Wednesday, October 31, 2012

Doraku @ Life Center, Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia

If your table at Doraku isn't overloaded with dishes, you are doing something wrong. Start with standout cold dishes like Shiromi Shiso Carpaccio, followed by Ahi Hawaiian Poker and move over to the hot side and be dazzled by the Doraku Wafu Burger. To end, order your choice of ice cream and leave the table with a satisfying smile =)
Now I have an answer if anyone asks I know of any good Japanese Fusion style restaurant in KL. The answer will be Doraku. 
When you are here, expect nothing but a vivid palate of flavors, heightened by fresh ingredients and generous portions meant for sharing. 
Hiyashi Wakeme (RM8) - Served chilled, this marinated cold seaweed played well as an appetizer. 
Shiromi Shiso Carpaccio (RM30) - Thinly sliced Shiromi got extra layer of flavor from the shiso leaf, topped with marinated cucumber, sweet onion and tomato. The fresh ingredients and Kabayaki sauce was an instant flavor bomb.
Ahi Hawaiian Poker (RM36) - This dish started out as Japanese but ended with Hawaiian accent, thanks to the fresh ahi tuna, sweet onion, seaweed mix and nuts - all doused healthily in a Doraku Special sauce. We can't stop thinking how all these wonderful ingredients can sit together so well. 
Sashimi Moriawase (RM60) - It's always nice to complement the culinary journey with simple fresh sashimi, designed to accentuate both seafood and Japanese game.  
Doraku Wafu Burger (RM36) - The burger was a standout! Luscious greens and a fried egg draped across the juicy hamburger patty, held together by soft buns and flavored with special Japanese sauce.  We will definitely be back for this umami rich burger! 
Doraku Roll (RM30) - Unlike the typical rolls that can be found anywhere in KL, the Doraku roll was dressed with crabmeat and avocado, topped with seared tuna, daikon radish, shiso leaf and crispy garlic chips. To top it off, it was drizzled with special wasabi yuzu citrus sauce, giving it a sweet and spanking fresh combo. 
Sakura Ice Cream (RM12) - There is always room for desserts. A sweet sakura ending accompanied by azuki and a touch of Japanese sweets.


Doraku Wafu Burger 
Shiromi Shiso Carpaccio
Ahi Hawaiian Poker 

Doraku @ Life Center, Kuala Lumpur Big Badge

Monday, October 29, 2012

Smitten by Ideas: DIY Wine Cork

Don't throw those wine corks away. Here are some interesting ideas on what you can do with it - promise you will enjoy it as much as your wine. 

Idea # 1: Wine Cork Magnets

Idea # 2 Wine Cork Basket

Idea # 3: Mini Flower Pot

Idea # 4: Plant Marker

Idea # 5: XO Stamp

Idea # 6: Place Card Holder

Idea # 7: Key Chain

Idea # 8: Bath Mat

Idea # 9: Monogram

Idea # 10: Notice Board

Wednesday, October 24, 2012

Copenhagen Canal Tours - Nyhavn, Amalienborg, Dannebrog, Opera House, Church of Our Saviour @ Denmark

There is no better way to see Copenhagen than to hop onto a canal tour, where a bilingual tour guide will tell you about Copenhagen's most beautiful churches, castles, old listed houses and new buildings.
We started our tour at the famous Nyhavn, a beautiful canal surrounded by colorful houses and sail ships. The famous fairytale writer Hans Christian Andersen used to lived in house No.67 for a good 17 years. Some of his famous books include, The Little Mermaid, The Flying Truck, The Swineherd, The Ugly Duckling and The Shepherdess and Chimney Sweep. 
Amalienborg is currently the winter home of the Danish royal family. The castle was originally built for four noble families, but when the Christiansborg Palace got burned down in 1794, the royal family decided to buy this beautiful palace and moved in. 
If there is a winter castle, there will be a summer yacht. Meet Her Danish Majesty's Yacht - Dannebrog (named after the Denmark flag). This ship also function as a hospital ship in times of emergency. 
A lovely smile from a cheerful little girl 
Copenhagen Opera House - This is one of the most modern opera houses in the world. It is also one of the most expensive, costing more than US$500 million! 

Vor Frelsers Kirke or commonly known as the Church of Our Saviour is a baroque church, famous for its external spiral staircase. 
Passing through the tiny canal bridge
Colorful small boats mingling at the canal, waiting to be operated by their respective owners
Kids taking a break near the canal. Life is good in Copenhagen. 

Thursday, October 18, 2012

Conditori La Glace @ Copenhagen, Denmark

When Master Confectioner Nicolaus Henningsen opened his doors at Skoubogade 3 in 1870, he never thought that the confectionery would stay at the same location for more than 5 generations. 
Guests have come and go in steady stream over the past decades - all overwhelmed by the extensive assortment of cakes, cookies, chocolates and ice creams. 
With furnitures dating back to the 1920s, the ambiance was pleasant, making it a wonderful place to indulge oneself with sweets and caffeine. 
Sportskage (DKK 52) - If you could only order one thing here ( which is not recommended ) make it the Sportskage. This house specialty was created back in the 1891 for a theater play called "Sports Man". The treat was amply riched by crushed nougat, whipped cream and macaroon bottom.
Fragilite (DKK 31) - Also not to be overlooked is the Fragilite, which literally means fragile in French. This lovely pastry was made of almond bottom, mocha butter cream and decorated with powdered sugar. 
Efterarskage (DKK 52) - Another name to drop is The Autumn Cake, an art piece filled with chocolate truffle, chocolate bottom and smothered with butter chocolate! 
Conditori La Glace is not just a go-to place for desserts, they also rule when it comes to hot chocolate.  


Conditori La Glace
Address: Skoubogade 3, 1158 Kobenhavn K, Denmark
Telephone: 3314 4646
Operating Hours: Mon - Thu 8.30-5.30pm, Fri 8.30-6pm, Sat, 9-5pm, Closed on Sunday

Tuesday, October 16, 2012

Smitten By Ideas: Starbucks - A Licence to Lose Money

Source: Starbucks 

Although this post is more finance related, I can't help but to share this special report from Reuters, which uncovered some interesting facts about Starbucks’s creative accounting methods.

Over the past 3 years, Starbucks's UK subsidiary has reported no profit and paid no income tax despite registering £1.2 billion in sales. As guided by the reporter, tactics used by Starbucks are perfectly legal and are being practiced by multinationals all over the world.

Under the current UK tax regime, companies such as Starbucks are allowed to pay royalties to subsidiaries where country tax are much lower (i.e. Switzerland - as low as 2%). In addition, Her Majesty’s Revenue and Custom (HMRC) also allows companies to deduct intellectual property fees if firms can show that the charges were made at “arm’s length”.

More interestingly, transfer pricing seems to be a popular way for companies to minimize tax bill, by allocating some funds generated in the UK to other subsidiaries in the supply chain, where corporate tax are much lower.

Another way to cut taxes is through inter-company loans, where parent company will charge a high interest rate on its inter-company loan, benefiting both companies in term of taxable income. 

For the full post on How Starbucks avoids UK taxes, click HERE.

Happy Reading! =)

Wednesday, October 10, 2012

Svaneke, Sea Glass Studio and Osterlars Round Church Tour @ Bornholm, Denmark

First Stop: We started our tour at Svaneke, a small town located on the east coast of Bornholm that has a tiny population of just under 1,100.
Despite the small population, Svanake is a very popular tourist spot thanks to its quaint red-roofed and half timbered houses. 
A stroll down the port might evoke the idea of making Svaneke your second home.
Second Stop: The Baltic Sea Glass is a glass studio where artist Maibritt Jonsson and Pete Hunner develop unique glass art, inspired by the daily things in life such as plants, wildlife and landscapes. 
Mini volumetric flasks
Corn inspired glass art
Next stop: Round Church of Osterlars - Build in 1160, Osterlars Round Church is the largest round church in Denmark. It is one of the main attraction on the island with more than 120,000 visitors a year.
The central column of the church is decorated with biblical scenes from the Annunciation through to the Passion, ending with Day of Judgement where Jesus judges mankind. 
A view from the top - This church is often being linked to the Knight Templars, who were warrior monks that lived a modest life during normal times. But in wars, they were feared by the Muslims, whom they fought with in the Holy Land. It is believed that Bornholm was used as a base for a crusade to the Baltic countries. 

Monday, October 8, 2012

Gudhjem Rogeri @ Bornholm, Denmark (Smoked Herring)

Bornholm is a tiny fishing port located 200km east of Copenhagen. It is officially the sunniest part of Denmark, blessed with picturesque streets, sandy beaches and glorious food. 
After our visit to the Baltic Sea Glass and Round Church, we travelled back to the town center where we were treated to a sampling of smoked mackerel before returning to our ship.
Built in 1910, Gudhjem Rogeri is the oldest smokery in Bornholm. Here you will find herrings hanging over an open alder wood fire, smoked for a good three to four hours. 
 The golden smoked herring was served with rye bread, chopped radish, onions and chives, along with some coarse salt and butter. The texture of the herring was firm and crisp, packed with smokey and delicate flavors.
We concluded that the herrings were well worth sinking our teeth into, despite all the tiny fish bones that occasionally find its way into our mouth. 


Gudhjem Rogeri
Address: Ejnar Mikkelsensvej 9, Gudhjem, Bornholm 3760, Denmark. 
Phone: +45 56485708