you don"t need to save the crystal for a special day, even water tastes better in a "Fancy Glass"

Sunday, January 29, 2006

in the catagory of what NOT to do

I have a soft spot for Brown Sugar Cinnamon Poptarts. I know they are not good for me, and I know it is super-packaged food. But I love them. I actually thing they are the only true poptart. (though sometimes I do like the strawberry frosted ones too) We can't get them easily in Tokyo but recently they are becoming a bit more available- there is a supermarket that carries import foods and we have recently been able to get them there.

But... a poptart cannot be forgotten in the toaster oven on high with out dire consequences.

I was working away on the computer and spent quite a bit of time wondering what the acrid smell was before I remembered that I had indeed been making myself a poptart to have with my morning tea. Needless to say, I have no idea how a poptart tastes in the condition but I thought it was interesting to see how the frosting pulled away from the edges and made beautiful bubbles.

Monday, January 23, 2006

the redbook cafe

Tokyo is a very large, cosmopolitan city, and cafes are getting more and more common, but they are still not of the variety and quality that you might expect. So finding a nice arty, independent cafe is always a pleasant surprise. And finding one in my own neighborhood was a JOY! The Redbook is a little 12 seat cafe/bar, one couch, some bar stools around the counter, and one smaller table for two. I went there today to do some thinking and catching up on my writing. The interior was all designed and decorated by the female owner. She is young, very artistic, and seems to be quite down to earth. Nice little coffee/tea/and cocktail menu. Moves easily between sunny afternoon cafe spot to cozy bar. Dark green walls, wine red highlights, and very yummy cafe mocha. The best is that she serves the coffee drinks in a bowl-cup. I love those and they are far to rare. I remember in my Philadelphia days, two cafes, the Supreme Bean, and the Last Drop Cafe both had deep wonderful bowls for cappuccinos and lattes. Nothing better than to wrap your hands around a bowl of creamy steamed milk and coffee on a cold winter day. Today at the Redbook, I Got some writing done... nice afternoon off place. And only 10 mins. from my apartment.
definately going to become a regular.

Wednesday, January 18, 2006

kit kat and cross blog pr

In the "interesting candy release" world of Japan... there are many foriegn brands that release for Japan only flavors. One of the metro bloggers wrote about Wine Flavored KitKat Here Haven't tried these myself yet. I will give an update if I find them somewhere. One of the other strange aspects is that even when they release and promote special flavors here they keep the mistique by making the supply small and trying to build up demand.

Friday, January 13, 2006

Special Edition/ Limited Time Only

One of the things I like about living in Japan food wise is the sense of seasons and time in what is available. Fruits are available seasonally, for example; my favorite peaches can only be found in july early august. It keeps things special and changing and new, and generally the taste is better because instead of forced hot house produce you are eating fruit when it grows naturally.

Peaches in Summer, Mikan *Tangerines in Winter, Japanese grapes in the fall with the Fuji Apples... and so it goes.

this special edition mentality often gets taken to extremes however. Young japanese shoppers will line up for hours and spend hundreds of thousands of yen for a limited edition LVMH bag. And in a less expensive but even more interesting example... there is limited edition candy. each year, almost every month, in the convienience stores there is some special limited box or bag or bar of candy. The ones shown above are from last month... already gone from the shelves. I didn't think much of the pie alamode but the cappuccino one was actually pretty yummy.

I note that this kind of marketing is expanding back into the states as well. Starbucks used to only have special edition drinks in the USA for christmas... in japan a few years ago they started having all kinds of limited drinks at the Starbucks here. But I read recently that USA starbucks is creating more special menu items too.

I Love Gingerbread latte's by the way, and the GL season went by far too quickly this year.

I wonder if the special edition candy, coffee, etc. is not a reaction to tapping into the speedy lives we all lead and our desire to slow things down, make the time special. Smell the flowers? Anyway, more on special candy as I spot them.
-ls Posted by Picasa

Monday, January 02, 2006

Catching up on Christmas and New Year's Blogging

Being in the restaurant business means I do more serving of holiday meals than eating them. But I have to say, I really enjoy making people happy and bringing them a delicious meal when they are celebrating with family and friends. And my hubby and I do get creative about schedules and still find time to have some holiday fun ourselves.
Matthews Reserve
This year he came to the restaurant at 9pm after I had seated the last reservation group, on Christmas and we shared a great Christmas dinner. Roast Beef, Yorkshire pudding and mashed potatoes. YUM. We brought in a bottle of wonderful wine to have with dinner. A Mathews Cellars reserve Cabernet Sauvignon, from Washington state. It was perfect with the dinner. A little short in the finish, but really elegant and went terrifically with the roast beef.

Traditional Pork and Sauerkraut
For New Year’s Eve- We closed the restaurant at 7pm on 12/31… So, home I went to a tasty dinner. In my family back home in the states New Year’s traditions harken back to my Mother’s side of the family who were of German Decent or as they were known in Pennsylvania- "Pennsylvania Dutch" which actually came from the name for germany in german DEUTSCHLAND, not Holland!. Our new year’s dinner this year was just like I would have had with my Grandmother when I was growing up. Pork, Sauerkraut, Mashed potatoes… we forgot to get out the apple sauce but I also brought home some bisquits. Terri came over to enjoy New Year’s eve with us, she really enjoyed the dinner, And we had snacks, watched a movie and made popcorn after.

New Year’s Day- the restaurant is closed! this is the one day of the year we are not open... Chris and I Slept in Soooo late…. Ahhh.

Then we made Belgian waffles with strawberries. Perfect, decadent breakfast, Our little toasted sandwich and waffle-maker did not disappoint. Later it was out for a late lunch, and then we went to the movies to see KING KONG! I loved the movie, and I really think Peter Jackson is a genius. So all in all, my holidays included lots of hard work, but fun and good food with my husband and friend as well.