Where to wine and dine your way around the world this month.
There’s a buzz about London this March as the annual London Coffee Festival returns for the ninth time on 28-31 March. Held at the Old Truman Brewery in Brick Lane, UK’s largest coffee and artisan food event has plenty to offer casual and serious coffee aficionados. To start, there are over 100 coffee artisans, brands and food vendors; Latte Art Live workshops helmed by world-class baristas; and an extensive Lab programme that includes demonstrations, tastings, and discussions for home brewers and café owners.
This year will also see the debut of the Mindful Coffee Tasting Experience, a multi-sensory, guided and meditative coffee tasting experience that gives visitors a novel way to appreciate high-grade coffee. Tickets are available online from GBP14.50 (RM78/USD19) and the price includes unlimited coffee and food tastings, as well as access to workshops and demos. Be sure to check your caffeine levels!
Luck Be A Tiger Tonight
Feeling lucky tonight? Head on down to Kuala Lumpur’s Jalan Mesui, where you’ll find Lucky Tora, a contemporary Japanese restaurant that fits right into the city’s bustling nightlife. With a name that means ‘Lucky Tiger’, you can expect a bold and creative menu that fuses Japanese cuisine with Southeast Asian flavours.
Those prepping for a big night out in town can start with a kushiyaki selection of lamb rack, prawn and shiitake truffle skewers; sharing plates of prawn toast, where deep-fried minced prawn is served with toast and wasabi cream; pan-seared salmon with ponzu and truffle oil; or prawn gyozas with Chinese-style sour and spicy dressing; and deep-fried unagi served with four-angle bean with teriyaki sauce.
For those seeking a belly-filling meal, choose from a selection of bowl meals like Tiger Fried Rice Seto (garlic fried rice with egg, prawn, squid); Angus Beef Katsu Don; and Seafood Tomyum Udon served with prawn, squid, black mussels, and egg. End your meal on a sweet note with the Banana and Nutella Spring Roll, or if you’re so inclined, the intriguing dish of rum and raisin ice cream with beef bacon and salmon skin.
Experience a farm-to-table meal the next time you’re in Central Java by booking a stay at the Alila Solo. Towering above the capital city of Surakarta (commonly known as Solo), the hotel is a great place to base yourself as you explore the region’s landscape, volcanic peaks and centuries-old temples.
When you’re done travelling, head up to the Sky Garden, where (with a little help from the kitchen staff) you can hand-pick your own ingredients from the hotel’s farm that will be later cooked at the hotel’s Epice restaurant. You’ll also learn how to cook three or four authentic Indonesian dishes and enjoy them for lunch at the main restaurant, pool deck or in the room.
When Shanghai’s city life gets too hectic, head up to the Garden Podium floor of the Xintiandi Plaza mall to find refuge at PS.Cafe. As the first overseas venture for the Singapore-based franchise, the Parisian-chic café doesn’t hold back in creating a relaxed atmosphere in the mall’s elevated garden, offering a great view of the tree-lined Huaihai Middle Road while you enjoy a nice cuppa.
On the menu are dishes that are exclusive to this branch, such as the Lobster & Shrimp pasta, Chicken Cacio e Pepe, as well as the Ginger Sticky Date Pudding, a combination of the café’s signature Sticky Date Pudding and Ginger Pudding. On the lookout for familiar Singaporean flavours? You’ll be more than happy with signature dishes like Hainanese Chicken Rice, as well as Singapore Chilli Crab and Prawn served with crispy mantou bread and jade rice.
Elevate your Tokyo dining experience, literally, by booking a seat at the exclusive Musashi by Aman, the latest culinary addition to the Aman Tokyo luxury hotel housed in the Otemachi Tower in Chiyoda. Located on the 34th floor of Aman Tokyo with views of the city skyline and Mount Fuji on clear days, the restaurant specialises in omakase-style sushi meals comprising eight tsumami (appetisers) and 10 nigiri that differ each day according to what’s best at the market.
The man who makes the call is none other than Chef Musashi, whose career as a sushi chef has spanned over three decades and includes a Michelin star for his (now-closed) eponymous restaurant in Tokyo’s Aoyama district in 2009. Musashi by Aman is an intimate restaurant that seats just eight guests at a Hinoki wooden counter, so be sure to book your seats well in advance.