Korea.  It's more like being back home.  Korea was a love hate relationship. You love to hate it, but Hong Kong is all love.  Love the shopping.  Love the beaches.  Love the wine.  Love the weather.  Love the hiking.  Love the food.  Love the people.  Nights like last night just reaffirm we made the right decision moving here....even though I can't find a job :)

Wednesday, November 23, 2011

Happy Thanksgiving!!

This reminds me of Thanksgiving in LA all those years ago.  Except there will be a turkey this year.  And a kitchen.  And dishes won't be done in the bathtub.  Ahem.  But sun is shining, weather is sweet!  It's the perfect day out, and somehow I am feeling lazy and tired so I shall relax and take a nap.  Isn't that what Thanksgiving is all about?  Oh and what you're thankful for.  This year I am thankful for the following:

My partner in crime, without whom I wouldn't have the life I have now.  I am so lucky to have found my person.  <3 you P.  (I know Carolann's rolling her eyes over in Kimchiville)
My family!  I get to see you in less than a month!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
And the technology of Skype that keeps us in touch so faaaar away.
A beautiful new home (country and apartment) and friends.  Ex-pats unite!
All of my friends across the world
My health (and family's and friends')
Tariff free wine.  Woot.
My open schedule (although I suppose I would be more thankful for a fulfilling job and paycheck....this is not the time)
My new iphone (i love you)
The increase in blog traffic (yeah guys, thanks!)

And much much more that I'm sure you've picked up through the past few months of reading this beast.   What are you most thankful for this holiday?


Ok so about my funny evening last night at the wine investment seminar from Platinum Wines.  It's at the usual spot, Otto in LKF, but instead of 30+ people it was just the Platinum people (Rakesh, Emma, Alex, Karen) and 10 or so of us for the "seminar."  We're greeted with a Chardonnay, mini pulled pork sammies, bruschetta, and filet toasts, and spend the better part of an hour schmoozing with the wine people and each other (and 3 other asa wines from around the world.  The best being a 2003 Australian Shiraz- YUM).  Tis good networking.  I eventually got into conversation with Patrick, an older Chinese gentlemen, who for some reason took a liking to me.  He seemed to think I have a "natural ability to bring people together."  I told him all about how I was am looking for a finance job, but more recently have thought about following my passion into wines.  He told me don't second guess it, don't fool around, just dive in 100%.  Good advice if I didn't change my mind every day about what I am supposed to do with my life.  Anyone remember my Mandarin lessons??  Karen and Rakesh gave a quick presentation about the basics of investment wines, which I found to be very informative and interesting.  It's definitely a really appealing alternative investment, and hell, if markets run dry, drink your reward!  Win win really.  Anywho, post event Patrick invites Karen (who is just a doll and knows soooo much about wine) and I to go meet his friends for a drink.  "Just a half hour."  We go down the street and meet his Asia PGA tour friend Nick (Englishmen) and his wife (Hong Kongian) Yvette.  They're amazing, albeit amazingly hammered as well, and I mentioned I like John Daly.  Nick informs me the HSBC Classic will be in HK next weekend and he would love to arrange a dinner with John.  Chincha!?  Asa!!  I'm doubtful this will come to fruition, but stranger things have happened.  Regardless, it was a really fun evening, totally out of the ordinary, and I learned something.

So now tis time to watch some RHBH and catch a nap.  Happy Thanksgiving!  xoxo

Paul's First Post


After much deliberation and insistence I’ve decided to keep in line with this blog’s catchphrase (this is the life we lead) and make my first semblance of a contribution with a recap of yesterday.

Yesterday I managed to snag two new tutoring gigs, pushing my working time to the most hours per week I’ve had in my 26 years.  Seeing as Thanksgiving goes unnoticed here I was asked to start tomorrow but I couldn’t pass up a labor-free celebration in Central.  After work I headed to the neighborhood Yata to help with dinner.  I settled on some oysters with lemon and couldn’t pass up the chance for warm sake.  Sake Man was keen to report that he sees my girlfriend “very regular” and happily gave me a well-deserved discount.   I waited for Lauren to arrive and we each enjoyed oysters along with leftover bowls of spicy scallops & eggplant on noodles (me) and mixed-veg tofu with sriracha (L).  After dinner we headed to the lobby downstairs to sip a glass of sake and people watch before heading back to Yata.  Despite the pristine weather and scenery we were the only one’s taking advantage of the latitude’s outdoor couches.  We ended the evening middle school-style watching an Elizabethan romantic comedy I won’t mention.

With Lauren indisposed my dinner options are much less glamorous than the previous night.  I’ve settled on defrosted chicken hotdogs with mustard/ketchup and garlic clove condiments.  With pizza’s recent status upgrade to vegetable I suppose tonight’s dinner will be one soda short of a healthy lunch in two year’s time.  Can’t wait for Thanksgiving.  Hasta luego!

Tuesday, November 22, 2011

Happy 100!

This is already my 100th post with CWKD!  Woohoo.  Sorry for no post yesterday, somehow I was so busy I didn't have time.  Do you ever look back and try to figure out where exactly the time went?  Yesterday was like that.  Flew by!

Today has been flying by as well.  I went out for a quick run and ended up running 11k!  And it felt goooood.  I have this new app for running and I tried it out yesterday and every freakin 5 minutes a woman would come over my music informing me, "5 minutes, you have run xx kilometers, an average of blah blah kilometers per hour" in a really creepy annoying robot voice.  When you're out running for 40 minutes, you really don't want to hear 8 freakin reminders.   I finally figured out how to turn chica off, and today I totally loved the app!!  It GPS tracks distance, speed, and breaks out your splits.  Pretty cool stuff. I think my run was super long today because I took a different route.  I have been doing the same one for months now and it's getting stale.  Today I went out of the Latitude the OTHER way, under a highway, through the old airport, through mucho construction, and then ended up in Kowloon Bay.  Kowloon Bay is amazing for running!!  Big open sidewalks and best of all, no people!  I had my free reign over the sidewalks!  Not many cars around either, so you can jump through intersections fairly easily.  I believe if you look on my facebook you can even check out the run.  Technology is so cool!  Speaking of, I've been chatting with Siri.  She's good if you want to send a message or something, but as far as Hong Kong is concerned, she knows shit.  Clearly programed for America.  Hmm.  I guess I have to search for things the old fashioned way; Google.

Tonight I may or may not have tutoring.  It depends if Lim Lim goes down for her nap at 2.  haha okkk.  Then tonight I am attending a seminar on investing in wines.  I'm going because I like the company and want them to hire me, but I'm pretty sure they want me there so I give them money and invest in their wines.  Same same.  Should be interesting nonetheless.

Random things I am obsessed with at the moment:

iPhone 4s (duh!)- specifically running app, whatsapp, foursquare
yobu (korean sweet tofu wrappers) I bought from Yata and stuff with rice.  yummm
panetonne from the Christmas fair.  It is currently hidden high up in a shelf so I don't eat it all in 2 days.
box sake and my Yata sake man.  I see him at least once a day (not for sake, just because I go to Yata everyday)
Bloomberg TV
black sesame flavored soy milk.  this is a part of my half assed attempt to get off animal products.
the thought of having a career in wine.

Ok off to the library to prepare for tutoring.

Monday, November 21, 2011

New Possibilities

After my post-Thanksgiving 5 miler this morning (pretty good for a Monday), I head down to Wan Chai to meet with Jane from Adelaide Cellar Door to discuss me, her company, and our potential together.  I met Jane at the Tina Barrat going away party very very briefly, but got her card and learned she owns a wine and yachting company.  I like wine.  I like boats.  Match made in heaven, no?  Her company just hired a new employee, who incidentally started today, so they aren't exactly hiring/in need of help at the current.  But she recommended that I look into some wine education classes and said she'll keep me on file in case they need any help with upcoming events.  She also said that after Lunar New Year (end of Jan) we could get together again to talk about a sales type position.  I could learn about wine and get a commission off whatever I'm selling.  It's not ideal, but it could be a potential break into the industry.  Or so I thought until....

...I went to the Conrad Christmas Fair after meeting Jane.  I went to poke around and see if I could find any gifts, but turns out I may have landed myself an internship type job.  The fair was cool.  It had vendors from chocolate to chocolate wine, clothes and jewelry, handbags, children's toys/gifts, lotions, but also a couple gourmet food/wine shops.  I started chatting with an Irish fellow about the company he works for, House of Fine Wines.  Then I inquired if they were hiring.  He told me he didn't think they could afford American labor, to which I informed him I work cheap!  The company is very small with only 5 or 6 employees, but they're growing really fast and have a lot to do.  He himself, Gregoir, had lots of projects, just no time to implement them all.  Ohh me me me!  I'm going over next Wednesday for their weekly wine tasting (can't make this Wednesday as I have a seminar about investing in wines) and he's going to show me their office/warehouse, talk to me a little more about what all I could do to help, and then see if I'm interested in working with them.  He said they would compensate me a bit, but honestly, I'm more interested in the experience and wine knowledge.  Although a little shopping wouldn't hurt.  

So yeah, Christmas shopping = good networking.  It's always in the strangest places and never at the actual networking events.  Interesting.  Now tis time to cook up some green curry with fish and scallops.  Asa little Monday!!

Weekend Recap


Saturday proved to be a lovely ex-pat celebration of Thanksgiving.  We all collected at Brad's house down in Stanley.  Well not in his house since there were 30 of us, but in a large banquet room in his apartment complex.  His parents live in both Pittsburgh and in Hong Kong, but I think now that Brad's out of school, they're mostly here.  Their place is beautiful.  It was a solid two hour commute from good ole San Po Kong, but well worth the travel.  The view alone is worth trek.  Everyone brought exactly what they said they would.   There were 2 turkeys, stuffing, mac and cheese, cornbread, green bean casserole, mashed potatoes, asparagus, broccoli, cranberry sauce, sweet potatoes, and I'm sure much much more that I just can't remember now.  My personal favorite was the stuffing with gravy.  Which actually brought to light a very important question.  Why do we only eat stuffing on Thanksgiving??  I'm putting it into my repertoire this winter.  haha if it ever comes!!  It's a solid 75 degrees right now!
Thanksgiving Crew

Post dinner we head up to his parent's rooftop patio for some Irish Cream and dessert.  Stuff went fast!  I think I should start selling this stuff.  It's so easy to make that it really doesn't make any sense not to have it in my fridge at all times.  That is unless I want to get a job and not sit around sipping chocolate wine all day.  Hmmm.

Sunday and Paul and I finally had a lazy totally unproductive morning.  We usually get up and go do something since it's his only full day off.  Instead we slept in, laid on the couch, ate pancakes, and relaxed!!  Mid afternoon we decided to head over to Central to get out for a bit.  We were the first visitors to Nina and Kenny's new apartment in Central.  They just got all of their furniture delivered from the states and it looks awesome!!!  They're still trying to get everything arranged and get a drill that can work its way through the concrete walls (Kenny learned this the hard way while we were there), but it's looking amazing and I think they're super happy to be settled.  It's so nice to have friends who like to entertain!  We sat around chatting, looking through their photo albums, sipping champagne and wine, and nibbling on some cheese.  I love them!  They are just like Paul and I.  They like to do stuff.  They follow through.  AND they love wine and cheese.  My Chetta and Ryan of Hong Kong :) Next weekend we plan on hitting the Stanley for the Food and Music festival.  There's even a presentation from Richard Blaise for those of us who are obsessed with Top Chef.

We finished the night with an amazing dinner at Nha Trang.  It's a Vietnamese place that Paul and I had been wanting to check out for some time.  We noticed it because there is ALWAYS a line out the door.  Nina and Kenny had been twice and vouched for the tastiness, so we endured the line. It was totally worth all 10 minutes of it :)   It was very reasonably priced and super fresh tasting.  I haven't had Vietnamese in a while, but this totally hit the spot.  Stuffed squid, vermecelli with beef, meat skeweres with lettuce wraps, summer rolls, and even a crepe filled with seafood and pork.  It was way too much food after all the cheese we ate, but we did our best.

Can't wait for real Thanksgiving at Nina and Kenny's!!  

Friday, November 18, 2011

Events Events

Thursday night and we met Kenny, Cathy and Nina at the American Chamber of Commerce for some art and wine...and whiskey!  There was a woman showcasing six different Japanese artists, all of which were really beautiful.  I'm not quite at the point in my life where I'm buying art yet, but it was still interesting to see. Would have been really great networking as there were a bunch of 60+ year old men, but this was more about fun and friends.  Next time.  We followed the art show with an internet marketing happy hour.   I met a bunch of these people at an early morning presentation about a month ago so I figured why not check out their marketing happy hour.  It was certainly a niche crowd.  Internet affiliates looking for more affiliates.  I was hoping someone would want to monetize my blog (this could be a career, no?  with all 3 of you who read it....) but it wasn't quite that kind of event.  I did run into this guy Art and he's been networking for me ever since.  Asa!  Already scored 2 introductions from him.

Yesterday evening was occupied with lawyers.  I had met this girl Geneva at that super lame FC networking event and we have been trying to find an event/time when we could go network together.  She just got here from England and is looking for a lawyer job, but we're both in it alone so we figured let's hit some happy hours together.  I actually ran into another guy from the same lame FC event there, he's in grad school for his MBA.  It's funny how our little circuit runs.  Paul came and met us and guess who won one of the 3 lucky draws?!  Paul!   Yey, he is now the proud new owner of china from China.  Lucky draws are all the rage here.  If someone doesn't win something at the end of the night, what's it all really about then anyway!?  Genever actually won the grand prize; a bottle of Veuve Clicquot!  And she doesn't even drink!  Not fair,  I never win.  

But today I am a winner.  For breakfast I made irish cream.  Not to drink, to bring to the party!!  All day Thanksgiving at Brad's in Stanley!!  30 people, 2 turkeys, and I'm sure a ton of booze.  This is going to get saucy! 

Must Be Thanksgiving

Because I've been in the kitchen all day!  Homemade ricotta, check.  Fig app, half check; just needs to be assembled.  Mashed potatoes, half check;  still have 1/2 the potatoes on the stove ready for mashing.  Irish cream, not even started.  So much to do, so much to do!  I've already been to Yata 3 times. It's really amazing how fast heavy cream goes.  And how delicious it is....but for now I have to go to happy hour to network with some lawyers.  Why do I sign myself up for these things!?

Thursday, November 17, 2011

Homemade Baileys is the Best Idea Ever

And by best idea, I mean the worst.  It's pure creamy delicious evil.  I'm just minding my own business when it starts calling to me from the fridge....at 11 am in the morning.  2 cups later and I'm pretty sure I've hit a funemployment low....I did, however, follow my morning booze sesh with a 5 mile run, so things are back on track.

Until tomorrow morning, my friend.

ART

One of the models showcasing Tina's jewelry
Well if this isn't an art-centric couple of weeks, I don't know what is.  I suppose coming from Korea where art is as ubiquitous as cheese, it still surprises me that there's an outlet for it here.  And it's awesome.  Last night my friend Cherry invited Paul and I to attend Tina Barrat's show.  Turns out this show was actually a farewell and I almost felt like we were crashing a party (since we don't know Tina and a lot of her friends were there tears in eye).  Ohh and let me tell you why Tina is leaving the jewelry business.  A) she doesn't like the business side of it.  Ok fair enough.  B) to follow her philipantric (not a word, but I like it) desires.  Get this.  Tina and her friend are starting a dog blood bank.  Tragedy struck the Barrat household last year and one of her beloved dogs was stricken with illness.  In an effort to save this poor pup, she found out there is no blood bank for dogs here!  Preposterous you say!?  Who knew blood banks for dogs existed anywhere!?  Certainly not me....perhaps we could cure cancer.  Save the children.  Feed the hungry.  No, no, there are too many dogs at risk.  Here's a solution; SOUP.  Wow was that was cold.  

It was a lovely show though.  Her jewelry was showcased on several models and on mannequins, there was a brief piano concert dedicated to the host, and of course plenty o' wine.  Although the jewelry wasn't really to my taste, it was really interesting to come and see the different types of people it attracted.  Although, mostly it was wealthy 40+ year old women.

Tonight we're heading over to the American Chamber of Commerce for "Six Visions."  It's 6 pieces of art showcased by 6 different artists.  Since it's at AmCham I'm hoping there will be some good networking contacts as well.  Although we are going with Nina, Kenny, and Cathy, so my guess is we'll be too busy chatting about all of the upcoming Thanksgiving parties.

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Poor Paul is probably getting pretty sick of me.  As you may have noticed, I still don't have a job, but I do have this shiny new iPhone which makes communicating super accessible!  As if my incessant messages aren't enough, I decide to stop by on my runs.  Paul's school is a convenient 1.6 miles from home and just happens to be on my daily running loop.  Pop, here I am!  Paul, I promise one of these days I'll get a job and stop bothering you at yours :)  But til then, the jog continues.....

Tuesday, November 15, 2011

And I Thought Homemade Cheese Was Good

Until I made homemade Irish Cream!  This stuff is like crack!  Well, how I imagine crack to be, which is, addictive.  I was put on dessert for Thanksgiving at Brad's this Saturday and without an oven was having trouble deciding what to make.  Then I saw this recipe.  I have been craving Baileys, even in this 80 degree heat, and thought why not put this on this list of "things I love that I can now make from scratch." See unemployment's good for something.   Learned/practiced whilst unemployed list consists of the following:

ricotta, paneer, cottage cheese
chapati/tortillas
broth

I still want to try my hand at homemade pizza dough/naan.  Perhaps tomorrow...

For the Irish Cream I used Maria's recipe but didn't include eggs because I don't have a blender and I didn't think it would mix well together.  Recipe as follows:

Tupperwear of heavenly deliciousness
1 1/2 cups Whiskey
1 can sweetened condensed milk
1 little box of whipping cream
big spoonful of chocolate hazelnut spread
spoonful of instant coffee
vanilla extract
coconut etract
couldn't find almond extract

Just give it a little mix and you'll have your head in the bowl all night.  It's really super sweet (would be good on ice cream!) so to serve I usually cut it with some milk and perhaps a bit more whiskey.  But if you're drinking it as a dessert I would just toss it on some ice and dive in.

Paul and I are also making rosemary garlic mashed potatoes, and my all time favorite go to app, figs with goats cheese, almonds and honey.  Yummmm.  I can't wait to see the spread on Saturday.  And then do it all over again at Nina and Kenny's on Thursday!  If I can't be home, at least I can have Thanksgiving with friends...twice!

Monday, November 14, 2011

Not Again

Hanging meat restaurant in Kowloon City
Does anyone remember the epic turkey fail of 2010?  I certainly do.  I'm sure Dave does too.  Really, I'm still very sorry.  But, no mas failures.  Sunday night Paul and I got take-out on the way home from the island.  Post watching Forks Over Knives we've made a very small (very small) attempt at eating less meat and animal products in general.  Ignore the previous post where I ate salmon, eggs and cheese for breakfast.  I suppose this lack of meat made us crave it even more, so what do we do?  Hit one of those hanging animal in the window places for some meat rice.  Feeling adventurous, and perhaps a bit tipsy, we went for the frog meat rice.  Well get home and this is surely like no frog I have ever seen.  First off, the chunks were huge.  There's no way a frog could be this big.  On top of that there's a drumstick.  I don't know what kind of funky frog this is, but we're a bit skeptical.  Try it and it's waaaay too salty.  I mean you can't eat it unless it's covered in a huge spoonful of rice.  We do our best but there's still a lot left.  Wastefulness and I don't sit well together, so I saved the bones and am in the process of homemade soup parte dos.  I promise not to leave the apartment during this project.  I promise to check the pot every few minutes.  I promise not to smoke out my neighbors.  An hour and a half in, and we're still good :)

St. Paul Ruins, Macau
Anyway, yesterday was visa run day to Macau.  Woohoo casino city!  Actually not so much.  It's really just a huge pain to get over to TST, book a ferry, wait through customs, sit on the ferry for an hour +, bus to a casino. Blah Blah Blah.  I did some good sightseeing though.  I saw the ruins of St. Paul which were pretty cool, ate my Portuguese eggy tart (so good), and hit the Wynn for some gambling.  I sat for probably an hour, had two champagnes, got a free umbrella, and only lost $20 ($2.50usd) on slots.  I'm not confident enough in my gambling skills to sit at a table by myself :(  It was a nice little outing, but would have been a lot more fun if I had someone to share it with.  No visa runs til April though!

Today the sun is shining and I am motivated.  Something about rainy days makes me so unproductive.  But not today.  Today I have caught up on emails, blogs, soup, laundry, and now I'm waiting for the soup/laundry to finish so I can run and hit the grocery store.  This week are a lot of events, but not a whole lot going on during the day so I'm going to try to cook as much as possible.  I'm thinking homemade pizza may be in order.  Perhaps an Indian curry.  And definitely some Thai in there somewhere.  

I more than <3 my iPhone

I am currently on the ferry home from Macau typing this on my phone. This is awesome...but more on that later.

Saturday afternoon Paul and I walked from his school over to Mong Kok for some "designer" phone covers. My phone is now adorned by Kate Spade :) feeling lazy we kind of just hung out at home not really feeling like venturing out. Eventually we got motivated and MTRed it over to Po Lam, about 30 mins, to our friends' Courtney and Patrick's place. Beth was over as well ( they all teach together) and we all just chatted and caught up over wine. 'Twas refreshing not to spend a Saturday night out in LKF!

Sunday afternoon and P and I met Nina and Kenny at The Brunch Club in Soho for, well, brunch.  Duh.  It's a cute little spot, filled with people, magazines and an overall airy light feeling.  As per the food, meh. I got the two eggs on toast with salmon and goat's cheese.  And it was just that.  No seasoning, no garnish, no nothing.  Just bread, poached egg, cheese and salmon sitting next to each other on a plate.  At least it was healthy.  The rest of the table concurred about the blahness of the food.  Anyone know a decent brunch place here!?  We're trying to pick a weekend to do the Jumbo free flow champagne brunch.  Champagne, seafood, on a gianormous boat?  Sounds good to me.

Princess Helen, Nina and me in SoHo a couple weekends ago
Afterward we head up the 3 miles of escalators to Nina's co-worker and friend, Helen's, new apartment.  It's gorgeous!  It's way way up in the mid-levels so they have an amazing view of the harbor.   It's open, refurbished, and just nice.  I can't wait til I grow up and have a nice apartment!  Just get a job first...Helen is so sweet.  We met a few weekends ago in SoHo where she was dressed as princess Leia.  I'm not sure why, but it seems every weekend here you'll see at least one group of people dressed up.  It varies in themes.  Sometimes togas or cowboys, or sometimes just weird fuzzy costumes, but there's no shortage.  I have yet to partake.  But, yeah, good friends, good times, good apartments.  I think sometime in the near future Paul and I want to host a BBQ party over at our place.  I think there's a little guilt with living in a sick apartment in a sick location (because you never leave!), so they're willing to come see what the other side is all about.

Friday, November 11, 2011

Chincha!? AGAIN!?

Here's a lovely email I got from one of my recruiters in regards to an opening at Standard Chartered on their equities desk (read: my dream job):

"...even though they felt that you had the relevant experience this is quite an urgent hire for them and they are unable to wait 6 weeks to get a working Visa."


Screw this visa nonsense.  I'm telling ya, I'm 3 minutes away from running down to city hall to marry my way into a visa (this was honest to god advice from someone I met at that crappy networking event).  Mom, don't worry, I won't really!  For now...

Photo taken and loaded via iPhone :)
ANYWAY, in waaaay more important news, I am now an IPHONE OWNER!!!  Paul and I waited. And waited and waited in line for our new iPhones (which I couldn't pick up earlier in the day because I don't have a HKID!!!!!).  There were these 3 poor guys working at the store, and when we actually got up to talk to them they told us they'd been there since 11 pm the night before.  This was 8pm 11.11.11.  Bummer.  Another hour of them setting it up and everything and Paul and I have iPhones!!!!  And they're awesome!!  Definitely worth the 2+ hour investment on a Friday night.  We came back and had an amazing yet silent dinner of cheese, salami, pate, crackers, fruit, salmon and garlic shrimp.  I tots outdid myself :)  And then we spent the rest of the night sitting next to each other in silence downloading apps.  I love this little guy.  Needless to say, iPhone > random poetry.

If you need to contact me you can do it via facebook, email, twitter, facetoface, textie, skype, or just call +852 6331 2975 and I'll get right back to you.

Today I'm going to meet my friend Liza at her church for a "Women's Brunch; 10 Things I Have Learned In Life."  Should be interesting and then Paul and I are shopping for iPhone cases.  We had originally planned to go camping in Tai Long O, but our lack of research/planning/effort has proven to get the best of us, so local we shall stay.  There are a couple exhibit openings, so maybe we'll hit those for a little culture before hitting LKF.

Thursday, November 10, 2011

AC Is Officially Off For the Season

How come 70 degrees in Hong Kong is a lot colder than 70 degrees anywhere else?  It's freezing here all of the sudden.  I have to wear a long sleeve AND sweater to go out!  What is January going to be like!?


Last night P and I attended the Rancinan exhibit opening at the Opera Gallery in LKF.   Finally someone who knows how to throw an event!  As you walk into the deceivingly large gallery, you're greeted by a one of the many batmen waiters with a glass of champagne.   The photographs are blown up and cover every wall.  I don't know if you're familiar with his work, but it's visually stunning, shocking, and disturbing.  He certainly has a gripe with commercialism, specifically in America, yet somehow this doesn't translate to the $800,000+ price tags.  One of the pieces that really stood out was a family sitting around the dinner table in height order, mom and dad at each end.  Everyone is dressed in a suit accessorized with a black batman mask.  It was a really cool exhibit and the mix of people was really interesting.  We met a guy who just moved here and was teaching at a University.  He was decked out in a t-shirt, yet the rest of the 50 or so people were to the 9s.  I definitely didn't feel up to par.  I need a job.

Post exhibit we wandered around LKF and decided to stop into Otto Lounge.  I had only been here for private wine events, and now I realize why.  It was dead!  9:30 on a Thursday and there was not a soul in the 7th floor lounge.   The private party continues!  The shocking part is that Thursday is ladies night and it's free flow prosecco (from the tap!) and vodka drinks for da ladies.  I got my champers, P a beer, and we sat out on the 7th floor patio and anonymously watched all the LKF action.  I don't know if I should even write about this because it was really sweet to have the place to ourselves!

Today I'm heading into Foodie to discuss what I did and what's up next.  And I have my own computer!  It's almost like being an employee...
Then Paul and I are going to have a wine and cheese picnic and go watch some poetry in Lok Fu.  The artists are all international, so hopefully it won't suck :)


The mall we live above's idea of "Christmas."  Unicorns?  Really?

Wednesday, November 9, 2011

Lost Again

Ok, so I went on my normal (read I do it everyday) run this afternoon and somehow got lost.  No big surprise there, and it actually worked out because it's the first time I've run 11k in a looooong time!  Woo. Feeling energized upon finding my way back home, I decided to reward myself with some tom yum ramen I bought months ago.  I'm not a huge ramen person, but I am a HUGE tom yum person, so I figured I'd give it a try.  Made the little pack, added tofu, fish balls (one with cheese!), basil and parsely, and it's the bomb!!! Sorry for the 1990 reference, but really, it's that good and really tastes like ton yum!  Go buy tom yum ramen now!  And it's only 1/2 the calories of the regular big ramen.  I'm tellin ya, it's amazing!

Networking Fail

At this point I've been to a lot of networking events.  I mean like at least 4 a week.  So I can tell a good event from a bad one, and this my friend was a bad one.  Even if we look past the fact that you had to pay $130, only got one drink, and there was a surprising lack of food,  there was a huge disparity between those providing jobs and those in need of jobs.  Being part of the majority group, this did not benefit me much.  "Oh you're getting your MBA"  That's nice but it's not going to get me a job.   It wasn't a TOTAL fail, I did get some business cards and meet some very nice people, I just don't think Mr. EndofFunemployment will come knocking on my door after it.

In more exciting news.  I stopped by an ethnic bakery after profiling Kowloon City yesterday and got "Malay Cake."  YUM!!  Sugary, but not too sweet.  I promised Paul I'd save him half of this new treasure, but the cake won out.  I should have taken a picture, but it didn't make it past lunch.  Next time P.  He came home with a nice surprise from work for me though.  He brought these Chinese desserts.  I'm trying to find the name, but so far no success.   It's rice, sugar, bowl cake topped with red beans.  So Asian, and I would have totally hated these 2 years ago, but totally dig the gummy sweet texture now!  Anyone know the name?

After watching Forks Over Knives Paul and I are trying to be more vegetarian.  This is no problem for me as the only meat I eat is picking at whatever I'm preparing him for lunch (yum rosemary chicken salad today!), or prosciutto or foi gras at networking events.  This, however, is quite the challenge for Paul because he can eat all day, not get full, and not gain a pound.  Taking meat out just means he'll have to eat an extra pound of pasta.  No, but really we're going to try to eat more eggplant, legumes, beans and whole grains (anyone know if you can get quinoa here?), and hopefully this will ensure we'll live forever.   That's what I took from the movie.  No meat, no animal products (I will never be able to give up milk,  not even the crappy stuff here), equals life forever.  FOREVER.  Sounds good to me because that's how long it's taking me to find a job!!!!

Tuesday, November 8, 2011

Finishy

After stalking out neighborhoods and harassing people on the street (you'd be surprised how many people don't want to be in a magazine!), I have finished four Street Views and my Word on the Street....and my Le Souk review but I'm not 100% happy with that yet.  I hope they think I did a good job!!

Yesterday brought the rain.  Goodbye summer.  Hello 70s.  Last night I ran, well not literally, from tutoring down to Hart Avenue in TST (check it in an upcoming issue of Foodie), to meet Kameron and Pfunk for Taco Tuesday.  What brilliant alliteration!  Who could resist!?  There's also one at my new favorite place Happy Valley Bar & Grill, but it's just a litttle too far to travel on a rainy Tuesday.  But for $9.99 you get a beef taco and beers are on special too.  I haven't been drinking much beer on account of there is so much good wine here, but once and a while it hits the spot.  You know how I've mentioned this small little expat world I live it?  Well it reared it's head again last night.  I ran into Victor at Tequila Jack's.  So far I ran into him at a wine event, a cocktail event, a Dutch luncheon (ha!), and now for tacos! We clearly have similar interests/are on the same email lists.  You can find Victor in next month's issue of Foodie as well (Word on the Street).  Sick of the plugs yet?  Just wait til the magazine actually comes out.

I got a phone call from Huxley recruiting today saying they were having a meeting with Standard Chartered about an urgent position on their equities desk, and they wanted to know if they could present me as a candidate.  YES!!!  They must really be desperate because I don't have any equities experience except from what I've studied with the CFA.  But here's hoping!!

Anyway, tis raining and I'm supposed to go to a networking event in Central tonight, but I'm a little hesitant to trek all the way down there to find a lackluster turn out.   Perhaps it will help my career karma to go....


Monday, November 7, 2011

Inspired

After the delicious pumpkin filled with seafood last night, I was motivated to try my hand at a pumpkin sweet potato curry soup.  On the streets here in the fall there are these carts that sell roasted chestnuts,  quail eggs, and gigantic roasted sweet potatoes!  Picked one of those bad boys up and I was good to go.  One of my first grocery trips in HK and I found canned pumpkin.  I haven't seen this stuff since the US so I immediately snagged a can for no other reason than the fact that I could.  It's been sitting in the pantry ever since, and seeing as I don't have an oven I was a l little confounded as to what to do with it...until pumpkin seafood bowl!

Last night's dinner turned out delish!

Success!
Saute garlic and onion
Add chicken stock
Add can pumpkin
Add sweet potato
Add Indian curry (from India!)
Garnish with parsley
Finishy!

Of course nothing in my kitchen is ever that easy so of couse I ran into one snag when my stupid can opener broke 1/4 of the way through opening the pumpkin.  I already had the onion and garlic on the stove as well as a pot of rice for Paul's lunch the next day.  So what do I do?  I went ape shit on that can!  I pull and pushed and levered, and finally I made an opening big enough to get some pump mush out!  Victory was mine!!


For Paul, the carnivore, I tried my hand at fried chicken.  I don't cook meat often, and when I do, I certainly don't fry it, but I had chicken breast, eggs, and panko bread crumbs and to my delight it actually came out pretty damn well for a first attempt!  And so as not to be wasteful, used the leftover egg wash and made a mini omelet.  Post dinner and we started watching Forks Over Knives.  Have you seen it?  Perhaps no meat for a while....
Pumpkin Curry Soup with Fried Chicken Fingers

Sunday, November 6, 2011

Welcome to the 21st Century

Here it is, 3 years after the iPhone first came to market, and I am getting one!  Actually two.  Paul and I just ordered the new iPhone 4s and they come in Friday!!!

Yata grilled meat selection.  See the duck tongues on the left?
Sunday and we're on the go again.  Paul and I head up to Shatin in the New Territories to watch Catherine's rowing race.  We had never been there before and figured it was as good excuse as any to check out a new area.  Maybe it's just me, but New Territories remind me an awful lot of Korea.  Tons of apartment buildings all looking the exact same all in a row.  Meh.  We saw some of the rowers heading up to the start line, but decided we didn't want to sit around and wait for the race to begin, so we explored.  We found a Yata and had an amazing avocado salmon crepe and grilled salmon stuffed squid.  Why doesn't our Yata have a grill and crepe place??  Post snack and we head back to SPK (San Po Kong) for some pre-dinner relaxing.

I told sassyhk.com that I would write a review of Ruamjai for their blog as I'm trying to build up my writing portfolio.   Paul and I went once when we first moved here, loved it, and so invited our new friends to come taste so more of their Thai delicacies.  And try we did!

Don't you love when you make drunken plans on a Saturday and they actually happen!!?  Nina, Kenny, and Andrew arrived right at 6:30 for the Thai feast.  P and I had made reservations earlier and the waitress told us we could bring out own wine with no corkage fee.  Got to love that.  In the month or so since P and I had first visited Ruamjai, we seem to have forgotten it's, shall we say, unfortunate interior.  There's no ambiance.  This place is all about the food.  We gather around our folding table and order a plethora of dishes; baby Chinese cabbage cooked in garlic, flat noodles with chicken (pad thai), pumpkin seafood curry, a whole edible goldfish,  and chicken and pork satay.  Everything was just as yummy as we remembered!  I took a poll around the table and it seemed the pumpkin curry was the star.  I need to add this to my dinner repertoire.  Pumpkin + coconut milk + seafood = HEAVEN.  I could seriously eat this every day. Seriously.  Every. Day.

We finished dinner and still had 3 bottles of wine (5 people. 5 bottles of wine. you know how we do) left so everyone came back to the Latitude to imbibe on the 6th floor patio.  It's so nice to have an outdoor space to have people over.  It's usually Paul and I traveling to see people, so it's nice to be able to finish your wine and head up to the 19th floor when it's all over.  No hour long bus ride here! Twas a wonderful Sunday evening, and Nina, Kenny and Andrew said it was worth it to come ALL the way over to the dark side for the best, most authentic Thai in HK.


Chicken Pad Thai
Pumpkin Seafood Curry 
Edible Goldfish Stuffed with Lemongrass

Sunday Funday crew; Paul, me,  Andrew, Kenny, Nina




Epic Wine Fail

I had been looking forward to this winery tour for a long time.  Ever since Rakesh, the owner of Platinum Wines, told me of its existence well over a month ago.  The event was organized by Wine Lovers in Hong Kong, although upon arrival none of the organizers were in attendance.  Odd.  Do they know something I don't know?

Let me back up.  Paul and I take the subway, to the bus, to an hour away little island called Ap Lei Chau.  Neither of us had been, but we had heard rumors of designer stores and to me this translated to this is going to be an awesome cute little beach town.  We arrived 2 hours before the wine event to check out the island and get some pictures for Foodie's Street View.  Fail number 1.  Ap Lei Chau is abandoned.  There were no cute stores or restaurants, although we did find one pizzeria from which we were stared at for a minutes and then ignored.  There were however, an abundance of 711s.   Feeling betrayed we sat, Diet Cokes in hand, and watched the fisher boats float by.

Looks can be deceiving
Wine time and we took a taxi, who had never heard of 8th Estate Winery (clue #1), to this industrial park where there are no stores, no people, and absolutely no signs of a winery.  We saw a similarly lost looking couple and deduced they were looking for wine too, so we wandered together until we finally found the building.  Go up an industrial elevator, down an industrial hallway, turn an industrial corner and all of the sudden you're in this beautiful tasting room.   The room is full of barrels and in the center of the room is a large dining table with 2 cheese spreads (which weren't that great and when the crackers ran out, they were never replaced.  Poor form).  We were characteristically the first to arrive so we stood around and waited.  And waited.  And waited.  After 10 or so people arrived the staff decided it would be ok for us to "try" the first wine.  Oh and did I mention this cost $180 each (~$22) and two hours of commuting?  By "try" I mean there was a little splash in the bottom of your glass, sipped once and it was gone.  And then we waited and waited and waited.  Finally enough people had gathered so we got the "tour."  The founder, Lysanne,  began the tour with a preamble "Sorry I'm so ahhhh, but it's been a whirlwind of wine events these past few weeks."  That's nice but it's 4 o'clock in the afternoon, drink a coffee and pretend like you're happy to see us.  The tour went into one room where she very generally described their wine making process.  They get their grapes from Australia, Italy and Washington, USA, so they came make wine year round.  I would like to tell you more about their wines, but that's basically all I got from the tour.  It was quickly ended with, "You guys probably want to get back to drinking, so let's go back to the tasting room."  Yes, true story, but sadly the drinking she alluded to didn't so much exist in this winery.  We tasted, literally, 3 red wines and a dessert wine, they took our glasses and we were left to stand empty handed.  When we asked if we could buy a bottle and sit outside one of the staff replied, "Ugh, well, I have some paper work to do, so you can stay til I finish that, but we don't want everyone staying."  Well ok then, we're out.

So that concludes the worst wine event I have ever been too.  Uninformative, lack of actual wine tasting, and lack of any enthusiasm from anyone at the winery.  WTF?  Who opens a winery and isn't super excited to tell everyone about it!?  PS aren't you trying to SELL your wines?  We got not even one smile from the 3 people working their, no way would I spend even a dollar here, even if the wine was superb.  (Their shiraz was actually pretty good).



New friend Nina and I out in LKF
Silver lining: We met great new friends!!  Nina and Kenny just moved here from NYC a month ago, and Kenny's co-worker/friend from Deutsche Bank, Andrew, just got here a few weeks ago as well.  We all got on so well, bonded about how much the winery sucked, so we cabbed it to Happy Valley Brew Pub for BEERS and fries.  We went out all night and made plans to meet again for Sunday Funday.  I suppose if wine tasting is going to suck, it's better to suck it together.  

Friday, November 4, 2011

fengqi.asia

I woke up reasonably early this morning, the sun was shining, and I decided to go for a quick little 4 miler.  31 minutes later and I hop in the shower.  I go to get a little pump of condition and son of a bitch shoots straight into my eye!  Must have been saving conditioner gunk for weeks to get that kind of precision and height! All I'm thinking is, "Oh no I have to go to this winery today with a puffy eye.  That or it's going to look like a smoked a pound of hash!"  Luckily for me I was in the shower.  A quick flush out and the crisis was averted. Shampoo I would expect this from you, but conditioner?  Really?

Doesn't the chandelier look like a booby tassel? 
Yesterday afternoon was an interesting one.  As I mentioned I didn't know what the event I was going to was.  Turns out it was a launch for some new cloud technology, fengqi.asia.  I'm still a little unclear about what exactly it is, perhaps because 1/3 of the hour long explanation was in Cantonese.  All was not lost though.  I made some good contacts in the banking and technology world, got a free key fob for attending, had some mediocre wine, and some excellent food!  The highlights were the skewers with a tomato, rare beef and fig, cheese foi gras puff pastry, and my absolute favorite mini grilled ham and cheese!  The turnout was pretty funny.  There were over 100 people there, 95% of which were Chinese, and 95% of which were men.  I was definitely the only Caucasian woman there, and I'm pretty sure the other white dudes were the CEOs and CTOs of the two companies who put this product together.  After introducing myself the first question everyone asked was, "How did you find out about this?"  Oh I have my ways.



Post reception I met Paul for dinner.  I had already eaten, but I wanted to profile this cute little street where Kameron and I had dinner the previous night.  Hau Fook Street will make an appearance in one of the upcoming Foodie magazines.  Paul and I popped into this tiny little Chinese place that Kameron said she and her parents like to go to, and we ordered a small thousand year egg and fish meat congee, and beef n noodles.  The congee was amazing!!! My new favorite and it was $21! (~<$3).
thousand year old egg w/ fish meat congee

Thursday, November 3, 2011

Work N Play

This morning I attended Work N Play's monthly meeting at Cherry's (of Aeris magazine) suggestion.  Despite the fact that it was at 8:30 in Central, I am super glad I went.  This meetup group meets often to talk about what's new in social media and how to use it to grow your business/online exposure.  Today's session started with everyone giving a brief 3 word introduction of themselves.  "Hi, I'm Lauren.  Looking for work."  The main act was Casey Lau's presentation about his companies past and present, advice on using social media, and then and he strongly (STRONGLY) encouraged everyone to keep a blog.  Check!  Most people there were in marketing or PR, but there were a few entrepreneurs and even wine guys.  Love wine guys!  I passed out my card, got some, and have already sent out emails.  Man these tech savvy people are quick at getting back to you!  I'm used to waiting a day or sometimes weeks for a response, not minutes.  Lessons I learned:

1.  I still don't know what it is I want to do so I'm going to do it all.  Keep blogging.  Keep applying for Finance jobs.  Keep networking.  Keep writing. Keep wine tasting.  Keep harassing wine guys.  Keep on keepin on.

2. Social media is key.  I'm back on Twitter, I need to spend more time on linkedin, and there are a shit ton other sites I haven't even heard of that I need to get on.  I also promise I will try to make my blog the most interesting it can be.  I just borrowed a camera from Foodie for this week, so I'll get you some pictures.

Crabstick roll that was much enjoyed for breakfast this am
Oh you're interested in what I came home to last night after dinner with Kameron, who is super sweet by the way.  Sushi!  Paul got off work at 4:30 because the teachers had to stay late on Halloween for a party, so he came home and rolled me some crab rolls.  How sweet is that?  Any of your boyfriends ever make you sushi??  Didn't think so.

I met Kameron in Tsim Sha Tsui (TST) and she showed me this really cute back street (off Cameron St) with all of these tiny mom and pop restaurants.  We went to a homemade noodle place where I didn't get noodles, hmm, and it made me eager to come back, sooo, Paul and I are going to head back tonight and check out some restaurants.  I think I may do an article for Foodie about the small little alley; Street Views for those of you who looked at Foodie.

Now it's off to profile some streets for Foodie, attend a mid-afternoon cocktail launch party.  I lost the confirmation email and now I can't figure out what the event is!  I guess I'll find out when I get there.  Tough times.  

Wednesday, November 2, 2011

Le Souk- Soho

After my meeting with Alicia last night, I met Paul and we hit up Le Souk.  My official Foodie Club review will be in the December issue, but here's a preview.  It was AMAZING.  This place was really phenomenal, and I'm not just saying that because it was free.  We started with a Spanish rioja, lovely, and the Egyptian mezze platter.  The platter had Moroccan cigars (phyllo with goat's cheese), babaganoush, hummus, falafel, eggplant/tomato spread, feta, olives, greens, Kafta (beef patties), and came with pitas.  All of it was superb.  Then for mains I got the sea bass tagine and Paul got the CousCous A Le Souk.  You guys know me and I'm not a huge meat person, but if I had to come back I would definitely get Paul's meat dish!  It was the star of the night. Although I must say the sea bass was lovely too.  Paul's plate had a mound of couscous with raisins in which you spoon a bowl of vegetable soup on top.  It was good, but the best part again was the meat.  There was no joke a whole lamb on his plate.  Ok maybe not a whole lamb, but it was a huge rack. I wish I had photos.  The lamb just fell off the bone and the two sausages had just the right amount of cardamom, and both were smothered in this delicious Moroccan sauce.  Needless to say, even after the big app, we licked our plates clean.  The owner, who was super enthusiastic and fun, told Paul he should share with me.  Ha he's clearly never met me as I don't so much ask, as just take a bite of everything.  Or two.  But, yeah everything was wonderful and Moroccan food is soooo up my alley.  Hummus?  Yes, please.  He also said they usually have Moroccan wine which is really good, but they had just sold out, so we'll have to go back to try that...and another rack of lamb.  Based on the amount of people who were there when we left, they should have no problem.  For you Hong Kongers, they also own Sahara and Antipasto.  I must go ASAP.

Post dinner and Paul and I made our way down the street to Maison Wines where we were invited to sample some Italian wines with the owners of the Cavalierino vineyard.  We tried 7 wines and two types of grappa, all of which were organic and quite delicious.  Much better than the usual French nonsense served everywhere here.  The Poggiano di Montepulciano, a cab sav, was definitely my favorite, but really all of them were really fruity and tasty.   They also had some of their home grown sausage and procsuitto to taste, but I was much too full for that.  They have this huge estate in Tuscany where they have 300 pigs, grapes, and olive trees for which they make olive oil.  We were invited to come stay at their vineyard/bed and breakfast in any time and I think one of these days we may just take them up on it.

And if this wasn't enough excitement for one night, we left the tasting and met Angie (my sub in Korea who now works for RBS) for a drink at Cicada.  I haven't seen her since one of my first weeks here so it was nice to catch up and reconnect.  We found out that we have a friend in common, Mirg.  The small little expat world we live in....

Today is busy busy busy.  Run, coffee with Aeris at 2, pick up camera from Foodie, tutoring x2, dinner in TST.  How does anyone find time for a job?

Tuesday, November 1, 2011

Lunch

I just made the best lunch ever.  Maybe it's because I miss Korean food, but man this hits the spot:

Kimchi, avocado, tomato, and shirataki noodles salad with mustard/soysauce dressing.  YUM. I think tomorrow I shall have the same with tofu.

Anyway, it's an exciting couple of days coming up! Today I meet with the editor of Foodie then out to dinner for Moroccan BBQ.  Tomorrow meeting with the marketing director at Aeris, an online "style and substance" magazine, tutoring, and dinner with Kameron.  Kameron is the daughter of Mei-Mei's best friend and just moved to Hong Kong.  I love meeting new friends!

Also on tap for this week, I have to write a review of a Thai restaurant and Cupcake Nails for sassyhongkong.com.  No Finance job, but at least I'm busy :)

Check out the November issue of Foodie, and me on pages 9-11, here:

http://issuu.com/foodie.hk/docs/foodie_2011_november_issuu

Check out Aeris's latest issue, now in Cantonese!, here:

http://www.aerismagazine.com/