Crab ‘n corn soup – Paraiso Grill

Crab 'n corn soup - Paraiso Grill
Creamy soup with crab, corn and egg. 200 PHP
Paraiso Grill, Boracay PHILIPPINES

Meh, this soup was neither particularly good nor bad. It tasted fine, but it was definitely forgettable. I guess it was something to eat while we waited for everything else.

Pineapple daquiri - Paraiso Grill
Pineapple Daquiri: rum, triple sec, lime juice, fresh pineapple. 180 PHP

Outdoor seating
Outdoor seating along the White Beach Path. The nautilus lamps are kinda cool.

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Rooftop cocktails – Rex Hotel

Planter's Punch - Rex Hotel
Planter’s Punch: Bacardi light rhum, triple sec, lemon juice, pineapple juice, soda. 220,000 VND
Rex Hotel, Ho Chi Minh City VIETNAM

So this was probably the most we spent for cocktails while in Vietnam. We really wanted to check out the rooftop bar though (and get out of the scorching heat). The Rex hotel is historic and it was quite relaxing up on the roof so I really didn’t mind too much about spending a little more for drinks here. My Planter’s Punch tasted pretty weak and not as sweet and vibrantly colored as those you would find on a Caribbean island.

Gin and tonic - Rex Hotel
Gin and tonic. 240,000 VND

Salted peanuts - Rex Hotel
Salted peanuts.

Table centerpiece - Rex Hotel
Table centerpiece.

Rex Hotel rooftop view
View from the Rex Hotel rooftop.

Cadillac margarita – El Torito

Cadillac margarita - El Torito
Made with premium 1800 Reposado, triple sec and sweet and sour, hand-shaken and served on-the-rocks with a side shot of Cointreau Noir. $8.29
El Torito, Burlingame CA

El Torito is a local chain so I was skeptical that they would make a decent margarita because most chains serve really bad cocktails. They’re usually way too sweet and have very little alcohol. I was pleasantly surprised that this margarita actually tasted good. And the extra Cointreau shot really sneaks up on you, lol! Yay!

San Francisco Bay
Looking out towards SFO and the San Francisco Bay from Millbrae.

House margarita – Velvet Cantina

House margarita - Velvet Cantina

100% Agave Dos Manos, triple sec, fresh citrus juices. Pitcher $27
Velvet Cantina, San Francisco CA

I’ve been to Velvet Cantina several times now and I haven’t been all that impressed with their margaritas. They’re decent, but nothing special. They’re not cheap so I would expect more “wow”!

Chips and salsa - Velvet Cantina
Chips and salsa. Complimentary
I do love their chips and salsa though. The chips are extra salty and their salsa is a bit different from most restaurants.

Agave Blue Glow
Agave “Blue Glow” plant (Asparagaceae), West Field Road.

Who’s to Blame margarita – Margaritaville

Who's to Blame margarita - Margaritaville

Our traditional margarita made with Margaritaville Gold Tequila, Margaritaville Triple Sec, and our special margarita mix, served on the rocks. $8.95
Margaritaville, Las Vegas NV

Ugh, this was the weakest and smallest nine dollar margarita I have EVER had! The sad part is that I really didn’t expect anything better. What a waste!

Caesars Palace at night

Caesars Palace at night.

House margarita – El Chupacabra

House margarita - El Chupacabra

Gold tequila, triple sec and their own sour mix, muddled limes, shaken and served on the rocks in a pint glass. $6
El Chupacabra, Seattle WA

These margaritas were decent. I asked for “no salt” but that’s a minor mistake. There were really annoying “ladies” sitting at the bar though and they were bullying a table of kids sitting nearby. Lame! The ladies seemed liked regulars so I guess they were permitted by the bar staff to bully other guests… :(

Bleeding-heart flowers
Pink and white bleeding-heart flowers (Lamprocapnos spectabilis, Papaveraceae), Ballard.

“How Da Ya’ Do” cosmo – Roy’s

How Da Ya' Do cosmo - Roy's

Sobieski orange vodka, triple sec, lime juice, cranberry juice. $10
Roy’s, Waikoloa HI

We ended up at Roy’s because another restaurant that we wanted to go to was closed. I wasn’t too excited for Roy’s because I’d already been to the San Francisco and Seattle branches, but we were with a group so I didn’t want to make a fuss. Everything was just ok. Our group was pretty vocal and readily drunk so we still had a blast, lol.

Orchid table decoration
Orchid table decoration.

Pololu Valley sign

Pololu Valley sign.

Cocktails – Bamboo Restaurant

Lilikoi margarita - Bamboo Restaurant
Lilikoi Margarita: Invented in 1993, tangy passion fruit with tequila served on the rocks.
Bamboo Restaurant, Hawi HI

This was ok – a little too tart for my liking. It was cute that they’re served in coconut shell glasses though.

Bamboozle iced tea - Bamboo Restaurant

Bamboozle Iced Tea: Our version of the Long Island Tea, gin, vodka, dark rum, tequila and triple sec with pineapple and yes, lilikoi, finished with a splash of Coke.
Either this was super weak, or super well-made. It tasted great and went down easily – uh oh, that could be trouble!

Indian wooden statues

Indian wooden statues, Akoni Pule Highway.

Cocktails – Duke’s Waikiki

Duke's Mai Tai - Duke's Waikiki
Duke’s Mai Tai: Hawaiian juices with two different types of rum and orange curacao. $9
Duke’s Waikiki, Honolulu HI

Duke’s is super touristy, but it’s still nice to sit outside on Waikiki beach and enjoy the sunset. The food is middle of the road and the drinks are weak and sugary, but that’s OK because you’re on vacation, lol! The mai tai had good flavor though.

Mango-Rita cocktail - Duke's Waikiki
Mango-Rita: Jose Cuervo Gold tequila, mango, lime and triple sec. $8.50
This was more on the lime side than on the mango side and it could have used another shot of tequila. Oh well.

Duke's Waikiki sunset
Sunset from the back patio at Duke’s Waikiki.

Pomegranate margarita – Eureka Restaurant and Lounge

Pomegranate margarita - Eureka Restaurant and Lounge
Reposado tequila, Pama pomegranate liqueur, triple sec and lime on the rocks. $10
Eureka Restaurant & Lounge, San Francisco CA

I love the soft pink color of this margarita! It’s nicely made and tastes wonderful.

Mill holiday windows

My neighborhood has began decorating its storefronts for the holidays. I like the simple window trims at Mill, 24th Street.