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Wellness Travel: Where Wine & Yoga Converge Around the Globe

December 17, 2014 by  

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Photo courtesy of Ditty_about_summer via Shutterstock. On first consideration, drinking and yoga may seem rather incompatible. If, like me, you’ve occasionally had one too many glasses of red wine before heading to an hour of vinyasa and downward dog, you may have reservations about combining the two. But trust me: these two contrasting activities can actually come together to create a truly relaxing and rejuvenating vacation.

For those who love wellness travel — wine and beer included — here are ten of the world’s top boozy yoga holidays:

Wellness Travel Photo courtesy of ISchmidt via Shutterstock.

1. Yoga & Cocktails At A Maldives Retreat

In this retreat held at W Hotels Retreat and Spa and run by yoga guru Tara Stiles, you can relax into a routine of regular yoga classes, peppered with welcome drinks and cocktail evenings. There are also spa treatments, meditation and water activities available, plus plenty of sunset beach yoga in the tropical paradise of the Maldives. Prices start from $1,760; click here to find out more. Wellness Travel Photo courtesy of Westin Verasa Napa.

2. Wine, Women & Wellness In



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The Spilberk Food Festival in the Czech Republic

December 17, 2014 by  

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  czech-rep_spilberk_food-festIf you’re looking to taste something different might consider a trip to the Czech Republic next June for the Spilberk Food Festival. Celebrating its fourth year, the event is set for June 5 through 7, 2014, in the Spilberk Castle (Hrad Špilberk) in Brno, Czech Republic. Expect a varied program full of unusual dishes, new gourmet specialties and classic dining. Visitors will taste wines and spirits, coffee and beer and check out culinary exhibitions. Chefs from in and around Brno will offer what is typical for their locations. The Spilberk Food Festival also includes bartending and cooking school. (Photo courtesy of Czech Tourism)


The First Global Forum on Gastro-Tourism in San Sebastian Spain

December 16, 2014 by  

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  tourism-logoThe World Tourism Organization (WTO) and The Basque Culinary Center (BCC) are planning a Global Forum on Gastro-tourism. The event, the first of its kind, will be held in San Sebastian, Spain, April 27 and 28, 2015. The objectives are to advance the professional development of the sector, to exchange ideas and to identify good practices on a global level. The event’s technical committee is made up of eight people from the organization and its partners. There will be other Basque organizations participating alongside the WTO and the BCC, as well as Basquetour, the Gipuzkoa provincial council, and San Sebastian’s local government. The assembly, which will take place at BCC headquarters, will bring together experts in gastro-tourism to consider the sector’s current state of affairs, the goals of the sector in each area of expertise, consumer tendencies, management and the development of events and communication.


The Ultimate Curaçao Foodie Guide

December 13, 2014 by  

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Established in the 1970′s, Plasa Bieu is Curaçao’s traditional old market in Punda, a main meeting place where locals interact over Creole dishes in the island’s capital city Willemstad. It is the place I would learn about cactus soup and goat stew and watch locals prepare island delicacies for hours on end in massive sized pots on flaming hot grills. It wasn’t the first place I began sampling Creole food however, nor was it last on the list before I left this charming little island boasting a rich cultural heritage, a deep history and to-die-for views from pristine beaches. I started my culinary tour exploring restaurants throughout Curaçao and one gem not to be missed is Shore’s American Seafood Grill where Heinrich Hortencia is head chef. The restaurant is part of the Santa Barbara Resort, a 45 or so minute drive from Willemstad. You may be thinking that this beautifully presented dish doesn’t look classically Creole to you and you may be right, although let’s remember that Curaçao is an island where most locals speak four languages, Dutch being one of the island’s two official languages, Papiamento being the other. Its a cultural-rich island which means that its culinary appetite is…

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Liquor + Chocolate Hand-in-Hand in the Big Apple

December 11, 2014 by  

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cacao prieto Chocolate and liquor are probably not the first things that come to mind when you think of healthy food and drink. Additionally, they’re not typically two items you imagine pairing together; however, at Brooklyn’s Cacao Prieto, single origin Dominican cacao and antioxidant-rich spirits are served side-by-side and sometimes intermixed. “Cacao Prieto is a crucial meeting place of ideas, of traditions, of dreams and technology,” explains Mike Dirksen, Director of Sales. “It is a place where the creation of delicious chocolate and liquor resonates with an idealistic sense of purpose stating that making one thing the right way might just makes the world a better place.” As the name states, cacao — the main ingredient of chocolate — is a major focus of Cacao Prieto. Their chocolate is 72% Dark, which is surprisingly not bitter due to their Vortex Winnower, a machine developed by Aerospace Engineer owner Daniel Prieto Preston to better separate sweet nibs from bitter shells. Additionally, because the beans aren’t fumigated the chocolate is one of the only 100% Pesticide-free chocolate bars on the market. Their liquor is also innovative, especially as they’re kept at 80 proof (40% alcohol) — twice as…

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Cook Book Events & Recipe Chatter in San Francisco

December 10, 2014 by  

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If you’re looking for gift ideas for someone on your list, cookbooks are a great way to go. Especially signed, beautifully photographed, locally written ones. On Saturday December 13th from 3pm-4pm, catch Nicolaus Balla and Cortney Burns of Bar Tartine at ~OMNIVORE BOOKS in San Francisco. They’ll be discussing their new cookbook, Bar Tartine: Techniques & Recipes, and signing copies. The event is free, and books will be available for purchase.  Omnivore is also hosting a number of other special book events next week, if you can’t make this one.


Give Yourself the Gift of Learning Chinese Cooking

December 10, 2014 by  

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Egg rolls fall into that category of food I find far too intimidating to tackle.  Outside of the steady and practiced hand required to assemble these perfect little packages, my complete lack of familiarity with the flavors and seasonings of Chinese cuisine left me feeling unsure of where to start. After a fair amount of practice rolling spring rolls and the nagging desire to finally dip my toe into the vast and varied world of Chinese cooking, I pushed my fear of failing aside, accepting that, as with many first time recipe attempts, the end result would be a burnt and broken mess of egg roll wrappers, not-quite-cooked-through filling and a grease-splattered stove. So I tentatively read a few recipes, bought my first bottle of fish sauce and set about assembling an approachable blend of ingredients for my first egg roll filling: minced shallots and garlic for a flavorful base, shredded carrots for a touch of sweetness, diced serrano peppers for heat and rice noodles to act as a binding agent of sort, a vehicle for sauce absorption wrapping and intertwining with large bites of shrimp and sausage. Tossed with fish sauce, sugar, soy sauce and


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The Spices of the Caribbean Food Festival in St. Lucia

December 10, 2014 by  

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  st-lucia_jade_spiceDreaming of warmer climes this month? The “Spices of the Caribbean Food Festival” takes place December 12 through 16, 2014, at Jade Mountain Resort in Soufriere, St. Lucia. The five-day event will highlight the flavors of Caribbean cuisine. Friday starts the weekend off with a cocktail party of spiced rum and zesty finger foods, while Saturday morning brings a tour of the Emerald Gardens and cooking classes. There will also be a specially prepared five-course dinner using local fish and seafood, organically grown produce and of course, spices. Everything’s under the direction of Chef Allen Susser and his Jade Mountain culinary team. (Photo courtesy of Jade Mountain)


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