Deux Crèmes | 듀 크렘

Gangnam’s Garosugil is laden with patisseries, cake-shops, chocolatiers and coffeehouses. Deux Crèmes is one of the most popular and renowned pastry houses that occupies a standalone 3-storey building along the main street, drawing in a steady stream of dessert-seeking locals and foreigner everyday, and feeding this steady stream with their very special pie-tart-cake hybrids.

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Read: Deux Crèmes was awarded Travel CNN’s Best pie-tart-cake hybrid for their Caramel Tiramisu. I think, that Deux Crèmes should be awarded best modernist architectural design for dessert cafes.

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I tried their Muscato Tart: glazed champagne grapes cushioned with a layer of banana and custard cream on a thick crisp crust. Sounds like heaven on a slice? Tastes like heaven on a slice!

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The kind pastry chefs awarded me photographic opportunities and I snapped away at their amazing, aesthetically appealing tarts. These pastries are actually freshly baked behind the counters by talented chefs in white.

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If you’re in the area, you’ve got to seek this place out because their tarts, though pricier than the usual range, is worth every penny. There are over 100 different champagnes and wines to go with the tarts, and the in-house sommeliers can tell you exactly what wines go with the dessert you’re having! Such personalized service makes for a very awesome dessert experience.

강남구 신사동 533-11
533-11 Sinsa-dong, Gangnam-gu, Seoul
+82 2 545 7931
Daily, 10am – midnight
Free WiFi
Tarts range from ₩6,500 to ₩8,000

For Quick Reference:

xoxo,
Viktoria Jean

50 Fifty No Stress Cafe | 피프티

Reminiscent of a warehouse and appearing somewhat like a garage amidst reformation, the high-ceilinged 50 Fifty Cafe in uptown Apgujeong is hip and trendy with a rustic Junk-Style appeal. Diners can choose between smoking and non-smoking seating areas to enjoy a truly stress-free meal amongst the company of friends and tasteful lounge music. Kick back with a 50 Fifty cuppa, or settle down with something off their brunch set menu!

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Brunch set: meat sauce wrap, sausages, chips and salad. A piping cup of Americano on the side. 16000₩20140323-110723.jpg

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The kitchens are on the upper floor, an open concept overlooking the dining space. You can observe your food being prepared.

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Extremely filling and satisfying brunch! Lots of artistic and media companies are within the Gangnam district, hence the abundance of cafes in this part of town for lunch meetings, tea breaks and coffee runs. 50 Fifty was pretty quiet for a Friday mid-afternoon, and I suspect it has more patrons on the weekends. For such a trendy upscale restaurant, it must attract the mid-20s and early-30s crowd.

646-1 Sinsa-Dong, Gangnam-Gu (Apgujeong)
강남구 신사동 646-1, Seoul
02-544-8050
Daily 11am – Midnight
Free WiFi

Quick Reference:

xoxo,
Viktoria Jean

Bloom and Goûté | 블룸 앤 구떼

“To see a World in a Grain of Sand And a Heaven in a Wild Flower.”  Nothing else better invokes purity of thoughts than innocence of youth. In this rustic foliage of greens and florals, William Blake’s Auguries of Innocence springs to mind.

Off the beaten track on Gangnam-Gu’s Garosu-Gil is my favorite cafe by a long shot. Bloom and Goûté cafe is an intimate space, tastefully decorated with bouquets of blooming flowers, oak wood tables, chic garlands and housed in exposed brick walls in an independent two-storeyed building. Downstairs, flowers are tended to, bought and sold, along with displays of cakes and other mouth-watering desserts. Upstairs is where the seating spaces run out quickly during the busiest periods.

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The concept of B&G was created by marrying the influences of European cultures. Co-owners Lee Jin-sook studied botany in London while Jo Jung-hee undertook baking in Paris. From classy table settings (one-of-a-kind floral arrangements) to the uniqueness of B&G’s sweet and savoury menu, a European bohemian charm permeates the space, blending beautifully with scents of musk and florals.

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A Maximowiczia and Mint Detox Soda – a Bloom and Goûté Special.20140323-002529.jpg

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Some of B&G’s desserts. They do have the staples such as waffles, salads, sandwiches, but I’m told their special is the homemade strawberry cheesecake.

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I want to lie in a bed of roses and love flowers forever.

534-6 Sinsa-dong Gangnam-gu Seoul
서울 신사동 강남구 545-24
02-545-6659
DAILY 11AM – Midnight

Quick reference:

xoxo,
Viktoria Jean

President’s Day at Pier 39, San Francisco

Day after we touched down on San Francisco was the United States’ President’s Day on February 17th. We took a tram from Parc 55 Wyndham Hotel to Pier 39 aka Fishermen’s Wharf, which was mad crowded. That island on the other side in the picture below, by the way, is Alcatraz!

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We were just in time to catch Tulipmania! PIER 39 is in full bloom with thousands of tulips in all possible shades, and seasonal garden favorites decking the walkways on both levels of the pier.

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Taking a shot with the pier! Although it’s my second time at Fishermen’s Wharf, previously it was late evening when I arrived. Sunny afternoons really bring out the vibrance of the wharf.

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Some of my travel buddies this trip: Sam and Brown! Thanks for the great company, the heart-to-heart talks and the spontaneity.20140223-022825.jpg

The pier is double-decked, so from the upper deck this is basically what the lower deck looks like. It’s pretty much the same everywhere around the pier, except with different shops or diners. And if you’re a shopaholic there’s soooo many shopping to do: a crazy variety of gift shops, Candy Baron, Zip It, Sunglass Hut, Shirtique, SF Underground and so much more.

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Fulfilling our fascination with carousels. The pier’s central carousel is one of their main photographic attractions and kids line up for it everyday.

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Giving the teddy a HIGH FIVE ^^ he’s like a club bouncer outside the souvenir shop. Sad teddy needed some lovin’.

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A cupcake patisserie along the second deck. Cannot resist pretty cupcakes! They smelt so good too.20140223-022940.jpg

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A senior colleague who brought us here was telling us something about this building…not with the sharp pointed head but that one on the left. I cannot remember now!! Something about its resemblance to something…can somebody refresh my memory?
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Will be posting up more snapshots in a while. There are too many food pictures!! This place is known for crabs, clam chowders, and seafood in general. I’m not entirely a fan of seafood but I had some crabs and fish & chips anyway. You have to, it’s Fishermen’s Wharf!

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Coming to San Francisco for work purposes isn’t the same as travelling on holiday, but I’m glad for friends who brave through jet lags and fatigue with me!! Despite the worsening eyebags, I had a helluva great time. Can’t imagine lazing around in my hotel room all day!! I’ll be like these fat ass sea lions on the wharf. They stink, so bad.

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Beach Street & The Embarcadero,
San Francisco, CA 94133, United States

xoxo,
Viktoria Jean