Even though the holidays are technically winding down, I sure hope your heart and hungry palates continue to be filled with the spirit of the holiday season every single day!  

This week, my family is on the go. My parents are in Montreal, Canada to visit relatives. My sister is in New York City with a group of friends. Our yellow lab, Google, went to his fancy doggy hotel and here I am, holding down the fort at home with my orange cat, Simba! Since everyone is hustling and bustling this year and we aren't able to all be together when the ball drops at midnight, we decided to celebrate the New Year early by having a family feast at one of our favorite Chinese restaurants, Sichuan Gourmet in Framingham.

Tina Gao Sichuan Gourmet As you can see here (and there are dishes that didn't fit into the picture), we ordered way more than we were able to consume in one sitting!  However, as always, the bonding over food was priceless and the meal was so delicious (especially if you like it spicy)! We ordered whole tilapia with Sichuan chili bean sauce, Chinese eggplant with yuxiang sauce, sauteed pea pod stems with fresh garlic, beef stew with spicy chili sauce and cabbage, Sichuan cold noodles, seafood medley with sizzling rice and fried tofu with potato stir fry. And everything here is authentic Chinese.

As 2014 approaches, I wish all of you a healthy and happy new year filled with abundant joy, health, love, happiness and fun surprises! 2013 has truly been an amazing journey with incredible new horizons that have allowed me to explore my lifelong passions, especially for broadcasting, food and travel. I'm filled with so much gratitude and I'm looking forward to 2014 with gusto!

If you have restaurant recommendations you'd like me to review in 2014, or have questions/comments, please e-mail me.  I would love to hear from you!