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Ritz-Carlton's New Signature Cake

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Awhile back, pastry chefs at Ritz-Carlton hotels around the world were given a task: To create a cake to celebrate the hotel's founding and a dessert that distinctly represented the Ritz-Carlton brand. But there were a few requirements. Grand Marnier had to be an ingredient (Mr. Marnier La Postelle was a friend of Cesar Ritz and an investor in the original Ritz-Carlton hotel). Also, the cake must travel well.

The cake that, well, took the cake, is a moist Valrhona chocolate sponge cake layered with bitter caramel and orange ganache made from Grand Marnier by chef Yusuke Aoki from Toronto. We had the pleasure of tasting it over here at Travel + Leisure and it was gobbled up within minutes of opening the simple, yet elegant black cake box. The rich chocolate and orange cake is a crowd pleaser and would make great souvenir to bring back from your next stay at a Ritz-Carlton hotel.

Lyndsey Matthews is an assistant digital editor at Travel + Leisure

Photo Courtesy of Ritz-Carlton

"Global Kitchen" Cookbook by David Joachim Let’s You Travel the World One Dish at a Time

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“A culinary greatest hits of the world.” That’s how best-selling author David Joachim describes his 40th cookbook, Cooking Light Global Kitchen: The World's Most Delicious Food Made Easy (Oxmoor House; $29.95), which hit shelves this week. It’s a compendium of 150 recipes—including 120 pulled from Cooking Light’s 25-year-old archive developed by the likes of Lidia Bastianich and Rick Bayless.

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New York's Hottest Food Trends and Restaurant Tips

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From the latest food trends to favorite nights for dining out, we asked for tips from the experts. Here's what they had to say in a recent Twitter chat.

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The Return of St. Regis New York's King Cole Bar

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What part of the ongoing $90 million renovation of the St. Regis New York do we love the most? The expanded King Cole Bar & Salon, with tables spilling into the hall, eclectic bites from chef John DeLucie, and a new global Bloody Mary menu that pays tribute to the hotel’s signature cocktail.

Related Articles:
New York’s Best New Restaurants
America’s Best Wine Bars
T+L Insider Video: Where to Eat in NYC

Photo by David Alexander Arnold

Win a Two-Night Stay at South Africa's Le Quartier Francais

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If you’re the kind of traveling foodie who also likes to cook, then the name Le Creuset may get your attention. Le Quartier Francais, the luxury boutique hotel in the heart of Franschhoek Village in South Africa, has cooked up a contest with Le Creuset. Prizing includes a two-night stay in a Le Quartier suite, which is inclusive of breakfast, a surprise tasting menu with wine pairings, and a Le Creuset voucher. 

What do you have to do to win a stay at this Relais & Châteaux auberge? Tweet an inventive and clever slogan for an apron and include the hashtag, #MyApron. This would look like:

@lequaf @leCreusetSA – Have cake pan, will travel (i.e. your slogan) – #MyApron.

You have now till February 24th to enter, so get creative with your foodie terminology. Find out more details here

Gabrielle Blitz is the Associate Social Media Editor at Travel + Leisure. 

Photo credit: Anthony Friend

How to Open a Bottle of Champagne



Did you know that France's charming Champagne region—home of Moët & Chandon, the mother of all producers—is just a 45-minute train ride from Paris? It's one thing I learned this week when I met the lovely Elise Losfelt, the latest addition to Moët & Chandon's team of nine winemakers, who stopped by talk about the spring release of Moët’s Grand Vintage Brut 2006. The other thing I learned from Elise? How to open a bottle of bubbly without injuring your friends and loved ones. Watch her tutorial, and impress your significant other with your new skills while breaking out the bubbly this Valentine’s Day weekend.

Jennifer FlowersJennifer Flowers is the Travel News Editor at Travel + Leisure and part of the Trip Doctor news team. Find her on Twitter at @JennFlowers.

Is London the Next Foodie Mecca? Chef Jason Atherton of Berners Tavern Tells All

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Berners Tavern, under the direction of much-celebrated chef Jason Atherton, is the most glamorous (and hard-to-get) reservation in London these days. Atherton is known for his fresh approach to traditional British cuisine, while steadfastly using only the very best ingredients. Now he’s showing the world just how fantastic British food can be, opening nothing less than a mini-restaurant empire that extends from London to Dubai to Shanghai to Singapore to Hong Kong. 

Celebrity sightings abound at this, Atherton’s latest London opening. Housed in the Edition Hoteljust North of Oxford Street, it is jaw-droppingly beautiful, the walls crammed with artwork, framed by ornate plasterwork that seems to ooze off the walls. It’s a bit like sitting inside a Faberge egg.

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London's Street Food Heads Indoors at Hawker House Market

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Street food culture continues to reign supreme in London, but what's a girl to do to get her foodie fix during the long, wet winter months that plague The Big Smoke? Why, move the street festival indoors, of course! And that's exactly what the guys behind Street Feast have done by setting up camp in an old factory in East London. Modelled on the traditional hawker markets of Singapore, Hawker House (38-50 Pritchard’s Road, London) will provide music, booze and fantastic food every Friday and Saturday night through March 22nd. Traders hail from the who’s who roster of the city’s street food legends and will be feeding the crowds dishes like crispy wood oven pizza, pork belly steamed buns, fish tacos, octopus curry, and authentic BBQ. And it gets better! While nibbling on your taco you can boogie across the space to pick your poison at one of four bars. So why not get out of the rain and join in one of the great foodie parties London offers?

Entry to Hawker House is free before 7pm, and £3 at the door after 7pm. Find out more here.

Sally Hurst is a chef and food writer based in London. You can follow her on Twitter at @chefsallyjane

Photo courtesy of The Gaztronome

World’s Best Frozen Yogurt in New York City?

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As freezing rain pelts New York City streets, it feels strange to acknowledge, let alone celebrate, yet another made-up holiday: National Frozen Yogurt Day. But I can’t help myself, namely because I just tasted the BEST frozen yogurt of my life at Blue Olive Market, in Midtown Manhattan.

The welcoming, newly opened Greek marketplace is a mini Eataly-style space, with everything from build-your-own Greek salads to authentic prepared foods—toothy moussakas, savory bean dips drizzled with house-infused olive oils, and more. There’s also a wine bar with Mediterranean pours, a soup station featuring lemony avgolemono, and a pastry counter. But it was the siren call of the Greek Yogurt Bar that lured me within seconds, and that will keep me coming back.

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Beer and Chocolate: Valentine's Day's Delicious New Dream Couple

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Valentine’s Day is approaching fast and clinging hard to its cliché menu of red wine and milk chocolates served inside a heart-shaped box. There’s not much mystery—or much travel—involved to fulfill this V-Day ritual. And personally, I’m much more likely to swoon over a rich, frothy stout than a glass of pinot noir. Thankfully, Beer Dreamer is breaking the norm for hop-lovers like myself by pairing craft beers from around the globe with artisanal foods. In light of Valentine’s Day, their Beer and Chocolate Box ($75) will send your taste buds on a world tour. Two brews—a crisp, raspberry-infused lambic ale from Belgium and an imperial coffee stout from San Diego, CA—come paired with truffles from Charles Chocolates in San Francisco and a single-origin Ritual Chocolate Costa Rica Bar, respectively.

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