Peacock – The Disappointment

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Long waiting lists, months in advance to book, this is the process that everyone heard about when the peacock reopened after being shutdown for years. For the longest time The Peacock was the best Chinese place for a very long time, and people would fly in just to taste the amazing food. Over the years the taste deteriorated towards the end but they said with the launch of the revamped hotel the staff were for the Peacock were top knotch.

As I called to make the booking for a few people it was about two weeks ahead to get lunch on the weekend and 4 weeks ahead to get a dinner for more then 6 people. So I just booked for a few of us to try it out and I was honestly very excited to go to. We walked in and got seated within 5 minutes and it is exactly the same setting that it was 10 years ago, just a few touches, some people like that it stayed the same I was hoping that they might have decided to changes things up but at the end all I care about is the food.

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  • Spring Rolls & Prawn Toast
  • Crispy Noodles & Sweet And Sour Chicken
  • Peking Duck

Very simple order, straight forward and every Chinese place has the same sort of items, and I remember ordering at this restaurant since I was a kid. The appetizers came out quickly but the main course took over 30 minutes to get to the table and they mixed up our orders with the table next to us.

Overall the taste of the food was a bit disappointing and too oily for my taste. I was expecting it to be a bit more refined then your hole in the wall type Chinese place. It just wasn’t up to par, and the waiting list to get a reservation is getting shorter, and in my case I canceled my next reservation. The service wasn’t that great, and the food was disappointing not what I was expecting for a place with so much history.

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Phoenix Palace – The Need For Chinese

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Late night food and very hungry, the only thing that could satisfy my hunger while in London was going to the Phoenix Palace. I go there and the place is packed but there is always space, and still the people from years ago remember me and gave me a nice spot, they know I like to order a good amount of food even if it was for one person, and I thought in London I usually walk around enough to justify burning off this food.

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I wasn’t going mess around with the food or try something new, I was hungry and I wanted to go to a late night movie, so my options were clear. And I knew exactly what I wanted.

  • Vegetable Spring Roll
  • Prawn On Toast
  • Hot & Sour Soup
  • Vegetable Crispy Noodles
  • Half Peking Duck

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That was a good amount of food and I love that one item keeps coming right after the other, people can complain about Chinese food but when its good its really good. Honestly I haven’t found any Chinese place better then in London and there are quite a few good ones there. After the meal I was hoping not to pass out during the movie but luckily enough it was an action packed movie so I was wide awake during the whole thing, and even then I had some sweet popcorn.

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Zain Home Router (LTE/4G Speeds)

I had a chance to get my hands on the Zain router, running on the LTE/4G frequencies in Kuwait which still hasn’t been fully certified from the Ministry of Communications. So people are asking the main reason for the delay is MoC, they have everything deployed for a little while now, but as usual politics is what stops things in Kuwait, but MoC is a totally different story.

Getting my hands on it I had a bit of skepticism but I did try AT&T’s 4G services and I have seen how fast it is and its scary fast. So the first thing I wanted to do is test it where ever I can, and this case I tested it at work and friend’s places and my home. Overall I am impressed with the hardware, it is solid and gets a lot of signal, decent speed even when it is low signal, and that was the important test for me, even with low signal it was getting decent speeds around 10 MB.

It’s a Huawei modem, looks good and simple, 4 Ethernet ports on the back and right now the services are not open to the public. The worst signal I got was ranging from 8MB to 16MB, up to 32MB to 42MB. Those are some very scary speeds, and surfing the net feels lighting fast, I do love fast internet. And for 33 KD a month honestly its not too bad, but the cap should at least be 200 or 250 GB not 80 GB

Pros:

  • Gets decent speed even with bad signal
  • It doesn’t have to be next to a window like Mada so you can place it inside your house and it will work
  • It has reached 42 MBPs with me, which got about 4.1 MB down with downloads

Cons:

  • The Cap is 80GB, thats nothing compared to the speed
  • You can buy more space but its overpriced in my opinion
  • Its not consistent at times, but I think they are just ironing out a few kinks in the system

Based on what speeds can be reached you can reach which is 2.1 MB/s to 4.1 MB/s you can use up your 80 GB cap in 11 to 6 hrs depending on your speed. And previously the 21 MBps had a 60 GB limit from Zain so logically it should be at least 120 GB based on their original capping scheme. Overall I think the cap is ridiculous but they are going to do it then a person should get a good bang for their buck with a 250 GB limit.

If you reach the cap you can buy an extra 25 GB for 12 KD or 5 GB for 3 KD, overall I think the pricing is off and not proportional but at least they give you an option to buy more data. For a 15 month contract you get the first three months 50% off and the device for free with 33 KD per month after the first three months. Overall the package is pretty good.

Testing In Shuweikh

Sometimes it would hang a bit, in an odd way and torrents would slow down even when the surfing speed is still high so its a bit surprising. The main issue is consistency, nothing beats a fiber connection but if you don’t have the option then this is the next best thing for surfers. Some gamers will like it but if you care about your ping then this is a bit on the high side. So its great for surfing and certain amount of downloading, not for heavy internet use, but its the perfect back up to your home internet if something goes wrong.

Testing in Miseela/Bidaa

In my case I have crappy land lines so I depend on WIMD and I’m honestly very happy with them even though they are a bit congested still at least a solid 12 to 15 MB and hitting 20 MB in the evenings with no cap. If you can have fiber thats always better but then again this device will really do the job because 4G coverage is supposed to be all over the country by the time it rolls out.

Testing In Fintas with One Signal Bar

Overall I think its an excellent product but they are working out the kinks, it did really reach those high speeds but we have to keep in mind nobody is on the network and it isn’t commercially available so until it is then we can judge the real speed based on the number of users, I hope they have the band width to accept the number of users who will get on board. I’m not sure when it will go commercial because the issue isn’t with Zain its with a governmental entity and you can never guess when they will be done.

Speedtest with VPN on, overall not bad, surfing speed feels quick

Chinese Zodiac Trailer – The Last Big Action From Jackie Chan

I’m a huge fan of Jackie Chan and I think I have seen a huge majority of his movies, I don’t think I have seen them all since he has made so many movies, many more then most actors. I always look forward to his movies or any movie he is in, be it action, comedy or drama. And this looks to be one of Jackie Chan’s best, an action packed movie with an interesting plot and Jackie Chan doing what he does best.

This is the first official trailer of Jackie Chan’s last BIG action movie Chinese Zodiac’s official trailer as releases in Cannes on 18 May 2012. Chan says he spent seven years working on the movie — writing, producing, directing and coordinating fight scenes.

“For the last ten years I’ve been choosing the director to direct me. This one I direct myself.” he said. “I hope this movie, 20 years later, people still remember it. For me, for the audience, for my future, for my history — it’s very important.”

The Hong Kong-born actor, 58, said: “I’ve been fighting and doing action films all my life, you’ve got to find a point to stop. With this movie I’m the director, I’m the writer, I’m the producer. So okay, I think it’s a good time to announce that it’s my last big action movie.
“I would still do action movies but not a big one like this.”

Food & More Good Food

I love food, there is no question about that, and I thought about all the most memorable places to eat in the region that I would want to eat again. So this list came together as I was getting hungry at night, and I think I want to visit them sooner rather then later. This is why I have a problem dieting, I love food too much to stop eating.

UAE

  • Zuma – It’s in Dubai and its going to open in 2012 in Beirut, and I’m a big fan of their amazing food
  • Hakkassan – Just opened in Emirates Towers
  • Caramel – DIFC really tasty and great selection
  • ToroToro – South American Steak Dining
  • Le Petite Maison – Always good food
  • Meat Co – Always a good place to eat
  • Cippriani – Abu Dhabi – Amazing food, seriously delicious
  • The IVY – Just like London

Kuwait

  • OFK – Can’t get enough of their food!
  • Slider Station – Those sliders hit the spot
  • Prime & Toast – Large Menu & its Open 24 hours
  • Q Cafe – Really Tasty Food
  • UpperCrust Pizza – Damn good thin pizza

Beirut

  • Zinc – Very good steak & always a buzzing place
  • Le Stay – Trendy French Cuisine
  • Momo’s – Fusion Morrocan Cuisine, love the place
  • Muneer – The best Lebanese restaurant, really damn good food

Lack Of Quality Chinese Food

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I am a huge fan of Chinese food and love having it whenever I have the chance. But everytime I have chinese food in Kuwait I am a bit disappointed, its never what I expect it to be and something is always lacking. I know people talk about Peacock as the best Chinese Restaurant in Kuwait, but in my case its a disaster I have gotten food poisoning from them twice and in one case I had to stay in the hospital for the night. The other fast food places usually have one or two good dishes but thats about it, and they are not very consistent. I go to London or the US and love the Chinese food, its amazing and so satisfying, every bite of it tastes good. But in Kuwait they just can’t seem to get it 100% right and I usually eat and then regret eating the food because it wasn’t worth it and I just don’t feel good after the meal. I have tried most of the places in Kuwait and they aren’t good even in Dubai I haven’t found a place with good chinese food.

Phoenix Palace – Best Chinese Restaurant in the UK!

When ever I’m in London I make it one of my top priorities to go eat at the Phoenix Palace and to make sure that I am very hungry. Its very easy to find, just off of Baker Steet & Marlyben Road. Walking in I noticed that they have expanded the whole place to a larger entrance and more tables, and still the place was full. They seated me on a four person table even though I was on my own. It was around 12:30 in the afternoon and the place was packed, business people, families, and a lot of Chinese. You know its a good sign when people from the country of cuisine go there to eat, and they always know what to order from what I have seen at Phoenix Palace.

Right off the bat I knew what I wanted to order, two appetizers and one main course for my meal for getting on the plane. Sesame Prawn on Toast, Vegetable Spring Roll, and a Peking Duck. They have the best tasting Peking Duck I have ever had in my life, I have been going to this restaurant for over 5 years now and its still as a good as every time I eat there, and I’m never disappointed. I usually want more people to come with me so I can order more dishes and share it with people, I never had any dish that I didn’t enjoy, the chow meins, the noodles, the rice, chicken and shrimp dishes, all so tantalizing, you feel as if they are tickling your taste buds. If you ever have a chance while in London and your craving Chinese food then this place should be the only place to visit.

Phoenix Palace Chinese Restaurant
5 Glentworth Street, London NW1 5PG
Tel: 020 7486 3515
Fax: 020 7486 3401


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Phoenix Palace in London

There is a long standing relationship that I have with this restaurant, I have been the best Chinese food in this restaurant for over 5 years. Its just off of Baker Street, I have been to it with friends, and I have been to it countless times on my own. This is the place the Chinese go to have authentic and tasty Cantonese Food in London, and it has all the dishes you could possibily imagine. The staff are effecient and know their food, and they are very fast, expect good service and friendly people. Over the years I have seen a lot of the same faces and they have a stringent process for the waiters to progress within the restaurant and a lot of these people have been there for years. The place looks like small restaurant from the main door but it is huge, with a private room if you need one and they are expanding. Almost every time I go to London I stop and eat at this place, even if its just a 10 hour lay over I leave the airport to get some of that amazing Peking Duck. I have had dreams where I taste the Peking Duck and remember Phoenix Palace even though it might have been over a year since I have gone to this place.

The food is just on another level, you have a very large selection. I love their prawn toast, spring roll, and hot & sour soup to start off with. And if I’m on my own I tend to have a full Peking Duck just for myself. When I eat there on my own every time I take my laptop with me and watch some anime, and recently a few tv shows and the staff doesn’t mind at all and there are always those who are curious. The staff is always friendly, when ever I’m low on Coca Cola they bring another one quickly, and by the time I’m done I am extremely satisfied and walking outside to the cold London air feels good. I walk around for a while after that with my backpack and head phones listening to music and pointing my camera as I walk. This is probably hands down one of the best no nonsense Chinese Restaurants I have ever been to and it has only gotten better over the years and hopefully many more years to come.

Phoenix Palace Chinese Restaurant
5 Glentworth Street, London NW1 5PG
Tel: 020 7486 3515
Fax: 020 7486 3401


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Review: IP Man

Ip Man is adapted from the life story of Ip Man, the grandmaster of the Wing Chun style of martial arts. This film is the first important record of the master’s life.

I watched a preview about this movie and it got me really interested. A true martial arts story with history at the heart of it. I will not go into the story of movie since it should be seen by every person who likes Asian movies or martial arts.

The best part is how the action is choreographed, I get annoyed with the recent movies how they make you dizzy with the confusing camera angles. The fight scenes were genuine, shots showing all the details, no camera tricks.

Also this movie didn’t focus totally about martial arts, it tells a story about a man who fought for what he believed in, even when it meant not fighting. They show some part of the history of China when invaded by Japan, and what he did to make a stand when he had to.

The later years IP Man spread the art of Wing Chun openly. And one of his most famous disciples is Bruce Lee.

Link: IMDB

Rating: