Chilean sea bass at Chef Morimoto’s Wasabi in Mumbai (photo by Brad A Johnson)
I’ve fallen off the wagon, and there’s no turning back. For nearly 10 years, I’ve abstained from eating Chilean sea bass. But I recently started up again. It’s so damn delicious! I’d forgotten how uniquely buttery this fish can be. There’s simply nothing else quite like it.
Back in 2002, more than 100 restaurants in Los Angeles banded together and stopped serving Chilean sea bass. Chefs across the country followed suit. Most top chefs in L.A. still won’t touch it. However, the tide seems to be turning. I’ve suddenly been spotting it again on menus around the world. Continue reading →
Images from the Taj Mahal Palace Hotel, Mumbai, India (photos by Brad A. Johnson)
Mumbai is chaos. Absolute, full-sensory chaos. The noise. The pigeons. The traffic. The incessant honking. The wild dogs barking. The heat. The tongue-wetting aroma of durian on the sidewalk. The wafting incense of marigolds and jasmine. Cows leisurely wandering through rush-hour intersections. Horses clopping. Children laughing. It’s maddening. And it’s what makes Mumbai one of the most interesting cities in the world, a place everyone should see at least once in their lifetime. The Taj Mahal Palace Hotel is the perfect antidote to all this frenzy. One of the world’s beloved grand dames, the turn-of-the-century palace overlooks the iconic Gateway of India in the Apollo Bunder neighborhood, on the banks of the Arabian Sea in the Bay of Bombay. Step inside the hotel, and the city’s swirling rumpus immediately fades. Serenity cleanses the senses. Here’s a quick look around this beautiful hotel.
The best way to experience the true soul of a place is to arrive by train. I’m reminded of this after spending several days aboard the Eastern & Oriental Express and disembarking my posh Pullman car at the dirty, chaotic platform of downtown Bangkok’s Hua Lamphong station at the height of rush hour. My senses are instantly thrust into overload. Train whistles are blowing at nearly all the 20 or so platforms. People are shouting, laughing, scrambling for luggage, rushing to climb aboard one train or another. Cars waiting in the street are honking incessantly. A chicken runs underfoot, feathers flying. A dozen young monks in bright orange robes shuffle through the station in a parallel but silent world. “Where is my valet,” I’m wondering?