Day 1 & 2 – Taipei, Taiwan

Day 1 Itinerary:

Flight from Singapore to Taoyuan Airport | Shilin Night Market

This post is long overdue but I’ll post it anyway. Just because.

The yearly family trip destination for 2015…Taiwan! It’s that time of the year to bring out the sweaters. Oh yeah! Sweater weather here we come!

Upon checking in, we got our Hello Kitty print boarding passes (had no idea that we’re flying on a Sanrio airbus). So psyched and shocked when we boarded the plane. **Hello Kitty fan over here.** 

Everything in the plane is Sanrio-fied (pillows, utensils, monitors, everything!) What an exciting way to start our trip.

The flight from Singapore to Taipei takes about 4h25mins so I managed to squeeze in two in-flight movies—Hotel Transylvania 2 and A Wonderful Nightmare.

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By the time, we landed in Taipei it’s already past 8 in the evening. But that doesn’t stop us from going to Shilin Night Market*. 

*TIP: Go there on a weekend, more shops are open compared on a weekday.

There are a lot of cute stuff you can find here. Lookie! Star Wars inspired Minions—Darth Maul, Obi-Wan Kenobi, Darth Vader, Stormtrooper, Yoda and R2-D2.

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Ending the night with some Taiwanese snacks—pancake filled with sweet potato and cheese, chicken feet, salt & pepper crablets and many moooore! Get ready to eat, shop and eat while you’re in Taiwan.

Day 2 Itinerary:

Tien Lai Resort & Spa | Yangmingshan National Park | Sun Yat-sen Memorial Hall

Rise and shine people!

We stroll around the neighbourhood first to get some breakfast before going to Tien Lai Resort in Yangmingshan. I ordered some Fried chicken cutlet and sausage noodles with mushroom sauce. Yum!

Tummy’s happy, hot spring here we come!

Went to Yangminshan National Park afterwards since it’s near Tien Lai. Go to Xiaoyoukeng (小油坑) as well when you’re in YMSNP. I guess the view will be nicer during summer or spring when the weather’s not gloomy.

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We decided to watch the NYE fireworks show at Sun Yat-sen Memorial Hall. Look at those people waiting! If you plan on watching the show in the future, be prepared with the amount of crowd. It’s nice to bring some mat or cardboard where you can sit on. Because placing your butt on a cold cement for a long time sucks. LOL Scarfs/blankets and hot drinks will also be helpful in keeping you warm.

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Selfies while waiting.

And the countdown begins. 5..4..3..2..1..

Happy new year!!!

Day 3 & 4   |   Day 5 & 6

Majestic Mt. Pinatubo

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I’m psyched to share my first hiking adventure with you. Yey! I’m no expert, so if you’re looking for pro-tips, you won’t find it here. But stay with me, I’m sure you can pick something useful—or not. Kidding!

Btw, this happened last February. Soooo..yeah.. Super late post! Guilty as charged! O.O

Going back to the topic. Make sure to do some preps, a few weeks before the actual trek. Go for a jog or run or cycle, anything that will help in increasing your endurance and in conditioning your muscles before an intensive activity.

Things you need (or the things I brought):

  • 1L of water (our guide provided another 1L so that makes it 2L of water)
  • Towel
  • Sunglasses
  • Cap
  • Scarf
  • Snacks (I brought jelly sticks—no judging please)
  • Money (prepare small change—you need it when using the toilet)
  • Slippers / extra clothes (change to something comfy after the hike)
  • Toiletries (if you are want to take a bath after)
  • Phone / Camera (you know why)

We started our ascension around 6 in the morning, so we were able to witness the sunrise on our way. Before the actual hike, we had to ride a 4×4 for around 2 hours or less to drop us at the starting point. The ride will be bumpy and dusty, this is where the sunglasses and scarf will come in handy.

We had a quick stop at this place they called Toblerone Hill (I guess because of the shape) to take some photos and selfies.

Be prepared for a rough and rocky terrain. Do yourself a favour and make sure to wear durable shoes. And if you are planning to wear trekking sandals, do wear some socks. This will save your precious feet from blisters. Also, do not force yourself. Take your time and don’t get pressured by others’ progress. Better be safe than sorry. Take quick breaks and enjoy the view. Hiking is something that can de-stress you, so have fun and take it easy.

The real challenge was the 30minute trek to the crater but it was worth it! The view was…beyond words to describe.

When we reached the crater, it was already drizzling so the view is quite gloomy. Rain or shine I think the scene will be breathtaking. Be the judge.

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And as enticing as it is to jump into the water, swimming is prohibited. It was quite an experience and would love to go for more hiking trips. Hopefully anytime soon.

Savour 2016

Celebrated the Delicious last weekend at Savour 2016 with one of my best buddies. We had lunch under the scorching sun, it sounds crazy but with all the tasty food and fun we had… I say it was worth it.

Here’s the list of food that we munch on.

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(Clockwise from the top)

1 – Signature Stewed Ancho Pork Taco, Sweet Corn and Mango Salsa by Team Lower East Side [$6]

2 – Siew Yoke Umami Rice (Roasted Pork Belly, Crispy Nori, Japanese Umami Rice) by Labyrinth [$12]

3 – Peach Cooler Mocktail by Harry’s

4 – Wagyu Striploin, Mushrooms, Beans and Truffles by Team Bar A Thym [$12]

5 – Angel Hair Lobster Pasta, Fish Roe, Crispy Ebi by Team Saveur Art [$12]

6 – R&D’s Fried Chicken (12 Spice Dredge, Gong Bo Sauce) by Guest Team R&D [$6]

We also tried some cheeses. Just because it’s cheese, right?

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And finally, some Hokkaido Lavender Soft Serve Ice Cream for $5 to cap off our food trip.

There will be more Savour shows for this year—Savour Wines on September 8-11 and Savour Christmas on November 17-20. Mark your calendars.

Kimchi Pancake (Kimchijeon)

Kimchi. Kimchi. Kimchi. I’ve been craving for kimchi these past few days already. So I decided to try cooking some Kimchi Pancakes for lunch. So here it is. Ta-da!

Kimchi Pancake

Disclaimer: I am not a chef or anything, I just like to experiment when it comes to cooking. 

Things you need:

  • 3 tbsp of flour
  • 3 medium eggs (I used only 2 eggs, but I find it needs more egg)
  • A handful of soybean sprouts
  • 1 cup of kimchi
  • 3 tbsp of kimchi sauce
  • 1/2 cup of chopped white onions
  • Chopped spring onion (depends on your liking for this one I used around 2 tbsp)
  • 1/2 tsp of sugar (I used brown sugar)
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  • Sesame oil

Procedure:

  1. On a separate bowl, whisk in the eggs, kimchi sauce, sugar, salt, pepper and the flour. Make sure to mix in the flour carefully as it may create lumps.
  2. Over a low heat, pour sesame oil on a hot non-stick pan and then fry the onions until they becomes transparent.
  3. Add the soybean sprouts, kimchi and toss in half of the spring onions.
  4. After a minute, pour in the egg batter mixture and sprinkle the remaining spring onions. After two minutes or if the other side if cooked already flip the pancake. About a minute or so your Kimchi pancake is ready.
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This brand is worth trying. I tried many kimchis already and this one is nice! The brand is Chan Chan Chan. Yup! That’s three Chan(s) there. We usually order it online, so I’m not sure if FairPrice or Cold Storage sells this.

If you’ve managed to try my recipe, let me know how was it.

National Gallery Singapore

After some years of waiting…

Finally, National Gallery of Singapore is now open to the public!

One of the ongoing special exhibition now is the Wu GuanZhong: Beaty Beyond Form. And It will be on the National Gallery of Singapore until 03 May 2016. So be sure to check it out!

My sister and I were really shocked when we saw him. He looked just like our Angkong (or Grandpa)! Seriously! I even send the photo to my mom and she affirmed it. And to think our surname is also Go or Wu in chinese. Maybe it’s where I got my passion for the arts? Hmmm.. He He

And more photos around the gallery.

Inside the Keppel Centre for Art Education. This area is made specially for kids but I’m sure adults and those child at heart will also have fun here.

We were looking forward to go to the Playscape that day, but too bad it was already closed when we finished going through the other exhibits. -.- But I managed to take two photos. LOL Will be definitely back for this.


National Gallery Singapore
1 St. Andrew’s Road Singa­pore 178957
Opening Hours
Sun – Thu, Public Holidays: 10am to 7pm
Fri – Sat, Eve of Public Holidays: 10am to 10pm

One Sunday Afternoon

“When you drink coffee you are already two hours ahead of your peers.” I heard someone said it. Well too bad for me ’cause I don’t drink coffee. *insert non-coffee drinker puns here* Anyway, my friends and I visited two coffee shops last Sunday where we had our lunch and killed some time before we watched Burnt.

First Stop:

Common Man Coffee Roasters (22 Martin Road 01-00, Singapore 239058)

Common Man

Some ordered the Common Man Burger and the Tender Pulled Pork Burger.

Mine was the Organic Eggs Benedict—Tender braised ox cheeks, two poached organic eggs & chive hollandaise, with pepita toast. Look at those runny eggs. Yum!

And some Crab Salad to share—shredded crab meat with wild rocket, romaine, endive, sugar snaps, avocado, mint, pomegranate & caper crumbs in a mango mint dressing for sharing.

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Verdict:

I tried all the food we ordered and in my opinion the Eggs Benedict and the Crab Salad are delectable dishes. A must-try! Sorry guys, I can’t comment on their coffee but according to my peers they are good.


Second Stop:

Toby’s Estate (8 Rodyk Street, 01-03/04 Singapore 238216)

Toby's Estate

The place is bigger than the usual cafes here in Singapore.

Some beans and dessert they sell.

Tempura Mushrooms—Chunky tempura portobello mushrooms with lightly drizzled citrus dressing.

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Green apple and Pineapple Orange juice—freshly squeezed.

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I got to also taste the Affogato. It’s nice (coming from a person whoe doesn’t drink coffee.) Maybe because of the vanilla ice cream. LOL

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And the V60. I love their mug—matte finish and I love that gold accent on a black mug.

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My friend also took some photos of me.

Verdict:

If you are looking for a place who serves a lot of cakes, this is not a place for you. But, if what your after is keeping those caffeine flowing in your bloodstream then by all means drop by here and have a taste of their Woodneck or the V60 coffee. And DO NOT, I repeat, DO NOT forget to order the Tempura Mushrooms!


Update: I have learned to drink and enjoy coffee. And I am thankful I did.

I love flat white, lattes and cold brew.

27 years and counting…

A few only knows that I am frightened by the thought of growing old. So I dread the days that lead to my birthday. Every October I am having “anxiety attacks” and panic starts to creep in. There were times when I cried just the thought of my birthday. And sometimes when I encounter old folks I do feel scared—BUT this doesn’t mean I don’t respect or care for them or help them for that matter. The thought of being weak and wrinkly petrifies me.

So yeah, at the midnight of my birthday my sister and my brother-in-law went to my room and woke me up to surprise me. They were so happy and started singing the Birthday song.

And my reaction was…27th bday

Yup, that moment you realised you are getting older again. I totally ruined the moment, didn’t I? LOL

What’s a better way to make you feel younger is a Hello Kitty cake.27th bday4 27th bday3

Being aware of this weird condition of mine, I am working on it—psyching myself that it is really not a big deal and just accept the inevitable. And yes, I had some glitches this year but it wasn’t as bad as the past years (or so I thought). Ha Ha

Anyway, later that evening we had a dinner at Carousel Buffet. Together with the other dining celebrants, they gave us mini birthday cake and sang the Birthday song.27th bday 2

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These past 26 years of living, I can say that life was not always great but I couldn’t be any happier with what I have, where I am now and who I am with. My family and friends are not perfect and so am I, work had its ups and downs, encountered bumpy roads once in a while. But hey, it’s what makes life worth living and exciting.

Aiming that this 27th year will have more adventure, more love and happiness to share, learn to be content but know how to dream big. And remember to live life to the fullest and make it count.

Cheers to my fellow Librans!

The Garden Slug

As a pre-birthday celebration (last 10 October), the four of us—me, my sister and her husband and my best friend ate at The Garden Slug for dinner. Personally, I really don’t like celebrating my birthday that’s why it’s just the four of us. LOL

These are printed paintings by a local artist. You can check his instagram account @michael_lee_sy.

And here’s our order:The Garden Slug 8
Three Little Pigs: Bratwurst, Bacon & Ham Hashed with Mushroom Cheese Melt & Potato Egg Bake.The Garden Slug 6

Roti Johnson: Pork+Beef Patty, Chilli Eggs, Gooey Mozzarella, Creamy Parmesan, Drunken Onions & Sriracha Aioli.The Garden Slug 9

Spicy Mindy’s Chicken: Chicken with Chilli & Lime Leaf Garlic Butter Sauce.The Garden Slug 5

Babyback Pork Ribs: Slow-Baked Ribs Simmered Hickory BBQ Sauce.The Garden Slug 7

Overall, the food is just so-so. It’s not great but it’s not also bad.