travel: hemispheres and horizons…

– The calendar has turned for the twelfth time on this blog, and once again, I find myself nearly immobilized by the daunting task of gathering the previous year in one post.  What has proven perennially to be one of my most challenging exercises, pausing to regroup, reflect, and record at year-end has turned out to be one of the most […]


Water Fools

The calendar has turned for the twelfth time on this blog, and once again, I find myself nearly immobilized by the daunting task of gathering the previous year in one post.  What has proven perennially to be one of my most challenging exercises, pausing to regroup, reflect, and record at year-end has turned out to be one of the most rewarding ones as well.  So, I continue it here.*

If 2015 was a fairytale, 2016 was an odyssey. Beyond its epic scale and scope, which words and pictures could not possibly capture or contain, as with any true odyssey, much of my journey was internal, intangible, and invisible.  2016 included much soul-searching, as I continued to evaluate my trajectory, my purpose, my destination.  Unpacking it here will take some time.

As in previous years, I write this post mostly for my own file.  So, if you’re not interested in reading about my year and only interested in seeing the list of restaurants that I visited in 2016 – a log that I include annually with this year-end round-up – skip to the bottom of this post.

It’s hard to believe, but I broke my previous travel record.  The equivalent of circling the globe six times, I touched down in a dozen countries across four continents in 2016.  In May and June alone, I flew over 60,000 miles, as I shuttled across hemispheres, visiting Asia and Australia on separate trips, and Europe twice.  And, with two years left on the clock, I exceeded my goal of visiting 40 countries before I turn 40.  Adding three new countries to my list last year, my tally now stands at 42.

It’s hard to imagine, but I also think I ate better than ever before – even as I went further off the grid, or probably because of it.  (More on that in my upcoming, year-end series of posts about food and restaurants).

And, as a writer and photographer, I continued to work with some of the very best and most talented people in their fields.  They are the ones who kept me moving, inspired, and excited for all the tomorrows that pulled me through 2016 at an unprecedented pace.  For them, I am especially grateful.

Indeed, photography has taken up an increasingly large slice of my pie in recent years.  And photography jobs took me all over the world in 2016.  They ranged from the editorial to the advertorial, the practical to the commercial.  I found my work more rewarding than ever, as I gained more freedom and latitude of expression in it.  An increasingly self-selecting crowd, I find that those who engage me for work are doing so because of my photojournalistic approach to photography.  As such, they give me very little to no instruction and allow me to inhabit the experience, be it an event or a setting.  And that’s been immensely gratifying.

In February, I photographed Gourmet Fest, a Michelin star-studded event hosted by chef Justin Cogley at l’Auberge Carmel in Carmel-By-The-Sea, California, in partnership with Relais & Châteaux.

In May, I did two photography projects with AirBNB, one in Memphis and another in Copenhagen.  In that month, I also photographed for my friend Solveig’s family company Regal Springs Tilapia on the island of Sumatra, Indonesia.

Paris saw me briefly in early August, when I swung through for a quick photoshoot for Atsushi Tanaka at his Restaurant A.T.

In September, I traveled with chef Joshua Skenes of Saison on a three-week hunting and fishing trip through California, Oregon, and Idaho.  All of it, including a week in Sonoma, was for his upcoming Skenes Ranch, a project which remains shrouded in much mystery to the public.

And in November, I returned to Palmetto Bluff to see what delicious mischief Courtney Hampson had conjured up on a mid-autumn night’s eve amidst the woods of South Carolina’s Lowcountry.  This was my sixth time attending Music To Your Mouth, and it was the sixth time I watched her cast a spell over a delicious series of feasts in a magical wood of live oaks swaying with moss.  It remains one of the highlights of my year.

Gavin Kaysen and Daniel Boulud

If passion is at the heart of good cooking, then generosity is the soul through which it should live.

Chef Gavin Kaysen puts this in practice through his Synergy Series, which took me to Minneapolis four times in 2016.  This quarterly event raised awareness and funds for local charities in the Twin Cities.  When the four chefs he invited – all of them friends from his time cooking in New York: Michael WhiteMichael AnthonyApril Bloomfield, and Daniel Boulud – heard that their dinners sold out in minutes, they all agreed to cook for two nights to double the winnings.  That, truly, is the spirit.  [Kaysen plans on continuing the Synergy Series in 2017, and has announced the four chefs who will cook at Spoon & Stable this year.]

At a time when many chefs are retreating from the big cities to the less-glamorous, less-expensive markets of our country, Kaysen does it the way I wish more chefs would: bringing his sphere of influence home to attract talent and attention to the shallower ends of our nation’s pool.  I am constantly searching for a way to do the same in my hometown of Kansas City.  It is one reason why I have continued to help organize a couple of charity dinners that not only brings dollars to those who need them, but moves the culinary spotlight to my region for a couple of nights each year.

For all you young cooks from second and third-tier cities, go out and see and taste the world.  That’s important, it’s imperative.  But consider taking the resources you acquire home, and enriching the soil from which you came.  A rising tide lifts all boats.

Christopher Haatuft, chef of Lysverket, continues to be an advocate and ambassador for his hometown of Bergen, Norway.  Despite an increasingly busy schedule from an expanding career in television, he remains devoted to his restaurant and those who work for him. Over the past three years, through a series of dinners and events that I’ve been lucky to help plan and document, he has celebrated and enlarged his and my circle of friends, and the friends of Lysverket.

As in 2015, my collaborative work with the Friends of Lysverket series took me to the rainy west coast of Norway five times in 2016.  Given how much time I spent with Haatuft and the team at Lysverket, and how regrettably little I wrote about it, I think it necessary to devote a bit of space to it here.

There was a British invasion in January with guest chefs James Knappett and his wife, sommelier Sandia Chang, of Kitchen Table and Bubbledogs in London; Russell Batemen of Colette’s’ in Watford; and Bradford McDonald (an American expat in London) of Lockhart. We foraged among tidal pools, and visited a farm high in the mountains, where we watched a lamb slaughtered in the snow.

In June, Lysverket hosted Atsushi Tanaka of Restaurant A.T. (Paris, France) and José Gabriel Cerdá Contreras of Restaurant Hoze (Gothenburg, Sweden).  We visited one of the last, remaining whaling ships – the Olavson – on the west coast of Norway, and learned about that dying industry (and tasted raw whale right off the butcher block).

And in August, on a rainy dock by the fjord, American chef Paco Roberts introduced Lysverket to a seafood boil, using a trove of fresh shellfish that our friend and diver Knut Magnus Persson had harvested: tubs mounded with crabs, scallops, clams, and mussels.

While these international partnerships promoted the kind of cross-cultural pollination that first inspired this project, I particularly enjoyed watching Haatuft slowly turn homeward for inspiration and motivation in 2016.  Friends of Lysverket nos. 8 and 12 were highlights for me because they celebrated the wealth of resources in Haatuft’s own community.

In March, Haatuft used Friends of Lysverket to gather the restaurant community of Bergen to consider it’s own future and fate on the heels of the city being named a “City of Gastronomy” by UNESCO (The United Nations Education, Science, and Cultural Organization is, among other things, tasked with designating and preserving our world’s “heritage”).  In addition to hosting a panel discussion among local food journalists, Haatuft opened the forum to the public, inviting the city into his kitchen to cook their version of Bergen’s iconic fish soup.  What we would call a chowder in America, this seafood soup is acidulated with a touch of vinegar.

At this eighth Friends of Lysverket, we also threw a barbecue block party at which about a dozen Bergen-area chefs lit up the grills and smokers and cooked for the city.  There was a spit-roasted suckling pig, sausages, and lamb heart tacos.  I brought some rich, thick Kansas City barbecue sauce from my home town to share.


In December, with the Christmas season in full swing, Haatuft and his staff stopped to share their own families’ yuletide recipes with each other.  For the twelfth Friends of Lysverket, they gathered to cook one, big Christmas family meal.

Irmelin Meidal and her mother Marit made krumkake (wafer-thin waffles rolled into a cone shape) and rossettbakkels (snowflake-shaped fritters dusted with powdered sugar).  Julia Torsvik and her mother made tørre vafler – a thicker, dry, crisp waffle.  August Cernic made monka batter-based pastry akin to a donut hole (or Danish æbleskiver, or the Japanese takoyaki). It, too, was dusted with powdered sugar.  Cernic also made his grandmother’s hertuginnekake (“duchess cake”), rich with nuts.

But there were members of the Lysverket family from all over the world. And they shared their recipes too. Khang Doan’s family is from Vietnam, and he made his mother’s spring rolls.  Anna Kim Thorsden, from Denmark, made sur-rib – pork rib meat set in soured aspic, a traditional Christmas dish from her home in Jutland.  Agurtzane Galarza, who is Basque, made her mother’s marzipan recipe and shaped the mound of sugared almond into a crocodile, just the way her mother does.  And Haatuft’s mother, Debbie, originally from my neighboring state of Tennessee, made good-old, American no-bake cookies, and a soft pinwheel made from peanut butter, potatoes, and lots of sugar.

Haatuft and some of his cooks made the traditional staples of Norwegian Christmases: lutefisk – lye-cured cod, which has to be soaked before it’s steamed; mashed rutabaga (the Norwegians call it kohlrabi); fat back with crackling (akin to the Danish flæskesteg); and pinnekjøtt – salted and dried (and sometimes smoked) mutton ribs, which also have to be soaked before its boiled.

This Christmas family meal embodied the very best of what Haatuft wants out of The Friends of Lysverket: a cross-cultural dialogue and an appreciation of the other; community.

The colors of Singapore

All of this travel for work made it easy to explore afield.

My trip to Indonesia made Singapore a sensible side-trip.  With my extra miles, I flew my father out for his seventy-fifth birthday, and in part, so he could see an old friend he hadn’t seen in decades.  It was my first time on this island nation.  And it was delicious.

We indulged in the confluence of Chinese, Malay, and Indian cooking unique to Singapore.  We had sweet and spicy chili crab; white and silky chicken rice; a restoring broth of pork ribs; and a terrific introduction to Peranakan culture and cooking at Malcolm Lee’s restaurant Candlenut (since awarded a Michelin star in Singapore’s inaugural guide).

Four days was not enough.

And two weeks was definitely not enough for Australia.

Fresh off a six-month stint with Médecins sans Frontières in Papua New Guinea, my friend Dr. Tomostyle met me down under, together with our friend Jonathan Alphandery.  The last time the three of us saw each other was in Tokyo, where Dr. Tomostyle was living in 2014.  Two years later, our reunion took us to his home turf.

Originally from Paris, Jonathan immigrated to Australia a few years ago.  He now owns and operates the Ladurée franchise for the country, and is very active in the food community.  We could not have had a better host or guide for stay.

In Melbourne, we had dumplings in Chinatown (with a mousse-like mackerel filling), and croissants in Fitzroy.  There were tulips to be plucked from the garden at Attica, and further afield, a quiet, countryside inn at Brae (my first time driving on the left!).

Surry Hills was our base in Sydney.  With a dozen very good coffee shops at our doorstep, all of them serving very good food, we had little reason to leave our bohemian enclave (I started most of my mornings at either Reuben Hills or Single Origin Roasters, all within a stone’s throw of our apartment).

But we’re glad we did.

Thanks to Jonathan, we found good food all over the city.  There was a terrific orange duck at Billy Kwong in Potts Point, and a buttery nduja, ham and grilled cheese sandwich at Bar Brosé in Darlinghurst.

Our three-hour lunch at Sixpenny in the Stanmore neighborhood was a highlight, as was dinner at Bennelong in the iconic Sydney Opera House.  There were velvety sheets of maltagliati with shiitake, scallions, and an alluring “wok hay” at ACME in Rushcutters Bay, and a giant mud crab for the smashing at Ester in Chippendale.

In between, Dr. Tomostyle and I toured the city.  We walked the Sydney Harbor Bridge, and wound our way around the coves from Bronte to Bondi Beach.  And everywhere we went, coffee, coffee, coffee.

Tomo, Jonathan – can we do it again?

I was all over Europe.

In January, the Haatufts and I visited London: tea at The Wolseley, soufflé at the Ritz, Lord Elgin’s marbles, and an afternoon at Westminster.

In March, we went to Stockholm.

With the U.S. Dollar so strong, especially against the pound sterling in the wake of Brexit, London called again, and I answered in August.  I found a a delicious revival of imperial India at Gymkhana.  I paid my respects to the Georgians and the great Tudor king at Windsor.  And, for the fourth time, I hopped on a train bound for Faversham station to have lunch at an old pub on the windswept coast of of Whistable: I’m happy to report, The Sportsman is as good as ever.

I had two nights in Oslo to see a couple of friends.  It was a brief stopover on the way to Bergen.

And in October, a friend and I took a quick getaway to the Basque coast of Spain to eat, eat, and eat.  We had jamón at midnight, with lots of sherry. We had fat porcini sautéed with foie gras. And we reveled over a five-hour lunch, kissed with a hint of smoke, high in the Basque mountains.  It was wonderful.  All of it.

I went to Denmark six times in 2016.  I was mostly in Copenhagen.  But I also wandered afield and explored some of the country’s quiet corners.

In Roskilde I spent half a day in the Domkirke, Denmark’s ancient cathedral and crypt.  Here, you will find the splendor of Danish royalty preserved under magnificent canopiesjaw-dropping chapels lined with the stunning sarcophagi of kings and queens, princes and princesses.  I followed a group of British tourists into the otherwise empty church, only to discover that they were a society of organists there to see and play the famous Herman Raphaelis instrument dating to 1554.  They invited me up to the organ loft, where they lined up to play for a lone, lucky American who happened to be at the right place at the right time.  It was incredible.

On my last trip to Denmark, in December, I spent Christmas with my friend Mark Lundgaard Nielsen’s family in Jutland.

Tradition is alive and well in the Nielsen household, where the nisse (Danish Christmas elves) are ever watchful, and snaps flows like water.

Our three-day yuletide celebration started on the 24th, with a traditional Christmas eve lunch of rice porridge (ris en grød is taken with a little cinnamon sugar and a pat of butter), after which we walked a few blocks to the town chapel for Christmas eve service.

The Nielsen’s had been kind enough to stage a Christmas eve dinner for me in September of 2015.  At the time, none of us anticipated that I’d be back for the real deal.  There was flæskesteg (fat back with a thick rind of crackling), roasted duck, boiled potatoes with brown gravy, caramelized potatoes, cabbage, and, of course, lots and lots of risalamande.  Originally a way to use up leftover rice porridge from lunch, risalamande has now become synonymous with Danish Christmas.  To the ris en grød is added sugar, vanilla and chopped blanched almonds.  All of it chilled and then mounted with whipped cream, and one whole, blanched almond is folded in (whoever finds it wins a prize).  It is served cold with warm cherry sauce.  After dinner, we ringed the Christmas tree – lit with candles – and sang carols (traditionally, I think there are seven), after which we exchanged gifts.

On Christmas morning, I took a run through the woods at Gråsten Slot – the queen’s summer palace.  While the queen is away, the royal lands are opened as public parkland.  I was shocked to be able to walk up to the palace and literally touch it.  There were no guards.  But there was no graffiti either.  The grounds were immaculate.  America, this is why Danish people can have nice things, and we can’t.

Julfrokost – Christmas lunch – is the centerpiece of the day.  We started at two o’clock in the afternoon, and finished near midnight.  In between, there were five courses, each involving multiple – sometimes a dozen – dishes.  And all of it was homemade by Mark and his father. There were two types of pickled herring, two versions of pan-fried herring, breaded fish, smoked eel, smoked salmon, and a mound of Danish shrimp, all of it served with half a dozen condiments and bread (of course).  That was just the first course.

Then came the cold cuts: eight types of charcuterie, including pâté, head cheese, sur-rib, and wild game saucisson.  There was leverpostej – hot liver pâté served with mushrooms and bacon (out of everything served, this was my favorite), and blood sausage, taken with a drizzle of maple syrup and a dash of cinnamon.  And bread (of course).

We moved onto hot meats in the third course: another round of flæskesteg, two types of sausages, and ham, served with pickled red cabbage, creamed white cabbage, and creamed kale.  And bread (of course).

There about a dozen cheeses, including a baked round of creamy Vacherin.  And, there was bread (of course).

And finally, risalamande.

Between each course, the entire table was cleared and reset.  And each night, all of the tapers – dozens of them around the house – were removed and refreshed, and the dinner table cleared and reset one last time, ready for the next day.

We drove over the border to Germany on the morning of the 26th for a walk through the border town of Flensburg.  Unfortunately, the Christmas market stalls were closed.  But Mark found his favorite pita joint – Papa Imbiss – and insisted that we share a gyro.  Down the street, we stopped into Hansens Brauerei, a brewery dating to 1781, for a mug of beer and a plate of curry wurst.

And if you can believe it, we returned to Mark’s parents’ home to repeat julfrokost.  All five courses.  From top to bottom.  All of it.

Nobody does Christmas like the Nielsens.  Nobody.

Tusind tak, min familie!  (You can see all the photos from my Danish Christmas with the Nielsen’s here.)

World Trade Center

The density of my work travel and international travel curtailed my domestic travel in 2016.

I was in Chicago twice – once for the James Beard Awards, and again much later in the year to eat at a couple of newly minted Michelin stars.  (It’s about time, John and Karen Shields!)

My friends Catherine and Ralph got hitched.  So, Beverly Hills for a long weekend.  (There really are worse ways of spending time in Los Angeles…)

In June, I was in Seattle, briefly, to see my goddaughter, Adalena. Her mother, my friend Solveig, threw a part for all of us godparents. It was lovely.  I need to spend more time in that upper-left corner of our country.

And in October, I popped into New York – my first visit to the city in a year, and my only trip there in 2016 – to speak at the New York Wine & Food Festival (I was on a panel about food and travel with some terrific folks, well-seasoned in both arenas).  I did quite a bit of eating while in New York, but sadly, very little was worth mentioning here.

Friends of James Beard Foundation 2016

Here at home, in Kansas City, we said farewell to a couple of dear friends.

After 42 years, The American Restaurant – designed by Warren Plattner, with an opening menu by James Beard – closed to the public.  Over my lifetime, I have eaten at this restaurant scores of times, and have, for nearly a decade, worked with the chef in hosting a number of wonderful charity dinners that have brought some of America’s brightest and best to Kansas City. I have been reassured, however, that this iconic space – which really should be on an historic registry – still has life, and will continue under different terms.  The greetings card giant Hallmark, which opened and owns the restaurant, has reached out to a number of people in our community, including me, to help form its future.

And on Christmas day, I received the sad news that Jennifer Maloney, chef of Café Sebastian at the Kemper Museum of Contemporary Art, left us.  Years ago, when I was writing as a restaurant critic for a local publication – a tenure that some Kansas City chefs now affectionately refer to as “the reign of terror;” honesty was my strong suit – Jennifer didn’t take my review of her restaurant so well.  In her rather curt and straightforward way, she voiced her objections to me.  Loudly.

Of course, years later, she and I had a good laugh about it.  And under that boisterous, sometimes gruff exterior, I discovered a tremendously humble and generous heart.  She was as funny as she was sincere, always quick to self-deprecate and the first to praise others.  She became one of my biggest cheerleaders as I walked off of the firm and into the unknown, always encouraging me to pursue my passion.  Her warm smile and tight hugs always allayed any self-doubts I had, even if momentarily.  I’m sorry I never told her that.  Rest in peace, Jennifer.  You will be missed.


What’s on the horizon?

Every year, I fear peering over the ledge, because I have a hard time believing that it could possibly get any better.  And yet, for the past six years, it has – breathtakingly so.  And for all of it, I look up and give thanks.  I know I have earned very little of it, and deserve even less.

Before 2016 ended, 2017 had already started to take form.  I have a number of commitments on the books, including another Gourmet Fest, the Synergy Series, and the Friends of Lysverket.  Although I missed my time in Napa this past December, many of you will be happy to know that The Twelve Days of Christmas will be remounted this year.  As in the past, I’ll be reporting from Kostow’s kitchen then.

The gaps always seem to fill themselves in.  And every year I marvel at that, and I have enjoyed the adventure in it.  But in the past year, I’ve been growing increasingly dissatisfied with just letting my year unfold without much direction.  In 2017, I hope to move more purposefully through the calendar.

I was published in the July, 2016 issue of Food & Wine Magazine – my trip with my parents to Taiwan in 2015 appeared as an article that I wrote and photographed about eating through the night markets of Taipei.  I’d like to write more in 2017.  In fact, I’d like to write a book.  It’s been a lifelong goal, and I feel the time is ripe.

I want to run a marathon.   It too, has been a lifelong goal, which was recently delayed due to knee surgery.

And, there are specific places in the world I’d like to see: Russia (St. Petersburg), India, Peru, Thailand, and Alaska (the only U.S. state I have not visited) are top on my list.  Now that I’ve tackled 40 before 40, I’m working towards 50 before 50.

The scary thing is, now that I’ve broadcasted this to the public, I might actually have to do it.  I hope I get to tell you about some, if not all of these adventures in the coming year.

Surfer tracks.

For my own record, but also to add context to my upcoming posts – my favorite dishes, desserts, and restaurant meals of 2016 – I include here a list of every restaurant I visited in 2016.  They are listed alphabetically by the month in which I visited them.


A.C. Perchs Thehandel (Copenhagen, Denmark)
Alléhjørnet Thai (Bergen, Norway)
Atelier September (Copenhagen, Denmark) (once, twice)
Barrafina (London, The United Kingdom)
Bare Vestland (Bergen, Norway)
Barnyard (London, The United Kingdom)
Bistro Bohême (Copenhagen, Denmark)
Bistro Pastis (Copenhagen, Denmark)
Bubbledogs (London, The United Kingdom)
Café Don Pippo (Bergen, Norway) (once, twice)
Dinner by Heston Blumenthal (London, The United Kingdom)
District Tonkin (Copenhagen, Denmark) (one, twice)
El Dorado (Copenhagen, Denmark)
Kadeau (Copenhagen, Denmark)
Kong Hans Kælder (Copenhagen, Denmark)
Lady Bird Diner (Lawrence, Kansas)
Lyle’s (London, The United Kingdom)
Lysverket (Bergen, Norway) (once, twice)
Mirabelle (Copenhagen, Denmark)
Radio (Copenhagen, Denmark)
Rivoli at The Ritz (London, The United Kingdom)
Rye (Leawood, Kansas) (once, twice)
Smakverket (Bergen, Norway)
Ten Bells (London, The United Kingdom)
Wolesely, The (London, The United Kingdom)


American Restaurant, The (Kansas City, Missouri)
Bella Napoli (Kansas City, Missouri)
Bluestem (Kansas City, Missouri)
Columbus Park Ramen (Kansas City, Missouri)
El Tonayenses at 14th Street (San Francisco, California)
Kin Khao (San Francisco, California)
Los Gatos Café (Los Gatos, California)
Manresa (Los Gatos, California)
North (Leawood, Kansas)
Tacos Cala (San Francisco, California)


108 at Noma (Copenhagen, Denmark)
Anarki (Copenhagen, Denmark)
Atelier September (Copenhagen, Denmark) (5x)
Bæst (Copenhagen, Denmark)
Bakfickan (Stockholm, Sweden)
Bluestem (Kansas City, Missouri)
Café Don Pippo (Bergen, Norway)
Columbus Park Ramen (Kansas City, Missouri)
Cowgirl Creamery (San Francisco, California)
District Tonkin (Copenhagen, Denmark)
Frankie Farelanes (Lee’s Summit, Missouri)
Ipsen & Co. (Copenhagen, Denmark)
Krökstrom (Kansas City, Missouri)
Lumskebugten (Copenhagen, Denmark)
Kong Hans Kælder (Copenhagen, Denmark)
Lysverket (Bergen, Norway) (once, twice)
Matsalen (Stockholm, Sweden)
Mielcke & Hurtigkarl (Copenhagen, Denmark)
Otto (Copenhagen, Denmark)
Rye (Leawood, Kansas)
Saison (San Francisco, California)
Shawarma Grill House (Copenhagen, Denmark)
Snickerbacken 7 (Stockholm, Sweden) (once, twice)
le Sommelier (Copenhagen, Denmark)
Speceriet (Stockholm, Sweden)
Zuni Café (San Francisco, California)


American Restaurant, The (Kansas City, Missouri)
Columbus Park Ramen (Kansas City, Missouri)
Corner Table (Minneapolis, Minnesota)
Fika (Minneapolis, Minnesota)
Freddy’s Pizzeria (Cicero, Illinois)
Gjusta (Venice, California)
Hi-Lo Diner (Minneapolis, Minnesota)
Night + Market Song (Los Angeles, California)
Rye (Leawood, Kansas)
Spago (Beverly Hills, California)
St. Genevieve (Minneapolis, Minnesota)
Staymaker at the Journeyman (Three Oaks, Michigan)
Timothy’s Restaurant (Union Pier, Michigan)
Wolfgang Puck at the Hotel Bel-Air (Bel-Air, California)


Andrew Michael Italian Kitchen (Memphis, Tennessee)
Arcade (Memphis, Tennessee)
Atelier September (Copenhagen, Denmark) (4x)
Bæst (Copenhagen, Denmark)
Bar DKDC (Memphis, Tennessee)
Beatrix (Chicago, Illinois)
Beauty Shop (Memphis, Tennessee)
Bistro Bohême (Copenhagen, Denmark)
Boon Tong Kee (Singapore)
Candlenut (Singapore)
Carolina (Lake Toba, Indonesia)
Central BBQ (Memphis, Tennessee)
Columbus Park Ramen (Kansas City, Missouri)
Din Tai Fung (Raffles City; Singapore)
Dove’s Luncheonette (Chicago, Illinois)
Filling Station, The (Lee’s Summit, Missouri)
Founder’s Bak Kuh Teh (Singapore)
Gus’s World Famous Hot Chicken (Memphis, Tennessee)
Henne Kirkeby Kro (Henne Kirkeby, Denmark)
Hija de Sanchez (Copenhagen, Denmark)
Hog & Hominy (Memphis, Tennessee)
Jumbo Seafood (East Coast; Singapore)
Kong Hans Kælder (Copenhagen, Denmark)
Kul (Copenhagen, Denmark)
Las Tortugas (Germantown, Tennessee)
Marchal (Copenhagen, Denmark)
Mirabelle (Copenhagen, Denmark)
Mellben Seafood (Tao Payoh; Singapore)
Palægade (Copehagen, Denmark)
Porcellino’s Craft Butcher (Memphis, Tennessee)
Prime (Medan, Indonesia) (once, twice, thrice)
Publican (Chicago, Illinois)
Second Line, The (Memphis, Tennessee)
Sortebro Kro (Odense, Denmark)
Vedstranden 10 (Copenhagen, Denmark)
Yusho (Charter Oak pop-up) (Chicago, Illinois)


ACME (Sydney, Australia)
Attica (Melbourne, Australia)
Automata (Sydney, Australia) (once, twice)
Bachelor Farmer, The (Minneapolis, Minnesota)
Bachelor Farmer Café, The (Minneapolis, Minnesota)
Bar Brosé (Sydney, Australia)
Bar Sajor (Seattle, Washington)
Belle’s Hot Chicken (Melbourne, Australia)
Bennelong (Sydney, Australia)
Billy Kwong (Sydney, Australia)
Bourke Street Bakery (Sydney, Australia)
Bræ (Birregura, Australia)
Cornersmith (Sydney, Australia)
Cumulus Inc. (Melbourne, Australia)
Devon on Danks (Sydney, Australia)
Eastside (Minneapolis, Minnesota)
Edition (Sydney, Australia)
Ester (Sydney, Australia)
London Plane, The (Seattle, Washington) (once, twice)
Lune Croissanterie (Melbourne, Australia)
Lysverket (Bergen, Norway)
Marion Wine Bar (Melbourne, Australia)
Mr. Wong (Sydney, Australia)
Porch & Parlour (Bondi Beach, Australia)
Reuben Hills (Sydney, Australia)  (once, twice, thrice)
Rockpool Bar & Grill (Sydney, Australia)
Salumi (Seattle, Washington)
Shandong Mama (Melbourne, Australia)
Single Origin Roasters (Sydney, Australia)
Sixpenny (Sydney, Australia)
Spice Temple (Sydney, Australia)
Surly Beer Hall (Minneapolis, Minnesota)


1900 Barker (Lawrence, Kansas)
American Restaurant, The (Kansas City, Missouri)
Bachelor Farmer, The (Minneapolis, Minnesota)
Bachelor Farmer Café, The (Minneapolis, Minnesota)
Bluestem (Kansas City, Missouri)
ça va (Kansas City, Missouri)
Hank Charcuterie (Lawrence, Kansas)
Heyday (Minneapolis, Minnesota)
Jarocho Pescados y Mariscos (Kansas City, Kansas)
Port Fonda (Kansas City, Missouri)
Spoon & Stable (Minneapolis, Minnesota)
Sundry, The (Kansas City, Missouri)


1900 Barker (Lawrence, Kansas)
Alléhjørnet Thai (Bergen, Norway)
Atelier September (Copenhagen, Denmark) (once, twice)
Aubergine (Carmel-By-The-Sea, California)
Bæst (Copenhagen, Denmark)
Bench, The (Pebble Beach, California)
la Bicyclette (Carmel-By-The-Sea, California)
Brown & Loe (Kansas City, Missouri)
Boot Café (Paris, France) (once, twice)
Buvette (Paris, France)
Café Don Pippo (Bergen, Norway)
ça va (Kansas City, Missouri)
le Cinq (Paris, France)
Clown Bar (Paris, France)
le Comptoir du Relais (Paris, France)
Fragments (Paris, France)
Fuglen (Oslo, Norway)
Golden Hind, The (London, The United Kingdom)
la Glace (Copenhagen, Denmark)
Gymkhana (London, The United Kingdom)
Havfruen (Copenhagen, Denmark)
Hija de Sanchez (Copenhagen, Denmark)
Kong Hans Kælder (Copenhagen, Denmark)
Little Napoli (Carmel-By-The-Sea, California)
Luca (Carmel-By-The-Sea, California)
Lumskebugten (Copenhagen, Denmark)
Lysverket (Bergen, Norway)
Marchal (Copenhagen, Denmark)
Miznon (Paris, France)
Oklava (London, The United Kingdom)
Restaurant A.T. (Paris France)
Sentralen (Oslo, Norway)
Sportsman, The (Seasalter, The United Kingdom)
St. John Bread & Wine (London, The United Kingdom) (once, twice)
Vaaghals (Oslo, Norway)
Vedstranden 10 (Copenhagen, Denmark)
Wolseley, The (London, The United Kingdom)
Yank Sing (San Francisco, California)


101 (Reno, Nevada)
20th Century Café (San Francisco, California)
511 Main Fountain & Pizzeria (Ashton, Idaho)
Anthony’s Mediterranean (Redding, California)
Californios (San Francisco, California)
Cotogna (San Francisco, California)
El Molino Central (Boyes Hot Springs, California)
Fremont Diner (Sonoma, California)
Girl and the Fig (Sonoma, California)
Hank Charcuterie (Lawrence, Kansas)
Joe’s Kansas City (Kansas City, Kansas)
Miminashi (Napa, California)
Morimoto (Napa, California)
Ole’s (Sugar City, Idaho)
Pho Lee Hoa Phat (Vacaville, California)
Port Fonda (Kansas City, Missouri)
Rye (Leawood, Kansas)
Saison (San Francisco, California)
Tay Ho (Sacramento, California)
Zuni Café (San Francisco, California)


108 (Copenhagen, Denmark)
108 Corner Café (Copenhagen, Denmark) (once, twice, thrice)
American Restaurant (Kansas City, Missouri) (once, twice)
Asador Etxebarri (Axtondo, Spain)
Atelier September (Copenhagen, Denmark) (once, twice)
Bachelor Farmer, The (Minneapolis, Minnesota)
Columbus Park Ramen (Kansas City, Missouri)
Gammel Mønt (Copenhagen, Denmark)
Ganbara (San Sebastián, Spain) (once, twice, thrice)
Gandarias (San Sébastian, Spain)
Gunter Seeger (New York, New York)
Happy Gillis Café & Hangout (Kansas City, Missouri)
Ibai (San Sébastian, Spain)
Jean-Georges (New York, New York)
Joe’s Kansas City (Kansas City, Kansas)
Kong Hans Kælder (Copenhagen, Denmark) (once, twice)
Leeway Franks (Lawrence, Kansas)
Marchal (Copenhagen, Denmark)
Méson Bidea Berri (San Sébastian, Spain)
Modern, The (New York, New York)
Pho Hanoi (Copenhagen, Denmark)
Rufino Osteria (Copenhagen, Denmark)
Terrebone (Lawrence, Kansas)
Untitled at the Whitney (New York, New York)


Bluestem (Kansas City, Missouri)
Eddie V’s (Kansas City, Missouri)
Jessamine’s at the Montage Palmetto Bluff (Palmetto Bluff, South Carolina)
Stock Hill (Kansas City, Missouri)


108 Café (Copenhagen, Denmark)
3 Arts Club Café (Chicago, Illinois) (once, twice, thrice)
Alléhjørnet Thai (Bergen, Norway)
Alma (Minneapolis, Minnesota)
American Restaurant, The (Kansas City, Missouri)
Antler Room (Kansas City, Missouri)
Au Cheval (Chicago, Illinois)
Bachelor Farmer Café, The (Minneapolis, Minnesota) (once, twice, thrice)
Bar La Grassa (Minneapolis, Minnesota)
Bistro Bohème (Copenhagen, Denmark)
Café Alma (Minneapolis, Minnesota)
Café Don Pippo (Bergen, Norway)
Cindy’s (Chicago, Illinois)
d’Angleterre Hôtel (Copenhagen, Denmark) (once, twice)
Elske (Chicago, Illinois)
Fat Rice (Chicago, Illinois)
Hansens Brauerei (Flensburg, Germany)
Lou Lou (Copenhagen, Denmark)
Loyalist (Chicago, Illinois)
Lysverket (Bergen, Norway) (once, twice)
Manny’s Cafeteria and Delicatessen (Chicago, Illinois)
Marchal (Copenhagen, Denmark)
Mirabelle (Copenhagen, Denmark)
North (Leawood, Kansas)
Oriole (Chicago, Illinois)
Papa’s Imbiss (Flensburg, Germany)
Rudo (Copenhagen, Denmark) (once, twice)
Smyth (Chicago, Illinois)
Spoon & Stable (Minneapolis, Minnesota)
Stock Hill (Kansas City, Missouri)
Upton 43 (Minneapolis, Minnesota)


* Here are my year-end posts for 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014, and 2015.

Photos: “Water Fools,” a water circus at the Festspillene i Bergen, Bergen, Norway; a lion dances in Chinatown, San Francisco, California; the Cirkelbroen in Copenhagen, Denmark; McWay Falls at the Julia Pfeiffer Burns State Park along Highway 1 in California; Place de la Concorde, Paris France; Gavin Kaysen and Daniel Boulud at Spoon & Stable in Minneapolis, Minnesota; a lamb being slaughtered in the snow at Tveite Gård in Voss, Norway; Knut Magnus Persson boils crabs on his dock in Sotra, Norway; a spit-roasted suckling pig at the Friends of Lysverket No. 8 at Lysverket, Norway; the Norwegian flag rips in the wind atop the Ulriken, over looking Bergen, Norway; rossettbakkels frying in oil; lanterns strung across the colorful streets of Chinatown, Singapore; Marion Wine Bar in Melbourne, Australia; mackerel dumplings at Shandong Mama in Chinatown, Melbourne, Australia; breakfast at Reuben Hills in Sydney, Australia; the colonialist-era interior of Mr. Wong in Sydney, Australia; Lord Elgin’s Greek marbles at the British Museum in London, The United Kingdom; prawns at Asador Etxebarri in Axtondo, Spain; Rosenborg Slot in Copenhagen, Denmark; a coffee kiosk at Kongens Nytorv in Copenhagen, Denmark; the Nielsen’s tannenbaum, lit with candles, Egernsund, Denmark; risalamande at the Nielsens’; fish course at julefrokost at the Nielsens’; cheeses at julefrokost at the Nielsens’; the “Oculus” at the World Trade Center in New York, New York; the cast of the 2016 Friends of James Beard Foundation dinner at The American Restaurant in Kansas City, Missouri; the night view from atop the Norwegian Operahouse in Oslo, Norway; Bronte Beach, New South Wales, Australia; and a painter resurfaces the pool at Icebergs as the waves break over the wall, Bondi Beach, New South Wales, Australia.

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3 replies on “travel: hemispheres and horizons…”

Keep up the good work. You are truly an inspiration!

P.S. There’s loads more to eat in Singapore other than the usual suspects you tried.