photos: Ikenna Nwaogu

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December 2017 | Vlogg

Bonjour! I hope you're all doing well. I'm so sorry for the mega late upload of this - I haven't been very well over the past week but my December vlog is finally up!! It's all about my Lucerne time at Culinary Arts Switzerland Campus and I hope you all like it! Missed filming and editing so much but sadly lost my camera.



photos: Ikenna Nwaogu

Today me and a friend discussed about how to maintain an active blog. Creating one is easy. But in order to maintain an active one, we need to find inspiration and motivation so we can share our ideas and thoughts to everyone. Without unique and eye-catching posts, the public won’t notice what we have to say or show. Losing confidence in your own blog and going idle will cause the rest of the world to ignore it like a speck of dust on the ground. Most of the time, it’s our audience who motivates us to keep on going. We can always play it safe but eventually we have to take risks and hope that the result is worth it. Maybe it’s the controversial posts that will instantly boost your followers, likes, and popularity.

I thought about how creating and trying new food or recipes is like taking a risk. Pushing yourself to do it and knowing the consequence can either be really bad or fantastic is like making a sushi roll for the very first time or trying a UFO (Unidentified Food Object). For example, during Thanksgiving, I tried to make a raw pumpkin pie and half-failed. The pie’s appearance was enticing but it didn’t taste very good, so to the garbage it went! I also made purple yam (sweet potato) mousse and it was surprisingly a success. Through these experiences and many other embarrassing ones, I learned to take risks and accept failure or success.

Trying out a type of food or restaurant that’s new to you can also require you to take a risk. Sometimes the food in the restaurant just isn’t quite right or maybe that fruit or vegetable has a funky taste. Going to a restaurant you have no idea about can require you to make decision that will either waste or make good use of your money. Recently, I tried a restaurant: Le Soste al Mare in Como, Italy. Although I read good reviews about it, I was not a fan of seafood and large portions of fish. However, their oysters was delicious and I ended up finishing the plate Another day, I went to a Japanese Restaurant and decided to try out their menu. I’ve eaten enough sushi in my life to be a judge of what’s good or bad. Unfortunately, both the food and service was great and amazing – the sushi was good and tasty, and the salmon tartar tasted like okay.

Even though I did not eat pasta or pizza during my stay in Como, Italy. I do still have the appetite and hunger to discover new eateries! After all, you can’t find new places to eat and tell your family and friends all about them without taking risks. The most important lesson out of this is that through success and failure, you can always gain something positive from it. Maybe it will take a few tries to master that one dish you’re making, but in the end, you can improve from it and make each one better than before.



Photo: Lina Benatti

Now here comes the 5 steps to finding the meaning of life. Why is it even important to find the answer to what is the meaning of our lives?

Those who use their passion and their talents to best comes into its own, is also happier. They are more satisfied with their lives. They are safer. They are more balanced. They are more themselves. More true. You can now do the test if you have found what is the meaning of your life. You, who know clearly that you have not yet found the right place, get this five important questions that can give you the answer easier.

1) Who am I?

When you get to know yourself well and know what you are good at, what your obstacles are, what is easy for you and what is more challenging, it is also much easier to choose your path.

2) What do I do?

What do I want to do in life? Not just how I want to enjoy life, but how I want to help others. We all have a need to get help, that what we do has a meaning for any or many. Exactly how that contribution appears to be based on what is your inner passion. What really makes the whole you will fully to your right, to your talents are used, your passion, mission and vision fulfilled. If you do not really know this, you can think about what you have to contribute and to teach or share to others that really gives you such pleasure that you would do it even if you have not got the money for it just because it gives you so much joy and energy.

3) Who am I doing it for?

What are you contributing to? Your children? Your ideal customer? What is it? Have a clear picture of those who take part of your talents and what you do.

4) What do the people want or what they need?

What are the needs? What are the problems? What is it they want? That you love to give them. As you are one of the best to be able to give them.

5) What do they get out of it you give them? What changes in them when you give this to them?

This is a very important issue and that is what will give you the answer to it now you have chosen this answer, the task, if it really is your life's purpose. Do this sentence you write the answers to these your heart beat a little extra? Do you have a "rush" through the body when you realize that you help with this? Do you feel proud? Joyful? Caffeinated and happy?



Is there a process you go through to create a new dessert?

The internet is always a good tool. I find pictures/desserts that I like and build from there. Other than that I like to pull inspiration from traveling and dining out at different types of restaurants.

What are your most and least favorite ingredients to work with?
“New ingredients” has to be the answer for both. New ingredients are hard to work with. Sometimes you don’t know your boundaries when combining new flavors. New ingredients are also my favorite because you’ve opened up new opportunities and flavors.

What are your top three tips for success as a pastry chef?
Patience. Attention to detail. Respect.

What city would you most like to visit on a culinary adventure, and what tool, ingredient, or book would you take with you?

Anywhere in Spain, still haven’t made it yet. I might bring a spoon with me, but I would not bring an ingredient, I would be searching for more.

What advice would you offer young pastry chefs just starting?
Follow directions, have patience and keep clean/organized. Some great advice I was told once a long time ago, that may not sound appropriate is “Keep your head down, mouth shut and ears open”. I live to those 3 rules.

There are many aspiring cooks out there like myself who are not beginners but haven’t yet reached the professional level; what advice would you give us to take our pastry skills to the next level?
Internship, Internship and Internship . The best way to gain experience is to do it. Some classes would be good too, to understand the technical/scientific background to it.



Culinary Arts Academy Switzerland. photo: Nuno Acácio

"Truly appreciating what life has to offer is one of the best things you can do for yourself."

Lucerne, Switzerland. 17 December, 2017. John Henry Mendoza, a Filipino-Swedish aspiring pastry chef student from Culinary Arts Academy in the heart Switzerland is Rocking his new school with his Filipino-Swedish inspired sweets.

I had such an Amazing time in Lucerne, Switzerland. New people, new friends, well not just friends. I mean friends for life. Just a magical moment if you just think about how you suddenly have alot of friends from all over the world. Myanmar, Korea, Thailand, Vietnam, Sweden and more!

“Be adventurous! It will be worth it”

Imagining those crazy and fun time moments I had at Culinary Arts Academy Switzerland. Feels like it was yesterday!

There are so many memorable moments that took place during those 22 weeks and they can never be forgotten. It's really hard to list just one.

I am now on the train while writing this down on my way to my Internship. A 5-star Hotel, The Chedi Andermatt. Surrounded by the natural, year-round beauty of the Swiss Alps.

Check out there website for more info:

Big thanks to Mr. Levi Kritikos, who help and lead us chose the right way. Aswell as Sylvie Bugnon and Mr. Love Starke. Alot of great inspirers, sorrounding by possitive people and self enriching students. Im never going to be able to forget them and will always keep them in mind when faced with a tough challenge in life.



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**Thank you, Daniel Wellington for sending me this watch as a present! I am extremely grateful for it!



We had such an amazing fun time today with our Best Sports & Leisure teacher Ms. Natalie, teaching us tricks and how to spin on the ice. For some it's their first attempt in ice skating. We only fell down a few hundred times! Spending 3 hours in the ice with a hot chocolate drink, cold hands and wet pants.

Such a magical moment. The giant lighted Christmas tree, the cool air, the music, the fun! 🎄