+ The Experience by Reif Othman Dubai Review

The Experience by Reif Othman – Dubai

If you’re a fan (like me) of lists such as The World’s 50 Best and travel the globe to find exciting and inspiring food experiences, you’d be forgiven if Dubai left you a little…wanting. To put it very politely. Despite the huge amount of investment being poured into fancy restaurants on a constant basis, Dubai hasn’t really stepped up to international levels when it… Read More


St. Regis – Macao, China

For my first visit to China’s island playground, I couldn’t have chosen a better introduction than the St. Regis Macao. My love for the St. Regis brand is well known, and this new addition to their portfolio delivers on everything you expect from the iconic luxury stable. Situated in what felt like the perfect location on the new Cotai strip, the St. Regis is easily… Read More

Morah – Dubai

I’ll admit it – I’d been holding off revisiting Morah. After previously attending a pop-up dinner there featuring an imported chef from a two-star restaurant that didn’t go well on all counts, I was once bitten, twice shy. With guests in town however, I seized the opportunity to showcase the stunning views of Dubai that Morah affords from its 71st floor location in the JW Marriott… Read More

+ Bagatelle dubai review

Bagatelle – Dubai

I’d like to say I’ve heard a lot about Bagatelle since it opened at the Fairmont, but it would be more accurate to say I’d seen a lot about Bagatelle. Which led me to the issue of not knowing how to pronounce it’s name – is it Bagatell? Or Bagatelly? Thankfully I was able to make my reservation over email which avoided all need to… Read More


Azurmendi – Larrabetzu, Spain

It’s with careful trepidation that I open the wax-sealed menu I’ve preserved from our Azurmendi experience. Being my favourite meal of 2016, I’m careful not to damage a single momento from the occasion. (I still have the little hessian pouch of Azurmendi pea seeds safely sitting in my kitchen – sadly Dubai’s not really the best place for cultivating plants.) I’m lucky enough to eat… Read More

Fairmont – Fujairah, UAE

It’s fair to say that the Fairmont brand has quite the reputation. A very good one, that is. Given this excellent reputation, it’s also fair to say that when you arrive at the new Fairmont Fujairah, you might temporarily think you’re lost. I certainly did. A quick check of the GPS told me we were, in fact, at the brand new Fairmont, but you’d… Read More

+ 101 One and Only The Palm Restaurant Review

101, One and Only The Palm – Dubai

Dubai is a city famous for its beaches, crystal clear water and sprawling skyscraper skylines. Sadly, I can’t think of too many venues that offer views encompassing all three of these elements while offering a decent dining experience. The beachscape is lined with mediocre establishments, all too happy to charge over inflated tourist prices for disappointing dishes. Thankfully, I now have somewhere to recommend… Read More


Sühring – Bangkok, Thailand

Sühring. Not what you’d expect a restaurant located in bustling Bangkok to be called – but this isn’t your average Thai restaurant. It’s an unexpected taste of Germany in BKK, and possibly the first German tasting menu I’ve come across in my world travels. Sühring is part of the new wave of Bangkok restaurants championing foreign cuisines, and it should be on your list when… Read More

+ Play Brunch Dubai Review Reif Othman

‘Play by Day’ Brunch – Dubai

  It’s not often you find a brunch in Dubai that truly dishes up top level food – so when TimeOut Restaurant of the Year, Play, announced it was now offering a brunch, I was more than intrigued. Set on the 36th floor of The H Hotel, Play is certainly a beautiful restaurant. It’s sexy, majestic, expansive…and frankly, has the best ceiling in all… Read More

Clooney – Auckland, New Zealand

Clooney. A name that for many Aucklanders likely conjures up images of a long-standing, industrial-glam, fine dining restaurant on Sale Street. For those residing outside of Auckland however, the only Clooney they’re likely to be familiar with is better known for assisting patients in the emergency department and orchestrating casino heists. Somehow I think Jacob Kear’s arrival at Clooney is going to go a… Read More

+ The Grove Auckland Review

The Grove – Auckland, New Zealand

The Grove is every bit a legend on the Auckland scene. Not only has it consistently been at the pointy end of every list in town for as many years as I can remember, but it’s also been New Zealand’s Noma or El Bulli of sorts – in that it’s been the training ground that has spawned many of New Zealand’s most renown chefs…. Read More

Anantara Sir Bani Yas Island – Abu Dhabi, U.A.E.

If you’re looking for a unique escape that feels a world away but is still quintessentially U.A.E, look no further than Anantara’s five-star Sir Bani Yas Island resort and villas. A salt dome island situated 8km off the Abu Dhabi coastline (but 250km from Abu Dhabi Airport), Sir Bani Yas was originally established in 1971 by the late ruler and founder of the United… Read More

+ The Culpeper Princes Wharf Restaurant Review

The Culpeper – Princes Wharf, Auckland

Occupying a prime slice of the Prince’s Wharf seaside frontage that used to be part of what was once Euro 1.0, The Culpeper is bringing American style BBQ with a side of seafood to the wharf. Nourish Group’s Gareth Stewart brings his wealth of culinary expertise as Executive Chef, and in its first year, the restaurant hit the Metro Top 50 list. Not bad…. Read More

+ Fine Dining Myths Debunked by Zoe Bowker

Fine Dining Myths Debunked

The term ‘fine dining’ has come under a lot of fire lately. Everyone seems to be scrambling to define their restaurant as anything but. Why are restaurants now scared of being labelled ‘fine dining’? Is it because the general population are intimidated by the old school notion of fine dining, without realising what it really means today? In my eyes, it’s a term to… Read More

+ The W Hotel Bangkok Review

The W Hotel – Bangkok, Thailand

Ok, so the W is a brand we know (mostly) what to expect of – bright colours, reflective surfaces, interesting art, rooms named after superlatives. The W Bangkok doesn’t disappoint on any of those fronts. The colour du jour at W BKK is royal purple, and the theme is Muay-Thai-gone-clubbing. Think giant sequined boxing gloves adorning the beds (which read appropriately, ‘Lights’ and ‘Out’), fighting… Read More

+ Tucks and Bao Newmarket Auckland Review

Tucks and Bao – Newmarket, Auckland

Having read some good things about this new eatery, it’s Newmarket location made it the perfect location at which to catch up with local friends on my most recent trip to Auckland. I previously worked just up the road from this venue, and knew it’s previous occupants well – I still remember Market Kitchen’s stellar eye fillet, celeriac and watercress dish fondly. I have… Read More


First Look: Lima – Dubai

Most foodies will be familiar with the name Virgilio Martinez, whether from his Chef’s Table episode on Netflix, or from being the man behind Central, ranked no.4 on The World’s 50 Best Restaurants list. He’s gracious, softly spoken and put simply, just a lovely bloke. We were very lucky he was in the kitchen (and on the floor) for our visit – I’m told… Read More

+ Gaggan Emoji Menu 2017

Gaggan – The Emoji Menu Feb ’17

  Gaggan. He’s a superstar of the culinary world…a bit like Madonna and Britney, the first name is all you need. It’s my second time to Gaggan’s eponymous restaurant (read here for the first), and after hearing that his new menu consists of 25 emojis, it’s safe to say I’m pretty excited – not just because I’m fond of peppering my communications with said… Read More

+ Fukuko Britomart Review

Fukuko – Auckland, New Zealand

  A little sibling of sorts to Metro Top 50 veteran Ebisu, Fukuko is just the place if you want to grab a quick lunch or cocktails and Japanese tapas that won’t break the bank. With tacos starting at $6 a piece and cocktails at $14, this is an inner-city spot that offers a great location and great food for a great price. Fukuko… Read More

+ Depot Auckland Review

Depot Eatery and Oyster Bar – Auckland, New Zealand

At over five years of age, Depot is somewhat of a stalwart on the Auckland dining scene. From the stable of NZ celeb chef Al Brown and until recently helmed by Kyle Street (who has gone on to open Culprit on Wyndham St, at the site of the former Black Hoof), it’s casual and cosy, serving up Kiwi inspired seasonal fare. You’ll usually struggle… Read More

+ Ruya Dubai Brunch Review Grosvenor House Marina

Ruya Brunch – Grosvenor House, Dubai

  When the team behind Zuma, Coya and Nusr-et open a new restaurant in Dubai, you can bet it’s going to be the hot ticket in town. Clearly, Ruya is hoping to follow on from the success of Coya and Zuma – they’ve certainly prepared for crowds. (Also it seems they really like two syllable names ending in ‘a’ don’t they? There must be… Read More


Le Classique, Emirates Golf Club – Dubai

I’ll admit it – I’m not too familiar with Emirates Golf Club. A venue that’s a bit ‘before my time’ in Dubai, it’s one that will be well known by many an expat with a longer tenure in the sandpit than I. It’s fabulously located, right near the Marina, and I wonder if once upon a time it seemed far away, before the explosion… Read More

+ Photo Credit: JA Resorts and Hotels

Bateaux – Dubai

Ahh, Christmas in Dubai. That lovely time of year where family and friends from around the world come to visit our fair shores. I don’t know about you, but when visitors are in town we find ourselves doing activities on the more touristy-side to showcase the wonderful city we live in. On this visit I decided it would be a good excuse to check out… Read More

+ Nobu Matsuhisa and Zoe Bowker

Chef Nobu Matsuhisa Interview

The Nobu brand is a globally recognisable name, conjuring up images of sophisticated sushi and celebrity endorsements – starting with it’s co-owner, Robert de Niro. Behind all the glitz and glamour, the restaurants, the hotels and sake lines, lies a fascinating story of triumph over adversity. I’m almost surprised they haven’t made a movie of Chef Nobu’s life yet, but then this blockbuster script is still… Read More

+ Dinner in the Sky UAE review

Dinner in the Sky – Dubai

If you’re a foodie, you’ve probably heard of Dinner in the Sky. With over 3000 meal flights conducted, it’s had it’s fair share of press around the globe. I’ve long admired the pictures of this amazing experience conducted worldwide, hoping one day I would get to try it. With the sky-high table winging it’s way back to Dubai, I finally got my chance to tick… Read More


Bazxar Brunch – DIFC, Dubai

  Ahh, DIFC. Home to SO many dining establishments, (including many of Dubai’s best restaurants) yet somehow still manages to have a new restaurant open what feels like every month. I suppose everyone is chasing the gold-lined suit pockets of those financial types and I can’t say I really blame them in what’s becoming an increasingly tough dining scene in Dubai.  Bazxar is one of… Read More

+ The Artisan by Enoteca Pinchiorri Dubai Restaurant Review

The Artisan – Burj Daman, DIFC, Dubai

Ahh, The Artisan. After a long time pining over a visit to this restaurant, a gap finally came up in my schedule and I was more than excited to be taking hubs to a restaurant I just had a feeling would deliver the goods. The real deal. Italian like it should be. Let’s just say (spoiler alert, please don’t stop here – but if you’re hella… Read More

+ La Farine Dubai JW Marriott Turkey Christmas Dinner Review

The Turkey Takeaway with all the Trimmings – La Farine, JW Marriott Marquis

One of the best things about Christmas in Dubai is that while it’s certainly different to most expat’s home countries, it has a lot of wonderful upsides. One of these is definitely that spending all day in the kitchen is not required. In fact, I’ll don’t think I’ll ever cater Christmas myself ever again! Why slave away over a hot stove for hours upon hours… Read More

+ Cibo Auckland New Zealand Restaurant Review

Lunch at Cibo – Parnell, Auckland

There’s just something about Cibo. It’s not easy to find, tucked away on a back street in the city fringe. Sure, it sits hidden amongst high-end furniture stores (mostly patronised by Interior Designers on the Eastern Suburbs dime), a fab French market (La Cigale), a fab wine shop (Caro’s) and offices, but you wouldn’t know it’s there unless you know it’s there. Despite its lack… Read More

+ Mini Bar Lisbon Review

Mini Bar by Jose Avillez – Lisbon, Portugal

If you love Tickets in Barcelona or are just a fan of fun food, then Mini Bar has to go on your must-visit list when in Lisbon. Part of Jose Avillez’s impressive stable of Lisbon restaurants (which includes top 100 restaurant Belcanto), this for me is the type of experience that puts the life back into fine dining. It’s crazy, sexy and full of… Read More

+ Budapest Wine Tours Hungary Wine Tasting

The Wine Lover’s Guide To: Budapest

Budapest would have to be one of my favourite destinations in the world right now. It’s officially the cheapest city in the world in which to drink – so wine lovers, you’re going to be in heaven here. In fact, everything is great value in Budapest. The stunning scenery in Buda and Pest (each side of the river carries a name that forms part… Read More

+ FRANKIE'S Dubai RestauranJt Review

Frankie’s – The Walk, JBR, Dubai

Located on the fab-for-walking, problematic-for-driving ‘The Walk’ at JBR (actually, I guess that should be obvious from the name…it’s not called ‘The Drive’!), Frankie’s is a long-standing Dubai institution (so I’m told). A partnership between a famous jockey (Frankie) and a famous chef (Marco Pierre White), it appears to be a homage to their old school boozy days, with the hallways lined with photos… Read More

+ Ronda Locatelli Atlantis The Palm Dubai Restaurant Review

Ronda Locatelli – Atlantis The Palm, Dubai

With Dubai being a city of celebrity chef-branded restaurants, a few times each year we are lucky enough to have the figurehead chefs themselves in town. It’s usually the best time of the year to visit these venues, as the ‘big boss’ overlooking proceedings ensures the best is coming out of the kitchen and often they’ll create a special menu just for the occasion…. Read More

+ Laguna Lounge Sofitel The Palm Dubai

New Opening: Laguna Lounge, Sofitel the Palm

Alright beach bar lovers, I’ve got a new one for you to try! Just in time for quite a few months of lovely beachside, cocktail sipping weather, Sofitel the Palm has opened Laguna Lounge, a beautiful new venue. It’s French Polynesian-themed, like the hotel as a whole, and takes me right back to memories of the South Pacific. There are plenty of comfy seats… Read More

+ The Ivy Dubai Restaurant News

December To-Do: Farewell The Ivy

British cuisine fans, we’ve got news that may sadden you. The Ivy, a Dubai institution via way of Dubai, is closing on New Year’s Eve! (Well, we’re hoping that a re-opening announcement will follow.) It seems Emirates towers is shaking up its food and beverage offering, having just killed off one of my favourite Dubai venues, the karaoke dive bar that was Harry Ghatto’s…. Read More

+ Tatsumi Newmarket Auckland Best Japanese Restaurants

Tatsumi – Auckland, New Zealand

Tatsumi has long been one of Auckland’s hidden gems for me – one I only discovered given that I was lucky enough to work within walking distance. I’ve enjoyed their lunch set more times than I could count, and taken many guests there to rave reviews. The question was, would it still taste as good as I remembered after a year of Michelin starred,… Read More

+ La Mome Dubai Restaurant Review Menu

La Mome – Nassima Royal, Dubai

Traditional and homely…not something you’d usually associate with Dubai restaurants, but that’s the vibe recent arrival La Môme is going for. Arriving to La Môme, I’m excited to see whether I’ll feel transported to Paris by Dubai’s latest French concept. Red roses, velvet booths and beautiful views from the 49th floor tick a lot of boxes in the cosy and romantic categories, but it… Read More

+ Carnival by Tresind DIFC Dubai Restaurant Review

Carnival by Tresind – Burj Daman, DIFC Dubai

  As if Chef Himanshu Saini didn’t have enough on his plate with his award winning Modern Indian restaurant on SZR, Tresind, he’s decided to add another crazily creative Indian inspired venue to his stable, and Dubai’s dining scene is all the richer for it. Accompanying a space on the 1st floor of the Burj Daman in DIFC just down from the fabulous The Artisan,… Read More

+ Stay by Yannick Alleno One and Only the Palm Dubai

STAY by Yannick Alleno – One & Only The Palm, Dubai

Ok so I may or may not have had an obsession with the One & Only brand since I was a teenager…so when the opportunity came to check out their fine dining restaurant, STAY, while the executive chef was in town, there was no way I was saying no. The chef in question is none other than Yannick Alleno, a culinary mastermind who’s work… Read More

+ Eleven Madison Park World's 50 Best 3 Michelin Star Restaurant Review New York

Eleven Madison Park *** – New York City, New York

Situated parkside at 11 Madison Avenue, the much lauded venue with the self explanatory name is nothing if not a New York institution. The pride and joy of Daniel Humm’s ‘Make It Nice’ group, Eleven Madison Park (or EMP for short) is the three-star older brother to one-starred little sister The NoMad, but stars aside – both are must visits when in NYC. As if… Read More

+ Kempinski Ishtar Dead Sea Jordan Hotel Review

Kempinski Hotel Ishtar Dead Sea – Sweimeh, Jordan

Let’s face it – the Dead Sea is a total bucket list destination – but after visiting the Kempinski Hotel Ishtar, I think it deserves more than one visit in a lifetime. I chose the Kempinski due to it’s top ranking on HotelsCombined.ae (I like to start my search by ranking options from the highest guest rating to the lowest) – with an 8.9… Read More

+ Gordon Ramsay's La Bordeaux in Bordeaux, France

La Bordeaux by Gordon Ramsay – Bordeaux, France

Having not realised that many Bordeaux establishments are closed on Sunday, we were lucky enough that the team at Gordon Ramsay’s La Bordeaux could squeeze us in for dinner at the last minute. Not to be confused with Gordon’s flagship Bordeaux establishment, Le Pressoir d’Argent, this is the more casual side of his operation at the Intercontinental Bordeaux (though still in pretty swanky surrounds if… Read More

+ Social House Dubai Mall Dining Review

Social House – The Dubai Mall, Dubai

Choosing where to dine at the mall is always a difficult decision – now that I’ve levelled up my guac skills I have less of a Rosa Mexicano habit, and at the moment I’ve got no favourite restaurants with a view at Souk al Bahar. Dubai Mall shopping however requires significant fuel so with visitors in tow, we decided to take Social House for a spin…. Read More


Saffron – Atlantis the Palm, Dubai

Ask any Emirates cabin crew member enroute to Dubai which is the best brunch on offer in DXB and it’s likely they’ll enthusiastically espouse, ‘Saffron!’. It’s a brunch with a reputation that precedes itself, well known for epitomising the essence of the ‘Dubai Brunch’ – indulgence and party vibes! Rocking up to Saffron (at the world famous Atlantis the Palm no less), it’s evident… Read More

+ Asia Asia Pier 7 Dubai Brunch

Asia Asia Spice Route Brunch – Pier 7, Dubai Marina

Having only popped into Asia Asia for a quick drink previously (but having heard wonderful things about their food), I was excited to see what their Friday ‘Spice Route’ brunch was all about. Pier 7 in the Marina is a great spot with a fab view and given that I had guests in town, it was the ideal choice (traffic however is a giant… Read More

+ Cassia by Sid Sahrawat - Metro Magazine's Best Restaurant in New Zealand 2016 - Review

Cassia – Auckland, New Zealand

You only need one reason to book a table at Cassia, and that reason is Sid Sahrawat. Cuisine NZ’s Chef of the Year 2016 and the man behind one of New Zealand’s most lauded restaurants (and a personal favourite of mine), SIDART, is lending his magic touch to Indian cuisine and the results are even better than I expected. Actually, of course I should have… Read More

+ Saan Ponsonby Review Metro Top 50 Auckland

Saan – Auckland, New Zealand

I love Thai food, whether it’s dining out or whipping up something at home. Hearing the rave reviews about new Ponsonby establishment Saan, I knew I had to taste what all fuss was about. Coming from the Cafe Hanoi and XuXu Dumpling bar stable, I’ve got high hopes. Being a Metro Top 50 restaurant, I was more than surprised to see a rather empty… Read More

+ Ebisu Britomart Auckland Metro Top 50 Restaurant Review

Ebisu – Auckland, New Zealand

Despite being a stalwart on the Metro Top 50 scene since it’s opening, the Ebisu menu had never been able to lure me to it’s waterfront location, even though I’ve dined all around it over the years. This time however, some delicious sounding dishes and multiple mentions of truffle oil managed to get me over the line. I tried to book on the fly, as… Read More

+ Fu He Hui Shanghai Review Menu

Fu He Hui * – Shanghai, China

Part of the acclaimed Fu group and a rising star on on Asia’s 50 Best list, Fu He Hui (‘Fortune and Intelligence’) was to me an enigma shrouded in mystery. Coming in at no. 18 on the list in 2016, the vegetarian Shanghainese restaurant of the Fu group keeps the secrets of it’s success close to it’s chest. No website, no online menu…let’s just say… Read More

+ Besh Dubai Mall of the Emirates Restaurant Review

Besh – Sheraton Mall of the Emirates, Dubai

The newest dining arrival located in the rather stylish Sheraton Mall of the Emirates, Besh is promising to bring traditional Turkish fare to Dubai using only the highest quality Anatolian ingredients and recipes. Consultant chef Vedat Basaran has brought his magical touch to the Besh’s menu – according to his bio, “Vedat has collaborated with many known chefs over the years such as Alain… Read More

+ Sud777 Mexico City Review

Sud777 – Mexico City, Mexico

Housed in a sprawling venue that marries 60’s log cabin chic with hipster design afficionado, Sud777 is immediately impressive from the moment you arrive. Though, I have to admit I did briefly think I was lost when I entered through what looks like a Japanese sake bar…I think this is actually Kokeshi by Sud, and probably warrants a visit of it’s own. Confusion aside, head… Read More


Biko – Mexico City, Mexico

As my Uber nears the end of the long trek through the Mexico City traffic en route to Biko, my view slowly starts to change from bustling city scenes to polished, posh Polanco streets – and I get a hunch that my lunch date is going to be a relaxing respite from the madness of downtown Mexico City. My suspicions are confirmed when the lift doors open to reveal Biko’s… Read More


Nerua * – Guggenheim, Bilbao

A must visit not just because of it’s world famous museum, Bilbao is fast developing a foodie reputation to rival it’s big brother in the culinary stakes, San Sebastian. Just an hour or so away from the famed Basque cuisine capital, Nerua is one of the establishments leading the way in Bilbao’s fine food scene. Housed inside the Guggenheim, Nerua clearly gets a big… Read More


The Surrey – Upper East Side, NYC

With accolades piling up on it’s doorstep, The Surrey was an easy choice when I popped to the Big Apple to attend The World’s 50 Best Restaurants Awards. It’s New York City’s only Relais & Chateaux boutique hotel, delivering Upper East Side chic in spades. It’s also a haven for some rather cool art – so if that tickles your fancy, you’ll find plenty to peruse… Read More


Dusty’s – DIFC, Dubai

I’m always on the look out for a new and unique brunch – so when I heard about the Departures Brunch, an airline themed Friday feast, it was the perfect excuse to finally take Dusty’s for a test drive. I spend a lot of time on airplanes, so I was keen to check out how Dusty’s have translated the sky high experience into a Dubai brunch…. Read More


Waldorf Astoria – Ras Al Khaimah

Whether you’re a looking to escape the summer heat, get some R&R or explore the other Emirates, Ras al Khaimah is a top choice. Just over an hour from Dubai, the isolated location of the seaside resorts means you can just put your feet up and have a guilt free getaway. A spur of the moment decision to get away for a quick staycation lead… Read More

+ Armani Deli Dubai Review

Armani/Deli – Armani Hotel, Dubai

Housed in the world’s tallest building, the Armani Hotel and it’s chic dining establishments are the epitome of Dubai indulgence. Armani/Deli is the first of the four dining concepts I’ve experienced – the more casual, traditional Italian offering and the only one of the restaurants open for lunch. Sure, it goes without saying that I love Italian fare – but there’s something else that brings me back… Read More

+ Katana Downtown Dubai Review

Katana – The Address, Dubai

Currently on a mission to discover the best spots to take guests when in Dubai, and of course always being on a mission to discover the best food in Dubai, I was intrigued when offered the opportunity to check out Katana. Residing underneath the still-under-repair let’s-not-talk-about-that-NYE Address Downtown Dubai, location-wise it looked like it had the potential to tick both boxes if the food… Read More

+ J&G Steakhouse Review St. Regis Dubai Habtoor City

J&G Steakhouse – St Regis, Dubai

Stepping into what might be Dubai’s most majestic hotel lobby, you just know what’s coming has got to be good. I’m rather happy that one of my all time favourite hotel brands, St. Regis, has finally graced Dubai with it’s presence – it’s about time really! Part of the Al Habtoor City complex that includes the new W and soon to be opened Westin,… Read More

+ Review of Gaggan Bangkok Asia's 50 Best Restaurants

Gaggan – Bangkok, Thailand

Why are the good ones so hard to write about? That’s what I find myself asking as I finally put fingers to keyboard to finish my review of Gaggan, one of the restaurants I visited while in Bangkok after #50BestTalksAsia. Is it because it’s so hard to find words that do the food justice? I think that’s a big part of it. I’m also realising… Read More

The Dubai Dish List 2016

Choosing where to go and what to order in a city with as many options as Dubai can be an overwhelming task – I’ve been there! Let me help make short work of that by sharing with you (in my opinion) the must eat dishes out there in the Dubai dining wilderness. These are dishes that for me, were love at first bite. Make sure you… Read More

+ Fume Pier 7 Dubai Breakfast Review

Fume Breakfast – Pier 7, Dubai

Today I found myself grappling with a problem most Dubai residents will be familiar with – where to take guests when they visit to dine. Somewhere with good food, a good view, and prices that won’t make your visitors cry when they convert it to their local currency. Breakfast is by no means my favourite meal of the day, so given that I think… Read More

+ Treehouse Taj Dubai La Guinguette Brunch Review

Treehouse ‘La Guinguette’ Brunch – Taj Downtown, Dubai

A recent arrival on Dubai’s outdoor terrace scene, you might have heard of Treehouse due to it’s spectacular views of the Burj Khalifa and the soon to be completed Dubai Opera. It’s a very pretty view indeed, and an equally pretty venue. While Treehouse’s terrace is undoubtably a gorgeous spot to spend a night Burj-gazing during cooler winter evenings, it might not instantly spring to mind as… Read More

+ The Rib Room Review Jumeirah Emirates Towers DIFC Dubai

The Rib Room – Emirates Towers, Dubai

Coming from a steak saturated country, the home of beef and lamb (New Zealand, in case you were wondering), I’ll admit I’ve skirted around Dubai’s top steakhouses in my 18 months of living in the desert. I know a great steak, I can cook a great steak, so it’s often neglected in my dining calendar – but the good things I’d heard about The Rib Room were… Read More

Namaaz Dining – Jakarta, Indonesia

I’ve pondered long and hard how to start this review off. How to convey to you how much I loved this dining experience. How to explain in words how special this restaurant is, how special this chef is. How to make you want to travel to Jakarta (not exactly the world’s most hospitable city just FYI) just to taste the molecular Indonesian cuisine I’m… Read More

+ Taste Kitchen Dubai Burger Review

Burger Review: Taste Kitchen – Mercato, Dubai

I’m on a bit of a burger kick at the moment. It’s kind of the opposite of a health kick. A combination of my visit to NYC and my ever escalating Food TV addiction seems to have ignited a passion for meat sandwiches that had lay dormant for most of my life. So I now find myself on a self-appointed quest to find the… Read More

+ Botanist Shanghai Review

Botanist – Shanghai, China

  When we arrived to take our seat at the bar, Botanist was abuzz with local cocktail connoisseurs checking out what Shanghai’s newest purveyor has to offer. Let me tell you – Shanghai knows a thing or two about cocktails, and takes it’s mixed concoctions very, very seriously. Botanist is a prime example of this, with a very lengthy, very complex cocktail menu that takes some… Read More

+ Tea Ceremony at Royal China Dubai, DIFC Review

Royal China – DIFC, Dubai

Having spent more time eating European creations on my recent trip to Shanghai than Chinese cuisine, I was really craving some authentic Asian fare. Enter Royal China DIFC to the rescue. The sign outside the door signals that this isn’t a one-off establishment, but like many successful Dubai hotspots (Nobu, Coya, Zuma, Hakkasan anyone?) it’s a member of a worldwide group of restaurants under the… Read More

+ The Commune Social Shanghai Review

The Commune Social – Shanghai, China

With this being my second trip to Shanghai, I knew I couldn’t depart the city again without sampling one of the local outposts of Jason Atherton’s global restaurant empire. Having attended the soft launch of Jason’s Dubai venue, Marina Social, I had pretty high expectations for what The Commune Social would be dishing up. Thankfully, it didn’t disappoint. Definitely a relaxed affair, The Commune Social… Read More


Paper Island Street Food Market – Copenhagen, Denmark

If you’re looking for a break from the plethora of excellent fine dining on offer in Copenhagen, I’d recommend a visit to Papiroen, or Paper Island. A giant shed housing a huge selection of ‘street food’ stalls, you’re going to need to go seriously hungry to this place! It’ll also give your wallet a little reprieve from Copenhagen fine dining prices which can’t be… Read More


Vanitas – Palazzo Versace, Dubai

When a name like Versace arrives in town, people sit up and take notice – especially in the luxury-loving locale that is Dubai. A palatial property designed under the guidance of one of Italy’s finest design houses, Palazzo Versace’s dining establishments have rather large shoes (or should that be stilettos?) to fill. Enigma seems to be growing into it’s role as Dubai’s premium fine… Read More

+ Yonah Shimmel Knish Bakery

Yonah Shimmel Knish Bakery – New York

A NYC institution since 1910 (well at least according to the sign), Yonah Shimmel Knish Bakery is an essential stop if you’re planning to visit the legendary sandwich institution just down the road that is Katz’s Deli. Going by the letters, cards and photos lining the interior walls of Yonah’s, it soon becomes apparent that plenty of people believe Yonah’s creations are just as… Read More


Estela – New York

As I was planning my NYC trip for The World’s 50 Best Awards, I reached out to all of my local (and worldly) food expert friends for their essential reservation recommendations. One name came up time and time again: Estela. The coming together of Uruguayan Chef Ignacio Mattos (a chef boasting a very respectable CV including a stint at Alice Waters’ Chez Panisse) and restaurateur Thomas Carter, the former… Read More

+ Gramercy Tavern New York Review

Gramercy Tavern * – New York

Alright, just a quickie here. Danny Meyer’s Michelin Starred Gramercy Tavern seems to be firmly rooted in the hearts of New Yorkers, and seeing as I was walking past en route to Estela, thought it my duty to pop in and see if the hype was on point here. The basics – there are two areas to Gramercy Tavern. The Dining Room offers tasting… Read More

+ Momofuku Ssam Bar New York Review

Momofuku Ssäm Bar – New York

Flicking through the online offerings from the Momofuku stable, something about Momofuku Ssäm Bar’s menu stood out to me. I particularly liked the look of their brunch menu – baos, pork belly, duck…I’m sure you get the picture. What better way to start a sunny Saturday in NYC than indulge in some David Chang mastery? Kicking things off in true heart-stopping style with some chicharron (yeah,… Read More

+ Totora Cebicheria DIFC Dubai Review

Totora Cebicheria Peruana – DIFC, Dubai

DIFC, home to some of Dubai’s best and most talked about restaurants, has welcomed a new Peruvian purveyor to the fold – Totora Cebicheria Peruana. A locale loved by financiers and foodies alike, DIFC hosts heavyweight culinary competition in the form of Zuma and LPM, both just scraping into this year’s World’s 50 Best 51-100 list. In a market some might say overloaded with Peruvian and… Read More

+ The NoMad New York Review

The NoMad – New York

Taking it’s name from it’s location North of Madison Ave, New York’s The NoMad sits just a short stroll from it’s big brother, EMP. That’s Eleven Madison Park to be precise, a true NYC establishment and holder of the no. 3 spot on the 2016 World’s 50 Best Restaurants list. Being a stablemate of EMP comes with some hefty expectations – but the number… Read More

+ Obsidian Vineyard Waiheke Island Auckland New Zealand

Obsidian Vineyard – Waiheke Island, New Zealand

I’m going to cut to the chase here – I’m a big fan of the wines Obsidian Vineyard has been producing over the last three or so years, and as a result it’s now cemented firmly as a must-visit vineyard on my Waiheke Itineraries. Being in a location that looks on the map to be a little out of the way at first, it was… Read More


SixtyFive – New York

When I travel, I love to get high in my new destination as quickly as possible. By high, I mean scaling great heights for a view, not the illegal substance kind! When in NYC, you may find your search for the perfect cityscape selfie comes at a hefty price – both Top of the Rock and the Empire State Building will set you back… Read More

+ Tickets Barcelona Restaurant Review

Tickets * – Barcelona, Spain

Are you one of the many foodies left devastated that they never made it to the ground breaking home of molecular cuisine, El Bulli? May I present to you the next best thing (in my books) – Tickets in Barcelona! Ok, so it’s not quite the legendary establishment itself – but nevertheless, being that it’s from the brothers Adria themselves, (well, Albert anyway) it… Read More

+ Noma Rene Redzepi

Noma ** – Copenhagen, Denmark

Let’s be honest – visiting Noma is somewhat of a rite of passage for hardcore foodies. Having topped The World’s 50 Best Restaurants list four times, it’s a name synonymous with innovative, modern cuisine that showcases the essence and ethos of the Nordic wave of chefs leaving their mark on gastronomy as we know it today. On this occasion I’m making the pilgrimage to the… Read More


Nougatine at Jean-Georges – New York

After starting a busy pre-World’s 50 Best day with brunch at the James Beard foundation, I was determined to squeeze some Jean-Georges magic into the NYC itinerary. Sadly by the time we arrived, the three star Jean-Georges kitchen was closed, but we were still able to dine at the adjoining Nougatine at Jean-Georges, a slightly more casual option at Trump Tower, 1 Central Park. It’s ideal… Read More


Buddha Bar – Grosvenor House, Dubai

If you’re a traveller like me, you’ve probably come across the famous ‘Buddha Bar’ name somewhere, somehow. Perhaps you’ve visited one, or many, but after my visit to the Dubai outpost I can say it’s one you shouldn’t miss. Just want a quick rundown? Check out the short review here… From the moment you step through the red velvet rope, a night at Buddha… Read More


ABaC ** – Barcelona, Spain

Arriving at the much heralded ABaC (FYI that’s pronounced ah-bach, not A-B-a-C), you can’t help but feel a twinge of excitement when confronted with the imposing front entrance emblazoned with it’s name. Want just a taste of ABaC’s tasting menu experience? Read the short summary here… The boutique hotel and it’s eponymous two-star restaurant, helmed by the renown Jordi Cruz, feels serene and mysterious,… Read More


Rhodes W1 – Grosvenor House, Dubai

Ahh Grosvenor house….full of so many of my favourite eateries, yet so hard to pronounce. My love for GH brought me here to test out a dining venue that was new to me yet not new to Dubai….Rhodes W1. Short on time? Read a summary review here… One of Gary Rhodes’ eponymous restaurants, this is a Dubai establishment that has celeb chef cred attached… Read More


Babbo * – New York

On an extremely (and suddenly) wet and blustery New York day, stepping into Babbo was perhaps the most heavenly respite a hungry foodie could ask for. View the conciso version of my review here  Having had my newly purchased $5 umbrella turn itself inside out mere minutes after purchase enroute, I learned that walking isn’t always the best option for your wellbeing (and that you… Read More


Brunswick Social Club – Mall of the Emirates, Dubai

Introducing the latest release from the team that brought you such hits as Tom & Serg, Common Grounds and The Sum of Us…it’s Brunswick Social Club! More Aussie than the three combined, this is one that just screams ‘Aussie, Aussie, Aussie! (Oi, Oi, Oi)’ from the moment you step inside it’s doors. Ok boys, I know you just want the quick rundown – you can… Read More


Weslodge – JW Marriott Marquis, Dubai

Look out Dubai diners, theres a new expat arrival in town – they hail from Canadia*, eh, and they’re here to rock the sky-high dining scene. I headed along to see exactly what Weslodge was all aboot. Want it short ‘n’ sweet? Read the compact version of my review here First of all, this location isn’t your run of the mill Dubai spot – it’s on… Read More


Hija de Sanchez – Copenhagen, Denmark

As part of the Opinionated About Dining weekend in Copenhagen, we were invited to taste the creations of Hija de Sanchez – a taqueria created by Rosa Sanchez, an ex-Noma chef with a passion for bringing authentic Mexican cuisine to the masses. They have two locations, Kødbyen and Torvehallerne, and we popped into the latter to experience what are apparently the finest tacos Copenhagen has to offer…. Read More


Skye Bar – Jakarta, Indonesia

If there’s one thing I love in this life, it’s a good rooftop bar. Or really, a great rooftop bar. Turns out, rather unexpectedly, Skye Bar is one of them. I say unexpectedly – well, first, have you visited Jakarta? It’s a crazy tangle of roads that exist in a constant state of gridlock, un-walkable sidewalks, smog that blocks the sun and metal detectors… Read More


Radio – Copenhagen, Denmark

When we asked around for must-visit dining destinations in Copenhagen, Radio was a name that popped up time and again – so needless to say we simply had to pop in to see what all the fuss was about. Given that the schedule was already pretty jammed full of fine dining, we lined up Radio as part two (well technically three) of our ‘bang-bang’ Saturday… Read More


Relae * – Copenhagen, Denmark

Decked out in modern Scandinavian décor, certified organic and winner of the World’s 50 Best Sustainability Award for 2015 (and coming in at no. 45), it seems Michelin starred Relae couldn’t be more Copenhagen. A tiny eatery of under 40 covers, our cozy corner table seemed to be the perfect place to while away a warm and sunny Scandic Saturday. It seems this is… Read More


Bayside – Steigenberger, Business Bay

Checking out the brunch at Bayside at the very new Steigenberger, Business Bay, I honestly wasn’t sure what to expect – German food to mach the origin of the brand perhaps? It seems they are leaving the German fare to their upcoming restaurant, Brothouse, (meaning bread house in German), and going the oh-so-Dubai route of international cuisine. You may know by now I don’t particularly… Read More


Hoja Santa * – El Raval, Barcelona

Hitting our must-visit list due to a) the magic touch of Albert Adria, b) it’s Michelin star, we booked in to Hoja Santa for a late night gastronomic Mexican feast. (I mean really late by our standards – 10:30pm! These Spanish are crazy!) Knowing this is elevated Mexican cuisine, we are prepared that we are probably in for some unusual dishes and flavours, albeit… Read More


Cervesaria Catalana – Barcelona

Hungry and happy after cheering on FC Barcelona’s 5-0 trouncing of RCD Espanyol at Camp Nou, we were in dire need of seriously good tapas…on a Sunday. Sounds like a simple request, but this is harder than one might think, mostly because of the day of the week. The biggest tip I can give you when visiting Barcelona – avoid Sunday and Monday! It’s… Read More


Le Tresor Classic Car Cafe – Box Park, Dubai

Unexpectedly out and about very early on a weekend morning, we decided it was a good opportunity to check out a new cafe for breakfast, and having not visited Box Park yet we drove on down the road to see what it has to offer. Breakfast is an ideal time of day to visit Box Park – for me it’s a precinct best suited to… Read More

Bar 44 – Grosvenor House, Dubai

Atop the Number 1 tower of Grosvenor house, the 44th floor to be precise (tell me you saw that one coming), lies a well kept Dubai secret.  A double sided venue with a duo of impressively stocked bars, you can take your pick of Marina (smoking) or sunset/beach/The Palm views (non-smoking) – or perhaps even enjoy a drink in both. An extensive cocktail list… Read More


Sloane’s – Grosvenor House, Dubai

Dining here for breakfast post-stay at Grosvenor House, we arrive at 10am (today last call is at 11am) and the restaurant is packed with holiday makers. It’s an extensive spread, larger than most breakfast buffets that I have eaten at and almost segueing into the lunch area too, which is great for guests who want to get a serious refuel in before exploring the city… Read More


Enigma – Journey of a Nordic Chef – Palazzo Versace, Dubai

Having experienced the first incantation of Enigma, the seasonally changing fine dining concept at Palazzo Versace that welcomes a new chef’s vision each three months or so, I was eagerly counting down the days to experience the next chapter. Chef Bjorn Frantzen, of the eponymous Stockholm restaurant currently voted no. 31 on the World’s Best Restaurants list, has been chosen as Dubai’s new gourmet golden boy…. Read More


Gaucho – DIFC, Dubai

From the moment you arrive at the all-black valet entrance to this DIFC institution, first impressions suggest you’re in for a classier-than-average experience. An extremely classy one in fact. Given that Gaucho’s popularity extends to 15 locations in the UK plus three international outposts – Dubai, Hong Kong and Buenos Aries, there’s got to be something very special about the Argentinian cuisine they’re serving… Read More