oxtail dumpling

I’m willing to give The Cecil another chance because I didn’t dislike my food, I just think my expectations and what was delivered weren’t on the same menu page. I decided to see what the hype was about in Harlem and went for brunch since that’s like my thing. Unbeknownst to me, is that they don’t serve Mimosas here, well it’s not on their menu at least and every one that reads Food Before Love knows I had an instant frown in my face!

I ordered one anyway and raised my eyebrow at not only the $14 price tag but also at the cocktail glass it was served to me in. Where’s my flute? I wasn’t going to let this hinder my experience though and tried the oxtail dumplings. I really enjoyed them and apparently, so do the rest of Harlem. It wasn’t over powering with the taste of curry and the oxtail was delicious especially in the sauce they provide.

oxtail dumpling

But I wasn’t there for starters; I’m a small girl who needs her food. So I ordered the brisket and poached egg, which is accompanied by fried rice. This is where I had a dilemma and also why I’m willing to go back.  Who told The Cecil they could put so many onions in my rice?? I don’t like onions, but I will eat them if I have to. This was too much for me. Too many onions, way too many, and I could hardly taste or enjoy my rice. I was already trying to be adventurous with my poached egg; I couldn’t be so different for one day. Judge my palate if you want to! I tried to enjoy my steak, but it was far too chewy for me as well and this brunch just wasn’t it.

brisket and duck egg

I will say this though, I love the decor in this spot and their menu is extremely enticing. I think now that I’ve been, I’ll know better what to order next time and head there for dinner instead. You haven’t lost me yet…


almond french toast sotto cinque

Back in December, my good friend over at Justice Sweets was celebrating the anniversary of the company, so we went to brunch. I’ll make this quick and painless, we BOTH enjoyed the Almond Crusted French Toast with mascarpone and maple syrup at Sotto Cinque.

almond french toast sotto cinque

Sotto Cinque is on the Upper East Side and it’s barely noticeable considering it’s so close to 1st avenue but being from around the way, I’ve been meaning to go. And for the $3 Mimosas they have, I was glad I went for this celebration! Can you tell?

I am a huge Mascarpone person, like seriously. Throw it on anything and I’m in, this stuff is better than Nutella. The almonds, in addition to this perfectly made toast, were all a girl could ask for but it just might leave you hungry. Either that, or it was just so good that we wanted more. Nonetheless, it’s the best French toast you’ll find uptown (until further notice).

Martine of justice sweets & Cass of foodbeforelove

Crepe Vegas

I missed my flight out of Vegas for this crepe from Blizz.  Blizz is a spot under the MGM down the hall from Fat Tuesday’s  that sells savory and sweet crepes. They also sell breakfast crepes so though it’s not photographed here, their bacon, egg and cheese crepe was probably one of the most amazing things I have ever had.

It was a crepe filled with Nutella, Cream Cheese, Strawberries, and a Raspberry to top. Can you say flawless? It’s so hard to find a perfect crepe but they’ve got it down packed out in Vegas so if you’re in town, don’t miss your flight but don’t miss this either.

Crepe Vegas

Coconut Pudding

I surely didn’t know what to expect when I showed up at Hakkasan in Vegas because I never looked at a menu but I surely wasn’t complaining either.

Hakkasan Las Vegas

I realized last year, that lettuce wraps are ridiculously yummy and this appetizer was no exception. We started with the stir-fry mushroom wrap that had pine nuts and listen; I don’t even like mushrooms, like at all. However, the flavors cooked up and layered into the lettuce would have told you different as it entered my system, repeatedly.


And that was only building an appetite to this dim sum platter I was extremely curious about. They bring enough out for the entire table and once a layer is eaten, you lift the top off only to find more food! Heaven! It was all ridiculously amazing too.


From there, they brought out numerous of items from the menu like spicy prawn, duck, chicken, and cod.

Hakkasan Spread  Hakkasan Spread - Prawns

For dessert, we were intrigued once more by the coconut pudding they offered, due to its interesting look and we had plans to devour the PB&J parfait before we hit the strip. I must admit, this was an exceptional dinner which I thoroughly enjoyed all while in the presence of some amazing people; which always makes the food taste better.

Hakkassan Coconut Pudding PB&J Dessert

Now I want to go back…