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Thursday 26 July 2012

Hotel Review: Hilton Maldives/Iru Fushi Resort & Spa

WOW! would be the least of words when it comes to Hilton Maldives at Iru Fushi Island. The entire island is the hotel with 11 restaurants and bars, luxury spa, 2 tennis courts, 2 badminton courts, training facilities, 360 degrees of sun and sunset experience, butler service, water sport usage and scuba diving centre.

There are 3 different types of villas at the hotel (no hotel rooms); Garden Villa, Beach Villa and Water Villa. The Water Villa that we had is something that everyone should at least once in a life time try. You will get a view over the clear blue lagoon; the Water Villas offer breathtaking views of the Indian Ocean. You can enjoy exotic marine life float past from the glass floor panels or soak up some sun from your own private 20 sqm sundeck before cooling off with a refreshing swim. Unwind in the luxury bathroom with i-spa bath and rain fall shower as you enjoy views of the ocean and stay entertained with the Bose home theatre system.

Outside of all the luxury and the amazing facilities at Hilton you will get a very good service as a guest. Firstly you will be greeted upon arrival at the airport to Hilton’s private lounge with a complementary massage, breakfast and refreshing treatment. When arriving to the hotel with the private plane, your personal service manager/butler will great you. I really enjoyed this because Hilton has even thought of the language barrier. If you are Chinese, Russian, American or German they will find you a service manager that speaks your language. Amazingly great service!

Since we stayed in the Water Villa we were invited to a executive mingle on the second evening, here we could meet up with the General Manager and his executive staff for a chat over champagne, cocktails and some aperitif before dinner.

The hotel also has a adult pool area were children are not allowed. This is a very good system for couples that want to enjoy a glass of chilled champagne without having small children running around.

At Hilton Maldives the staff has thought of everything and we enjoyed every bit of the hotel and its amenities. The service, staff, food & beverage, facilities, activates and the island itself was just breathtaking and amazingly good.

Hilton Maldives/Iru Fushi Resort & Spa
P.O. Box 2036, Noonu Atoll, Maldives
Tel: 960-656-0591

Final Grade: 4,5 out of 5

Written by Alexander Yü

Wednesday 18 July 2012

Restaurant Review: The TRIO, Hilton Maldives/Iru Fushi Resort & Spa

Enjoy a glass of chilled white wine in the warm breeze of the Indian Ocean. Love the view from your amazing dining table on the terrace at the pier by the ocean. Get served by some of the best staff in the world at Hilton Maldives resort & spa and just love the food from the TRIO restaurant.

Eat the amazing food that combines local ingredients with Mediterranean flavors and sink in the atmosphere of the surroundings. Please try the local Snapper tartar or the seafood soup as starter. For main we would love to suggest the grilled tuna fish or Local White Snapper.

The dessert is amazingly enjoyable and will be a gastronomic experience and perfect ending for your evening. Do try their Chocolate Fondant or the Trio Tarte Tatin.

If you are having problem to select wine from their large wine list, please do not hesitate to ask for their sommelier. He will recommend something that will perfectly suit your individual meal.

As a whole the restaurant brought quality, service, perfect performance and great atmosphere to its guests and it is highly recommended by Western Taste. We even enjoyed the cocktails as a pre dinner drink made from a very service minded bartender. Tip is to try his Strawberry Mojito.

Hilton Maldives/Iru Fushi Resort & Spa
P.O. Box 2036, Noonu Atoll, Maldives
Tel: 960-656-0591

Restaurant Grade: 4,5 out of 5

Written by Alexander Yü
Photos taken by Alexander Yü and Sofie Yü

Friday 13 July 2012

Article: KVINT Brandy

It's been said that Transnistria is lacking in things to be proud of, but it's still young, only a teenager, and doesn't have much of a history to draw upon. Transnistria is a breakaway territory located mostly on a strip of land between the Dniester River and the eastern Moldovan border to Ukraine with a capital called Tiraspol. Since its declaration of independence in 1990, and especially after the War of Transnistria in 1992, it is governed as the Pridnestrovian Moldavian Republic (PMR, also known as "Pridnestrovie"), a state with limited recognition which claims the territory to the east of the river Dniester, the city of Bender and its surrounding localities located on the west bank. The Republic of Moldova does not recognize the secession and a state of civil war is still in effect, though a cease fire is prevalent.

The one thing Transnistria can be proud of is its Brandy KVINT. The acronym KVINT is composed of the first letters of the words in the Russian phrase “Brandies, Wines and Beverages of Tiraspol”. Locals consider KVINT a national symbol and the factory is even shown on the 5 Transnistrian Ruble banknotes. Founded in 1897, the company is the oldest still-operating commercial enterprise in the region. Its annual production is approximately ten million liters of alcoholic drinks. The company also makes wines and vodkas and is one of Transnistria's largest exporters. Visitors to its factory can sign up for daily tours which end with a product taste sampling. Western Taste has made such a visit and can highly recommend it.

The Brandy itself is quite good and you can choose from a range of 17 different varieties. If you want an everyday brandy we recommend you try the KVINT 5 y.o. which is made from high-quality wine-distilled spirits, aged in oak barrels for at least 5 years. It has typical brandy taste, mellow, with light tones of maturity and floral hints.

Doina is the brandy you should choose to accompany a cigar on a Saturday night. VSOP brandy was first produced in 1957 and to this date Doina is made from “eaux-de-vie” spirits seasoned in oak barrels for at least 9 years according to traditional production process. Inner harmony and well-developed bouquet are combined with its virility. The golden and amber color of this brandy is brilliant and gorgeous.

If you really want to celebrate you should feast upon some Prince Wittgenstein brandy. This product is named after the great Russian Army commander Prince Wittgenstein. After his retirement he made a profound contribution to the viticulture and winemaking of Eastern Europe and Central Asia. It is made from meticulously selected top-quality eaux-de-vie aged in oak barrels for no less than 50 years. Some specially treated spring water and local sugar syrup is then added. This Brandy is a real treat and Western Taste can absolutely recommend you try it.

Do yourself a favor and try this golden spirit from a remnant of the Cold War!

Written by Kristian Kull
Posted by Alexander Yü

Wednesday 4 July 2012

Wine of the Month: Marsannay Rosé Domaine Clair-Daü

Very easy to drink rose wine with Pinot Noir grape that gives round tones of flowers, lingonberries, cherry and citrus fruits. The acidity is fresh and the wine is elegant and gives a easy finish. An amazing wine from an amazing producer in Bourgonge.
The wine goes perfectly to chicken, easy dishes like salads, pork dishes and fresh fish like sushi.

Nr Systembolaget: 95048
Price in Sweden: 129 SEK
Price in China: Not available
Price in US: Approx. 13 USD