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100 Things to Eat Before You Die

So I saw this list circulating on and off through various blogs and foodie circles. Sadly when I went through the list, I’m shocked at some of the random stuff on here. SERIOUSLY!? McDonald’s!? And a PB&J sandwich?! Dude… there was just an article on how Duchess Kate wouldn’t touch peanut butter when they were sampling stuff being sent to starving orphans. So apparently starving orphans are eating peanut butter… and yet PB&J made this list. I don’t get it. Oh and pho!? Dude… who HASN’T eaten pho!?

Oh and roadkill. That’s just wrong.

1. Venison – Had it in La Jolla years ago when a friend ordered it during a bday celebration. I tasted it… and it was super gamey. :(
2. Nettle tea
3. Huevos rancheros – How can I not eat this while living in SD?
4. Steak tartare – Thank you Josh for introducing me to this,
5. Crocodile– We tried it down at the Garlic Festival. It was grilled…and tasted like super chewy chicken.
7. Cheese fondueHad it @ La Fondue
8. Carp – Buy it live from 99 Ranch and steam it… MMMMmmmm
9. Borscht – Had it at this Russian Tea Room restaurant in SF
10. Baba ghanoush – Not too big of a fan… I’d prefer hummus anyday.
11. Calamari– I love calamari… in any form.
12. Pho – I think Sam and I eat this at least once a week.
13. PB&J sandwich– Seriously?! This is on the list?
14. Aloo gobi – Standard at any of the amazing Indian buffets around here.
15. Hot dog from a street cart– We had Japadog in Vancouver! (And a sampling in NYC)
16. Epoisses – Not a cheese fan AT ALL.
17. Black truffle – Had the oil version and the shaved version.
18. Fruit wine made from something other than grape – MMMmmm… Japanese plum wine…
19. Steamed pork buns – Sooooooo good. Especially the ones from Ippudo NY.
20. Pistachio ice cream– One of my fav flavors!
21. Heirloom tomatoes– Grew up with these in in our backyard garden.
22. Fresh wild berriesWe’d go berry picking in Seattle when I was growing up. Nothing like a juicy wild blackberry!
23. Foie gras – LOOOOOVE me some foie gras… *sigh*
24. Rice and beansAgain… seriously!?
25. Brawn, or head cheese
26. Raw Scotch Bonnet pepper – Yes… it was very spicy.
27. Dulce de leche – I love dulce de leche ice cream!
28. Oysters– I’ve had them fried, baked, and raw… so far my fav are the tiny sweet juicy ones from Taiwan or Kumamotos from Hog Island, straight from the farm.
29. Baklava– A good version’s hard to find. Some restaurants have them sitting there so they get super soggy. :(
30. Bagna cauda – Stinking Rose serves up my fav version!
31. Wasabi peas– I’ve had them and I still HATE wasabi.
32. Clam chowder in a sourdough bowlOf course! And the chef @ Boudin even invited me into make bread with him. 😀
33. Salted lassi – I thought it was sweetened when I got it at the Indian buffet… and it was quite a shock!
34. Sauerkraut– Yup… its delicious with a good Italian sausage.
35. Root beer float– I don’t like them…
36. Cognac with a fat cigar
37. Clotted cream tea
38. Vodka jelly/Jell-O shot– I think these were the staple at college parties.
39. Gumbo– See Daring Kitchen challenge! I even rendered my own chicken fat!
40. Oxtail– Sam cooks a mean oxtail soup. 😀
41. Curried goat– Not a fan… I got it by accident at the Indian buffet… and it was super gamey. *shudders*
42. Whole insects– I tried a chocolate covered grasshopper in high school.
43. Phaal
44. Goat’s milk– Yeche!!!!
45. Single malt whisky
46. Fugu
47. Chicken tikka masala– Sooooo good…
48. Eel– I <3 Unagi. Nuff said.
49. Krispy Kreme original glazed doughnut– I’m not a fan of these. Personally I like Mr. Donut from Taiwan or Shipley’s in the south.
50. Sea urchin – Ahh… Thank you Ruth and James for the fresh caught uni!
51. Prickly pear – I had a prickly pear salad in SD a while ago. Don’t really remember it…
52. Umeboshi – Yum!! They’re good made into tea also.
53. Abalone – Standard at any Chinese banquet…
54. Paneer –  Saag paneer… delicious!
55. McDonald’s Big Mac Meal– I remember back in the day when the Big Macs had that cardboard circling it.
56. Spaetzle – MMMmmmm…!
57. Dirty gin martini
58. Beer above 8% ABV-
59. Poutine – OMG I LOVE poutine!! I found Poutine Flavored Lays in Canada a few years ago…
60. Carob chips – weird…
61. S’mores – Camping isn’t camping unless smores are involved.
62. Sweetbreads – apparently they’re really popular out here in SF… I see them on tasting menus all the time.
63. Kaolin
64. Currywurst – Yup… there was a currywurst truck here at work awhile ago.
65. Durian – I actually don’t mind the smell and taste.
66. Frogs’ legs – We fooled my Japanese godsister into eating this… afterwards we told her she had Keroppi…
67. Beignets, churros, elephant ears or funnel cake– OMG. Delicious.
68. Haggis
69. Fried plantain– Soooo good!
70. Chitterlings, or andouillette – I’m Taiwanese. We’re known for stuffing sticky rice in chitterlings. And it is AMAZING.
71. Gazpacho – Cold soup is weird.
72. Caviar and blini – Caviar yes. Blini. No.
73. Louche absinthe – We used to serve absinthe on the airplane!
74. Gjetost, or brunost – Eh? Que es?
75. Roadkill- Three letters. Double-you-tee-eff.
76. Baijiu
77. Hostess Fruit Pie – No, my health conscious mother wouldn’t let me eat that. Now as an adult, it doesn’t look the least bit appealing.
78. Snail – it wasn’t very good… strangely chewy and with a funky taste.
79. Lapsang souchong – My granduncle took me on this tea tasting adventure on one of my trips back to Taiwan.
80. Bellini– Delicious!
81. Tom yum – Two of my favorites… spicy and sour!
82. Eggs Benedict – not a fan since I hate yolks.
83. Pocky – My favorite is the crunchy chocolate or strawberry ones!
84. Tasting menu at a three-Michelin-star restaurant – I ate at French Laundry before Michelin Stars were awarded in the states….
85. Kobe beef – OMG IT WAS SO GOOD!!!
86. Hare – I’m assuming that rabbit counts…
87. Goulash– I’m pretty sure I’ve had goulash at some point in my life.
88. Flowers– Extraordinary Desserts decorates their cakes BEAUTIFULLY. I’ve tried a few of their edible flowers. Thankfully their cakes are better than the flowers otherwise the gardeners would put them out of business.
89. Horse
90. Criollo – Okay… so I googled this and found out that it’s Cuban cuisine? If it is, then yes. If not, please enlighten me on what Criollo is.
91. Spam – Random pig parts in a brick form. I don’t understand the appeal of it.
92. Soft shell crab – LOVE!!!
93. Rose harissa
94. Catfish– I’m not a fan. It tastes like mud.
95. Mole poblano – NOT a fan.
96. Bagel and lox– Especially good from Ess A Bagel…
97. Lobster Thermidor – Yes please.
98. Polenta – I’ve had it grilled, soft, creamed, etc.
99. Jamaican Blue Mountain Coffee
100. Snake – I had fried rattlesnack at the Gilroy Garlic Festival and stewed snake in Taiwan. Tasted like strange rubbery chicken.

I think I’ve had roughly 80% of the list.

What have you eaten?

2012… Came Way too Fast!

I’m still alive… and one of my resolutions is to continue to blog and to blog more and to do it more consistently. I’ll have a few posts lined up in the pipeline.

Moorea Travel Tips!


We did quite a bit of research and found out some of the best packages were via Costco. From there, it was a debate on where to stay. Given that we seemed to hear more about Bora Bora than Moorea and the majority of the cost was going to be incurred in Bora Bora, we were more focused on finding a good hotel there. Costco multi-island packages tend to lump the resorts together. One of Sam’s requirements for Bora Bora was that we could view Mt. Otemanu. That knocked out some of the resorts and we ended up with a good list. Price being a factor, we ended up choosing the Hilton Package and noted that the OWB in the 100’s section have Mt. Otemanu views. Moorea Hilton was also rated the best resort on the island of Moorea and Hilton Bora Bora is rated 4th. In the end, if it was good enough for the Victoria’s Secret models, it was good enough for us.

We chose the Hilton Moorea Lagoon and Spa resort. After booking and scouring the internet for blogs, I found out that our Visa Signature card was offering free Hilton Gold status. I nabbed that deal and called the two resorts to give them my number to link up with the Costco reservation. It was great because it gave us two free upgrades at Moorea and one upgrade at Bora Bora.


  • Request a west facing bungalow (leeward side) since there are strong East-West gusts in French Polynesia. The bungalow blocked the brunt of those winds so we could enjoy and lay out on our deck.
  • Food packages aren’t really needed in Moorea because we were on a motu and with a rental car we had the run of the island. We did opt for the breakfast buffet which was very delicious and wandered out and about for our lunches and dinners. The hotels try to sell you the package to keep you “stuck” in the resort.


  • Best Poisson Cru on the entire trip from Snack Mahana. The islanders seem to have a weird sense of time. Most eateries that have “Snack” in the name are open fro 11-2:30 or whenever they run out of food. Roulettes are open from 5PM and onwards.
  • We got larger portions and better food from the local run places.
  • Roulette Jules and Claude in Pao Pao was delicious! Best mahi mahi steak with au poivre vert sauce I’ve ever tasted.
  • Rudy’s was a disaster, the owner/managers were rude and foul. The parrotfish that everyone raves about on Tripadvisor tasted like flounder and didn’t knock my socks off.
  • Aloo Pizza offered up delicious food but the service like any of the other European run joints was on the pretentious side.


  • Rental Car through Albert’s Rental Car. It was easy to rent and renting beyond 2 days offered room for negotiation. Service was amazing and prompt and they offer pick up and drop off from your resort. The ladies (Albert’s daughter in laws) that run this place are sweet and charming. They accept CC so Visa was our best friend on this trip.


  • We got the best exchange rates via our CC and ironically at an ATM in Papeete. The banks didn’t offer such a great rate in Moorea and they seemed to open and close at odd hours of the day. The people really run on Tahitian time…

Happy Anniversary! :)

Happy Anniversary to us!

We made it to a year!

One year down. Forever left to go! 😉

Packing for the Honeymoon! :)

The weekend prior to us leaving for Tahiti was insane. We managed to procure our rashguards, sunscreen, bug repellant, and finish loads of laundry. Oh yeah, I also threw in a pedicure in there so my toeberries would be cute on Tahiti. 😀

My must pack list:

  • Sunscreen (this stuff was super expensive down there! We ponied up the funds and bought extra down in Moorea when it looked like we were gonna run out). We had the super duper strong kind for our bodies and I brought two for my face… DDF and Neutrogena.
  • Rashguards – Our friends Max and Sarah recommended it. We spent a lot of time snorkeling; leaving our backs up to the mercy of the sun down there.
  • Bug repellent – I was on a mission to find the portable fan repellent made by Off!; given that it was late September, most Targets had sold out and I found it at the North San Jose one on clearance. I don’t think it worked THAT well… I used it for one day in Bora Bora. The only times I got badly bit was when Hubs wanted to venture and explore the southern part of Moorea and some random time in our Bora Bora bungalow.
  • Lots of swimsuits!
  • Flip-flops – I only packed a pair… would be more useful to pack two so that my feet could get a break between. Highly recommend Reefs. 😀
  • Sundresses/coverups – Tahiti and her islands are super casual… I showed up to dinner in a bikini and pareo. The waitresses all wear flip flops out there.
  • Sunglasses
  • Travel documents
  • Print outs of our itineraries. Things are slow and not the most “efficient” out there so it was important that we had copies of all the excursions and reservations.

Tahiti/Moorea/Bora Bora Excursion Planning!

When I booked our honeymoon with Costco, I had them price quote the various excursions while I did more price comparison and shopping around. It turned out to be a blessing in disguise since Groupon came along and dropped $500 in my lap to work with. When I contacted Classic Vacations, the pricing was a bit better than what Costco was quoting me for excursions. With $1K, we got the most bang for our buck and  I booked it as close as I could to 1K to use up every last penny.

On Moorea, we picked the Ray and Shark Feeding with Motu Picnic and we splurged on the Apnea dolphin experience. For Bora Bora, we did chose another Coral Gardens Snorkeling/Ray and Shark Feeding. We had some concerns of the two ray and shark excursions being too similar, but it worked out to our benefit.

The pricing Classic Vacations quoted ranged from being $20-40 cheaper per person. There are some tours that are definitely worth purchasing ahead of time, but some of the other excursions seemed to be availability when we arrived there so booking ahead of time isn’t necessary.

While we were on Moorea, we rented a car through Albert’s and drove around Moorea to explore (more on that in a later post). In Bora Bora, we made it onto Vaiteepe and hired a driver who had a classic LandRover who took us on a tour and took us offroading. It was actually a really nice tour without the pressures of the other tours that are geared towards pushing the visitors to buy everything and anything. We didn’t have any shopping stops and only had scenic stops.

Once I had everything booked all we did was try to go on with life as much as normal, twiddle our thumbs and wait in anticipation! 😀


Tahiti Trip Planning!

Hubs and I spent a lot of time discussing Tahiti as our honeymoon location. We decided on a place where we could relax and in the midst of planning a wedding, the idea of planning a honeymoon was just to exhausting. We decided to get some down time after the wedding before tackling the idea of booking our honeymoon.

My first stop was Costco Travel where they offered the BEST DEALS on Tahiti. After discussion and hours on Tripadvisor, we picked the Tahiti/Moorea/Bora Bora package. Hours on the phone and some quick math, I realized that it would be cheaper for me to book the flights on my own instead of having Costco do that. In addition, we got an free upgrade into Business Class on Air Tahiti Nui. THANK YOU AIR TAHITI NUI!! :)

We finally took the plunge and booked our lodging and transfers through Costco and I booked our international flight and inter-island flights separately.

Coincidentally, within weeks of booking our trip, Groupon launched its “Groupon Destinations” and on the very first day was the $500 for $1000 Classic Vacations Tahiti Offer. I read through the fine print and quickly bought it. They wanted me to book a hotel through them but after finaggling through 3 supervisors and a manager and me squawking that in their fine print it said that it was “good towards hotel, transfers, and or excursions” they finally relented and let me book excusions with my $1K of credit. 😀 (Ironically… the same deal came up again a few weeks ago and I sent it to some friends flying out there for their honeymoon and the fine print said “must book hotel.” I wonder if my squawking had anything to do with that…

We booked our package with Hilton and Visa Signature was also having a deal where we got Hilton Gold Status. I called the hotels down in Moorea and Bora Bora to log my Hilton number since Tripadvisor mentioned that there were issues with the hotels looking them up. Thankfully I did since we got multiple upgrades at both resorts on the house. 😀

Air Tahiti Nui only flies out of LAX so I was on the prowl for good deals. I was considering using the Buy 1 Get 1 Free coupon codes I got at the Virgin America SF Giants game to book our flights down to LAX and back but decided that since we were flying out on a Tuesday, the standby slots should be good.

Overall, booking through Costco, scouring LivingSocial and Groupon, and having our company’s standby flights really made a difference in our honeymoon. We got the most bang for our buck in the sense that:
1) We got a free coach to business upgrade on Air Tahiti Nui both going and coming back… which was a big deal since we were red-eyeing out and red-eyeing in. I didn’t see any value in spending a night in Tahiti.
2) Groupon blessed us with $500 for free!
3) Hilton Moorea Lagoon and Spa upgraded us twice to a Overwater Bungalow and then to the Panoramic Overwater Bungalow (Sunset View) instead of the Garden Bungalow we booked.
4) Hilton Bora Bora Nui upgraded us from an Overwater Bungalow to a Deluxe Overwater Bungalow (with a mountain view… we had one of the 3 or 4 bungalows that had the amazing view of Mt. Otemanu. This was a huge debate for us since when we were picking through the various packages Costco offered, Hubs really REALLY wanted a view of the mountain. Most of the Bora Bora resorts are located on Motus (islands) away from the main island of Bora Bora. Hilton is one that faces away from Bora Bora and towards the sunset so this was a HUGE! We got some AMAZING views from our bungalow for free!

Overall, I think I spent hours on the phone with Costco negotiating out the best possible deal and hours with Classic Vacation to redeem our Groupon voucher; time spent was worth every single penny.

Business Class tickets were going for about $4000-$4200 per person at the time we were flying. We paid around $1400 per person for coach so we got a nice $3000 perk between the two of us.

Moorea Bungalow Upgrades: Difference between the Garden and the Panoramic was about 400 dollars… spanned across 3 nights it was a $1200 perk they gifted us.

The difference in price for the Bora Bora bungalows was about $250 a night which worked out to $1250 for all the nights we were there.

Given the budget Hubs gave me, I managed to finaggle an extra $6000 give or take out of everything. 😀

If I have any advice, it would be to figure out which hotel chain you’re at and then get into their rewards program. I heard that the Intercontinental offers a “VIP” program that you can pay to get into that gives you upgrades when you check in. Given that these bungalows out in Tahiti cost so much, it would be useful to pursue that. We were lucky to have Hilton Gold status via Visa Signature’s promo which came in very handy. The upgrade in Moorea was definitely much appreciated.

Coming up next… Excursion Planning! :)


Steve Jobs.

He was a visionary; brought the hip to what was once a “nerdy” sector, reinvented technology to become cool.

I still remember my first Apple product, the 6G  iPod mini. I was a late adopter, finally indulging myself with a pricey Apple product after getting my first paycheck. It was definitely pricey and worth every penny at the time. From then on, I was obsessed with Apple. Macbook Pro, multiple iPods later, and now my iPhone, I’ve been converted with the beautiful designs and great products.

Thank you Steve, for your genius, vision, and dedication to perfection.


Quickie Update! :)

After a crazy summer of helping my dear friends T & T plan their wedding, standing up with them while they exchanged their vows, it was truly a great way to celebrate the long Labor Day weekend. We also had my SIL visiting us for a weekend of gluttony and exploring SF. I took my dad to a SF Giants game on the 9/11 anniversary, followed by starting up aquascaping again. We’ve been fairly busy the last two months. Lastly…. we finally took our honeymoon. 😀

I need to get started on putting together my posts for Tahiti/Moorea/Bora Bora.

In the meantime… here was the view from the deck of our Deluxe OWB in Moorea. :)

Fish. Before and After.

Hubs and I both love seafood; probably a little bit too much. More often than not, we get cravings for a yummy whole steamed live fish. Granted it’s far from live when it’s served to us but there’s just something so delicious about plucking the meat off a freshly steamed fish that was just flopping before my eyes minutes before.

A few weeks ago we went to Fu Lam Mum to satiate our fish craving.

Eating a whole fish works for us. I don’t mind nibbling on all the various bones and Sam loves going after the fish belly portions. We have our preferences when it comes to the fish head but all in all, we’re really good about not letting anything go to waste!

I finished the fins and spine and was left with a big pile of bones so I decided to put the whole thing back together.