This year, I won't deviate from the usual practice as I present to you my 11 Memorable Moments in 2011!!! (p.s. in no particular order)
1) Hello USA!
It was like a dream come true. To be honest, I'd never thought I'd travel to the US...this soon and best of all, Paul was with me! :) Memorable food stops includes the mouthwatering ribs of Lucille's, the to-die-for bucket of seafood from Boiling Crab and the incredibly delicious Red Velvet Cheesecake from Cheesecake Factory.
We had a great time reuniting with friends and family all throughout our two weeks stay! Oh boy, I can't wait to go back and to visit more states too -- hello Vegas and New York!
2) Fun Taiwan
A month after coming home from our US trip, Paul and I headed to Taiwan this time for an all-out food adventure! Our 4 days trip was a perfect mix of visiting historical sites, going up the 2nd tallest tower in the world and filling our tummies with the best food finds Taiwan can offer!
At a Glance: Taipei, Taiwan
3) Frannywanny and Twitter = ♥
Tweet! I finally got around to starting my own Twitter page where I get to update you on what I'm currently doing at the moment, my thoughts, my whereabouts (hehe kidding!) Seriously, follow me on Twitter as I'll be launching a BIG contest over there pretty SOON!
Clue: Involves an amazing Ca$h prize!! *kaching kaching!*
4) Private Dinner with Pepita's Lechon
This just got to be one of the most memorable dinners I've had this year. Sure I love lechon but to have four different lechons in one night...this got me day and night dreaming about it for WEEKS! I will always love Pepita's French and German Lechon not to mention her delicious Pinoy Pate and Balut Surprise. Definitely a must try! Oh, and don't forget to bring your Lipitor. :)
Lechon Degustacion Dinner at Pepita's Kitchen
5) Milk Tea Craze continues
I first fell in love with milk tea early last year and it was Serenitea who won my milk-tea loving heart. Who cares about calories, I had milk tea to ease my wedding tensions away. This year, we saw the entrance of more milk tea brands and by just taking a short drive down Wilson Street in Greenhills, you'll notice that it's starting to turn into a milk tea land as at present, there are 5 milk tea players present in the area (and more that will soon pop out I'm sure)!
This 2011, I have been frequenting Chatime and Teatap where I enjoyed trying out the new drink varieties from the Brown Rice Green Tea to the Strawberry Yakult and a lot more.
Check out my friend's very own Chatime branch at Eton Centris! Aside from Chatime's signature milk tea, they will also be offering a couple of yummy food items that you all should try! See you there this 2012!
6) Six Star Dining at Impressions
When I got the invite to try Impressions, I got really excited! First and foremost, it was located at the Maxims Tower which I was told was a 6-star hotel! Wow! I've never heard of a 6 star hotel before. That dinner was really delicious starting from the complimentary bread and some bagna cauda. ♥ It was a fun evening chatting with some of Manila's renowned Chefs.
7) Reunited with La Chesca
This is pure happiness! Being reunited with my favorite childhood snack! I was overjoyed when I finally was able to contact the owners of La Chesca and to be able to bite into their famous chicken pie and sapin sapin once again!
The Secret is Out: La Chesca Chicken Pie
8) Linamnam by Claude Tayag and Mary Ann Quioc
Growing up, I've made it a point to read the newspaper at least once a week. There was actually a time when my mom decided to stop our daily newspaper subscription after my dad had his brain surgery and has temporarily lost his interest to read as he had a hard time comprehending. I begged her to just keep the Thursday paper as it has been a long time habit of mine to go through the lifestyle section just for this particular day in the week. After all, this is the time when both major local broadsheets would have food as the feature in their lifestyle sections. I'm glad mom agreed to just continue with our subscription which actually helped my dad improve quickly as he would train himself to read the papers every morning.
I look up to certain personalities especially food writers who were actually my inspiration to eat, write and to keep a food blog. Such personalities include Claude Tayag who's a Capampangan food writer and the owner of Bale Datung, a place that has been part of my Restaurant wish list for YEARS! I look forward to his weekly column at the Philippine Star where he talks about his food adventures with wife Mary Ann whom he affectionately calls Darleng.
Imagine how flattered I was when I was told that he cited this blog as part of his Acknowledgement page in his book Linamnam. I couldn't believe it at first and initially thought it was a joke.
Not until I finally had my very own copy where I saw that yes, Frannywanny.com was included as part of his list of food blogs which he made as reference to his comprehensive list of must-try dishes and places all around the Philippines.
Please grab a copy as it's a fun read! I'm half-way done and every single time, my mouth waters as I see the photos and read about the various dishes every province is proud of. Looks like I should schedule more domestic food trips come 2012!
9) Neighborhood great finds
I just love my neighborhood! Both my real neighborhood and my work neighborhood! With all these great restaurants opening here and there, it truly makes every lunch and dinner out more exciting!
This year, I fell in love with Mad Mark's Mariner Sandwich and Herb Parmesan Fries, Milky and Sunny's All-Day Breakfast, Maimee's Garden Cafe's beautiful ambiance and Kare Kare and Moshi Koshi's Katsudon and Coffee Ice Cream.
As we end the year, I see a lot more board ups of possible food finds for next year! Let's continue to cross our fingers (and toes!).
10) Fun adventures with the Food Club
Once again, who would have thought that we'd be able to find such great friends over the internet? Well this is a story about real (online turned offline) friendship, sharing a great bond over our love for food, traveling and writing. Together, we've discovered a lot of great food finds and have traveled to some part of the country this year. Soon, we are ready to conquer Korea and a lot more lined up for 2012! :)
11) Love love love ♥
2011 surely went by so fast! What an amazing year filled with so much love, happiness and success. I'm thankful for so many things that I think it will take me one whole day to list them all.
To end this, I'll leave you with this endearing video of Joseph Gordon-Levitt and Zooey Deschanel singing What Are You Doing This New Year's Eve. This video has been circling all social media sites for a couple of days now. Talk about the power of the Internet! I wonder when can I finally be a YouTube sensation? haha :P