An Exclusive Lunch with Anton Mosimann, OBE, DL

Monday, January 30, 2017



I like fancy meals, but I never imagined it could look like this. 

I was invited to a luncheon by the Swiss Embassy a couple of days ago to be in the presence of Anton Mosimann, a world renowned Swiss Chef and officer of the Order of the British Empire (OBE). I've heard his name a couple of times already (US food shows and news) as he's done countless events for the British Royal Family including the important banquets they've hosted and Royal weddings too. He's not much on TV (though he has some in the Brit networks) but if you ask the who's who of the culinary world, he's up there. 



Aside from being in countless successful hotels, he's also responsible for getting 2 Michelin Stars for Dorchester's Restaurant which is a first for a hotel restaurant outside France - plus countless awards to boot.


Switzerland and the Philippines is currently celebrating the 60th year of our diplomatic relations. They're doing several events to mark this momentous occasion and inviting a Chef of his caliber or being part of an audience was such an honor. I actually was excited to meet him in the flesh. Here's what happened on video.


Here's what we had during the afternoon.


Pretty exquisitely served hors d'oeuvres that's got foie gras, savory tarts, parma ham and bread sticks.


My blogger friends, old and new, had several wines paired with the meals and for the good ol amuse-bouche. Had a couple glasses while socializing, our glasses get filled up fast because Marco Polo had pretty good service. It was red and white wine from the Valais region, we knew we had it coming!

Anton Mosimann is known for his bow ties, a different one each time he's working. They gave us one as a souvenir.

It was a huge table, we were about 50 trying to send cheers, personal and non verbal greetings across the hall. Seated were officers, dignitaries from the embassy and people from the Swiss Education Group. For those who don't know, the Swiss is known for having some of the best hospitality schools in the world! The Swiss Education Group is a network for these world class institutions and universities done by world class educators. 

Now if you've wanted to study with the best, maybe you should consider going the mile literally and check out courses at http://www.swisseducation.com. They've got the best educational systems, a mix of practical and theoretical applications that have already been able to produce some of the best culinary professionals the world over. Aside from that, Anton Mosimann had this huge library of cook books, references, tons of stuff you would have never seen but he chose to share it with the public... to the industry that he loves so they planned to put these things in one place and properly called it "The Mosimann Collection". It's now housed at the C├ęsar Ritz Colleges Switzerland campus in Le Bouveret, in the Swiss canton (like a state in the US) of Valais. If you plan to do your studies there, take a look at what they could offer you. I mean the best Chef already has all his things there, so just imagine the possibilities. 

Now of course we had our lunch. This is what we had!
 
Marinated Salmon with Dorset Crab, Spring Onion, Lemon Dressing. It had the right amount of acidity, the salmon and crab was so fresh that it actually tasted sweet. It was divine!

They came as legit as they can be. This is Chef Anton's Risotto ai Funghi, a popular dish that he cooks for the royalty. Damn good. Pardon the words, but it was really that good. The seared fillet of lamb with Rosemary sauce and market vegetables was also served, but didn't get to the photos. It was gone in 5 minutes LOL! Speaking of which!

This is the Passion Fruit Souffle and Yoghurt Ice Cream. I like how the hot and tangy souffle fights with the sweet yoghurt. It was fruity, and the smell permeates to your nose when you take a scoop out of the ramekin.

We ended the meal with brewed coffee, tea and some really guiltless Petit Fours. How can you not love something that looks like this no?


Thanks to Chef Anton Mosimann, OBE, DL, Frank Reichenbach General Manager of Marco Polo Ortigas Manila and his team of Filipino chefs who made it possible to put these lovely items on our plates. It wasn't just like introducing his skills as a Chef, but more of telling us the standard that they have and how the most simplest ingredients become a little more magical in Swiss hands. I must say, I am impressed, I am but honored to be in the presence of a great man who did a lot for his country and his profession. 

I'd like to take this opportunity to thank the Swiss Embassy, HE Ambassador Andrea Reichlin for having us (and personally saying hi!), to the always gracious Deputy head of Mission Mr. Raoul Imbach, Mr. Herve Findeisen from the Swiss Education Group (whom we met there) and of course everyone who made it possible for us to have the opportunity to be with THE Anton Mosimann in the Philippines and Marco Polo Ortigas. Thank you!


COW

For more information about their activities this year:
SwissEmbassyManila
Swiss Embassy Manila
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Visit their official website

http://www.eda.admin.ch/manila

Some Cool Alternatives for Your Vices




While there are still a lot of people who still don't how to totally quit from smoking cigars, there are some good alternatives in the market that can be used so you can stay away from these vices. There's a lot of things that can take you out of the habit and perhaps even lessen the recurrence of going back. This is good news if you want regulate your levels of nicotine intake. You would be surprised at how many things that can take you away from this habit.

You should always remember, smoking damages our lungs over time. It can be first or second hand smoke, but the effect is quite the same. The usual smoke that comes from cigarettes have toxins that can really hurt the human body. Although we're quite glad to note that cigarette alternatives are much milder than the tobacco kind.

What are cigarette alternatives?

Cigarette alternatives are objects/devices that filter toxic substances. Some of which can prevent us from inhaling the harmful smoke whenever someone does it wherever you are. To name a few, we've come up with a few things that are being used in this day and age. Check out our list below!

Vape - Almost everybody that you might know these days carry around one so they can kick the smoking habit. It's trendy, fashionable, one that you can carry around easily just like a stick. It's called a Vape because it's primarily a vaporizer. It needs plain of flavored juice which can dissipate in the air as water vapor. Surely, you've got friends who have it in their pockets or bags already. There are cases where it helped, but some are still skeptic as there probably is no great amount of data to back up claims. Though there are success stories that have proven quite phenomenal, you probably know some of your friends who did it and got out of the smoking habit right?

Bongs - This is an apparatus that basically converts substance to vapor. It works like vape but is different from it. Unlike vape, it's not that portable. Although one advantage is that it doesn’t need batteries to work. In fact, there's a lot out there that have similar functions and can be easily available online. In fact, buying a bong online is quite easy. It takes a few minutes to even do it.

Do Cigarette Alternatives Help?

If you think about the tons of people who swear about the effectiveness of these alternatives, you won't be second guessing suggesting them to your friends and peers. It has helped a lot of people to quit smoking cigars. It may be case to case, but most of them have transitioned to using the alternatives like vape. Though not everyone is getting the same effect, people have felt that it is milder compared to the effects of traditional smoking. That's quite assuring.

Nicotine is highly addictive and taking it out of your system takes a lot of work. Quitting cold turkey might not be that effective but with the use of these devices, there's a greater chance to have a healthier disposition because you're already doing something about it. It's fun too because you can play around with it while chasing the vapors. They say it's like cloud chasing and we know a handful people even go the mile and do games with it. You probably have seen several TV shows and news agencies that have already made an enormous amount of improvement and transforms it to art. Who would have though it was possible right?

There are a lot of advantages from using these alternatives. All you have to do is keep an open mind and see how it has greatly affected the lives of others who made an effort to quit the habit of smoking. You should start quitting from smoking now!



COW

Converse x Miss Universe

Sunday, January 29, 2017




We went to the Converse headquarters in the Philippines to learn about good news. A few days ago, some of the candidates for the Miss Universe competition held in Manila took time off their busy schedules to do a little crafting, using a few tools to make their own dream converse shoes. These shoes were all base canvass and to make it worth their time, the people from Converse Philippines would actually be holding an online silent auction to benefit their chosen charities "Positive Action Foundation". Selling these shoes must have been heartbreaking for the them because after all, it's a one of a kind thing and Miss Universe doesn't happen every year in this part of the world. 

Here's the collection on video, enjoy!

This will benefit HIV/AIDS patients under the foundation's care and hopefully, they'll be better. Check out Converse Philippines' Facebook page on the next dates of exhibits. 


KUMAGCOW
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Smart Celebrates The 65th Miss Universe


Hey guys and gals! I know you've seen me update a lot on IG @kumagcow and on Facebook.com/kumagcow about the Miss Universe competition lately. I'm even uploading fast because Smart is so strong in the MOA Arena. But here's goof news, you don't really have to travel all the way down south or spend a few thousand pesos to watch the actual event. 



If you have a mobile phone and are currently subscribed to the BIGGEST network, you're going to be hooked up as they're streaming it live as it happens on http://www.smart.com.ph/life. Yes, it's the Miss Universe 2016 Finals and Coronation night this Monday, January 30 at 8AM. You can follow updates by clicking on the hashtag #SmartMissU for BTS and real time happenings in the pageant.



Well it doesn't end there because aside from bringing you the streaming telecast of Miss Universe, they're giving away FREE 100MB for subscribers who will register with GIGA SURF 50, ALL OUT SURF and UCT 50 on dates January 28-31, 2017. Now isn't that good news? 

I'll also be covering the Coronation night dressed rehearsals today so if you wanna stay updated, you know what to do! Follow @kumagcow on IG and Twitter, or Smart's Social Media channels! Or just click #SmartMissU to check out our posts! 



KUMAGCOW
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Fujifilm Launches New Cameras, Lenses and GFX 50S



Tomoyuki Fukura of Fujifilm Philippines says "The GFX has very high image quality. Thanks to the image processor, you'll get quality that of a full frame camera and more." It's a great year because they're launching new products, especially the GFX 50s which is a medium format camera. Higher peformance, ultra high image quality, now Fujifilm is taking medium format to be almost equal to 35mm fill frame digital cameras. These new cameras have a new lens series called G Mounts, it'll be the best for commercial and print jobs. The reason why this is good is because if the X Processor Pro, which makes it 1.7x better than your full frame camera. 



Fujifilm has great GF Lenses which can get you super high resolution images and Fujifilm adapts the use of physical dials outside the body making it easy and accesible to adjust settings, so don't worry if you are already using the previous models because you'll feel right at home. There are also accessories like the EVF adapter so you can see your viewfinders in different ways. Focus points alone is 425, impressive in that feature alone. I'm sure you'll have no problem if you're into spot focusing, those creamy BOKEH's would be easy to acheive!



The powerful cameras need lenses that would maximize its potential and Fujifilm delivers. With the remarkable success of the compact and stylish FUJINON XF35mmF2 R WR and the XF23mmF2 R WR lenses, Fujifilm Corporation sees the need to have a prime lens that can take portraiture to another level. It features 9 elements in 7 groups including one aspherical ED lens plus an inner focusing system. Thanks for the superbly engineered stepping motor, the lens performs brilliantly fast and does silent autofocusing. It's made generally of metal parts so you get that premium feel.
The XF50mmF2 R WR lens is weather and dust resistant. It can even operate in -10°C weather so there's no problem if you're taking it outside the country and vacations where there is snow!




Fujifilm GFX 50S has softer shadow tone which means you can still see details inside shadowy shots, which you won't usually see in other cams. Higher tonality means more vibrant colors without losing details in photos. It's good, it'll cost you half a million pesos for the camera body and the lens. But may I say, it's totally worth it!


KUMAGCOW
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Perfect Chinese New Year Selfies with VIVO V5 Plus

Saturday, January 28, 2017




Isn't it so nice to see people celebrating outside and enjoying one of the most culturally diverse celebrations? It's the year of the Red Fire Rooster and for Filipino Chinese or most of us, it's a time to actually spend time with family and friends. The usual dinner table becomes so filled with fruits, lucky charms and just about every single family member that's dear to you. Now in these celebrations, it's a must to take selfies so you could at least take these precious moments with you and upload it on your social media channels for all your other relatives and friends to see. With the recent launch of the VIVO V5 Plus, the brand promises you the PERFECT SELFIE. Their phones have been designed and developed to take advantage of the world’s first 20 megapixel dual front camera, one that can take your selfie game into the next level!


Shoot at your best angle. Show that jawline or turn a bit and elongate that neck. It's a sure fire way of looking thinner, get your best features pronounced and even make you look younger in a shot. Make sure you practice at home, that's what the mirrors inside your bedroom and bathrooms are for.


Choose the right background. You would never want a place that's busy and full of people. You'll get spotted, but people would be distracted at your photo's background. So make sure you take shots like a pro with those creamy bokeh's that the VIVO V5 Plus is known for.


Find the light. It takes out most of the lines on your face, or perhaps make your photo look a less noisy. Take your friends along on a drive, or just stay indoors and feast on your new year's buffet.
Whether it's this Chinese New Year or just about any occasion, make sure you take photos nicely because you always would want something good when you look back a few years from now. You wouldn't want to be the source of laughter the next time you come back to your country. Right people?

So make sure you get the Perfect Selfie phone Vivo V5 Plus and take it everywhere you're going. Don't be shy to get that angle, even if you plan to just shoot for your social media channels, make sure you phone would be at par with the world's biggest brands because we all need that perfect selfie anytime of the day with the good piece of hardware starting with your phone. Change could be done in one, two theree!. This Chinese New Year, take the perfect selfie the easy way with the Vivo V5 Plus. The perfect selfie phone has also is here, take it for a spin!

Happy Chinese New Year!


COW

For more information about their new phone:
VivoPhil
Vivo Philippines
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Visit their official website

https://twitter.com/vivophil

Broken Mirror : Inside A Chinese Marriage Book Launch

Friday, January 27, 2017



I'm spending the afternoon at the Manila Grand Opera Hotel in Sta. Cruz Manila for the book launch of Broken Mirror : Inside A Chinese Marriage by Aurora Teo Mei Ling and Coylee Gamboa. Actually, just hearing about the topic already shocked me because just the mere thought of talking about it seems to be taboo in Chinese culture. You get the feeling that if you do, you'll get shunned or ostracized by the greater populace. I was a little worried, but thought that if my hunch was right, it would be a little empowering to see this all out in the open. It might spark discussion, controversy yes, but perhaps also empower women who might fall into the same situation. So before the book reading, author Coylee Gamboa quirps "You may not know it but this is a phenomenal launch. This is a life story, not new, as a lot of women has the same life. This is a tell all, the pain is so raw that it pains me to listen to her story. After a difficult life, she told me it's not enough that we write the book and put it on the book shelf and I want my life to mean something, even if everyone said she was not worth loving. She has endured abuse, she was shipped to Hong Kong and suffered more with a marriage plus the reality of accepting a second family. She tries to save the marriage but it was not meant to be. She tells how she kept hope, the want to dream, as a heroine who finds her voice to move Filipino Chinese traditions and customs, and hopes to have this literature become a movie."



 They ask "Who is Aurora?". She defies tradition, divulges the secrets of the Chinese marriage. During the reading I heard lines of affairs, asking "How many times will I let him do this to me? How many times will he break my heart? I didn't know tears were drawing on my cheeks, felt my mind was separared from my body, and I still went home. No matter how shattered I am, my kids were my refuge. I was barely able to live from day to day, I escaped to my bedroom and drank my sorrows. I plunged to drinking, and said to my husband "I heard Vivian is pregnant" and his silence was an admission of guilt. He said it was over but how could she get pregnant? He was very apologetic and remorseful, but I could imagine he could feel my pain. I didn't know what to think anymore, should I have expected fidelity? Did he even want to get away from her? I hoped we could be in love with one another, settled for friendship and companionship. He promised to end the affair, paid her off for the price of peace and wanted her out of the picture. But I could not help but see how he tried to make amends, but I was a carpet worn out trampled upon regularly."

That's just a part of the story. It was quite interesting to hear that this is actually from real people. Would you stay in a loveless marriage? Would you stick it out with a person like in this chinese marriage?

The book is available in all Fully Booked branches at BGC, Powerplant mall, Greenbelt 5, Mall of Asia, Alabang Town Center, Century Mall, Eastwood Mall, Greenhills Promenade and other leading stores nationwide.


KUMAGCOW
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Why is VIVO the perfect Selfie phone?

Thursday, January 26, 2017



Surely there are tons of people probably asking why VIVO claims that they have the perfect selfie phone. Some may or may or may not agree but perhaps it'll be enough reason why we'd give them that title if the evidences speak for themselves!


A world class athlete trusts the brand. He's not just your ordinary NBA player, he's Stephen Curry. He's probably more popular to kids than Jordan and I said that without batting an eyelash. If a man of his stature already trusted a brand like VIVO, I don't think he'd be someone that would endorse something that he's not using. The video endorsements says it all and he's happy!



The BOKEH effect on evenry shot on this phone caused by dual cameras in the front makes this a selfie phone. The second 8MP in the front makes it creamy, really deep depth of field so all the attention goes to the subject (YOU) so think of how wonderful your selfies would turn out. It'll be the talk of the town!


Face Beauty 6.0 makes sure you look good in every angle. Highlighting your assets, hiding common flaws, you'll love how you're gonna look like in every shot and even get your skin tone and condition fixed when you see the need to. This is a smart phone after all!


No more dark and "against the light" shots because of the VIVO V5 Plus' ability to do soft lighting would take care of those shadows who plan to ruin your selfie shots in different lighting conditions. See how different it looks like when compared to the other brand. That makes it perfect everytime.

VIVO V5 Plus takes your selfie shots to another level and with it's features you can never go wrong. Pre order has started and if you want to get one NOW is the right time! It's time you experience the Perfect Selfie phone!


KUMAGCOW
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JAY-R Gets GOLD Record Award for ELEVATED Album

Tuesday, January 24, 2017




The last time I saw JayR was at the 2nd WISH Music Awards at the Araneta Coliseum. He was awesome on stage together with other RnB artists and has continually proved that since we've seen him on different prime afternoon shows. That again is going to be cemented as his recent album called ELEVATED turned GOLD status just a few days ago. He was given the award during ABSCBN's ASAP last January 22. With sales reaching 7,500 units in both physical and digital album sales, PARI and the Optical Media Board confers this award to the nation's RnP Prince. He accepted the award togethe with Homeworkz Ad Prom Officer Perry McDonald.

JayR finds this as a humongous acheivement and says "I truly feel great about receiving this gold record award under my own label. All the hard work, blood, sweat and tears that I put into it finally paid off. It was all passion which kept my drive high. I am strongly advocating for spreading original music. This just proves that originality and creativity is more important than statistics and numbers. Being an indie music label, we don't have a huge budget like other big labels. You have to do the legwork as far as distribution, promotion, recording, mixing, mastering, photoshoots (for covers), music video shoots, paperwork, permits and a lot more. I want fellow artists to realize that original music does sell. We don’t have to do remakes or covers in order to sell music. It’s proven here at HOMEWORKZ. People are looking for new creations. Classic songs will always be classic. But new songs are the future of OPM and I fervently hope they do more."

He quips "I would love for ELEVATED to hit platinum status too! I'll be promoting this at the same time as my new album this year. I hope to reach the next level, fingers crossed. I handpicked  my team at Homeworkz and we are a solid group. This is a team effort and I truly couldn’t have done it without them. I would also like to take this opportunity to thank all the music fans out there for keeping the OPM industry alive. We intend to make more music for your ears, hearts and souls. Thank you for allowing us artists to have the best job in the world."

If you don't know, I've heard JayR has helped a lot of artists in the industry. His music and his hunger for music has taken him to a lot of places. I fervently hope he continues to be blessed and continue to be an instrument to the industry so he could help more people... in the place he loves, the Philippines. 



KUMAGCOW
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Diabetes in the Philippines

Monday, January 23, 2017



 I live in a household where the word DIABETES is a norm. Sad but true. My lineage seemed to have all concentrated on this vicious chronic and lifestyle ailment; and it has claimed the lives of a lot of my relatives, I could count more than 10 just in my lifetime. It's scary and with my Dad and Mom's genes passed on to me, I could likely be a candidate if I don't take care of what I eat, my activities, and perhaps what I do everyday. There are various reasons on what causes this, but it is primarily a chronic disease. As some say, it is also a lifestyle disease. Just a few days ago, they announced quite disturbing data about it, which seems to confirm that it is happening in the Philippines. Just hearing that made me realize it's much closer than home, because I feel too that it is at an alarming rate. 


According to a study by the International Diabetes Federation, the Philippines is one of the world's emerging diabetes hotspots. Imagine, 4 Million Filipinos are suffering from Diabetes as we speak. That already puts us at the world stage with even a couple of million more that are unreported, or perhaps people that are unaware. IDF also reported 3.51 Filipinos at the age of 20-79 have it, and 51,127 have passed away because of it. Again, that's scary.

This chronic disease occurs when the pancreas does not produce enough insulin or when the body cannot effectively use the insulin it produces. So if it can't properly control the amount of sugar in the blood, you're in big trouble. It doesn't matter if you're male or female, rich or poor, everyone can be a candidate and it all boils down to one thing, you need prevention rather than cure. Data from the Food and Nutrition Research Institute from the Department of Science and Technology's 8th National Nutrition Survey indicates diabetes prevalence has risen from 3.4 percent in 2003 to 5.4 percent in 2013. You can just imagine how much that would be this 2017 if we had current data. 

What's also alarming is that a great number of Filipinos who suffer from it are ages 50 to 69. Most of which are wealthy and also living in urban communities. The Type 2 diabetes mellitus (T2DM) on the other hand is both a genetic and a lifestyle disease. It is also linked to old age, unhealthy diets, lack of physical activity, obesity (oh yeah you sit too much on the couch and in front of the computer!) and urbanization, all of which contribute to this disease. To control this, Doctors would recommend insulin to take care of the blood glucose levels. If you take care of that, you can get to have a normal and healthy life. Today, there are available syringes, insulin pens and insulin pumps so people who suffer from it could do what normal people would do. Of course, it all has to be monitored regularly so you and doctors would know if you have risks of developing hypo/hyperglycemia. Make sure you ask your doctor regularly if you are at risk, and do the annual/regular checkup if you can. As they say, knowing is half the battle. Try to live healthy as much as you can, and please trust your body.

Think about it.

COW
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