Ostend, Belgium

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Picture Perfect Ostend

Although still cold, the sun was shining – so why not take a trip to the Belgian coast? There are so many cities in Beligum I’d still like to visit and Ostend was at the top of my list.

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Stockholm: Riche

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Riche

I know in November I already posted photos of Riche, but I had to come back! I needed to have their toast skagen again!

To quote the Huffington Post, Toast Skagen is essentially a shrimp toast, but there is one mythical ingredient that sets it apart from any other shrimp toast. Kalix Vendace Roe. This Swedish version of Russian or Iranian caviar is orange, light in taste, subtle and not as pushy as its eastern cousins. It’s often served together with butter fried blinis or toast, some sour cream and very finely chopped red onions – as the star of the show. But in the Toast Skagen, it will have to settle with being the jewel in the crown. An orange colored precious gem, placed on top of this culinary treasure.

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Stockholms Matmarknad

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So many delicious salmon to choose from!

In general, Koen and I really love renting apartments if we’re on holiday. One of our favorite things to do, normally to relax toward the end, is to visit a local market to prepare dinner at our apartment. It gives us an opportunity to try local food and chill at the apartment for an easy evening. Markets are also a great opportunity to delve into the real food culture of a city. Koen is the best at discovering what we need to eat – asking what they miss most when out of the country, what does their family eat at Christmas and other big holidays. Like this we’re sure not to miss anything!

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Stockholm: Esperanto

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View on our walk to dinner

We were curious to try the restaurant Esperanto (now permanently closed) for dinner while in Stockholm. Esperanto is a one Michelin star restaurant that specializes in a fusion of Japanese and Swedish cuisine.

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Stockholm: Matbaren by Mathias Dahlgren

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Evening in Stockholm

In the winter, the days are short in Stockholm. I absolutely love it. The city lights up with a warm glow and you can’t help but feel cozy. After visiting the Vasa Museum, we headed to the Grand Hotel to eat at Matbaren by the chef Mathias Dahlgren. Matbaren was recommened by a Swedish colleague of mine. She told me it’s her favorite restaurant, so of course we had to try it!

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London Day 3

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The Lighterman

For our last day, we started for brunch at The Lighterman on Granary Square. If you read my blog often, you’ll recognize The Lighterman – I always try to come here for breakfast if I’m in London. Great location and delicious food!

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London Day 2

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Ready for brunch

We started our second day in Chelsea at The Ivy Chelsea Garden for brunch. Chelsea is one of my favorite neighborhoods and Koen and I both really love the brunch at The Ivy, so I definitely wanted to take Koen’s family here!

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Stockholm, Sweden

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In snowy Stockholm!

I was in Stockholm for a few days – the city is so beautiful and the food is so delicious!! I stayed mostly in Östermalm and Gamla Stan (Old Town – which dates back to 1252!). Stockholm is very big, so I definitely need to go back for a longer period to explore!

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Hof Van Cleve

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Dinner at Hof Van Cleve!

Koen and I decided we really wanted to try eating at the best restaurants in Belgium, so of course Hof Van Cleve was at the top of our list – Number 50 Best Restaurant in the World 2017 and it has 3 Michelin stars.

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Listvyanka, Siberia, Russia

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First view of Lake Baikal

When Koen and I decided to make a stop in Siberia, Irkutsk was the obvious destination to spend a few days because of its proximity to Lake Baikal, the world’s largest freshwater lake, containing 23% of the world’s fresh surface water (also the world’s deepest lake, the world’s clearest lake, and the world’s oldest lake)! There were a few options of which city to visit to see Lake Baikal, and in the end we chose Listvyanka, the ‘French Riveria of Siberia’.

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