Saturday, May 28, 2022

World-renowned Chef Nancy Silverton Opens Osteria Mozza at Hilton Singapore Orchard on 31 May 2022

Celebrated American Chef Nancy Silverton’s Osteria Mozza is bringing its unique brand of ingredient-specific, Cal-Italian cuisine to Singapore, showcasing simple cooking that allows impeccably sourced seasonal produce to shine.

The new 120-seat restaurant at Hilton Singapore Orchard features classics from the original one-Michelin-starred outpost in Los Angeles as well as a number of new dishes crafted exclusively for Singapore. 

“Singapore’s already insatiable appetite for top-notch dining has grown in recent years. I am excited to create a new Osteria Mozza experience in partnership with Hilton Singapore Orchard and OUE, one that highlights our classics yet is designed especially for Singapore,” said Nancy Silverton, Co-Owner of Osteria Mozza.

Hilton Singapore Orchard is the largest Hilton Hotel in the Asia Pacific and presents a beacon for Hilton’s flagship brand. A true dining destination, Hilton Singapore Orchard is home to a stellar collection of restaurants that offer exceptional culinary experiences complemented by Hilton’s signature hospitality: residential all-day dining restaurant Estate, elegant lobby lounge, and bar Ginger. Lily, two-Michelin-starred Shisen Hanten by Chen Kentaro, and award-winning all-time favorite Chatterbox. With the addition of the internationally celebrated Osteria Mozza, the hotel’s compelling roster of five culinary concepts is now complete.

General manager of Hilton Singapore Orchard, Cedric Nubul said, “Nancy Silverton's unparalleled creativity and passion make Osteria Mozza the perfect addition to our array of distinctive culinary concepts. This opening cements Hilton Singapore Orchard's position as a world-class dining destination while creating memories that last a lifetime."

Silverton believes in cooking with only the best ingredients, using them across the menu in a number of different styles. With her decades of experience as a baker who popularised sourdough and sparked the artisan bread movement across the U.S since the nineties, nearly all of Osteria Mozza’s dishes are served atop, complemented by, or made more complete by bread. 

The standouts of Osteria Mozza are many – its mozzarella bar and housemade fresh pasta; two wood-burning ovens for Silverton’s show-stopping pizzas, meats, fish, and fresh vegetables; and gelato-centric dessert menu; all supported by a stellar beverage program and attentive warm service. 


At the heart of Osteria Mozza is the signature mozzarella bar, a place to start the meal with a selection of five different mozzarellas, burrata, and fresh cheeses, and an impressive array of imported Italian cured meats (speck, coppa, salami sardo, mortadella, and prosciutto di Parma). Silverton and her team source and curate simple Italian ingredients of exceptional quality to create the remarkable antipasti and salads which have cemented Osteria Mozza’s reputation. For example, the restaurant goes to great lengths to source Bianca Modenese – 36-month ‘White Cow’ Parmigiano Reggiano, aged triple the time required for normal Parmiggiano Reggiano. 

Antipasti selections include the signature Affettati Misti. What is different about the dish for the Singapore outpost is the inclusion of butcher’s pate and trotter fritti, as a nod to the popularity of trotter meat locally. Other highlights not to be missed from the mozzarella bar include Nancy’s Favorite Trio of Mozzarella di Bufala, Cantabrian anchovies, semi-dried  tomato, and cruschi peppers with fett’unta; Smoked Burrata & Peas; and Nancy’s Caesar.


Almost all of the 10 pastas on the menu at Osteria Mozza are handmade in-house daily. A unique new pasta on the menu and one created especially for Singapore is the Cencioni with Dungeness crab and saffron, inspired by Silverton experiencing the wide array of seafood in Singapore. Every part of the crab is used to create the dish from claws to meat and belly, used either as filling for the pasta or to create stock for pasta-making. 

The Josper Oven is the precision workhorse of the kitchen, turning out perfectly cooked Grilled Calamari and Whole Branzino alla piastra. Farmers’ market quality vegetables are also roasted in the Josper to coax out their flavor and natural sweetness, like seasonal selections of Friarelli Peppers and Roasted Carrots.

A selection of secondi for individual enjoyment or sharing includes the Cacciucco, a traditional fish stew from Tuscany brimming with locally sourced grouper and calamari, venus clams, red prawns, mussels, and red pepper crostone. The dish is another of Silverton’s love notes to Singapore, recognizing the city’s fondness for seafood. Other highlights include whole Grilled Corn-Fed Baby Chicken; and juicy Pork Chop Milanese. 

Pizza at Osteria Mozza is the art of a master bread baker. After extensive testing and enhancement, the pizzas are a reflection of Silverton’s distinctive style and taste. A selection of nine pizzas are cooked in the restaurant’s custom Wood Stone wood-burning pizza oven and will be served exclusively at lunch. Silverton has chosen to cook with California almond wood for its fruitwood flavor, high heat, low smoke, and balanced sweetness. As a result, Osteria Mozza’s pizzas boast a fine crisp base and ultra-high airy and puffy cornicione, with a deep sourdough flavor. 


Osteria Mozza’s desserts sport a distinctly Italian-meets-American flair. While most of the menu is centred around the joy and art of gelato, where local tropical fruits like pineapple and rambutan feature prominently, Silverton classics like Butterscotch Budino and  Rosemary Olive Oil Cakes are not to be missed.

Silverton has created her own brand of gelato called Nancy’s Fancy, which will be made locally using a high-quality Carpigiani gelato machine. Tableside Hot Fudge Sundae Cartservice includes DIY sundaes with an array of toppings, plus signature creations like the  Tin Roof Sundae and Coconut Sorbetto Pie. 


The beverage list includes an impressive selection of Italian wines, including organic and sustainable wines, as well as classic Italian cocktails like negroni, aperol spritz, and espresso martinis.

Curated by Osteria Mozza partner Joe Bastianich and General Manager Manu Gandotra, the wine list is an exploratory journey of the great Italian wine-producing regions, including Piemonte, Tuscany, and Veneto. Of the 280 labels, 90% of the list is Italian, including house labels of Bastianich and La Mozza wines, while the remaining 10% of the list  highlights California and New World producers. Meanwhile, 70% of the wine list is made up of red grape varietals. Of the 20 wines served by the glass, premium labels such as  Amarone, Barolo, and Brunello di Montalcino are served by Coravin. 


Conceptualized by award-winning global hospitality design firm EDG Design, Osteria Mozza extends the design narrative of Hilton Singapore Orchard as a modern colonial-style residence, inspired by the past rustic stables and tannery buildings found along Orchard Road — an area once abundant with fruit orchards, nutmeg plantations, and pepper farms. 

Much like a Tuscan farmhouse, with its open kitchen and stacks of firewood, Osteria Mozza’s rich, textural design layers gabion stone walls and flooring, end cut wood, natural brick screening, and exposed nuts, bolts, and fixings. Leather features prominently – in supple caramel-colored leather and wood chairs as well as design elements, like horse buckles, bridles, saddles, belts, and tools. The space is encircled by the glass, with both indoor and outdoor plants lending a mossy, natural, slightly overgrown feel.

A communal, convivial vibe is evident throughout the restaurant. The mozzarella bar seats up to 14, and the spacious indoor dining room seats 61. The spacious and lush outdoor terrace that overlooks the bustling Orchard Road is covered to accommodate the Singapore weather and seats 59. Osteria Mozza’s private dining room seats 10. 


The restaurant is led by a strong and seasoned team with years of experience in the international dining scene: Executive Chef Peter Birks, who previously worked with Silverton at Osteria Mozza and Pizzeria Mozza from 2016-18, Nostra Cucina, and most recently Burnt Ends; Pastry Chef Manaal Syed (CUT by Wolfgang Puck); and General Manager Manu Gandotra (Bread Street Kitchen by Gordon Ramsay, Punjab Grill by Jiggs Kalra).

Osteria Mozza will welcome guests for dinner from Tuesdays to Saturdays, from 5 PM to 10.30 PM.

For more information on Osteria Mozza at Hilton Singapore Orchard, visit 

The Perks of Having a Water Birth

Max Collins, Coleen Garcia, Jennica Garcia, and Kylie Padilla. Aside from their gorgeous looks as beautiful mothers in the Philippine entertainment industry, these women have one thing in common: they all underwent water birth.

So, what is water birth? Water birth is a method of delivering a baby while the mother is in a birth tub or pool filled with warm water. A midwife and a doula are often present to assist with the delivery. 

Because of the pandemic, some mothers have opted to deliver their baby via water birth with the approval of their doctors to be safer against the virus. Others have chosen this method for a more relaxed birthing experience. For some who live in residences far from hospitals, such as a tropical house and Siargao lot for sale, giving birth in their home via water birth is more practical and convenient. However, some hospitals also offer water birth, so if you think that it's safer to give birth in a hospital, you may do so, but talk it out with your doctor to know if the hospital has special arrangements for that.

Before deciding if water birth is right for you, it is best to consult with your doctor, as this is generally recommended only for pregnant women with low-risk and single pregnancies. Water birth is also not recommended if you’re below 17 and over 35. 

Take note that there could be rare risks that could happen while water birthing; again, these are rare occurrences:

You and your child could get an infection from the water

Your baby’s temperature could be too high or too low

Your baby could breathe in some of the water

The umbilical cord could snap before your child comes out of the water

The Advantages of Water Birth

Now that you are aware of some of the cons and risks of water birth, here are the perks of choosing this birthing option if your doctor gives you the green light to undergo this birthing process:

You Can Give Birth at Home

If you live in a house and lot located in a busy city where there’s traffic, water birth in your home is more convenient because you don’t need to pack your hospital essentials and drive to the hospital. Instead, the midwife or your doctor will be the one to come to your place. Moreover, since you are in your home, you feel more relaxed, and your family and friends, no matter how many they may be, so long as they conveniently fit in your home, can be there to support you.

You Feel More in Control

Compared to giving birth in bed, floating in water during water birth allows you to relax and move better, so you are more in control of your movements when in labor.

Less Need for Pain Relief

Most mothers who undergo water birth find it less painful to deliver their baby this way. This is because the water’s buoyancy helps the uterine contractions be more efficient. It also helps improve the blood circulation to the mother’s uterine muscles. Additionally, the water helps the perineum be more relaxed and elastic, reducing the risk of severe tears. 

These are just a few benefits of water birth. Again, seek professional advice before considering undergoing this birthing procedure so that you and your baby are both safe and healthy. 

Tuesday, May 24, 2022

SEA Games Gold, a Win for OFW's All Over the World

Fresh from her win at the Women's 55kg category in weightlifting during the 31st Southeast Asian Games held in Hanoi, Vietnam, Hidilyn Diaz recognizes that her win was not just for herself but for all the Overseas Filipino Workers worldwide. 

Hidilyn acknowledges that the plight and struggle of the Overseas Filipino workers are tougher, especially during the pandemic. Some lost their job and stayed in a foreign country to protect their families from potential infection while others had to double down and work two jobs to make ends meet - - - something that Hidilyn truly admires about her co-Pinoy. 

“We take it day-by-day and we continue with our dreams. Talagang akma yung linyang we find ways eh. Hindi ka dapat bumitaw kase may paraan para maitawid ang buhay,” said Hidilyn who is a brand ambassador for BDO Unibank. 

She also reminded everyone about the importance and value of prayers as well as support from family and friends to survive challenges in work, business, or international sports competitions. 

“Iba kapag may nakakausap ka. May kasangga ako hindi lang yung coaching team ko kundi pati na rin friends ko. Napakalaking tulong nila. At syempre, hindi mawawala ang inspirasyon na galing sa aking pamilya at ang prayers ko kay God,”  said Olympic and now SEA Games gold medalist. 

Hidilyn candidly shared stories of how she herself would sometimes break down, cry, and question what she got herself into and how to solve things but she remained steadfast that she can overcome everything and that it will all be okay. This is how she was able to achieve her gold medals in weightlifting.  

Saturday, May 7, 2022

Mother's Day at Paradise Dynasty

If you're still unsure of where to take your Mom out for lunch or dinner on Sunday, Mother's Day, I strongly recommend bringing her to paradise, Paradise Dynasty that is. For me, it's still one of the best restaurants to eat at regardless if you are celebrating something or just want great food.

I had a lovely lunch with my Ninang Jen and some foodie friends and here are some of the dishes that I would recommend you to order when you dine in. 

This lettuce roll was so refreshing to the taste. Crunchy, tasty, and definitely healthy, this is something that should be on every table when you dine at Paradise Dynasty.

This peanut noodle (I'm sure that's not the name but I couldn't remember what it was for the life of me) is another hit! If you are not allergic to peanuts, then you must go ahead and try this. It was like eating kare kare but in noodle form. A marriage between two worlds that I truly love.

The salted prawn is another hit for me. It was just so good that I wish I could have eaten an entire plate all to myself. It was that good. 

Xiao Long Bao

Last, but definitely not least, this 8-flavored Xiao Long Bao needs to be ordered by every member of the family. You need to be able to savor the different flavors that they have to offer. My personal favorite is the original, truffle, and cheese. Mindblowing. 

Paradise Dynasty has branches in S Maison, SM Aura, and Podium. Regardless if you are from the North, East, West, or South, there is a branch near you and so make sure that you bring your Mom to Paradise this Mother's Day. She deserves it. 

Friday, May 6, 2022

Okada Manila Receives 3rd Forbes Travel Guide Five Star Award

Ooops they did it again! Okada has once again bagged another Forbes Travel Guide Five-Star for its 2022 Star Award. This is the 3rd year that Okada Manila has received this coveted accolade. 

Forbes Travel Guide (FTG) is the only globally recognized rating system for luxury hotels, restaurants, and spas. To celebrate this achievement, we were invited by Okada to their newest Filipino restaurant located at the Coral Wing. 

We were initially situated at their brand new lounge which is also located on the 3rd floor of the Coral Wing and it is simply stunning. Pure opulence is how I would describe it but in a good, classy way. 


This place is definitely something that I would recommend for business meetings, get-togethers, and intimate parties. 

On the other hand, the yet unnamed Filipino restaurant feels cozy and welcoming which I feel is the perfect ambiance for a Filipino-themed resto. 

I loved that they were playing soft OPM instrumentals as the background music because it completed the feel of the place. Personally, I don't like it when a Korean restaurant plays American songs or a Japanese restaurant plays Filipino songs. I believe that all these elements, music included, complete the overall impact of a place. 

This is a testament to how Okada looks not just at the overall effect of their service but also on the small details that make such a big difference. With over 990 exceptional accommodations, many amazing restaurants, award-winning spas, and various other extraordinary amenities, all complemented by exceptional Pilipino hospitality, it is no mean feat that Okada Manila has achieved the FTG 5-star rating for 3 straight years. 

Okada SVP for Hotel Operations Ivaylo S. Ivanov says, “Our 3T campaign, our industry-leading health and safety protocols lauded by the industry, were embraced by our amazing team members and we were able to provide exceptional service to our guests during the pandemic.” Forbes Travel Guide, a world-renowned authority in genuine Five-Star service, has over 900 stringent items on its list, 75% of which focus on the guest experience and the rest on the facility.

This 5-star rating comes at an opportune time, as the WTTC Global Summit that happened in Manila last week showed the world the Philippines is now open for tourism and it is time to rediscover travel. “Our doors are open, and Okada Manila is fully ready and excited to add to the exciting stories of our tourists, from both near and far,” adds Ivaylo S. Ivanov.

“Travel has come back strongly, and the resilient hospitality industry is creatively rallying to accommodate the increased occupancy demand for most regions,” shares Hermann Elger, CEO of Forbes Travel Guide. “While the industry faces some lingering issues, the 2022 award winners proved ready for those challenges and more, demonstrating the best that luxury hospitality has to offer.”

Thursday, May 5, 2022

Looking Through Rose-Colored Glasses with Pinks and Leys’ Owner, Leah Durante

Sometimes, the smallest things have the biggest impact on our lives. This was the case with Leah Durante, founder of Pinks and Leys, an up-and-coming flower shop that is sure to have a flower bouquet for every occasion in your life.  

Leah saw her father give her mother a rose bouquet on Valentine’s Day and the smile she saw on her mother’s face left a big impression on her. She wanted to bring that smile to every person’s face and since she also has a penchant for flower arrangements, she decided that one day, she will open her own flower shop which she did with her sister. 

Leah believes that when you give flower bouquets, you are not just giving flowers. You are giving a life booster. You are sharing a part of yourself with the other person and you have the purest of intentions which is to bring a smile to someone’s face. 

A flower is something that normally brings a smile to someone’s face. It’s nature’s natural happy pill and it symbolizes love. In this day and age where there is so much negativity and hate going around, Leah firmly believes that the need to give flowers matters even more because flowers bring unexplainable joy and kilig to the receiver. 

However, as with any business, there are challenges when it comes to flower shops. The biggest criticism it normally receives is that flowers die too easily and so this is something that Leah is looking into. She wants to learn how to extend the lifespan of a flower to extend the joy it gives as well to the people who receive a bouquet from Pinks and Leys.

The other challenge for Leah is to recommend the right bouquet to a person. You see, different flowers have different general meanings but it can also happen that a rose may mean something different for someone else compared to the general population. It’s a delicate process but luckily, Leah has the graceful touch needed to make magic happen.  

To anyone who wants to become a florist like Leah, her advice is to aim to always give hope and joy, continue to share a piece of nature in every bouquet, and create love with every single creation. Remember that as a florist, you are a child of God, sharing God’s creation with everyone around you. 

Be unique. Be creative. Be like Leah.  

Khali's Many Firsts

Since Khali is a pandemic baby, there are so many ordinary things that he has not tried. Last weekend, we ticked off a lot of these items for him. 

We had dinner at Jollibee and he enjoyed his french fries and spaghetti. Trust me, he ate a lot and he really, really likes his pasta. 

We also went to Kinder City in NoMo in Cavite which was a stone's throw away from our place. Truth be told, Khali had an awesome time while his Dad and I struggled to breathe.

This made M and I realize that we need to exercise more to keep up with our baby. 

Yesterday, we made our way to Tagaytay and Khali had a major blast running around, soaking in the sun and fresh air. He even gamely posed with his Ahia Brent. 

I'm so happy that I was able to experience these many firsts with Khali. When B was born, I was so busy working that I wasn't really able to immerse myself in his firsts. 

I'm also very thankful that B grew up to be such a good person. He loves his little brother and takes really good care of him. 

I am blessed and grateful. 

Wednesday, May 4, 2022

Georgia and her Tarot Cards, your Cheat Sheet to Life

They said that life will always hit you in the most unexpected ways. It will wait for you to get back up then it’ll hit you again, knock the wind out of you just to remind you how much you’re not in control and how you should appreciate the good parts of life when it happens. 

Thankfully, there are small things that we can use to help us sort of having a cheat sheet for life and one of them comes in the form of Georgia and her tarot cards. 

Who is Georgia?

Georgia is not your typical tarot card reader. The first time I saw her, I thought she was a sultry singer about to go on stage with waves of hair flowing and dazzling you with light that seemingly surround her as she walked. Apparently, I was wrong. 

Georgia is a wife, mother, friend, daughter, and everything in between. She is also a tarot card reader but she’s not your typical tarot card reader. 

Instead of simply reading the cards, she lets her intuition guide her when reading the cards which give her a more holistic view of what the cards are saying. She also does not just read what is in the cards but feels and senses auras around her as well as visions which makes her more potent than your run-of-the-mill tarot card reader. 

This is because Georgia is a visionary tarot reader, astrologer, and Feng Shui consultant. She is also an eternal student of astrology, tarot, and the occult and is indefatigable in her quest for mystical knowledge. With all these passions, you know that you are in the right hands when you are dealing with her. 

Not a Shaman nor a Madam

Georgia wants people to realize that tarot card readers are just ordinary people who have extraordinary abilities to interpret the messages of your spirit guides, ancestors, and the Divine through the decks.

Unlike what is seen in the movies and tv shows, tarot card readers are not people just waiting to announce the doom and gloom of society. In fact, in the 20+ years that Georgia has been reading cards, it was only once that she actually read a card that truly signified death or the end of life. So no, she is no Professor Trelawney and there is no hex in every card reading. 

Does tarot card reading still matter?

These days, tarot card reading matters more because tarot is a tool for guidance, insights, and gaining a different perspective. It offers relief after situations, intentions or people have been demystified. It allows you to reflect before making serious and heavy decisions because tarot cards, when read masterfully, unveil potential outcomes and consequences.

However, the true highlight of a tarot reading’s significance would be the confirmation it gives to clients that what they already know in their hearts is absolutely true. This is priceless. 

Though tarot reading is not everyone's cup of tea or preferred method of divination, it is something that can benefit everyone, especially those who are brave enough to face the realities of life head-on. 

Advice to Newbies

Georgia has three important lessons that she believes every newbie tarot card reader needs to learn. 

  • Study the symbolism of the cards. Visual intelligence combined with intuition is very important in tarot reading because the traditional meanings you learn in books are merely keywords and key phrases. In the future, you will have to decode the images in the card in a way that would deliver accurate readings to your clients.
  • Always be ethical in your readings and practice utmost client privacy.
  • Be patient, but don't skip the learning methods and process. 

Exchange of Energy

Georgia constantly updates her learnings of tarot reading by becoming a member of organizations such as Builders of the Adytum and buying new books and tarot card decks. This is how passionate she is about her tarot cards and tarot card readings. This is also why she has started asking for a professional fee, to serve as an exchange of energy because she invests so much of herself, her time, and her energy into learning and reading. 

Whatever floats your boat, I recommend that you try tarot card reading at least once in your life. If you do decide to have one, it’s best that you go for someone of Georgia’s caliber so that you will have a legitimate card reading and you’ll be in the hands of someone who will take great care of you. After all, tarot card reading is basically a reading of your life, and your life, just like any life, should always be handled with care. 

Book a reading today here.  

Photos by Mark Balmores