Laos ~ Colonia St. Jordi, Mallorca

Another one of my favorite restaurants in Colonia St. Jordi is Laos. They actually advertise it as restaurant – bar – chillout. Considering what level you are on.

The bottom level is the restaurant with a patio out front, a covered outdoor area and then my personal favorite, the inside where you watch the chefs make the food – I love to do that. Of course, then I start watching for my food and I tell Felix – hey! I see ours, it’s coming out soon. And then it’s served to another table. Patience is a virtue.

The staff is super friendly. Laos is run by a sister – brother team and they couldn’t be nicer. Or sweeter. The normal Spanish bread and aioli (which I find so tasteless and boring) most restaurants typically serve is not the thing here. Nope. A most delicious chicken pate covered with an orange sauce and a fresh, personal-sized, homemade baguette plus yummy olives is their “amuse bouche”. And damn it’s good, don’t say no to that.

The menu is quite large (and in many languages) from salads to steak tartare to lamb chops to salmon. And they offer half portions or full portions to most of the selections (which I think is cool). But my most favorite thing about Laos is that every month they have a specials menu – three appetizers, three entrees and usually one dessert. And the first time we go every month I always try one of the specials. Last month they had salmon ravioli and oxtail on the specials menu and we ordered that the entire month. It was THAT good.

After you’ve eaten to your hearts content. Have a delicious dessert – my favorite is Crema Catalan (pretty much crème brûlée (so many accent marks with that one!) with a strawberry sauce on top – so freaking delicioso).

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When you are full and happy, you can head to the top floor which is their chillout area. Overlooking the one of the main streets of C. St. Jordi and just a block over from the sea, its the place to be. With its open windows, the fresh breeze and a cocktail in your hand, you can relax and let the cool tunes and mellow vibes wash away all your problems.

It’s Saturday and we are planning to go to Laos tonight. See you there!

LAOS RESTAURANT  Av. Primavera, 26, 07638 Colònia de Sant Jordi  971 65 58 73

Cassai Beach House ~ Mallorca

This place is heaven. Cassai Beach House in Colònia St. Jordi.

We recently discovered this restaurant that is only 15 minutes from our house. Finally someone close knows what they are doing in the kitchen!

The view is breathtaking. The food is scrumptious. And the waitstaff is friendly. Choose from sitting in the interior room where the breeze passes through the restaurant or on the sunny terrace that overlooks the sea.

With a nautical look and feel, you can enjoy lunch or dinner here with a tempting menu. Mediterranean and Mallorcan dishes full of flavor from oysters to burgers topped with foie gras to salmon tartare to paella to salads to steak with a truffle sauce to delicious desserts. SO. GOOD.

This place is the bomb. Fo shizzle my nizzle. And you need to go.

It’s always pretty busy so a reservation would be a good idea.

Cassi Beach House. Carrer Major, 21, Colònia de Sant Jordi. +34 971 070 939

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A Weekend In London

SATURDAY:

First things first. I needed to return to the pub I worked at when I was a young, twenty-year old, think I know everything chica. Yeah, that was a long time ago, back when I was almost finished with college! Because now I am old enough to REALLY know everything. 😉

12:00 p.m. – Walk through Hyde Park to the pub. Check out my Hyde Park blog here.

1:30 p.m. The Scarsdale Tavern

I mean seriously, just look how cute this place is! Ahhhhh, my old stomping grounds for a few months in 199- …. er, awhile ago.  In the lovely neighborhood of Kensington.

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The food was super scrumptious. I finished everything they set in front of us. We shared the tomato, basil, pine nuts, roquette and buff mozzerella bruschetta. And hell yeah, we added the prosciutto! And then we shared the Scarsdale burger with stilton cheese. I have been dying for a good burger lately, Spain just can’t seem to find really good ground beef for some reason. And when I’m in England, vinegar goes on the chips. That’s fries to you Americans. Everything was so darn good. Plus my Guinness with black currants and then a cider. What a way to start off my weekend in London Town.

The Scarsdale Tavern – 23a Edwardes Square, Kensington   +44.020.7937.1811

4:00 The Tate Modern Museum

Not only is this a cool place to view international contemporary and modern art but it’s free admission (except for special exhibitions)! I love free. Amazing art.

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And through May, the exhibition – The Radical Eye: Modernist Photography From The Sir Elton John Collection is at the Tate Modern. It’s an amazing private collection of photography, drawn from the classic modernist period of the 1920s–50s. It’s £16.50 and well worth every penny.

Also, check out the restaurant at the top with panoramic views of the London skyline. It’s a nice place to grab a bite and a drink after a few hours of art viewing.

Tate Modern – Bankside, London   +44.20.7887.8888

8:30 Chiltern Firehouse

This is the new hot spot. The place to see and to be seen. There are two parts – the hotel side and the restaurant side, both are great. If you get here early enough and the hotel restaurant isn’t busy, that is the place to see the famous peeps. But the other side is just as cool and popular. We had some appetizers at the bar to start out with – fried chicken (YUM), deviled eggs and bacon cornbread. And then for the main course we had the Iberico Pork and the Welsh Lamb. So freakin’ yummy. My mouth is watering now just thinking about it. It gets busy quick so don’t forget to make a reservation.

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Chiltern Firehouse -1 Chiltern St., Marylebone  +44.20.7073.7676

 

SUNDAY:

Time to do some shopping. But not any shopping, I wanted to do some vintage shopping in East London. And off we go.

12:00 Vintage Shopping on Brick Lane

Grabbed a cheesy toast and a latte with an extra shot of espresso from Starbucks at the Bond Street Tube station and headed for the Liverpool Tube stop. Once there we headed north – walk up Commercial Street, turn east onto Fournier St and your second street will be Brick Lane. That is where all the good vintage shops are. First stop was Blitz on Hanbury St. This place puts the other shops to shame. Seriously good stuff here for good prices. Two floors of rails and rails of neatly presented vintage fashion. Good book selection too.

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If you want more of an eclectic selection, head back to Brick Lane and just a block up is the Vintage Market. Lots of smaller booths run with a large selection of clothes, jackets, hats, records, books. A bit claustrophobic but an excellent selection to browse through.

Blitz –  55 – 59 Hanbury Street   +44.20.7377.8828

The Vintage Market – F Block 85 Brick Lane   +44.20.7770.6028

4:00 Big Chill Bar

Vintage shopping sure works up a thirst! Right around the corner from the Vintage Market is the Big Chill Bar. A reggae vibe runs through this lounge bar with its own resident DJ. I had a cider, Donita had a Bloody Mary. Food looked good but we only had drinks.

Big Chill Bar – Dray Walk   +44.20.7392.9180

6:00 Tower Bridge

You gotta do at least one touristy thing when in London Town. Right? My choice, Tower Bridge. We walked (!) from vintage shopping on Brick Lane to Tower Bridge. It was about a 25 – 30 minute walk, but super easy.

Tower Bridge is AH-MAH-ZING. I love it. The details, the size, the blue! Construction started in 1886 and took eight years and five major contractors to complete. The bridge is 800 feet in length with two towers each 213 feet high, built on piers. It is a very, very busy bridge with traffic (bus, car, taxi, people) continuously travelling on it.

And I find it very beautiful.

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9:00 ROKA

I was craving sushi and luckily enough one of the hippest sushi restaurants in London is just a few doors down from my friend’s apartment. Even though it was so close we still had to use an umbrella because it had been your typical rainy, winter evening in London.

Donita had been at ROKA only a week before and Steven Tyler was there. He even stopped by to say hi to her and her friend. What a nice dude! Alas, Mr. Tyler was not there that evening but we still had a fabulous time. The tasting menus looked scrumptious but we opted for our usual fare – miso soup, edamame, some sushi and a roll. Super yummy. Even had to order another round of toro (tuna belly) for me. I gobbled it up and thought about ordering even one more. I decided for one more cold saki and then sadly … that was the end of my weekend in London.

ROKA –  30 N. Audley St., Mayfair    +44.20.7305.5644

What are some of your favorite places, haunts, restaurants in London?? I can’t wait to go back. But I also miss Cornwall, England. Maybe I can talk Felix in going there soon. Cheerio mates!

Top 5 Restaurants in Palma

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There are so many restaurants to choose from in Palma. And so many good ones too! Over the years I have been to quite a few. Here are my top five that I feel are best overall – in food, price and atmosphere. Still looking for that great Mexican restaurant here!

What are your favorites in Palma? Please share in the comments!

These first two are in the Santa Catalina area. LOTS of bars, LOTS of restaurants and usually a lot of fun.

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NOLA – This place just feels like home to me. They have Brooklyn Lager on tap and some darn good cajun cookin’. Whenever I am missing my good ole U.S. of A, I head on over to NOLA and eat some fried pickles and a big plate of BBQ ribs. So tasty, great flavor. And on most Wednesdays it’s RIB NIGHT – all you can eat ribs for 15euro per person.

Also great is the Jambalaya and Gumbo. Actually, it’s all delish. GO!

NOLA   C/San Magí, 13   +34 971.667.006

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ROTANA – Just up the street from Nola is Rotana. If you are craving some yummy Lebanese food, this is your place. I like to get the assorted starter to share with my peeps – hummus, falafel, stuffed grape leaves and more. Then my favorite lamb dish as a main course and I am FULL! They also have a few tasting menus to try. The mint tea is a perfect end to your dinner. Or they have hookahs that you can smoke from! Not sure if you have to bring your own tobacco.

You can sit inside or outside (if the weather is nice). But careful, on some nights they have belly dancing inside and the music can be a bit loud.

ROTANA  C/ San Magí, 58  +34 971.286.078

The next two are in the Old Town of Palma – My favorite area is the Old Town (La Antigua Lonja), full of narrow alleys, historic monuments and inspiring architecture. In just a square kilometer there are quirky cafes, funky shops, art galleries and of course lots of restaurants.

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LA BOVEDA – Tapas, tapas and more so very delicious TAPAS! The classics – prawns and garlic in oil, Iberian ham, pa amb oli, plates of tempting cheese and sausages. I recommend their plate – Estrella de la casa, which has a little bit of everything. If you’re lucky, you might get the occasional guitarist. Go early because it gets full quickly. But if that happens you can always go over to their sister restaurant around the corner – La Taberna de la Boveda

La Boveda  C/ Botería, 3  +34 971.714.863

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FORN DE SANT JOAN – This one you definitely need a reservation for if you want to eat here. They do have online reservations, which is nice. And it is a bit on the pricier side than the others but worth it. Full on menu with lots of tapas style appetizers to start with – my personal favorite is one of the oysters, the grilled octopus and the king crab. Then there is a grande selection of things to tempt your palate with pastas, fish and meat. Oh and the desserts!  The cocktails are excellent, the service is superb and it is one of my top favs on the island.

And if you want, you can go across the street to the over-the-top bar cocktails at Abaco Cocktail Bar. It’s pricey, but quite the experience.

Forn De Sant Joan   C/ Sant Joan,4   +34 971.728.422

And my last one is in the Genova area of Palma. If you don’t have a car, you will need to get a taxi to get here, but it’s not too far out of Palma.

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CASA JACINTO – This is your typical Mallorquin/Spanish restaurant that focuses on the popular tapas, fish and meat. Not much decor to talk about but it’s more of a place with good food, good prices, nice waitstaff and to get in with the locals and away from main stream of Palma. Order some dates with bacon or the pimientos de padron for a starter and my favorite is cooking your own steak on the hot stone they bring to your table. The house wine is pretty good too.

Casa Jacinto  Cami de Tranvia, 37   +34 971.401.858

BUEN PROVECHO!

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Christmas Butterplätzchen

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Time to make Mama N’s famous Weihnachten cookies again! These melt in your mouth cookies are so easy and everyone will love them. Make them for a party, for your family, for friends or just for yourself! Because you know what, you are worth it!

Here is the recipe in German but if you no entiendo Deutsch 🙂 then here’s the recipe in English.

Ingredients:

150 grams Flour                         75 grams sugar

1 Tablespoon Vanilla Sugar      1 egg yolk

100 grams butter (it says or margarine but REALLY?! do the butter already)

Clean off a countertop and starting at the top of the list make a pile of the ingredients. Then, when you add the butter grab a large knife and cut up all the ingredients together in a pile. Next, with clean hands (!) knead/mix the ingredients. Wrap the cookie dough in plastic wrap and set it in the fridge for one hour. Hour is up, roll the dough until it is 3 or 4 millimeters thick. Grab your cookie cutters and place the dough on a floured cookie sheet. Stick it into an oven at 180° C (350°F) for 8 – 10 minutes. Then take out to cool. Violá!

ps – I love the adorable side notes from Mama N in German. Warms my heart!

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Siphon Coffee Addict

siphon Siphoned coffee, y’all. Have you had it? I think I am spoiled for the rest of my life with drinking coffee. When we were in Germany for Thanksgiving, Felix’s brother talked about this coffee maker from Japan and how not only did it make delicious coffee, but it was an entertaining science-y experiment. The next morning he made us coffee from his Hario Siphon Coffee Maker. AH-Mazing.

Well, it was so good that as soon as we were back in Mallorca, Felix had to buy one of his own. And now, we too are siphon coffee maker owners. YAY! It really is quite fun to do and watch. And if you are still searching for a cool and interesting Christmas present this would be a good one for your coffee lovers out there. You can buy the Hario 5-cup Siphon Coffee Maker here on Amazon. And because I just became an affliate, I make a few coins (seriously, only coins) if you order from this link. And in advance, thank you for supporting me!

A few things to tell you about the maker. First, it says 5 cups but those are more espresso sized cups. It makes about 3 American coffee mugs. Secondly, you will need to buy alcohol fuel for it, not butane. And three, use hot water to start off with, this will save you time and money on the fuel – doesn’t change the taste of the coffee at all.

I made a time-lapse video to show you how to use it/make the coffee. It really is quite easy and SOOOOO freaking smooth and delicious.

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Paris Rue des Rosiers aka Falafel Street

I had some hours to kill in Paris before my plane back to Mallorca in the evening. I had done a bit of research (like always, hello!) to find something cool, different to do. And like always, it usually ends up with food. We all gotta eat! And to quote Anna Lösegeld directly – “Isn’t it funny how we have to eat?”. And true that Anna, we do. She is one smart cookie.

My search brought me to Rue des Rosiers. A divine street with hip, cool shops but is also known for its delicious Middle Eastern and Eastern European specialties, as well as some of the best restaurants in the area. I went to L’as du Fallafel, which claims (rightfully) to have the world’s best falafel.  This sandwich comes with grilled eggplant, cabbage, tahini, hummus, and hot sauce. But don’t think that nobody else knows about it. Prepare to wait. But they were decently fast about it. You can also sit inside but the place seemed quite crowded and you must wait for a seat. The outside line moved pretty quickly.

I’m at the end of the line and just ordered my falafel. Some dude is standing by the line taking orders, very proficient!

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*

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Almost there!!

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Competition directly across the street.

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Sooooooo close now, I can taste it.

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HALLELUJAH!!

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It was all it was cracked up to be and more. And apparently, Lenny Kravitz is a fan of L’as du Fallafel. Hey, you never know who you might run into. After you eat, continue exploring the bookshops, boulangeries, and trendy boutiques. This is one cool street, peeps. And this was on a Sunday! So get thyself over to Rue des Rosiers. You won’t be disappointed.

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