Kappo: The Art of Dining in Osaka

Kappo Osaka

When we learnt that we were headed to Osaka, we asked ourselves, “what must we eat?”

Because Osaka is affectionately known as the Kitchen of Japan, and the Osakans worship their washoku (Japanese cuisine) – the ones who prepare dedicate their lives to perfecting the dishes they lay out on the table; the ones who savour spend their time learning and understanding every history and style of the different kinds of washoku. It is almost like a religion for Japanese (and quite possibly people from all over the world) to live and breathe the art of washoku.

So when we say ‘eat’, it is in every way an artistic indulgence, one that has us completely enveloped in the soul of Japanese expressions. The chefs pay so much attention to every step of the preparation and presentation, and there are always rich histories behind every style of dining; ingredients used are very much based on seasons, and the style of cooking has their own stories to tell too.

All that intrigue to speak about, but for now, we will begin with kappo – the definition of Osaka’s culinary glory. Like how Kyoto has its kaiseki, Osaka takes pride in their cutting and cooking, hence making up the word ‘kappo’. But do not be intimidated by the language if you do not understand, because if any, it is really a very affectionate way of dining.

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Kayumanis Ubud Private Villa & Spa

Kayumanis Ubud

Ubud is the cultural heart of Bali, our favourite Indonesian island, and any time is a good time to do a quick getaway. So pack your bags, book your flight and jet off to rejuvenation.

When Julia Roberts filmed ‘Eat Pray Love’, Ubud was where Elizabeth Gilbert (played by Julia Roberts herself) fell in love. And Ubud has since been on many’s travel lists. In a recent trip to Ubud, we spent quality time with each other, and treated ourselves to the true essence of Balinese’s hospitality.

Our humble abode was Kayumanis Ubud Private Villa & Spa, a luxurious property tucked away in the alleys of Sayan Village and overlooking the Ayung River Valley jungle. Of tranquility and serenity, private villas and an abundance of lush greenery, step into a sanctuary and let your butlers pamper you throughout your stay.

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Kayumanis Private Villa & Spa Jimbaran Bali

Kayumanis Villa Jimbaran

Kayumanis Private Villa & Spa is one name that we’ve been hearing for quite some time now, and when leading luxury hotel bookings portal The Luxe Nomad offered us the chance to experience the hospitality, we hopped on to a flight and checked in to the Jimbaran property. The drive in to the villa was a colourful one – where we were greeted by a local linear of provision shops, warungs (small Indonesian eateries) and a scatter of fashion boutiques – before we turned in to the private land.

The serenity was then all ours.

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Karmakamet Diner Bangkok

Karmakamet Diner

Karmakamet is an established brand in Bangkok known for its range of aromatic products. It opened Everyday by Karmakamet, a cute and charming cafe in Silom which features its line of fragrances and lifestyle products. Karmakamet Diner, its full-fledged restaurant, is the latest creation.

Karmakamet Diner is a super gorgeous and stunning restaurant. The space is very well-furnished, with so much thoughts put into every detail. From coasters that are folded from envelopes, to the papers used to line the tables which are literally newspapers, albeit specially designed and printed ones bearing Karmakamet’s branding.

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Krispy Kreme Singapore to open at Tangs in October

Krispy Kreme Singapore

Krispy Kreme, the famous American doughnut franchise, will be opening in Singapore at Tangs Orchard Basement 1 in October 2013. This is great news for fans of Krispy Kreme who have waited so long for the original glazed doughnuts to come to Singapore. I am glad that we no longer need to carry boxes of Krispy Kreme doughnuts back from overseas. 2013 is turning out to be a great year for the local food scene. I certainly look forward to the arrival of more brands in the near future.

Shiok Maki from Koh Grill & Sushi Bar

Shiok Maki

I’ve written about Koh Grill & Sushi Bar’s before, but I thought I’d just share it again, because lately, the whole Singapore seems to be going gaga over their Shiok Maki.

Koh Grill & Sushi Bar is a small eatery that sits within Wisma’s Food Republic, and they serve honest Japanese food at affordable prices. And the one dish that makes everyone go back again and again is the Shiok Maki. It is a maki made up of avocado, unagi and aburi salmon, drenched with a supremely addictive creamy sauce that is seemingly a legit mixture of mayo and mentai, then topped with a copious amount of tobiko. Well, no one really knows the recipe, but sounds tempting already?

The Shiok Maki is hands down one of the best things I’ve ever had in life. Trust me, I am not exaggerating. This is surely one place to head to for a quick fix of Japanese food in between shopping at Orchard Road. Be prepared to queue though; an hour’s wait is the norm.

435 Orchard Road
#04-21 Wisma Atria Shopping Centre
Tel: +65 9180 3805
Daily: 11.30am – 10.30pm

A Weekend in Kata Beach Phuket

The Aspasia Phuket

There are many reasons why so many people fall in love with Phuket – white sand with turquoise waters and blue sunny skies; luxurious beach villas that will make you feel like royalty; cheap and delicious Thai street food; and wonder spa treatments for your tense shoulders after your flight.

Granted, Phuket has become very touristy in recent years as travellers escape there for a getaway, but there are still many beautiful beaches that are waiting to be explored. We spent a weekend in Kata Beach and had a memorable experience.

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