Peruvian Adventure with Chef Eduardo Vargas

Peru comes to Kuala Lumpur. Starting today till 7th December 2013, The Westin Kuala Lumpur will be showcasing Peruvian gastronomic delights paired with fine wines by Shanghai’s revered Celebrity Star Chef Eduardo Vargas.

Celebrity Chef Eduardo is owner and chef at Azul Tapas, Azul Urban, Ceviche and Chicha Lounge - the landmarks in Shanghai for serving amazing Peruvian specialties. His menus offer an eclectic mix from his home land cuisine to Mediterranean, South American, Southeast Asia and European flavours.

Starting tonight is a gala dinner held at The Westin Kuala Lumpur’s Grand Ballroom where Chef Eduardo Vargas will prepare an exquisite six-course Peruvian set menu. A live cooking demo by Chef Eduardo Vargas is also in stored for diners. Hmmm this is an opportunity for me to check out the cooking style and even secrets of Peru! 

And starting tomorrow, a Peruvian gastronomic journey awaits with a five-course menu at Qba Latin Bar & Grill. 2 options are available:
• Five course set menu at RM 248++ per person including wine pairing 
• Five course set menu at RM 168++ per person (food only) 

And if you fancy something less or even not from the set menu, then there is also a special a la carte menu which will be available in Qba featuring signature dishes from Chef Eduardo’s restaurants. Prices begin from RM32++.

Tapas will also be served in Qba Lounge & Bar with delights such as Oysters Lima style, Scallops A La Parmesana, Chicken Escaveche and many more. Prices begin from RM18++.

Fancy cooking? Then head in for the Cooking Masterclass on 30th November and 7th December! Step into the kitchen and  learn the art of Peruvian cooking in a hands-on cooking class conducted by Chef Eduardo Vargas. Limited seats are available so prior reservation is necessary! Priced at RM148++ this is a must if you wanna pick up some Peruvian dishes to cook - a good idea to showcase Peruvian dishes this Christmas!
Qba Latin Bar & Grill
The Westin Kuala Lumpur
199 Jalan Bukit Bintang
Kuala Lumpur
T: +603 2773 8338
GPS: N 3.147794 E 101.714548

THANX for reading this post! Do head on over to the following channels to stalk me (and show some love too) and my lil adventures...beginning with Sydney in 10 hours time!

Wine and Cheese @ Villa Danieli

Wine and cheese make good buddies. Wine and cheese also make good company whether one is alone or with friends. And when we put wine, cheese and friends together, its a brilliant pairing. A rainy evening saw us chilling in Villa Danieli in Sheraton Imperial Kuala Lumpur enjoying an evening of wine and cheese pairing.

Priced at RM120++ per person from now till 30th November 2013 comes with 5 different wines paired with 5 different cheese. 
• Caprino Cheese with Villa Maria Sauvignon Blanc (New Zealand 2012)
• Fontina Cheese with Mitchelton Blackwood Park Botrytis Riesling (Australia 2010)
• Pecorino Cheese with Frescobaldi Remole Chianti Sangiovese (Italy 2011)
• Asiago Cheese with Banfi Col di Sasso Toscana Cabernet Sangiovese (Italy 2010)
• Bel Paese Cheese with Banfi Bellagio Rosso Sangiovese (Italy 2012)
Soft and creamy Caprino Cheese is a goat cheese that will have you wanting more. Villa Maria Sauvignon Blanc (New Zealand 2012) is one of my fave of the night. Vibrant and citrusy, it was a nice wine to begin the evening.
Earthy tasting Fontina Cheese is made from unpasteurized cow's milk went rather interestingly with the Mitchelton Blackwood Park Botrytis Riesling (Australia 2010). The riesling has a refreshing acidity to it with a nice orange and toffee flavours.
Pecorino Cheese is made from ewe milk. A tad crumbly for some folks but this is a delightful cheese if you love a rich buttery and nutty flavoured cheese. The Frescobaldi Remole Chianti Sangiovese (Italy 2011) is easy to drink with lots of sweet berries balanced with a touch of spice.
Asiago Cheese is slightly hard and taste a tad like Parmesan cheese. Paired with Banfi Col di Sasso Toscana Cabernet Sangiovese (Italy 2010) that seemed to be better when decantered. Ruby red with nuances of sweet plum and currants with soft tannins.
Bel Paese Cheese is the hubby's fave cheese for the night. Soft, creamy and not too overpowering, this cheese certainly went well with the sweet and fruity Banfi Bellagio Rosso Sangiovese (Italy 2012). I am actually surprised that I actually loved this sweet wine. Am certainly looking forward to stocking this up for hot Sunday pool chill out sessions:D

Wine and cheese isn't just for the evenings. Head on over to Villa Danieli if you wish to have it for lunch too! 

Villa Danieli
5th floor
Sheraton Imperial Kuala Lumpur
Jalan Sultan Ismail
T: +603 2717 9922

For the full set of pics, hop on to Missyblurkit to check out the album Wine and Cheese @ Villa Danieli

AirAsia Bali Beach Run 2013

The month of November seems to be a MIA month for me. The 4th trip this month was to Bali over the weekend to run in the AirAsia Bali Beach Run. While Bali is one of my fave islands, this is indeed the first time I actually ran in Bali.

An amazing run experience of running on the beach, getting my shoes soaked in water, sinking into some sand before moving on to some cobblestone and tarmac before returning to the awesome sand by the beach. The run flagged off at 6am. 10.25km, 440 calories and 1:06:56 later, I can only conclude this is definitely one of the better well organised runs for me. There was plenty of directional signs and marshalls. Definitely sufficient water stations with friendly folks handing out Pocari Sweat. Medics were from a hospital and the medical tent at the finish line was certainly more equipped than some of the runs I had run in. 

The usual works of good music, bananas, drinks and a photo board kept runners entertained while they rested or waited for their friends to return. One of our pals was the last one in and she mentioned that she even had a marshall escort her all the way to the finish line.

Conclusion: It was an awesome experience with my very first run in Bali. Am certainly putting listing AirAsia Bali Beach Run as one my fave runs for the year. And hopefully AirAsia would be organising a similar beach run next year...with perhaps greater distances too. 

And now...let the pics run you through my fun run in Bali. 
Flew in to Bali with my fave low cost carrier AirAsia which offers 5 daily flights from Kuala Lumpur to Denpasar.
3 hours flight and its a land with plenty of pretty frangipani:D
A hiccup with my registration and I ended up being John Doe with a size S men's tee. Good thing I brought my own running tee (which coincidentally matched the 2 trainers that I brought along to Bali).
And #OOTD for John Doe bib 2143 is by Adidas in a lime green running tee and black shorts. Wished I packed my compression tights along in view of my current less than awesome fitness level.
5:45am in Bali is nice and bright. Took a warmup jog from Tune Hotel to the starting line.
Started way behind a sea of runners.
Special mention must be given to Alyssa who did a relatively good 10km despite her slip disc condition. Good job for rising to the 10km challenge and running the remaining 4km!
The run was a beautiful scene of the beach, passing through some gorgeous villas before we returned to the finish line which was at the beach.
I forgot to charge my phone the night before thus took minimal pics during the run but I could not resist taking a pic of The Royal Beach Seminyak which I stayed at in one of my trips to Bali (click to read the post on The Royal Beach Seminyak)
Properly trained medics....good job organisers!
A happy pic after the run even though I ran my worst 10km ever... Am happy with my bottle of Pocari Sweat, banana to fill the hungry tummy and a bag of ice. Grabbed a bag of ice from the medic tent to ease the hamstring which felt slightly strange during the run...a sign that the my finesse has certainly dropped because I am missing out in my regular trainings while travelling.
Still...I am feeling awesome and happy enough to have my signature froggie jump at the end of each run...
Another medal to add to the wall... are totally soaked after running in the water crossings but my Saucony Mirage 3 dried up within 12 hours in the hotel room.
Some awesome booths to keep us all entertained during prize giving and post run included a chiropractor examination. 
Performance post mortem...ran a lousy run....but I had so much fun...

An amazing experience that I am looking forward to experience again next year. For your share of fun...well stay tuned to: - flight and holiday bargains....and well maybe AirAsia will be organising a run again elsewhere soon? - stay tuned for the next run next year!

THANX for reading. Head on over to Missyblurkit to check out the full set of pics in the album AirAsia Bali Beach Run 2013.

La Mian - The Ancient Art of Chinese Noodle Making

They say that nothing warms the heart like a piping hot bowl of soup or noodles. A visit to Latest Recipe over the week when I was under the weather and braving a wet rainy Tuesday, meant that a bowl (or more) piping hot la mian with a comforting broth was soothing to the soul and did wonders to my tired body.

Coffee Moments @ Latitude03

Coffee. It isn't quite a new love but I think as time grows, appreciation for coffee has grown deeper. While I love the caffeine kick, over time, the caffeine effect has lapsed and I am quite a happy sleeper after a few cups of coffee. What thrills me these days is the aroma, the taste and in some cases the looks of my cup of coffee. 

Have I gone all 'atas' in my demands for coffee? I wouldn't say so. Instead I think its just an appreciation after all these years of drinking coffee both in cafes, restaurants or even the good old fashion kopitiam.

Weekends are spent running...and being rewarded with good coffee thereafter. Good company is always the bonus. And on a very good weekend, it kicked off with a good run and a good coffee session of learning what goes into a good cup of coffee with Illy Coffee Master Barista Goh Chee Wan
@ Latitude03 in Le Meridien Kuala Lumpur. 

Coffee appreciation aptly begins with knowing the beans but it can get technical for some so I'll save my cupping experience in another post one fine day. And it is an espresso to begin the session. Don't ever think of skipping espresso if you want to understand the coffee that you are having in hand. It all begins with freshly grinded beans, tamp just the right amount of coffee into the filter, and brewed with the right pressure and temperature. Might sound easy now that we have coffee machines but unless its properly calibrated from grinding to brewing, its all wasted even with good beans.
Only 100% Arabica goes to every cup of Illy coffee

A perfect and freshly brewed espresso with a patient 25 to 28 seconds extraction.
Rich, complex and certainly NOT bitter. 

While an espresso may be overwhelming for some, here are other styles of coffee one can opt for. May it be a latte or a cappuccino, its important to get the milk part right. It all begins with choosing the right milk. Milk must be whole milk and cold. Skimmed or low fat will not give you the velvety foam and a smooth finish.

Touch matters when foaming the milk. Pour cold milk into a metal steaming pitcher about 1/3 full. Release steam from the steaming wand for a couple of seconds to eliminate any residual water. As the foam rises, lower the pitcher. Keep the tip of the wand submerged at all times but avoid unnecessary movements. Keep your hand on the pitcher and when you can't touch it any further then its approximately 65°C. Initially you start off with looking at the thermometer but after some practices you will know the 65°C and the steaming stops.
Tap the pitcher firmly on the countertop to compress the foam and swirl it a few times. Pour approximately half into another pitcher then pour some back into the original pitcher. This ensures that the milk is creamy and all bubbles are gone.

Add milk to the espresso to create the art that you have in mind. It looks simple but heck it takes a a pair of steady hands. This refresher course for me was necessary as I pretty much lost the ability to do it unlike my first class 3 years back. So what I ended up was just 'blah'. The hubster had a nicer looking art...I know what I need...more practice!!!

So let's just focus on the nicer ones. Cuter ones came about because Coffee Master Barista Goh Chee Wan rescued and made art from disaster:P
Steady hands does a perfect heart from a perfect foam and espresso.
How not to fall in love?
A teddy bear
An elephant
Not quite a bear...

Grab your good cup of coffee and some pretty art to go with it at Latitude03 @ Le Meridien Kuala Lumpur. Stay tuned to their FB page because you may just see another coffee appreciation fun coming your way! 
Le Meridien Kuala Lumpur
2 Jalan Stesen Sentral
50470 Kuala Lumpur
T: +603 2263 7888

 THANX for reading this post. Do drop by to my Facebook page Missyblurkit to show some love and to check out the full set of pictures in Coffee Moments @ Latitude03

2013 MTV EMA

MTV is perhaps one of the most watch channels for me. There is something about MTV that allows me to stay put watching the channel for a few straight hours or when I work the treadmill (Yes I discovered that the only way to make run on a boring treadmill is to watch MTV).

And over the week, its has been the 2013 MTV EMA that I caught once on a private screening at Aloft Kuala Lumpur Sentral with a bunch of friends and most of reruns on Astro Channel 713 (on the treadmill...). The 2013 MTV EMA was out of the world with its acts including hottie Miley Cyrus strutting her stuff, energetic Redfoo, Katy Perry singing while being suspended 30 feet in the air and more.

Making the viewing extra fun for me was catching it with VJ Hanli. Caught up with this friendly girl next door VJ. Will be sharing more about Hanli in another post, so stay tuned.
For those who have yet to watch it, then catch the rerun on Monday 25th November 1am on Hypp TV CH602 and ABN CH 269. Of course you can also catch it on . The link for the 2013 MTV EMA is Happy watching folks!!!

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