Since 1969, restaurant, hotel, travel & other witty reviews by a handpicked, worldwide team of discerning professionals—and your views, too.






by Sophie Gayot

There is sunny Rodeo Drive in Beverly Hills and there is the Champs-Élysées in Paris, which is buried under snow as I write this. Each of these prestigious streets has only a single hotel directly located on them: the Paris Marriott Hotel Champs-Élysées and Luxe Rodeo Drive Hotel. While there are many restaurants with terraces on the most beautiful avenue in the world (“la plus belle avenue du monde”), there is only one on the walk of style: On Rodeo Bistro & Lounge.

Discover the restaurant with my exclusive video interview of hotel general manager Marcus Mueller and French executive chef Olivier Rousselle. Read the just published review of the restaurant to learn its rating and more.

Continue reading “French Restaurant on Rodeo Drive” »

by Sophie Gayot

Vanderpump Rules, the new television show that debuts on Bravo tonight, features Lisa Vanderpump Todd from “The Real Housewives of Beverly Hills“, and is set in her business, SUR Restaurant. The reality show focuses on the drama that goes on between the bartenders and the servers, six friends who have real moments. It is a real-life soap opera taking place in a restaurant where Lisa makes the rules.

Watch the video above for a sneak peak of the restaurant. In my exclusive interview with her partner Guillermo Zapata (yes, he does look like George Clooney), I bring you a more harmonious story about the décor and the food. The décor — created by Vanderpump herself — is why we named this restaurant to’s list of Top 10 Sexy Restaurants in Los Angeles. The lounge, which is actually as large as the restaurant, is on’s Top 10 Lounges in Los Angeles. You should make a reservation before you head there, as the restaurant is already one of’s Hot 10 Restaurants in Los Angeles before the show even airs!

Continue reading “The Real SUR Restaurant of Lisa Vanderpump Todd” »



by Sophie Gayot

Thomas Keller is the only chef to have two restaurants with’s highest rating of 19/20: The French Laundry and Per Se. Yesterday at Bouchon Beverly Hills, I had the pleasure to talk with him about his just-released dessert book, Bouchon Bakery. Sébastien Rouxel, the book’s co-author and the executive pastry chef of The Thomas Keller Restaurant Group, joined the conversation.

I had not seen the book until the three of us flipped through the 400 pages. If you haven’t had a chance to see Keller’s first recipe book for sweets either, watch the exclusive video above to discover it the same way they showed it to me. Coming from the masters directly, it is surely the best way to do so. The experience was quite fun, and, of course, a sweet moment to remember!

Continue reading “Sweet Times with Thomas Keller” »

A Wine of Legend

on December 10th, 2012
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by Sophie Gayot

Since the video interview above is with Richard Geoffroy, the Chef de Cave at Dom Pérignon, I will let him speak about the wine that was exclusively served at the Sun King (Louis XIV)’s court, and that we drink and even spray on each other to celebrate. Champagne bien sûr!

Learn some of the history of monk Pierre Pérignon whose goal was to create a sparkling wine that was “the best wine in the world.” Geoffroy will also give you some pairing advice as we enter the bubbly season.

Continue reading “A Wine of Legend” »


Terrace with a View

on November 26th, 2012
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by Sophie Gayot

The Las Vegas Strip has two ends, and there is a restaurant with amazing views at each end. A few weeks ago I profiled Top of the World at the Stratosphere Casino, Hotel & Tower. Today let’s move south and head to mega chef Alain Ducasse‘s restaurant Mix IN LAS VEGAS. Located on the 64th floor of THEHotel at Mandalay Bay, its views of Sin City are just grand.

Watch my exclusive video interview with executive chef Bruno Riou. Since the elevator is made of clear glass, that could be the only way to enjoy the restaurant if you have vertigo. For everyone else, admire the décor inside, then book a table on the terrace. I recommend heading there just before sunset for the best views possible.

Continue reading “Terrace with a View” »

by Sophie Gayot

For those dining out on America’s harvest holiday, we’ve put together a selection of the best restaurants near you. Simply visit’s main Thanksgiving page and select your city.

If you happen to be in the San Diego area during this time and want a luxurious Thanksgiving, head to Addison at The Grand Del Mar hotel.

Given Addison’s distinction as one of’s Top 40 Restaurants in the US since 2010, you can be sure that chef William Bradley has prepared an award-winning dinner. The six-course menu, priced at $180 per person (or $290 with wine pairings), will of course include turkey. The salt-roasted bird will be served with butternut squash, brioche and Brussels sprouts — and you can add white truffle for $65.

Continue reading “Celebrate Thanksgiving at a Top Restaurant” »



by Sophie Gayot

While there are many restaurants in Las Vegas, some offer dramatic views that can make your dining experience even more exciting. Top of the World at the Stratosphere Casino, Hotel & Tower is one of them. Perched on the 108th floor of a tower from which you can jump (don’t worry, the SkyJump is safe, as guests are tethered) on a 180-degree revolving platform, the view is just breathtaking.

Even better, Top of World is not what we call a “tourist trap” as the food is quite good. The chef, Claude Gaty, is French and has traveled around the world. He has brought back flavors from all over that he combines well in his dishes, such as his roasted pork belly with chimichurri. To discover more, watch my exclusive video interview with Gaty and hotel executive chef Rick Giffen.

Continue reading “High-Rolling Dining Experience” »



by Sophie Gayot

Who can talk about Margrit Mondavi’s exciting life better than herself? I recently attended a dinner with the second wife of the late Napa Valley iconic vintner Robert Mondavi. Besides the meal we shared at Wolfgang Puck at Hotel Bel-Air restaurant, I also was lucky enough to have a private discussion with the gifted storyteller.

Allow me to share a few words about the lady from Switzerland who brought so much to the Valley and is now the Vice President of Cultural Affairs of Robert Mondavi Winery: generosity, joie de vivre, witty, artistic, colorful style and simplicity.

Continue reading “The First Lady of Napa Valley” »

Fruits de Mer in Paris

on October 20th, 2012
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by Sophie Gayot

The InterContinental Paris Le Grand is celebrating its 150th birthday. Famous for its shellfish platter, the hotel’s restaurant Le Café de la Paix is offering its monster “le plateau de fruits de mer” at a price of €150 for two until the end of November.

Brush up on your culinary French or start practicing it by watching my exclusive video interview with executive chef Christophe Raoux. You will discover the wonders of the sea that will come to your table, and even get a lesson on how to open clams!

Continue reading “Fruits de Mer in Paris” »



by Sophie Gayot

I was lucky enough to enjoy a trip to the paradise of Tahiti. But if you are craving Tahitian raw fish but can’t get away to the islands, don’t worry: you can make it at home! Watch my exclusive video with Hotel Sofitel Moorea Ia Ora Beach Resort executive chef Pierre Sudre filmed on location right on the resort’s beautiful beach. The chef will show you how to prepare this simple but lovely dish step-by-step. The ingredients are simple:
– raw fish
– diced vegetables: carrots, cucumbers, tomatoes, onions
– coconut milk
– lime juice
– salt and pepper.

Continue reading “The Recipe for Tahitian Raw Fish” »

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