Power Of Scent: BOMSHBEE Pairs Inspiring Memories With Reusable Glassware In Collaboration With East Lane Candles

Growing up in Madison, New Jersey, a picturesque town about 25 miles from Manhattan, Emily Ficke remembers a childhood where the scent of fresh herbs was always in the air. “Our mom is an avid gardener, and I was always tasked with picking the herbs for dinner,” she says. “The smell of basil and rosemary – it just brings me right back to memories of grilling in the summertime.”

Inspired by meaningful experiences, Emily and her brother Matt launched their own candle company, East Lane Candles, at the end of 2020. Named after the street they grew up on, the artisanal candle brand is a collection of coconut-soy wax candles with scents inspired by the siblings’ favorite American destinations.

Their first batch of hand-poured candles showcases four locations – Aspen, Monterey, Manchester, and Nantucket – places that the brother-and-sister duo had visited many times and fell in love with. “We felt each destination was a place where we could escape and really take in the moment,” says Emily.

As it happens, the idea for East Lane Candles came about on a road trip where the duo drove from Aspen, Colorado in the Rocky Mountains to seaside Monterey, California on the scenic west coast, with several stops along the way.

“We were seeing the country and hiking in national parks, and that’s where we had the idea for what eventually became East Lane,” recalls Emily. “We chose to use locations as the theme for our candles, because we wanted to create something that was relatable, and motivated by real experiences.”

The Nantucket candle – inspired by the upmarket island off Cape Cod’s south coast, and the town that launched a thousand dirty limericks – is a blend of fruity and floral aromas, with balmy, graceful notes of hydrangea, lily, peony and pear. Meanwhile Aspen, evokes the great outdoors and untamed wilderness, with heady peppermint, pine and eucalyptus.

“We look at local ingredients and the experiences you might have while visiting. From there, we source various fragrance oils and test possible combinations,” says Emily, who hand pours each candle from her home studio in Pennsylvania.

Research informs much of their experimentation, and Matt credits the work of Luca Turin – a scientist and author who specializes in olfaction, perfumery and the human experience of smell – as a particular inspiration for him.

“There’s a scientific link between memory and smell,” says Matt. “The scents we encounter are effectively stored as specific emotions that are personal to the individual. It’s a complex subject, but we’re fascinated by this relationship.”

An incredible 75 percent of the emotions we generate each day are due to scent, says Matt. And humans are 100 times more likely to remember something they smell over something they see, hear, or touch. It’s a potent sense that can stimulate more positivity, relaxation and enjoyment in our daily lives – something that everyone could use more of these days.

“We aim to inspire memories! A lot of people have been unable to travel during the last year, and we hope our candles allow them to ‘revisit’ places they previously enjoyed,” says Emily.

Passionate travellers and avid explorers of the country’s natural wonders, Emily and Matt were adamant about operating a sustainable business from Day 1. The company uses biodegradable packaging, sells products in bundles to reduce shipping emissions, and sources everything locally, from eco-friendly cotton wicks to clean-burning coconut-soy wax.

They also sought out a modern, minimalist design for the candle’s glassware, so it could easily be repurposed and enjoyed as a rocks glass – ideal for a happy hour at home. That’s where BOMSHBEE comes in. East Lane’s second batch of candles – Yosemite, Zion and Haleakala – take inspiration from America’s national parks, and the siblings chose BOMSHBEE’s Ring DOF glassware as the vessel for the new collection.

“We love the BOMSHBEE glassware! First, the rings on top and bottom really isolate the flame, so it burns in the middle. The look is clean and modern, and the glass is the perfect size for your favorite cocktail,” says Emily.

Speaking of cocktails, there’s nothing better to end the day like a margarita – whether you’ve been hiking the high ridges of Zion National Park, or just want to savor a well-deserved drink from your porch on a summery night.

Try your hand at making this mezcal version, courtesy of East Lane Candles:


The Drink: East Lane Candle’s Mezcal Margarita
Servings: 2

Ingredients:

  • 3oz mezcal
  • 2oz orange liqueur
  • 1.5oz freshly squeezed lime juice (roughly 2 limes)
  • 2 teaspoons agave nectar
  • Salt & lime zest for glass rim (optional)

Directions:

  1. Are you a fan of salt on the rim? Take it up a notch by adding lime zest. Grab a shallow dish, fill it with salt and lime zest, and mix together. Run a lime wedge along the beautiful bold rim of your BOMSHBEE glass, then dip into the mixture.
  2. In a cocktail shaker, combine mezcal, orange liqueur, lime juice and agave nectar. Pro tip, margaritas are best shaken not stirred. Shake away!
  3. Do a taste test. If you would like more sweetness, add another teaspoon of agave nectar.
  4. Fill your glass with ice, pour, serve and enjoy!

Creative Cocktails: Elevate Your Home Bar With Just A Few Easy Steps

Carolyn Pascual White has always had a natural flair for making cocktails. “[My friends and family] always asked me to come up with cocktails for things like wedding events or baby showers. It’s never something I’ve done professionally – I’ve never even worked at a bar – but I’ve always had a personal interest in cocktails.”

So it’s no surprise that, in 2018, Pascual White pursued her calling when she started The Social Sipper, a blog focusing on fresh and delicious drinks that anyone can make at home with minimal ingredients. “I started it as a creative outlet – a way to share the creations I made at home,” says the San Diego-based blogger. “Cocktails are kind of like art, and I like to think of mixing and presenting a good drink as creating an experience.”

A food stylist by trade, Pascual White knows a thing or two about creating dining experiences. Together with husband Travis, a professional photographer, the pair take beautiful, scroll-stopping photos that have earned them a sizable, loyal following on social media. “Our audience is mostly people just like me. They aren’t bartenders; they just want to make a good cocktail at home, so we keep it simple.”

Inspired by her travels, seasonal produce, and ingredients readily found in her local supermarket, Pascual White has developed and perfected a library of tantalizing libations over the past three years. Her signature style? Sticking to time-tested classics – think sours, fizzes, and spritzes – with an unconventional twist that’s easy to pull off. In her recipe collection, you’ll find ambrosial concoctions like a Coconut Water Gimlet or Turmeric Pina Colada.

Since the pandemic began, Pascual White says she’s noticed more people have shown an interest in making cocktails and food photography. To get that perfect image, she recommends setting up the shot in natural light with a pretty garnish and one or two raw ingredients, and using your phone’s camera settings to capture as much detail as possible – using your fingertips on the screen to zoom in is a strict no-no.

And when it comes to home bar essentials, Pascual White shares four go-to’s that every cocktail enthusiast should have on hand:

1. A Trusty Muddler
“You can definitely get away with making cocktails at home without tons of fancy equipment, but I always have a muddler,” says Pascual White, adding that a wooden spoon can work in a pinch. Most of her recipes call for this handy tool, which is used to mash fresh fruits, herbs and spices to release flavour, aroma and colour in the bottom of a glass before you add any liquids.

2. A Jigger 
It’s easy to overdo it when you’re getting started. Pascual White advises being pragmatic and heading off a potential hangover by keeping an eye on your pours with a jigger. Or simply a measuring cup or spoon – any reliable measuring tool. “It’s just so much safer and gets your recipes closer to where you want them to be!”

3. Gorgeous Garnishes
Adding a final touch – even something simple like an orange slice – enhances your drink of choice, adds Pascual White. Her go-to garnish? “I love edible flowers! I use them all the time because they just elevate the whole presentation,” she says, listing pansies, marigolds and chamomile flowers as three of her favourites.

4. Showstopping Glassware
“I definitely think that we eat and drink with our eyes first,” insists Pascual White. “Even the prettiest cocktail isn’t going to taste as good if you serve it in your everyday water cups. So upgrading your glassware helps to bring your drinks to the next level.”

These days, she’s partial to BOMSHBEE’s Chandelier glassware. “I love that it has so many unique details – it’s like a showpiece in and of itself. When you have glassware that’s this interesting, half the work is already done because the presentation is so on point!”

This week, try shaking things up in your home with Pascual White’s easy-to-make (and drink!) Mezcal Passionfruit Cocktail recipe, that’s just the right blend of sweet, smokey and citrus.


The Drink: Mezcal Passion Fruit Cocktail by The Social Sipper
Servings: 1

Ingredients:

  • 2 oz mezcal (or 1 oz mezcal and 1 oz tequila)
  • Juice and pulp from 1 large passion fruit
  • 1 oz fresh lime juice
  • 1/2 oz agave
  • Garnish: lime wheel, passion fruit and pineapple frond

Directions:

  1. Add mezcal, passion fruit, lime juice and agave to a cocktail shaker with ice and shake until chilled.
  2. Strain into a cocktail glass over crushed ice.
  3. Garnish with a lime wheel, passion fruit and a pineapple frond. Enjoy!

The Art Of Good Living: Why Investing In High-Quality Homewares Matters More Than Ever

Living through a pandemic has caused many of us to re-evaluate our lifestyles, including our choice of homeware. We speak with Shana Buchanan, founder of home decor brand iDecorate, about how mindfully chosen objects can create a happier, healthier home.

What makes a house a home? Is it where you go to sleep, hang your clothes, eat your meals, watch Netflix? A home can certainly include all those things, but it can also be so much more – as so many of us discovered last year. After the pandemic confined billions of people to their homes for the better part of a year, it prompted us to re-evaluate our surroundings and how they impact our wellbeing.

“What’s interesting for me is that, because of COVID, we’ve seen people suddenly realize that their homes really are their sanctuaries,” says Shana Buchanan, founder and CEO of home decor retailer iDecorate. “We’ve always known that our homes affect our wellbeing, as well as our mental and physical health. In the last year, we just got a stark reminder that how we live within those walls around us is actually really important.”

Buchanan has a penchant for making spaces shine. The Australian mother of three has been involved in design in one way or another for most of her life. As a finance student in university, she helped with her family’s business – a high-end window furnishings and textiles manufacturer in Australia – for over seven years.

“We worked with all the top interior designers and architects in Sydney. And we did lots of celebrity homes, fitting window furnishings for celebrities like Nicole Kidman, Rupert and Wendi Murdoch, and Baz Luhrmann.”

Buchanan launched her own design business, iDecorate, after she moved to Hong Kong in 2011. Originally launched as a customisable online showroom for designing a dream space, her company eventually pivoted to e-commerce, selling bespoke and high-quality homewares online that provided a much-needed alternative to the deluge of mass-market, cheap products found in Hong Kong homeware stores.

“I noticed that there was a gap in Asia for cool, handcrafted products that are a world away from the mass market – something that people could have in their homes that looked stylish but also made them feel happy,” says Buchanan.

Instead of impulse purchases and cheap, yet disposable, products, Buchanan champions quality over quantity. It’s not about accumulating lots of things, none of which mean anything to you; instead, the interior designer insists on investing in quality objects that have the power to “really make your heart sing.”

“With Taobao or IKEA, there’s no story – and when there’s no story, there’s no emotional attachment,” she says. “Things become easier to throw out and replace – and that’s quite sad, especially when we’re trying to consume less and not add to this environmental crisis that we’re in.”

That’s why, with iDecorate, Buchanan sources her products from artists, designers and boutique shops that are passionate about what they do. In turn, she finds that this inspiration, love and personal touch really resonate with her customers. 

“So often we find that people connect with something if they love the story or they’ve visited the place it comes from,” she says. “Every time they look at it, there’s that connection there. And that creates both a healthy emotional space and a positive vibe inside your home.”

One of the most important areas of her home are the kitchen and dining room, where she loves to entertain family and friends, always setting a beautiful table for her guests.

“I really love spoiling people with an awesome table setting and awesome food – for me, the way to make a really good first impression while forming new friendships and new relationships,” she says. “And a huge part of that is tableware. My dinner plates, cutlery, serving bowls, pitchers… it all makes me feel really good.”

And that’s all the more important in between lockdowns and restrictions, when many of us have gone months without seeing our nearest and dearest.

“When you can get together, you celebrate. We really appreciate the times where we can have people at home because you might go into lockdown again soon. To be able to have friends and family in your home and break bread together over a beautiful table – I think now it means more than ever.”

Picture Perfect: How To Snap A Flawless Photo Of Your Next Dinner Spread

If you set the perfect table but don’t take a picture of it, did it ever really happen? It’s the era of Instagram, and whether we want to admit it or not, photos really are worth a million words, especially when it comes to food and tableware.

Someone who knows a good deal about both of those topics is Gloria Chung, the social media-savvy mind behind Insta-famous food blog @foodandtravelhk. A food and travel journalist, Chung has been honing her craft since 2008, having studied food styling and photography at RMIT in Melbourne and Le Cordon Bleu London. In 2020, she launched The Props Dept, a test kitchen, food photography studio and props-for-hire service in Hong Kong that rents cutlery and dinnerware sourced from around the world.

So how does a professional foodie like Chung know she’s nailed the shot? “I think ‘I want to lick the screen!’” she laughs, adding that a good picture is more than just what’s on the plate. “Appetizing food is important, but a good food photo should tell a story – it could be even just a bowl with some leftovers or melted ice cream.”

To learn more about how to achieve a screen-licking good picture that’s Instagram gold, we asked the food photography expert for her best tips on setting up and executing a perfect shot of your next dinner spread.

Tip 1: Start with neutral tones

While it’s tempting to buy colorful or patterned tableware that stands out, Chung recommends a simpler approach. It’s easier on the eye – as well as on your budget.

“Choose a set of neutral-colored dinnerware and play with the details on the table instead, like centerpieces, napkins or sauce plates,” says Chung, who uses a Canon Mark 4 DLSR as well as an iPhone 12 Pro. “This is the most flexible and economical way to style your table, since you can create many different setting styles with one set of plates.”

Tip 2: Don’t be afraid to play with texture

An easy way to give your table more character and depth is by adding different textures to it, says Chung. Try layering your tablescape with natural props and materials, which give the eye more to look at as well as creating a cohesive setting.

“Mix and match with natural elements such as wooden boards, stoneware and rattan to create a visual feast of textures,” says the food stylist. She also suggests using earthy materials like glass, ceramics, fabric or – her personal favorite – linen, to dress up a sparse table.

One of Chung’s top pro tips? Try adding raw ingredients from the recipe to the table. “If you pay attention, stylists will always use ingredients to decorate the set because it helps tell the story of the dish. You can never go wrong with food as decoration.”

To enhance a photo’s composition, Chung says she uses different shapes and forms to add more points of interest. For example: if the main dish is in a round dish, add a square napkin or rectangular side plate to the frame.

Tip 3: Use color to build the mood

When it comes to color schemes, Chung says she has two approaches: “Go monochromatic, or go bold!” For the latter, she suggests using an eclectic mix of colors; a good trick is to use shades that are opposite from one another on the color wheel – for example, orange and blue – to strike a more dramatic look.

While she believes colors are “essential” to taking an amazing photo, she says she also chooses them carefully depending on the vibe she’s trying to craft. “I am very careful with my colors because they have the power to influence the overall style, meaning, or even culture of a photo,” says Chung. “For example, I would match peacock green with coral to create something theatrical and quirky, or beige with light grey and cream for a more Japanese zen look.”

Tip 4: It’s all about the angles

What’s the best way to shoot? Chung says she’s an equal opportunist when it comes to angles, taking pictures from several different vantage points depending on the effect she’s after. 

Overhead is best for capturing a feast or giving more context, while an eye-level shot is excellent for artistic, more visually unusual dishes – like the stiff, toasted peaks of a meringue. A 45-degree angle works for most foods because, according to Chung, everything looks delicious from the side and you can create depth of field with the background.

No matter where she’s shooting from, she says it doesn’t always turn out the way she wanted – and that’s fine with her. “I believe in capturing the moment, and if the moment is not right.. the picture is not right,” she says, adding that she doesn’t edit her photos extensively after the shoot – even if they’re not perfect.

Tip 5: Tableware can make or break your photo

“It’s absolutely the key to a good photo,” says Chung. “Tableware carries as much messaging as the food itself. It’s like what clothes mean to people – whatever you wear defines you, and the same idea applies to plates and food.”

Photo Credits: Ben Marans Photography

Dine In Style: Recreate The Restaurant Experience At Home With Designer: JJ Acuna

Architect and interior designer JJ Acuna knows a thing or two about beautiful restaurant design. The founder and creative director of JJ Acuna / Bespoke Studio is behind some of the most inviting and photogenic eateries in the city, including the likes of Tate Dining Room, Hansik Goo, Miss Lee and Elephant Grounds in Wan Chai.

“When designing a space, I look for natural sources of daylight and whether or not the place has a sense of spirit or soul that I want to retain,” says Acuna. “I look at ways people could live, breathe and move about in this space. I want to inspire through design, so I consider how a space can add to a person’s wellbeing.”

This ethos permeates his work, making diners feel right at home thanks to great lighting, custom furniture and welcoming color palettes. As soon as you step into two-Michelin-starred Tate Dining Room, for instance, it has an elegant and elevated vibe that’s full of warmth thanks to the use of baby pink, brass, greenery and light wood.

“Comfort is the most important aspect when it comes to design because a space can be fashionable, but you’ll never come back again if it’s not comfortable,” says the Philippines native. “Feeling good is key.”

Likewise, Hansik Goo – a contemporary Korean fine-dining concept by acclaimed Chef Mingoo Kang from Seoul – combines a minimalist atmosphere with lots of natural stone and wood textures, alongside modern Korean art. The result is approachable, cultured and restrained – a pared-back setting that lets the food shine while still evoking a sense of intrigue.

“I take a humanistic approach to every restaurant I design. It feels easy to be in my restaurants – I try to make spaces where guests can sit for long periods of time and even daydream,” adds Acuna.

We caught up with the industry veteran to learn more about designing beautiful, inviting spaces – and how we can create a restaurant-worthy dining experience at home:

Narrow it down
To nail the restaurant experience at home without going overboard, Acuna recommends picking two or three restaurant-quality design elements that make sense for your space.

“Splurge on a fantastic, sturdy table,” says Acuna. “Maybe think about a natural material for the tabletop, such as stone or a type of hardwood with character. At home, my table is vintage, mid-century modern cherry hardwood from Boston, Massachusetts.”

When it comes to lighting, one of the easiest restaurant tricks is pendant lighting. It’s easy to install and looks elegant, instantly making your dining room look more polished. “Opt for more than one source – a pendant light and a wall light work well together to make the food look great, and they won’t cast big shadows,” he says. 

Prioritize comfort and conversations
Acuna has a “special place in his heart” for one of his first projects in Hong Kong: Elephant Grounds on Star Street, because it is a meeting point for the community. With its wood interiors and open-air layout, the cafe has become a go-to neighborhood hotspot where family and friends while away sunny afternoons.

Time with loved ones is something we could all use more of these days. So when adjusting your own dining space at home, Acuna recommends thinking about how you can bring people together and make sure they feel at ease.

A restaurant-worthy dining space should make it easier to hold conversations and relax together – not more difficult. “Soft, comfortable seats are also important. Don’t go too avant-garde, and use natural materials!”  

Fresh air and greenery
“People love having access to the outdoors, which is why restaurants with terraces, open fronts or patios are popular,” says Acuna. At home, you can recreate this feeling with a few comfy bar stools and lounge chairs on a small terrace. Or if you have a larger rooftop, a spacious sharing table hugged by plants can serve as your dining oasis.

Even if you only serve a few aperitifs outside, your guests will appreciate the fresh air as they unwind before dinner. Those who don’t have a terrace or rooftop can still bring a bit of nature indoors with flowers and greenery. And if all else fails: “Even just maximizing your window spaces to bring in more natural light can make a huge difference,” adds Acuna. 

Tell a story through craftsmanship
We love minimalist design at BOMSHBEE, but that doesn’t always mean brushed concrete and stark furniture. While keeping the overall look clean and simple, you can play with textures, color and details to add personality and make your dining space pop.

Acuna recommends incorporating a few carefully selected, handcrafted accessories – “everything from crockery to steak knives, handmade tables, tiles, plates, serving trays” – to showcase your personality and tell a story.

Did you find your steak knives in Buenos Aires? Fall in love with ceramics in Kyoto? Simply love a sturdy wood cheese board? Objects that mean something to you will also resonate with your guests and amplify the restaurant-like atmosphere.

Choose tableware you love
Setting your table may be the final touch, but it’s also one of the most important steps.  “Tableware is as important as the menu and the finishes. Usually, when we design interiors, we design the table and chairs with the tableware in mind,” says Acuna.

For Acuna, the right tableware is all about “craftsmanship and authorship”. He fell in love with brass cutlery a few years ago and purchased a set that he treasures from Japan. “I also like earthenware plates that are free-form rather than factory-made,” he adds.

His pointers? Choose high-quality materials that suit your space and personality. “Avoid tableware that scratches easily, has an obviously plastic appearance or bland white ceramics,” says Acuna. “Trending towards texture and color makes sense for a new generation of designers and food lovers.”

Make The Perfect Cup Of Coffee With These Barista-Approved Tricks From NOC Coffee Co

Some things just go together. Wine and cheese, butter and popcorn, coffee and breakfast – they just seem like they’re meant to be. And the same goes for gorgeous tableware and food.

Choosing the right plate, bowl or glassware can elevate the drinking or dining experience when it comes to both appearance and flavor. That’s why BOMSHBEE teamed up with NOC Coffee Co just over a year ago – both are homegrown Hong Kong brands rooted in quality, curation and meticulous attention to detail. Together, it’s a match made in heaven.

NOC Whampoa serves up its delicious, nutritious brunch-style menu using BOMSHBEE Tinge porcelain plates and bowls. As the brand’s first Kowloon location, the cafe and coffee shop also carries a selection of BOMSHBEE tableware and glassware so guests can recreate the experience at home. 

To mark the first anniversary of the collaboration, we caught up with Jacob Lau, store manager and head barista at NOC Whampoa, to learn all about the art of coffee brewing. Born and bred in Hong Kong, Lau caught the coffee bug after a chance encounter showed her what she had been missing.

“I used to work for a Japanese restaurant in Central and would drink coffee from the machine there to wake myself up in the morning,” says Lau. “One day, I dropped by a neighborhood café for a coffee, and it tasted so much better than what I was making!”

She started working part-time in local coffee shops, before making the barista’s pilgrimage to one of the world’s most discerning coffee destinations. “I traveled to Australia for a working holiday, and was fortunate enough to have met many passionate roasters and baristas who taught me their trade and pushed me to improve my coffee skills and knowledge,” recalls Lau.

To Lau, being a barista means practicing her passion and craft every single day – and she loves to share the joys of coffee with other people. Here are some of her top tips about how to prepare and enjoy the perfect cuppa:

Start with quality beans
“The freshness and quality of your beans will affect every aspect of your brew, including water temperature, grind size, brewing method, and most importantly, the overall complexity of flavor,” says Lau.

What’s the best kind of bean? Lau is a single-origin (beans from one farm or mill, as opposed to a blend) girl herself, preferring to sample the distinctive taste profiles of one specific region at a time.

“My personal favorite is single-origin beans from Panama,” says Lau, attributing the country’s altitude, location and soil to its delicious taste. “In the cup, Panamanian coffees are very sweet, and well-known for their excellent brightness.”

“I also really enjoy coffees from Ethiopia: I love their acidity, fruity and floral notes, as well as pleasant complexity.”

Try the pour-over method at home
Of course, it’s challenging to emulate what you’d find in a specialty coffee shop at home since most people do not own commercial espresso machines. When it comes to home-brewing, Lau says she prefers a pour-over coffee for both taste and convenience – all it takes is a hand-grinder, a decent dripper, a piece of filter paper and your favorite mug.

“For me, coffee is part of my morning routine and my self-care routine,” says Lau. “I love brewing a cup of pour-over in the morning to have a moment to myself and get energised for the day ahead.”

While she typically uses an in-house recipe from NOC’s head coffee trainer, Lau adds that a healthy dose of experimentation when you’re brewing is never a bad thing. “Keep in mind that every coffee is different. To fully enjoy it, it’s important to be adventurous, and explore different grind sizes, pouring motions and recipes.”

Invest in essential gear
The best cup of Joe will be made with freshly ground beans, which means you need a quality coffee grinder. Lau uses a Comandante coffee grinder as part of her morning pour-over ritual. 

“I love the versatility and accuracy of my manual coffee grinder,” says Lau. “It is fitted with wear-resistant ‘burr’ blades that allow grind sizes from espresso (really fine) to Turkish coffee (really coarse).

“I am also currently obsessed with my Flower Dripper, as its shape allows water to circulate through the ground coffee at a much slower speed, allowing better extraction and flavor in my brews.”

Not all cups are created equal
Don’t just grab any old mug off the shelf! To really savor a coffee’s flavor, choose your drinkware carefully. Lau says professional baristas pretty much all agree on which material makes for the best cuppa.

“Many baristas have experimented with drinkware, and the conclusion is almost unanimous: to achieve optimal flavor, it’s best to serve with double-walled ceramic cups.”

Why? Ceramic doesn’t influence the taste, whereas a synthetic material like plastic might. Plus, a double-walled mug has the insulation needed to keep your coffee warm for longer.

Enjoy with simple, subtle foods
Once you’ve brewed the perfect cup of coffee, it’s best enjoyed with simple foods that won’t overwhelm your taste buds. Steer clear of intense flavors like sharp cheese or anything spicy, for example.

“I really enjoy pairing my pour-overs with NOC’s Buddha Bowl or Two-way Avocado Toast,” says Lau. “They’re filling yet light enough to keep my palate clean, so I can appreciate my coffee.”

Photo Credits: NOC COFFEE CO

Make Mouth-Watering Dumplings with Nom Life this Chinese New Year

As self-described “restaurant kids at heart,” food bloggers Ewa Ko and her husband Jeromy Ko offer a fresh perspective in an often-saturated field. Both are first-generation children of immigrants – Ewa from Taiwan, and Jeromy from Hong Kong – who share a love of food that’s rooted in childhood memories.

From ultra-tender hong shao rou (red-braised pork belly) to boisterous family hotpots,  food has always been an integral part of growing up Asian in America. When the two moved to New York City in 2017, it felt only natural to keep up those same family values.

“When we moved to New York, we didn’t have as much access to our family’s home-cooking, so we started making a lot of recipes,” says Ko. They posted these creations on their food blog, Nom Life, which they had started back in 2014 to share local restaurants they loved in their home state of Ohio. The recipes struck a chord online, which Ko attributes to enthusiasm from the many, many first-generation children of Asian immigrants in the US who can relate to her culinary nostalgia.

“It was really cool to see people get excited about making these Asian recipes they recognized from growing up at home, but didn’t necessarily know how to make,” says Ko. “It’s been fun to be part of that journey, by creating dishes that are either new or from our childhood memories.”

While paying homage to their Asian roots, Ko and her husband, Jeromy – who adapts recipes learned from his family’s days working at their restaurant – maintain a certain irreverence in their cooking, with playfully named dishes and the errant curse word peppered in. But at the heart of it all is a passion to celebrate and share their food culture traditions.

One tradition that Ko says she doesn’t mess with? Dumplings, which symbolize wealth and prosperity, for Chinese New Year. “Dumplings are always on the menu for Lunar New Year!” says Ko. “We have so many memories of making them with family and friends; it’s one of our favorite traditions.”

While family gatherings are sadly in short supply this year, the two “dumpling debonairs” have created and shared their own version that they’ll be making at home together – think traditional juicy pork-stuffed pockets with an added crunch from mixed vegetables and roasted peanuts.

How To Make Pleated Dumplings By: Ewa & Jeromy Ko (@nom_life)

They’ve used BOMSHBEE’s tried-and-tested Tinge porcelain dinner plates in ash grey and newly launched, two-tone stainless steel Chop Chopsticks. “We absolutely love the BOMSHBEE products – they’re lightweight yet sturdy, with great texture. They are beautiful, but not distracting” says Ko. “I also love the chopsticks, which I am really picky about. I like that they have a nice, precise point that’s perfect for plating, styling and eating.”

This Lunar New Year – or anytime, really – try Nom Life’s take on Chiu Chow fun gor dumplings. One of Ko’s favourite dim sum dishes, these bites of heaven are full of juicy pork and crunchy vegetables, then topped with roasted peanuts and chilli sauce.


The Recipe: Dim Sum Dumplings
The Tableware: BOMSHBEE’s Chop Chopsticks and Tinge Porcelain Dinner Plates in Ash Grey

INGREDIENTS:

THE FILLING
– 3/4 lb ground pork
– 1/2 cup water chestnuts, minced
– 2 celery stalks, minced
– 1/4 cup crushed roasted peanuts
– 1/4 cup cilantro, minced
– 1 tbsp soy sauce
– 1 tsp cornstarch
– 1/2 tsp oyster sauce
– 1/4 tsp five spice
– Dash white pepper

THE DUMPLINGS
– Neutral oil, such as peanut or canola
– Circular dumpling wrappers
– Flour, for dusting surfaces
– Scallion, sesame seeds, chilli oil and/or black rice vinegar for garnish

INSTRUCTIONS:
– Mix filling ingredients together in a bowl.
– Lightly dust a flat, clean working surface with flour.
– Add a small spoonful of the filling to a dumpling wrapper. Note: You do not need to steam the wrappers first; just cook everything together.
– Fold to the desired shape (see video).
– Add neutral oil to a pan; once hot, add dumplings to the oil.
– Pan-fry for 30 seconds, then add 1/4 cup water and cover with a lid.
– Steam for 4-5 minutes.
– Remove the lid once the water has entirely evaporated.
– Pan-fry for an additional 30 seconds to crisp the bottoms of the dumpling up.
– Garnish with scallions and sesame seeds.
– Top with chilli oil and black rice vinegar, or use as a dipping sauce. Note: You can freeze any uncooked dumplings and save them for later!

New Year, New Recipes: Escape to The Kitchen with Challenging Recipes by Food Blogger Lady and Pups

Mandy Lee – the writer and cook behind popular food blog Lady and Pups – knows a thing or two about cooking. She has clocked thousands of hours in the kitchen, having started the blog in 2012 to stay occupied after she and her husband relocated from New York to Beijing.

“I didn’t enjoy living in Beijing,” says the Taiwanese-Canadian, who first got into cooking while living in Vancouver and New York City. “So I found myself at home cooking all day – I wasn’t really going outside. My husband was like ‘Why don’t you start a food blog and just put your recipes online?’ I wasn’t into the idea at first, but I did it. And after a while, the site took on a life of its own.”

Soon enough, Lee garnered an international following thanks to her inventive, intense flavour combinations and candid commentary. The blog became a way of keeping in touch with the world outside China and a journal of sorts.

Her cookbook, The Art of Escapism Cooking, came out in 2019 as a summary of her creations. But flipping through its beautifully shot pages, it feels meant for 2020 – a year where we have all been yearning for one form of escapism of another.

A treasure trove of creative cooking ideas, the book is Lee’s “memoir of recipes and stories” that she documented during a difficult time in her life – the lonely Beijing years – and “the delicious aftermath of how I cooked my way out,” she writes in the introduction. “My lemons and lemonade.”

“When it comes to cooking, as far as I’m concerned, there’s no hard or easy, new or old, real or fake,” she continues. “There is only good or bad. It’s about orchestrating an idea, mapping the most sensible way to get there, chasing the high.”

Here, she shares two recipes that are perfect diversions from your regular cooking repertoire and bound to help you rediscover the joys – and challenges – of making elaborate and time-intensive dishes.

Follow her detailed steps, and you will not only learn new techniques, but you’ll also have a restaurant-worth meal to show for it.  


The Recipe: The Inconvenient Ragu-th

Credit: Mandy Lee (Lady and Pups)

“I wrote this recipe right around the time the movie The Inconvenient Truth came out,” Lee recalls. It’s by no means a traditional way of making ragu, she notes, but rather her take on it. “This is not an authentic dish,” she says. “You will never see an Italian person making it this way.”

But that’s beside the point. For Lee, what matters is the delicious combination of milk and tomatoes, as well as the rich flavors created by her cooking process. “To me, ragu is all about intensity,” she says. 

One of the best parts of this recipe, she says, is that it is pretty hard to mess up. “Any tomato-based sauce with ground meat will probably end up tasting OK,” she explains. “So there isn’t much that could go wrong.”

One important tip before you get started: Take your time when reducing everything down. “You want the sauce to get nice and thick,” Lee says. This recipe is a slow, repetitive and meditative process. Enjoy!

Credit: Mandy Lee (Lady and Pups)

INGREDIENTS:

  • 1/3 cup extra virgin olive oil
  • 1/4 cup finely diced pancetta
  • 21oz fatty ground pork
  • 23.6oz ground beef
  • 1/4 heaping cup dried porcini mushrooms
  • 7 cloves garlic, minced
  • 10 sprigs fresh thyme
  • 1 tbsp minced rosemary leaves
  • 1 tsp chilli flakes
  • 2 medium stalks celery
  • 1 large onion
  • 1 small carrot
  • 4 dried bay leaves (or 2 fresh bay leaves)
  • 4 tbsp tomato paste
  • 1 Parmigiano rind (2” x 2”)
  • 7.5 cups whole milk, divided into 1.5 cups for each addition
  • 4 cans high-quality Italian peeled tomatoes
  • Coarse sea salt/grey salt and freshly ground black pepper to season
  • To finish:
    • 1 little nub of unsalted butter per serving
    • Aged Parmigiano cheese to grate
    • Extra virgin olive oil for drizzling
Credit: Mandy Lee (Lady and Pups)

INSTRUCTIONS:
*Note*
Use a flat, wide-bottomed pan for this recipe.

Prepare the ingredients:

  • Finely mince the celery, onion and carrots, then set aside
  • Wash the dried porcini mushrooms, then set aside (no need to soak)
  • Blend all the canned tomatoes with the juice inside until smoothly pureed, and set aside

STEP 1:  Brown the meat and vegetables (approx 30 min)

  • Heat the pan over medium-high heat and add 1/3 cup of extra virgin olive oil
  • Add the pancetta and cook until lightly browned, then add the ground pork and ground beef
  • Season with 1 tsp of sea salt/grey salt and 1 tsp of freshly ground black pepper
  • Keep cooking the meat until all the liquid has evaporated and there’s a layer of browning at the bottom of the pan (approx 15 min)
  • Now add the porcini mushrooms, minced garlic, fresh thyme, minced rosemary and chilli flakes. Cook until fragrant
  • Add the minced vegetables (celery, onion, carrot), bay leaves, tomato paste and Parmigiano rind
  • Season again with 1 tsp of sea salt/grey salt and 1/2 tsp of freshly ground black pepper 
  • The vegetables will release juice/liquid which is going to “loosen” the browning on the bottom of the pan
  • Scrape the brownings with a wooden spatula; just as before, keep cooking until all the juice/liquid has evaporated and there’s a new layer of browning at the bottom of the pan, (approx 15 min)

STEP 2: Reduce the milk and harvest caramel (approx 1:40-2 hours)

  • Once all the meat and vegetables have adequately browned, add 1.5 cups of whole milk (if using red wine, add and reduce it down completely before adding the milk)
  • Keep heat on medium-high, and stir to mix all the ingredients evenly 
  • The milk will loosen the brownings. Scrape it off with your wooden spatula to let it melt and become part of the sauce
  • Let it cook, and the milk will completely evaporate and form another new layer of brownings (approx 20 min).  You see the repetition now, don’t you? 
  • Add the next 1.5 cups of whole milk and repeat this process
  • If your stove tends to heat unevenly, move around the pan to “maximize” the brownings 
  • Don’t be afraid to let it get deeply rich and dark brown, as long as it doesn’t burn/blacken 
  • You will harvest the caramel (the brownings!) in each of the 5 additions of milk
  • By the end, you should have a pot of meat sauce that’s rich and brown with intense flavor

STEP 3: Add and reduce the tomatoes (approx 1.5 hours)

  • Once you have added, reduced and browned the final addition of whole milk, add all the pureed tomatoes 
  • Season again with sea salt/grey salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • Stir to evenly mix the ingredients and scrape the brownings on the bottom of the pan
  • Reduce the heat down to medium-low and partially cover the pan with a lid (tomato sauce splatters like crazy!)
  • Let the sauce reduce down by one-third to almost one-half. Stir occasionally to prevent burning

To serve: 

  • Cook the pasta (I prefer fresh tagliatelle) according to instructions 
  • In another pan, add a couple of tablespoons of freshly grated Parmigiano cheese (for each serving) and little nubs of butter (about 1 tsp per serving) 
  • Add the cooked pasta to the pan with a generous amount of ragu
  • Cook and stir over medium-high heat until everything’s incorporated
  • Serve with more freshly grated Parmigiano cheese and drizzles of extra virgin olive oil

The Recipe: Caramel Soy Sauce Sticky Ribs

Credit: Mandy Lee (Lady and Pups)

If you like dishes that are both savory and sweet, then Lee’s Caramel Soy Sauce Sticky Ribs are for you. A slightly more complicated affair than the ragu, this is Lee’s take on “really tender ribs” – dry ribs are one of her pet peeves. 

“What should be at all times, gelatinous and succulent, can often come disappointingly dry and under-flavoured, deceivingly passable for televised food-porn only,” she writes about ribs on her blog.

To avoid disappointing ribs, Lee ditches dry rubs and dry heat in favor of a deliciously thick caramelized sauce and a steaming method. To balance the sweet and sticky sauce, Lee adds Chinese yellow cooking wine, five-spice powder, cayenne and tangy Dijon mustard. 

Lee suggests a watermelon salad to bring a light, refreshing flavor to the table and soft, fluffy bread to soak everything up if you are looking for an accompaniment.

INGREDIENTS:

  • 35-42 oz baby back ribs or spareribs
  • Caramel soy sauce:
    • 8 large scallions, cut into segments
    • 1 tbsp oil for frying
    • 1/3 cup granulated sugar
    • 1/2 cup soy sauce
    • 1/2 cup apple juice
    • 1/8 cup Shao-xing wine, or other Chinese yellow cooking wine
    • 6 cloves garlic, smashed
    • 2 tbsp Dijon mustard
    • 2 tsp ground cayenne pepper
    • 1/2 tsp smoked paprika
    • 1/4 tsp + 1/8 tsp five-spice powder
    • 1/4 tsp freshly ground black pepper
  • To finish:
    • 1 tbsp dark brown sugar + 1/2 tbsp for adjusting
    • 1/2 tsp rice vinegar (important)
    • Ground white pepper for sprinkling
    • A few sprigs of scallion, finely diced

INSTRUCTIONS:

STEP 1: Make this the day before

  • Clean and dab the ribs dry with a clean towel, and set them meat-side down over a deep baking sheet in a single layer
  • Combine soy sauce, apple juice and Shao-xing wine inside a cup (this is just for easy pouring), then set aside
  • In a saucepot, heat 1 tbsp of oil over high heat, then cook the scallions until deeply browned and almost charred.  Remove the scallions and set aside
  • Add the granulated sugar into the same pot and melt over medium heat 
  • Once the edges begin to melt, stir slowly to incorporate the rest until all the sugar has melted and turned into dark, amber-color caramel (the pot will start to smoke, a good indicator that the sugar is caramelizing).
  • When the sugar reaches the desired color, immediately remove the pot from the heat and add the soy sauce/apple juice/wine mixture. 
  • The liquid will bubble up then quickly subside. Return the pot to the heat (the caramel may have solidified but don’t worry, it will melt back into the liquid)
  • Add the browned scallions, smashed garlic, Dijon mustard, ground cayenne, smoked paprika, five-spice powder and ground black pepper
  • Simmer the sauce for 7-10 min on low heat, then turn off the heat and let the sauce cool for 20 min

STEP 2: Bake your ribs (approx 3-3:30 hours; the day before or same day)

  • Pour the sauce over the ribs and use your hands to coat every surface of the ribs evenly
  • Cover the baking sheet tightly with foil, then bake in the oven for 3-3:30 hours
  • Re-baste the ribs with sauce about twice during baking
  • When the ribs are done, you should be able to insert a fork effortlessly into the meat
  • If you’re serving the ribs the next day, keep them covered tightly with foils and keep in the fridge

STEP 3: One hour before serving

  • If you have kept the ribs in the fridge, warm them in a 300ºF oven just until the sauce has returned to its liquid state
  • Carefully remove the ribs with a wide spatula. Lay them meat-side up this time on another baking sheet
  • Remove any scallions and garlic attached to the ribs, then cover with plastic wrap while you prepare the sauce
  • Preheat the top-broiler on medium
  • Pour the sauce out of the deep baking sheet through a fine strainer into a saucepot (should be just shy of 2 cups)
  • Skim off as much fat as you can from the surface and bring the sauce to a simmer over medium-low heat 
  • Adjust the sweetness with 1 tbsp of dark brown sugar or more and let the sauce reduce down by about 2/3 (leaving you with a bit more than 1/2 cup)
  • The sauce should have thickened quite a bit.  Now turn off the heat and mix in 1/2 tsp of rice vinegar
  • Brush the sauce over the ribs, and place the baking sheet on the middle-upper rack under the broiler
  • Once the surface of the ribs starts to sizzle and bubble up, baste another layer of sauce and bake until bubbly and sticky again
  • Sprinkle the ribs with a bit of finely diced scallions and ground white pepper to finish

BOMSHBEE’S Ultimate Gift Guide: 10 Gift Ideas That Will Keep Giving All Year Long

Whether you’re looking for a stocking stuffer for the coffee aficionados in your life or the perfect present for aspiring mixologists, our holiday gift guide is brimming with thoughtful ideas that will spoil your nearest and dearest well beyond Christmas or Hanukkah.

From elegant Champagne glasses to on-the-go, reusable coffee cups, textured tableware, professional barware and sleek storage, we’ve rounded up 10 BOMBSHEE pieces that are sure to shine under the tree:

For Coffee Connoisseurs

Ardent coffee lovers tend to be just as serious about their cup as the origins of their beans and, more likely than not, a run-of-the-mill mug isn’t going to cut it. Elevate their morning routine with a set of BOMSHBEE’s gorgeous Marlin Cup & Saucers. Available in black, grey and white, the collection features smooth edges with subtle, textured lines that will make their next cup of Jo extra enticing.

And for coffee enthusiasts on the go? Check out our reusable Barrel Cup, which sports a classic, clean design that’s versatile and functional. The Barrel Cup includes a slick silicone sleeve for a comfortable grip and a heat-resistant, double-wall of borosilicate glass, meaning it’ll keep coffee hotter than Hades for ages.

For Aspiring Mixologists

As most mixologists will tell you, every serious home bar needs pro drinkware. Assuming your cocktail-stirring friends already have their wine, champagne, and double old fashioned glasses sorted, help round out their collection with a set of Angle Bold Highballs.

Ideal for tall drinks like Dark ‘n’ Stormies, Bloody Mary’s, Mojitos or G&Ts, these highballs are dashing and durable, thanks to heat-resistant borosilicate glass and an angled lip for effortless sipping.

Another bartender favourite is our Chandelier Skopeo, which recalls the glitz and glamour of the Gatsby era. Crafted with press-glass, these dazzling goblets are ideal for colorful cocktails, whiskey and brandy, plus they double as a serving bowl for snacks, dips and even ice cream. 

For Social Butterflies

We all have people in our lives who absolutely adore entertaining, planning fabulous dinner parties, and celebrating every occasion, big or small, with a glass of bubbles. And nothing says ‘celebration’ quite like BOMSHBEE’s mouth-blown O Champagne glasses. The flutes, which have been handcrafted by artisans using delicate crystalline glass, showcase a paper-thin profile and a tall, slender stem. 

Another perfect present for the host or hostess with the mostest is our Posh Marble & Wood Serving Board. The stylish combination of faux marble and natural acacia wood makes it a true statement piece, not to mention a practical way to serve sharing plates like charcuterie and cheese. 

For Serious Foodies

Many foodies have missed dining at their favorite restaurants due to Covid-19 restrictions, but you can help them recreate the experience at home with our beautiful Tinge tableware. A new set of plates and bowls will not only spruce up the table but also add some excitement to the dinner dates at home. Available in several shades of clay or porcelain, our Tinge plates and bowls have a warm, homey feel with exposed, raw rims and semi-translucent glaze. 

Need more ideas? Our Posh Snack Bowl Set is another foodie favourite. It’s snacking at its most stylish: Handmade by artisans, the set includes three marble-inspired porcelain bowls atop a dark acacia wood tray. Your friends and family can use these pretty bowls for chips, dips, nuts, sweets – whatever they’re craving.

For New Parents

New parents aren’t solely interested in diapers and onesies. Quite the contrary: moms and dads need a reminder that they’re people too, not just parents, so skip the stuffed animals, and opt for a gift that’s actually for them.

Start with a pair of extra-sturdy wine glasses, like our tapered Ring Wine glasses, so they can relax and unwind when the baby’s down for the night. These glasses are casual, durable, easily stackable and shatter-resistant – one less thing for new parents to worry about.

Having kids doesn’t necessarily mean parents have to sacrifice their personal style. To add a little elegance to your loved one’s kitchen or dining room storage solutions, surprise them with a set of Pleat Containers. They come in several shades and sizes, and unlike most storage containers, feel more like striking design pieces thanks to their pleat-like design and exposed clay surface.

Pair Food & Wine Like The Pros At La Cabane Bistro

Pairing wine with food is truly an art – it requires skill, experience and an excellent palate. Many people play it safe, sticking with rules like ‘white with fish’ or ‘red with steak’. And while there’s nothing wrong with tried and tested strategies, more adventurous tipplers may prefer to play with unconventional combinations.

For an array of playful pairings, we turned to one of Hong Kong’s most beloved wine bars and French restaurants, La Cabane Bistro, where co-founder Cristobal Huneeus and Chef Kenny Yip offered up their insights.

Scanning their cellar full of natural wines (that is, organically or biodynamically produced wines with no additives) the experts chose three bottles to serve with popular dishes: pork pâté dumplings with Szechuan oil and Comtéemulsion; roasted asparagus with egg mimosa and herb crumbs; and foie gras and duck breast pâté en croûte with pickled mushrooms.

“If you want to bring out umami in your dishes, natural wines are the best way to go,” says Huneeus. “Since the wine-making process is back to basics, with no intervention, you get these beautiful wines with more intense flavors and real, unadulterated layers.”


The Dish: Pork Pâté Dumplings, Szechuan Oil & Comté Emulsion
Paired it With:
2015 Jean-François Ganevat Vin Jaune (Savagnin Ouille) from Jura, France 
The Tableware: BOMSHBEE Tinge Porcelain Dinner Plate, O Wine glasses and Chime Flatware Set

As one of La Cabane Bistro’s signature dishes, Chef Yip’s pork pâté dumplings with Szechuan oil and Comté emulsion bring together Chinese and French influences. “The flavor profile is mildly spicy, thanks to the oil, fruity and savory because of the Comté. But it also has sweet and salty undertones bursting through in waves,” says Chef Yip. “It’s pretty much the best of both worlds.”

To pair with this complex dish, Huneeus pulls out a bottle of Jean-François Ganevat Vin Jaune, a straw-hued “yellow wine” that is “tangy, bright, light, open and very clean on the palate,” says Huneeus. The wine comes from the same region as the Comté, which may be why it pairs so well together. And while the wine stands up to the dish, it’s in no way overpowering.

The same goes for the tableware. Chef Yip chose our BOMSHBEE Tinge Porcelain Dinner Plate for its rustic texture and colour. It provided the contrast he was looking for – the vibrant orange Szechuan oil, creamy comté sauce, and beautifully browned pork dumplings pop against the ash-grey porcelain backdrop.


The Dish: Roasted Asparagus, Egg Mimosa & Herbs Crumbs
Paired it With: 2017 Gut Oggau Grüner Veltliner Mechthild from Burgenland, Austria
The Tableware: BOMSHBEE Eclipse Round Serving Platter with Wood, Chandelier Eidos, O Wine glasses and Chime Flatware Set

You could enjoy La Cabane Bistro’s roasted asparagus with egg mimosa (akin to a fancy French version of deviled eggs) and light-as-air herb crumbs for brunch, lunch or dinner. And though it works for every meal, it sadly doesn’t work with every wine.

“Asparagus has earthy, grass undertones with some bitterness, which blends harmoniously with the sweet and fatty creaminess of the egg mimosa and the herbs aromatics,” says Chef Yip. “But with such strong flavours, it can make it hard to find a pairing, because we don’t want the asparagus to outshine the wine.”

When pairing wines with asparagus, Huneeus suggests skipping those with pronounced tannins or bold, oaked whites. Instead, he goes for a dry, crisp wine like 2017 Gut Oggau Grüner Veltliner Mechthild. 

“Anything that helps to balance the richness of the sauce and the strength of the asparagus works,” Huneeus says. “And this wine – which an ‘orange wine’ – is especially fitting, as it’s very refreshing with great length and citrus fruits on the nose. It really enhances the dish.”

To plate the asparagus, Chef Yip chose our BOMSHBEE Eclipse Round Serving Platter with Wood, which he says provides an extra layer of intrigue, thanks to the tiered structure and mixed textures. “I like the two-tone style of the serving platter because the asparagus looks great on the wood and then the second level is visually exciting,” adds Chef Yip. Then he shaved cheese into the Chandelier Eidos glass to create a flower-like effect, which almost tricks the eye. “It adds some height and an elegance to the whole presentation.”


The Dish: Foie Gras & Duck Breast Pâté en Croûte & Pickled Mushrooms
Paired it With: 2018 Jean Foillard Morgon Eponyme Charmes (Gamay) from Beaujolais, France
The Tableware: BOMSHBEE Tinge Porcelain Dinner Plate, O Wine glasses and Chime Flatware Set

Foie gras and duck breast pâté en croûte with pickled mushrooms is one of La Cabane Bistro’s most quintessentially French dishes – not to mention a popular choice among its local patrons.

“It’s a technical, complicated dish… we import the pastry dough for the croûte and foie gras from France, and it takes around two days to prepare,” says Chef Yip. “But it’s certainly worth it.”

Huneeus, who is half-French and half-Chilean, agrees. “This dish is a labour of love, offering a beautiful balance of meaty and daintier flavors.” The key to its success is to keep the ingredients cold during the preparation process and taking extreme care when folding and filling the dough.

To do justice to this time-intensive creation, Huneeus recommends a Gamay – specifically, a 2018 Jean Foillard Morgon Eponyme Charmes – which balances the richness of the pastry and foie gras,  stands up to the meatiness of the dish, yet still tastes elegant and delicate.

“Gamay is an impressive, underrated grape that’s long been overlooked in favor of its posh, big cousin Pinot Noir. But finally, Gamay is finding space in the wine world,” says Huneeus. “Some Gamay wines are bigger, rounder, fruitier; others are more delicate. This one is delicate and complex with a vibrant ruby hue. It’s from a Grand Crus vineyard in Beaujolais with.”

If you can’t make it to La Cabane Bistro – or don’t have two days to spend in the kitchen – Huneeus suggests pairing a bottle or two of Gamay with a platter of saucisson (dry-cured French sausages), cold cuts, pâté, and bread to recreate the experience at home this holiday season. Bon appetit!

Photo Credits: Ben Marans Photography