Mouthful of Sunshine

Satisfaction in every bite

Banana Bread and Brownies – Kiwi Yogurt

March 20, 2013
Kiwi Yogurt, Philadelphia PA
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Caramel Delight (Pure Vanilla w/ Mini Caramel Cups, Caramel)
Homemade Banana Nut Bread, Double Fudge Brownie Batter w/ Walnuts, Brownie
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ImageThe Caramel Delight, a Kiwi Kreation, was simple and lovely, with Pure Vanilla yogurt and Mini Caramel Cups, all drizzled with sweet and sticky Caramel sauce. It was sweet, cold, and just nice!

ImageThe Homemade Banana Nut Bread yogurt tasted like the real thing and I loved it! It went nicely with the crunchy chopped Walnuts. It was still American Chocolate Week so naturally, I needed some chocolate. I did find the Double Fudge Brownie Batter yogurt was not sweet enough and a little too much like bitter chocolate. The Brownie piece really matched up nicely.

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Livin’ Off Convenient Stores – Wawa

March 19, 2013
Wawa, Philadelphia PA
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Premium Honey Smoked Turkey w/ Scrambled Eggs Breakfast Hoagie
Sausage, Egg & Cheese Pancake Sizzli
Rainbow Cookie
Mozzarella Sticks
Sweet Cream Cheese Stuffed Pretzel
Red Velvet Muffin
BBQ Roast Pork Hoagie
Cookies & Cream Donut
Iced Chocolate Caramel Latte
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ImageThere are just those days that Wawa is my go to place for breakfast, lunch, and dinner, and snacks, of course. This was just one of those days.

ImageThe Premium Honey Smoked Turkey w/ Scrambled Eggs Breakfast Hoagie was actually great. It was also National Poultry Day so turkey fit the bill. The eggs were hot and fluffy. The turkey was slightly sweet and thinly sliced. The roll was toasted and crispy on the outside. I had a little trouble finding the cheese but otherwise, it was a good breakfast hoagie – more expensive than food trucks but I liked the eggs a lot more.Image

The Sausage, Egg & Cheese Pancake Sizzli was okay. I find it odd to have actual pancakes with no syrup as a breakfast sandwich but it was lightly sweet and nice. The sausage patty was a little dry but had good flavour, as did the cheese. I just was not a fan of the preformed egg omelet.
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The Rainbow Cookie had a lot of chocolate candies, making it so colourful. I loved the crisp that a regular chocolate chip or chunk cookie that just has melted chocolate. I liked the lightly sweetened cookie dough but it was a little over-baked, neither crispy nor gooey. I prefer the latter.
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The Mozzarella Sticks had a nice thin batter on the outside with very stringy, chewy mozzarella inside. I loved the chewiness of the cheese and I could pull it so long without it at all breaking. I was disappointed that if I wanted marinara sauce, I had to pay for it.Image

The Sweet Cream Cheese Stuffed Pretzel was chewy with a crisp exterior. The inside was filled with delicious sweet cream cheese. It was a nice balance between the sweet filling and the salt on the pretzel. I wished there was more of the cheese filling inside. I love the light sweetness of it.Image

The Red Velvet Muffin was so red that it was food colour overdose. The muffin was moist and dense with a crisp top. Inside was filled with sweet cream that was a little too buttery. The muffin was good though, compared to some smaller independent cafes.Image

The limited-time BBQ Roast Pork Hoagie was overloaded with Baby Ray’s BBQ sauce. The sauce was great on the hot roast pork. The pork was juicy and decently tender. The BBQ sauce covered up the provolone cheese, though, and all the juices made half the bread somewhat soggy.Image

The Cookies & Cream Donut was actually good. I liked the cookie crumble with the frosting, and especially the cookies and cream filling. It was not too sweet but not greasy either. The doughnut was also fresh since it was still early in the day.Image

ImageFor National Chocolate Caramel Day and American Chocolate Week, I tried the Iced Chocolate Caramel Latte. It was decent, just milky enough and had the tastes of chocolate and caramel, although it was not very sweet. I liked how the ice is crushed ice so not large cubes. The whip cream with chocolate drizzle did not add much but it was refreshing.

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Melt that Ranch – Taco Bell

March 16, 2013
Taco Bell, Philadelphia PA
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Cool Ranch Doritos Locos Taco
Meximelt
Caramel Apple Empanada
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ImageI was really hungry after a day at a show and decided on something fast and cheesy. However, they did not offer the loaded grillers at the Taco Bell on campus, which is a total shame.

The Cool Ranch Doritos Locos Tacos was decent. I could not taste too much of the cool ranch flavour as it was not that heavily seasoned. The taco shell was crispy and the ground beef, lettuce, and cheese was all decent for fast food.Image

The Meximelt was more like a beef burrito but skinnier and full of cheesy goodness. It was nice with the pico de gallo to add a tangy freshness to the burrito.

ImageFinally, the Caramel Apple Empanada was great. Crispy on the outside, the pastry was really sweet from the caramel but not overwhelming because of the acidity of the apples. The filling was piping hot and so good!Image

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Specials, Specials, Specials – Dunkin’ Donuts

ImageMarch 13, 2013
Dunkin’ Donuts, Philadelphia PA
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Irish Creme Iced Coffee
Irish Creme Donut
Angus Steak & Egg Breakfast Sandwich
Angus Steak & Egg Wake-up Wrap
Big n’ Toasted
Hash Browns

Lucky Mint Donut
Cinnamon Cake Donut
Apple Cheese Danish
Triple Chocolate Chunk Cookie
Chocolate Chip Muffin
Corn Muffin
Caramel Latte Lite
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ImageWith a bunch of coupons in my possession, St. Patrick’s Day promotions, and featured steak menu items, I basically had a day of just Dunkin’ Donuts food. Well, it was nice to share sweets with a friend, but still, the sandwiches were filling. However, I love breakfast all day long so it was no problem. Image

The Irish Creme Iced Coffee, which I had with some skim milk, was creamy and sweet. I loved the traditional Irish creme flavour that was quite prominent, especially near the bottom of the cup. Image

The Irish Creme Donut was filled with a flavoured cream that was just as sweet and just as good. It looked very plain and unappetizing though so I think a warmer brown or a different colour altogether would have been nice. Image

The Angus Steak & Egg Breakfast Sandwich that I got on a plain bagel – just like their advertisements – was just okay. The bagel was nicely toasted and I liked the simple cheese and freshly fried egg. However, the steak was a little dry. Image

The Angus Steak & Egg Wake-up Wrap was the same, with a good toasty tortilla, gooey melted  cheese, half an egg patty, and dry steak. I really wanted some juicy meat so this was disappointing. 

The Big n’ Toasted was pretty good. The toast was nicely browned and thick enough. I liked the egg and cheese combination with the bacon. The bacon could have been a little crispier, I thought, and it was not as big as I had expected it to be, especially since the bread got moist again after being in the bag. Image

The Hash Browns were actually not bad, just too greasy. They were just the right size and crispy on the outside while the inside was mushy. It had decent seasoning, too. Image

The Lucky Mint Donut was certainly prettier than the Irish Creme one despite having the same, delicious filling. It was green and thus perfect for celebrating St. Patrick’s Day.Image

The Cinnamon Cake Donut was a little dry and a little bland on the inside. However, I did like the sweet cinnamon sugar, though it was messy to eat. 

The Apple Cheese Danish was nice and flaky, with some chew and density to the pastry. I liked the apple filling but could have used more sweet cream cheese inside to amp up the sweetness of the glaze and icing drizzle a bit.Image

The Triple Chocolate Chunk Cookie was not that good. I prefer an ooey, gooey, and very soft cookie but this was only slightly soft and moist in the center. The edges were a little crunchy hard for me although the different kinds of chocolate was nice. Image

ImageThe Chocolate Chip Muffin had a lot of chocolate chips inside but the batter was a little dry, especially on the edge. I did like the sugar topping on top though to give it more sweetness.Image

The Corn Muffin was like a cornbread and moist and crumbly at the same time. It was not overly sweet but you can definitely get that corn aroma coming through.

Finally, the Caramel Latte Lite had a faint but nice caramel flavour. It was a decent latte that I probably would not have gotten had it been for the coupon. I just do not think their espresso is as good as those at other places.Image

There are so many more options to choose from at the store in 30th Street Station. The one on campus is just a little limited. Both seem rather clean and accommodating though. So many coupons that it was all for great value. 

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Sweet n’ Sour – Kiwi Yogurt

March 10, 2013
Kiwi Yogurt, Philadelphia PA
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An Apple A Day (Green Apple Sorbet, Creamy Caramel w/ Caramel)
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ImageThis yogurt swirl is more commonly seen as Caramel Apple yogurt. I loved the tangy refreshing taste of the green apple sorbet, with green apple being one of my favourite fruit flavours! The creamy caramel could not have been more of a contrast in flavour with its creamy smooth sweetness. The caramel sauce – perfect to National Sauce Month –  just added to the stickiness, making it a perfectly sweet summer treat!

Kiwi Yogurt on Urbanspoon

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Sandwiches and Sweets – Starbucks

March 8, 2013
Starbucks, Shinjuku, Tokyo, Japan
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ラントブロート クロックマダム (Landbrot Croque-madame)
イタリアンソーセージとチーズのタルティーヌ (Italian Sausage & Cheese Tartine)
パンプキンタルト (Pumpkin Tart)
クッキー&クリームチーズケーキ (Cookie & Cream Cheese Cake)
チェリー&カスタードマフィン (Cherry & Custard Muffin)
キャラメルピーカンナッツロール (Caramel & Pecan Nut Roll)
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ImageDoesn’t matter where you are, you can be sure Starbucks will be crowded in the morning. Their food selections are certainly getting better and the ones in Japan have way too many interesting choices that doesn’t matter how often I go, I still could not try all of them. So, I had to be selective. At least sharing with friends gave me more opportunities to taste all this delicious food!

The sandwich, ラントブロート クロックマダム (Landbrot Croque-madame), was so tasty! A pressed panini, it had chicken, melted gooey mozzarella cheese, and an almost-runny egg. I really enjoyed the savoury combination. The cheese had great flavour and was not bland. The bread had a nice crisp exterior and soft on the inside. It was a great breakfast sandwich!Image

The イタリアンソーセージとチーズのタルティーヌ (Italian Sausage & Cheese Tartine) also had great flavour. I really loved the creamy white sauce that covered the sausage, potatoes, mushrooms, and cauliflower. The bread was a bit too crisp and hard for my liking and I was never a fan of potatoes. However, the other ingredients were all delicious.Image

The パンプキンタルト (Pumpkin Tart) was very good. It had a good pumpkin custard texture and the crust was crumbly but not too dry. Inside was cubes of kabocha, the Asian version of winter squash that is sometimes translated as pumpkin. The tart was not at all very sweet but rather had the hearty taste of the squash. The pepitas, whipped cream, and glaze added nice touches.Image

The クッキー&クリームチーズケーキ (Cookie & Cream Cheese Cake) was not as great as I thought it would be. It was a regular, albeit a very good and creamy, cheesecake with chocolate cookie swirled in. There was a chocolate cookie crust and it was topped with chunks of very crumbly chocolate cookies. It was not too sweet despite being all chocolate and cheesecake but I guess that’s the good thing about Asian desserts.Image

The チェリー&カスタードマフィン (Cherry & Custard Muffin) was actually decent. The inside was moist, dense, yet soft. I loved the large, semi-dried cherries that were very sweet. The custard could have been more custard-like. It was a little dry and there did not seem to be enough.

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The キャラメルピーカンナッツロール (Caramel & Pecan Nut Roll) was delicious and sweet. Finally, something sweet enough! Rather, it was where there was caramel drizzle that was sweet – and sticky. The pecans were good and crunchy. The roll was a little dry and the parts without caramel was not as good. With all the ingredients together, though, it was delicious.

So many choices, so many goodies! And all of this is only one country. Imagine the collection of Starbucks treats from all around the world. Now that would be a feast!

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Tokyo Delights – Starbucks

March 4, 2013
Starbucks, Minato, Tokyo, Japan
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さくらシフォンケーキ (SAKURA Chiffon Cake)
ザッハトルテ (Sachertorte)
さくらシフォンケーキ (SAKURA Chiffon Cake)
キャラメル&ウォールナッツパウンド フード (Caramel & Walnuts Pound)
さくらマカロン (Sakura Macaron)
フィローネ 春野菜&ミートローフ (Filone Spring Vegetables & Meatloaf)
ハニー&カスタードドーナツ (Honey & Custard Doughnut)
マンゴー パッション ティー フラペチーノ (Mango Passion Tea Frappuccino Blended Juice Drink)
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ImageI had been waiting so long to visit a Japanese Starbucks. They have some different drinks and a completely different food menu from that in the US. I was extremely eager to try out the sweet pastries, savoury snacks, and sandwiches. Unfortunately, they had sold out of the SAKURA lattes and frappuccinos, something I was really looking forwards to. However, there were so many other choices to choose from.Image

Sticking with their spring promotion, Casey and I decided first on a slice of さくらシフォンケーキ (SAKURA Chiffon Cake). It was light and aromatic, with the lovely cherry blossom fragrance. The pink was so lovely to look at. The cake itself was airy, light, and slightly sweet. The cream on top was the same, and the little cherry blossom was also good. It was such a delicate dessert!Image

The ザッハトルテ (Sachertorte) was a slight let down after the pink delight of that first dessert. The chocolate shell was crunchy and the chocolate cake inside dense. The cocoa flavour was very strong and rich, and not overly sweetened. However, the cake was just slightly dry and this was just not particularly special.Image

The キャラメル&ウォールナッツパウンド フード (Caramel & Walnuts Pound) was delicious as well, and perfect for celebrating National Pound Cake Day (despite the fact that I was out of the US!). The caramel flavour was light and the walnuts added a wonderful crunch to the otherwise moist yet dense cake. My favourite part was the caramel frosting on top, which was not as sticky or moist as some frostings, more like a fondant layer. It was sweet and very yummy though.Image

The さくらマカロン (Sakura Macaron) was not to be outdone. Delicate and sweet, it also had a distinct cherry blossom fragrance that was just so light. The cream inside was a little denser and sweeter, contrasting the cookies nicely.Image

The フィローネ 春野菜&ミートローフ (Filone Spring Vegetables & Meatloaf) was incredible. The baguette was a little tough, the way I like it. I loved the asparagus, peppers, and other vegetables with the gravy and melted cheese. The meatloaf was thin but provided a richness to the sandwich. The flavour was clearly an Asian take on a western food, something I am familiar with and like very much.Image

The ハニー&カスタードドーナツ (Honey & Custard Doughnut) was not outstanding but still good. The honey made it sweet and the custard inside was dense, egg-y, and quite sweet as well. The doughnut dough was actually made from wheat or grain flour, not just white flour, giving it a fuller taste.Image

To drink, I got the マンゴー パッション ティー フラペチーノ (Mango Passion Tea Frappuccino Blended Juice Drink). It was not very sweet at all, with the aroma of the mango and the passion fruit juice that was slightly bitter and very tangy. It was incredibly refreshing and a better alternative for just cold juice.Image

My first visit at a Japanese Starbucks was just fantastic. The food and drinks were wonderful, not to mention the great service. Despite taking some time to communicate to the baristas what I wanted, they were very patient and helpful. They also had very interesting liquid sugar for people getting regular coffee. Everything was just splendid!

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Tangy and Sweet – Kiwi Yogurt

March 1, 2013
Kiwi Yogurt, Philadelphia PA
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Sweet n Salty (Sea Salt Caramel Pretzel w/ Pretzels, Ghirardelli Chocolate Chips, and Hershey’s Sugar Free Chocolate Syrup)
Green Apple Sorbet

Pomegranate Raspberry Sorbet
Peach-Mango Tart
Toppings: Kiwi, Strawberries, Blueberries, Mango Boba, and Yogurt Chips
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ImageI love promotions, especially when they coincide with your plan to visit the place to begin with. That was how I found myself at Kiwi Yogurt yet again, and this time with two bowls in front of me.

The first was a Kiwi Kreation called Sweet n Salty, made with Sea Salt Caramel Pretzel yogurt and swirled Pretzels, Ghirardelli Chocolate Chips, and Hershey’s Sugar Free Chocolate Syrup. I love the sea salt caramel pretzel yogurt as it was sweet but still had that salty undertone, adding a whole different layer of flavor. The pretzels and chocolate chips added some crunch.

My next bowl was a mix of Green Apple Sorbet, Pomegranate Raspberry Sorbet, and Peach-Mango Tart yogurt, all topped with Kiwi, Strawberries, Blueberries, Mango Boba, and Yogurt Chips. The green apple was really sour but very light and refreshing. The pomegranate raspberry had a similar sorbImageet texture but was not as sour. It was very pink, though. Finally, the peach-mango flavour did not really match that of the two in the case of texture since it was not a sorbet. The fruits were quite refreshing.

Overall, Kiwi Yogurt always offers a good break from the tedious textbooks and online assignments. Their flours changes monthly, so next month, hear I come! 

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Crispy and Fishy – City Tap House

February 20, 2013
City Tap House, Philadelphia PA
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Steelhead Salmon
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ImageAn event with a club brought me to City Tap House again. This time, I tried the Steelhead Salmon, which came with celery root puree, horseradish, Brussels sprouts leaves, smoky bacon, and citrus caramel. The salmon had a nice crispy skin with a well-done but still nice filet. It was only a tad bit dry but there was too much salt on the crispy skin. The puree was nice, as were the Brussels sprouts leaves, but I could not taste the horseradish. There were not very much of any of the ingredients. The bacon and Brussels sprouts were a tad greasy, but I loved the tangy and sweet citrus caramel.

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Minty Goodness – Kiwi Yogurt

February 19, 2013
Kiwi Yogurt, Philadelphia PA
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Peppermint Patty (Ghirardelli Dark Chocolate, Irish Mint w/ Oreos, Ghirardelli Chocolate Chips, Hershey’s Sugar Free Chocolate Syrup)
Peanut Butter Salted Pretzel (Creamy Peanut Butter, Sea Salt Caramel Pretzel w/ Brownies, Peanut Butter Sauce)
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ImageI dropped into Kiwi Yogurt after class for National Chocolate Mint Day. I am not a fan of mint, except when it is paired with chocolate – sweet yet refreshing.

The Peppermint Patty is one of many Kiwi Kreations, with Ghirardelli Dark Chocolate and Irish Mint yogurts and topped with Oreos, Ghirardelli Chocolate Chips, and Hershey’s Sugar Free Chocolate Syrup. The Irish Mint was creamy yet very minty and refreshing. The Ghirardelli Dark Chocolate was not sweet enough for me, as I prefer milk chocolate. The mini chocolate chips and the Oreos added a nice crunch.Image

Not having had enough, I returned later for a cup of Peanut Butter Fudge Pretzel, made with Creamy Peanut Butter and Sea Salt Caramel Pretzel yogurts and topped with Brownies and Peanut Butter Sauce. This lacked a little crunch but I loved the chewy brownies. The peanut butter flavor was very strong but I loved the sweet and salty Sea Salt Caramel Pretzel yogurt the most. Everything was so creamy, rich, and delicious.

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