San Francisco May 2014 Part 2

Posted on Thursday, 21 August 2014

I was just in Tokyo about 2 days before this trip, so you’d think that going Japantown would only be redundant. But as expected, my family couldn’t go to San Francisco and not make it the first stop in our itinerary. The level of our love for Japan is off the roof, lol.

We simply took a bus to Japantown from our hotel in Union Square. I was leaning on my mom’s shoulder, about to doze off (the jetlag was starting to kick in), when one of my readers recognized me! It was quite surreal because a) I was pretty much half-asleep, and b) I never expect anyone to recognize me, let alone in a foreign country. (Hi Denise! If you’re reading this, thank you for the quick chat! <3)

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This is one of the 5 Peace Pagodas in North America. The rest are in Canada, Mexico, Massachusetts and New York. 

It was presented to San Francisco by the people of Osaka, way back when they established a “sister city” relationship in the 50s/60s.

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There are some areas in Japantown that are definitely worth checking out, especially if you’ve never been to Japan! There’s a Kinokuniya Book Store where you can buy the latest Japanese magazines, artbooks, etc. Just outside the bookstore are places that sell CD/DVDs of Japanese movies and dramas.

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Great place to find figurines as well! 

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Heaven for otakus.

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Random (not sad) Keanu. I never got to watch 47 Ronin because of mixed (mostly bad) reviews, but I’ll probably get to it soon. Will watch for Shibasaki Ko and Kikuchi Rinko, and maybe Akanashi? I’ve been so out of the KAT-TUN loop ever since he left the group, but yay for the prettiness of AkaKuro couple.

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Purikura in the US - they exist! A lot of the machines are old and broken, and they’re all overpriced at $10 (It will only take you 400yen or $4 in Japan), but I guess they’re still better than nothing.

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Sunny weather bird feeding.

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Neko, inu, tsuru. 

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Sanko, for all your cooking supplies. Japantown is quite a small place, so it only took us about 2 hours to go around and check all the interesting places out.

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We went back to the Union Square area again since everyone was starting to feel groggy from jet lag. Gotta save our energy for the city tour the next morning!

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Westin Hotel along Powell St. on the left. First floor had Goyard and other luxury brands.

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The glorious view from one of the restaurants in Macy’s along Geary St.

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The Dewey Monument with the Goddess of Victory. It was named after Spanish-American war hero George Dewey. Sound familiar? I’m pretty sure we’ve all read about him in our history books back in high school. Back in the 19th century, his fleet won over the Spanish forces in Manila Bay.

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When in America, stuff yourself with the most delicious burgers and fries.

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Post St., with Designer Shoe Warehouse on the left. I never leave the US without any impulse shoe purchase, huhu. I’ll probably end up broke if I ever I get a chance to live in the US. 

Since the shipping process is so easy over there, I’ll probably just lock myself in my room ala Shintaro in Mekakucity Actors/Kagerou Project and have all my food and toiletries shipped to me, lol. 

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Ellis St.

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Someone please bring Urban Outfitters to Manila please!

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Because I matched the T-Mobile pink in the background. Hello to the iconic San Francisco cable car behind me. Didn’t get to ride one this time, but I remember trying it out during my first visit in San Francisco about 10 years ago.

Decided to wear a simple Korean-inspired outfit with pink color accent because SNSD! Tiffany and Jessica were both born in San Francisco. <3

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Jack Skellington socks and Doc Martens. Tracy, I found your doppelganger.

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I’m blue da ba dee da ba die~

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Someone bring American Apparel to Manila please!

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Japantown and Chinatown in one day! Someone obviously loves Asia too much.

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The oldest Chinatown in North America is in San Francisco, and it also houses the biggest Chinese community outside Asia. Whoa!

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My brother Juju and his pretty Herschel backpack with teal accents. Did I make a mistake when I didn’t include this in my first San Francisco post a.k.a. the ultimate hipster post?

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Obligatory cute couple photo. 

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Stay tuned for my next post! My San Francisco adventure isn’t finished yet. 

In the meantime, I hope everyone’s having a good holiday! So many people flew out of the country today (including my boyfriend who, as of this writing, is on a plane to Kuala Lumpur), and I’m definitely green with envy! I’m itching to travel again, and my Osaka trip in September somehow seems so far away.

TWG Tea: Red Lantern Tea Mooncake Collection

Posted on Wednesday, 20 August 2014

TWG Tea, the world’s finest tea brand, launches the Red Lantern Tea Mooncake Collection of eight intricately crafted tea-infused snowskin and traditional mooncakes!

My brother and I paid a visit to the TWG Tea in Shang recently to get a box of mooncakes for ourselves and the family. 

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I’m so happy that TWG Tea finally opened here in Manila. I used to always go to the ones in Ion Orchard and Marina Bay Sands whenever I went to Singapore. Now it has become so much easier to get my afternoon tea and macaron fix.

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For the love of cherry blossom-themed anything. These made me miss Japan so much!

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One of my favorite macaron flavors from TWG! You can’t go wrong with salted caramel.

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My sweet tooth was very much satisfied. <3

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Talk about food coma. After ordering a bunch of macarons, my brother and I couldn’t help but try the mooncakes out as well. 

The first mooncake that we tried was Moonlight. It had such an interesting texture. I thought the addition of sesame seeds is genius… or maybe I’m just biased because I love sesame (black sesame, sesame oil, sesame seeds, etc.).

Some of the suggested tea pairings for this mooncake included Midsummer Night Tea, Number 12 Tea, Chocolate Tea, London Breakfast Tea, 1837 Black Tea, Vanilla Bourbon Tea, Napoleon Tea (one of my faves - I actually ordered it on ice as you can see in the photo), Earl Grey Gentleman, and Maharajah Darjeeling.

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Salted caramel and Napoleon Tea are my TWG Tea weaknesses, so the Aurora mooncake was an absolute winner for me! I swear I could eat this everyday. I personally prefer the texture of snowskin mooncakes since they remind me so much of my favorite desserts, but the shelf life of traditional ones are much longer.

Suggested tea pairings include The Bellini Tea, Blue Lotus Tea, Weekend in Moscow Tea, Silver Moon Tea (in photo above), Creme Caramel (also one of my personal faves which I order on ice), English Breakfast Tea, New York Breakfast Tea, Brother’s Club Tea and Singapore Breakfast Tea.

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TWG Tea mooncakes are entirely handmade fresh daily by their master pâtissiers, using only the purest, noble ingredients and accented with the myriad of flavors and aromas of their signature teas.

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TWG Tea offers a set of four Traditional Mooncakes that retails at P2,088, while a set of four Snowskin Mooncakes retails at P2,188.

Both are elegantly available in the Red Lantern Mooncake gift box. Each mooncake in an individual Red Lantern Mooncake gift box retails at P468 and P498 for Traditional and Snowskin Mooncakes respectively.

Below are the description of the mooncakes in case you’re interested in buying for the upcoming Mid-Autumn Festival!

TWG Tea Traditional Mooncakes

Red Lantern - Wrapped in a perfectly baked golden brown crust, the delightful surprise of mixed almonds, hazelnuts, macadamia and pecans enveloped in a smooth lotus paste infused with the illuminating combination of jasmine, exotic fruits and sweet spices of Red Lantern Tea.

Emperor - An opulent representation of the Yin and Yang, this elegant golden brown crust embraces the harmonious balance of a luscious red bean paste adorning a delicate and aromatic Matcha Nara heart, whisked from the most prestigious tea estate in Japan.

Constellation - This iconic signature of mid-autumn festival holds within a golden crust a smooth and elegant Singapore Breakfast Tea infused brown lotus filling, a scattering of roasted melon seeds and an embedded salted egg yolk heart. A timeless favourite.

Moonlight - Encased in a lavish, brown crust, this exquisite TWG Tea mooncake is filled with smooth black sesame paste infused with Pu-Erh Prestige and sprinkled with black and white sesame seeds, enveloping an aromatic sesame paste heart.

TWG Tea Snowskin Mooncakes

Aurora - Perfectly sun-kissed yellow snowskin mooncake heralds the arrival of radiant mid-autumn days ahead, filled with salted caramel mousse infused with Napoleon Tea and a refreshing surprise of pear marmalade encased in a white chocolate heart.

Serenity - Adorned in a paradise blue snowskin, this alluring mooncake brings in the calm tides of a tropical oasis, filled with a classic kaya mousse infused with Vanilla Bourbon Tea, delicately graced by coconut crisps sprinkled around a strawberry filled white chocolate heart.

Pure - An ethereal satin white snowskin mooncake encases a smooth milk chocolate mousse infused with fruit and flowery notes of 1837 White Tea, revealing a heart of tangy blackcurrant marmalade and white chocolate.

Illumination - Concealed in a black snowskin, this exquisite mooncake reveals a brilliant composition of a light nutty praline infused with signature 1837 Black Tea and an oriental burst of glowing orange marmalade in a white chocolate heart.

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Obligatory teapot selfie.

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TWG Tea is only offering the mooncakes this August until September 12th, so do pay them a visit soon! The Mid-Autumn/Mooncake Festival is already on September 8th.

TWG Tea can be found in Greenbelt 5, Resorts World Manila, Rockwell Power Plant Mall, Shangri-La Plaza East Wing, Century City Mall and Central Square, Bonifacio Global City (opening today, August 20) 

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Look demure with midi skirts! These are the perfect skirts for those who never got on the mini skirt or maxi skirt train. Not too short and not too long, midi skirts are a great and stylish compromise to the usual skirt lengths we encounter.

While styling midi skirts may seem intimidating at first, do know that they will never overwhelm a petite frame as long as the long hemlines are paired with plain, neutral tops that still show off a bit of skin (in this case, the neck and arms). I want more! 

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Sheen: Gold Glimmer

Posted on Sunday, 17 August 2014

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(Time Depot Casio Sheen watch, Chicwish dress, Michael Kors bag, Kate Spade ring, Le Bunny Bleu oxfords) Hype this look on Lookbook here.

There’s nothing like a gold watch to complete a whole look. I almost never go out without a watch on my wrist nowadays, and I’m thankful that there are watches out there that can serve as *the* statement piece for my outfits.

Obviously, I’m not a fan of piling on accessories or “excessorizing”, and usually just go out with my basic pair of earrings, and a watch of the same metal as my jewelry. The new SHE-4800G-7A watch has genuine SWAROVSKI ELEMENTS that are able to compensate for the simplicity of any look. Been wearing it everyday since I got it from the Time Depot store in Shang! It also comes in rose gold and silver, if you’re not a fan of gold. Was originally eyeing the rose gold one, until I realized I don’t have a lot of rose gold jewelry to match it with. Still gorgeous though (photo here)!

For inquiries, kindly email inquiry@timedepot.com.ph. Follow Time Depot on FacebookTwitter and Instagram to know more about their selection of products, and to be updated with their promos and giveaways.

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(Young Hungry Free “Hey There, Sweetheart” tube top in white, Gifts Ahoy heels, Topshop pants, Romwe bagHype this look on Lookbook here.

(Young Hungry Free "Hey There, Sweetheart" tube top in black and ”Pleaty Girl” skirt, Blackfive heels, Romwe bag) Hype this look on Lookbook here.

Tube tops need not be just for the bold and daring! Take it from the self-proclaimed ambassador of modest dressing (a.k.a. me). Most of the time, I think twice about showing off too much skin, but these tops pass my modesty test, thanks to the relaxed fit and the adorable sweetheart neckline. 

Follow Young Hungry Free on Twitter, Facebook and Instagram.

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