New York City Restaurant Update: May 2014

Although keeping up with NYC restaurants is always an experience, we lucked out this year by visiting shortly after the announcement of the annual James Beard nominees. We ended up visiting three new restaurant and best chef nominees, plus a number of others we had wanted to try.

The three nominees were:

Betony. When we [Read more ...]

New York City Art Update: May 2014

Four full days is never enough in New York. It certainly cramps our museum-going activities, forcing us to miss some perennial favorites (especially MOMA, Frick and the Metropolitan). And this was despite the fact that we has to miss two Frank Lloyd Wright exhibits. (This disappointment, however, was totally mitigated by the fact that the [Read more ...]

New York City Theater Update: May 2014

Another theater season; another trip to New York to catch up on shows, museums, restaurants, galleries, art shows and, of course, the overall buzz of the city.   This year, based on strong recommendations of friends, we diversified our theater going experience by going to not just one, but two musicals. (Actually, since one was [Read more ...]

A Tale of Two Ryokans in Kyoto Japan

We have always wanted to stay in a ryokan, a traditional Japanese guesthouse where rooms are separated (or at least decorated) by paper screens, rooms are decorated tastefully, yet sparingly: floors covered with tatami mats, low dining tables at which you sit on cushions on the floor, mattresses that (after dinner) are laid directly on [Read more ...]

Kyoto Restaurants and Food Markets

Kyoto has a lot of wonderful restaurants and food markets. We tried our best to sample as much as we could. Our ryokan dining experiences were special experiences that we will talk about in our upcoming blog on Kyoto Ryokans.

Nishisaka, which is in the heart of Gion, specializes in Shaba Shabu, but offers a [Read more ...]

Exploring the Mysterious Gion District in Kyoto Japan

No trip to Kyoto Japan is complete without a visit to the Gion District. Originally developed in the Middle Ages for travelers and visitors to the Yasaka Shrine, the area evolved to become one of the most well-known geisha districts in all of Japan.

We wanted to learn more about this lovely and mysterious district. [Read more ...]

Kyoto: Temples and Castles and Gardens…Oh My!

The first and last time we were in Kyoto was special. Warm April days and evenings during Sakura (Cherry Blossom) celebrations, where Japanese humbly invite Westerners to join their celebratory picnics (with sushi and sake) as a favor to them–so they can practice their English. This, combined with the majesty of the temples, the serenity [Read more ...]

Nagoya Japan as Destination City: Toyota Bound

We have some wonderful memories of our last trip to Nagoya Japan. Although we didn’t specifically select it as a destination, it was a convenient two-night stop for a day trip into the so-called Japanese Alps where we went to the Takayama festival, where men carry dozens of ornately carved, gilded, 17th-century floats around the [Read more ...]

Nara Japan

Nara, which had its beginnings as the end of the Silk Road, became Japan’s first real capital in 710 AD. Since the capital moved to Kyoto prior to an era of conflict, it escaped many of the ravages of war, and was, therefore, able to preserve many of its temples and and shrines. While the [Read more ...]

Osaka Japan

Japan was the last country that we visited on our 4 month trip to Asia.  We flew into and out of Osaka since it was the closest major airport to Kyoto (our main destination), rather than for a particular desire to visit the city. But between our flight into and out of the airport, and [Read more ...]