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The Art Of Chewing Betel

The Art Of Chewing Betel

A Taste For The Areca Nut

"Even a Dog can have White Teeth," - Old Vietnamese saying

Chewing areca nut is an increasingly rare custom in the modern world. Yet once, not so long ago, areca nut – taken with the leaf of the betel tree and lime paste – was widely consumed throughout South and Southeast Asia by people of all social classes, and was considered an essential part of daily life.

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Spices

Spices

All The Spices Of The Indies

“And there come to these marts great ships, on account of the bulk and quantity of pepper and aromatic spices that are available there...” - Anonymous Greek, Periplus Maris Erythraei, 1st century AD.

Pepper is just one, if perhaps the best known, of the many spices used throughout the world to preserve or flavour much of the food we eat. Spices – for such is the generic term applied to these culinary wonders – are the highly esteemed fragrant or pungent plant products of tropical and sub-tropical regions.

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Tea

Tea

The "Serviceable Herb"

’The King of China reserves to himself the duty on a certain herb which is drunk infused in hot water. This herb is sold in all the towns at high prices. Water is boiled and poured upon it. The drink so made is serviceable under all circumstances’. - Sulayman Abu Zayd as-Sirafi, 851 CE

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Jim Thompson: Thailand’s Silk King

Jim Thompson: Thailand’s Silk King

The Life and Legacy of James H. W. Thompson

On a warm Sunday afternoon in March 1967, James H. W. Thompson, a successful American businessman and well-known resident of Bangkok, disappeared whilst on holiday in Malaysia’s Cameron Highlands. To this day his fate remains unknown - he simply walked out of the cottage where he was staying, and never came back.

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Chiang Mai’s Shan Connection

Chiang Mai’s Shan Connection

Thailand’s Colourful Poy Sang Long Festival

Probably because of their remoteness from Bangkok and their high demographic presence, the Shans of Mae Hong Son Province are confident, culturally secure, and very sure of their place in the scheme of things. Like the central Thais they are devout Buddhists (albeit with more than a touch of animism included), and their flourishing temples, redolent of Burma and of Shan State, have long excited the curiosity of visitors. The Shan ordination ceremony of Poy Sang Long, held in Mae Hong Son each April, is also a popular attraction. Yet Shan people are not just to be found in Mae Hong Son. In recent years they have also been making their cultural presence felt in Chiang Mai, the capital of the north.

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Banyan Tree Samui Opens Cool New Tuk-Tuk Bar

Banyan Tree Samui Opens Cool New Tuk-Tuk Bar

Colin Hinshelwood, CPA Media, May 24, 2019

Banyan Tree Samui resort has opened what might be the quirkiest if not the cutest bar in Thailand — a cocktail caravan remodeled from a classic 1960s tuk-tuk.

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Sweet Nothings Across Asia

Sweet Nothings Across Asia

Colin Hinshelwood, CPA Media, April 11, 2019

Colin, our resident gourmet, discovers a mouth-watering selection of delightful desserts from some of the very best hotels in Asia.

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9 Best Bars in the Far East for Father’s Day

9 Best Bars in the Far East for Father’s Day

Colin Hinshelwood, CPA Media, June 14, 2019

This Father’s Day, why not steer Dad to something he’d really like - a good old-fashioned lip-tingling drink? If you happen to be travelling in the Far East at this time, then you might consider dropping the old man off at one of these swanky watering holes – places where the bartender can sling a decent martini while those on the barstools chat sports, cars, and which tidy tipple is coming next.

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