Chef – A Movie That Makes You Hungry

A chef who loses his restaurant job starts up a food truck in an effort to reclaim his creative promise, while piecing back together his estranged family.

One Hell Of A Cast:

  • Jon Favreau
  • Sofia Vergara
  • John Leguizamo
  • Scarlett Johansson
  • Robert Downey Jr.
  • Dustin Hoffman

You would really have to do pretty badly to screw up a movie with this cast line up, half of them from the Marvel Universe and the other half are great actors. I love any movie with Jon Favreau, one reason is because he is Iron Man’s Body Guard / Driver, and the other reason is he brought Iron Man to life and with that came all the Marvel Movies behind his success. This movie is a different kind of movie for from Jon Favreau and if you want to watch a fun movie with great characters and really good looking food then this is it, I honestly can’t recommend it enough. Its got all the pieces of a great movie with a deep and fun story, and Jon Favreau makes you want to go into the kitchen and do something crazy with the food. And don’t watch the movie hungry, you will end craving everything you see on screen.

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The combination of this reality tv show couldn’t be any better, it’s very rare that I like a reality tv show, most of them really annoy me. But this one is different, this one has food specifically burgers, which I love, and it has the Wahlburgs, the family of actors that I adore. Mark Walhburg, Donnie Wahlburg, and Paul Wahlburg with their mom have this restaurant and a burger franchise that they want to take across the world or to start off with Boston then everywhere else. Everyone knows Mark Wahlburg from every movie and this New Kids in The Block Days, then there is Donnie Wahlburg who is known to be the bad ass brother in Blue Bloods, always kicking ass and taking names. And then there is Paul the heart of the restaurant and working with their mom, and he is always in the Kitchen and the food just looks so damn good. Seriously I’m thinking that I will be driving there the next time I will be in New York, the food seriously looks amazing, the burgers look so juicy I’m hungry just thinking about it right now. If there is a reality show to watch then this is it.

Link: IMDB

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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Premium Choice – Every Type of Meat

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BBQ season is upon us and burgers are always the easiest choice for me. I am always on the look out for different meat vendors and this time around I found Premium Choice. I picked up some Rib-Eye Steak and some burgers, and the amazing Potato Bun that is very hard to find, they have other types of steaks available but this is always my preference.

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I have to pick up fresh cut cheddar cheese for burgers, that honestly makes a world of a difference, I really don’t like using Kraft Cheese since they taste horrible compared to how well the meat tastes. And this meat looked really good, and the smell was killing me, I forgot about the rest of lunch and only wanted to eat the burger right off the grill. I prefer using a gas grill when I’m BBQing, in my case its the Weber, coal grills give amazing taste but it’s hard to control the cooking temperature of the meat.

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I got the Potato buns out and they were perfect, at least now I will have a constant supply of good buns, the ones you can find in the Co-ops are ok, not great, they do the job but this is the burger buns that complements a good burger. Threw it on the grill for about 2-4 minutes to get it a bit toasted while I waited for the cheese to melt on top of the Burgers.

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What I liked about Premium Choice is that everything was online on their website and delivery was quick. They do same deliveries if the order is done online before 5 pm, or it would go to the next day, but in my case I ordered around 10 am and got it by 1pm, makes for a very simple process. I had the Steaks one night at home when I felt like a steak and a salad, that Rib-Eye really hit the spot, nice and tender.

Link: PremiumChoice

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Amsterdam – Food & Stops – Love This City

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For the 2nd time visitng Amsterdam I wanted to make sure I get to expolore it as much as possible, and every time I like it even more and after this trip I do love this city. It has the unique capability to combine classic with modern design in their structures which I love.

These are the list of places that we enjoyed on this trip and every time we are surprised, some places stuffed in these smalls streets, and those places turn out to be huge, there is no way to tell.

Restaurants:

  • Momo
  • IZAKAYA – Sir Albert Hotel
  • Brasserie Harkema
  • The Butcher’s Den – Burger Bar
  • Burgermeester
  • Starbucks The Bank – A very unique Starbucks location

The Red Light District is a must visit, it is just such a unique piece of the history and just something different to see. People walk around there like it is a zoo, well it is sort of like a zoo. Watching the women behind the glass with lots of other people looking to as we all walk by. It is a unique piece of Amsterdam’s night life that isn’t in any other city, not in this way at least. It is really worth a visit because you see some bizarre things and so many people just walking about there and the women in their underwear behind the glass even when it’s near freezing outside. There are different zones which designate where women from different regions are in, and there are areas for transvestites which is very freaky. You have to see it at least once, and you will laugh, there are some hilarious sights.

This is city is full of charm and I love to walk around the city, we ended up walking at least 8 miles a day because of the conference then we keep walking around after that. It is a city built for walking. But when you walk around you have to watch for a lot of things to make sure you stay alive, the streets are a sort of organized chaos. There are car lanes and bike lanes, but scooters can use the bike lanes but not motorcycles, then there are the trams. You have to keep your eyes open for the Cars, Trams, Bicycles, Scooters, & Motorcycles. And there were some close calls because sometimes the sidewalk and bicycle lane sometimes looks similar and these guys fly.

The city has a certain charm with a lot of character and the people are genuinely nice, and it is one of those places that you have to explore in Europe.

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Junkyard

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There is a lot of burger places opening up in the Village and a new Village opening up on the other side. Lots of burger places opening up on the other side of it and a few disappointments, but Junkyard isn’t one of them. Its located on the other side of Upper Crust Pizza and simple to find for those who are familiar with the village.

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The place is simple and has gritty style to the restuarant, but I got food to go and didn’t bother eating there since I wanted to watch TV at home. I saw the menu and it’s a simple selection, burgers, hot dogs, fries, and couple of other things. I ordered the Junkyard Burger which is a Double Patty with Caramelized Onions & Cheddar Cheese. Got the Chicken Tenders, Fries and Chilli Fries as well.

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The burger is a bit small but that seemed to be the perfect size, juicy and the perfect bite. The fries were the normal thin type fries that I like, but the chilli fries weren’t that great and I wouldn’t order that again. The Chicken Tenders were a hit thought, I really liked them and especially the Honey Mustard Sauce. Overall the place is a great quick stop, there are better burgers but their burgers are honestly pretty good and I will repeat. You can find them on Talabat or call them directly on 23901022/33.

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Burgers & Meat – The Kuwait Selection

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I always like to grill steaks, burgers, hot dogs, and all other kinds of meats, its something that I love doing and especially since a few specialty places opened up in Kuwait. Grilling is an art form, and I know everyone loves ordering their meat well done but thats so wrong, you don’t get the taste of the steak or burger, and sometimes in Kuwait they burn it so it drives me nuts. So I prefer to cook my own when I can, and if I can’t then I go to either OFK or Meat Co because they are the only ones that get it right every time. But if your like me and want to grill at home, then these are your choices for meat supplier, each one has their own taste and some are better then the other but I can’t just can’t get enough of the grill so I will always keep trying to grill whenever I can.

Specialty Places (Ranked Top To Bottom):

  • PrimeCuts – Best Steaks Available from Every Cut you can think of, my favorite is the Rib Eye Wagyu 200 Gram, and the burgers are really good, they come in any size, you can have the Wagyu or the normal, but I prefer the normal because its juicier.
  • Fuddruckers – They only have burgers and their burgers are very juicy when cooked right, and their bread is out of this world. It’s a matter of prefrence but I prefer PC burger over Fudz.
  • RareCuts – I recently saw them and wanted to try them out, their steaks aren’t bad but aren’t as good as PrimeCuts for some reason, I don’t know why even though I tried different steaks, PC was better. The burger I had from them was too salty, and strangely chewy, and I cooked two burger differently but they just didn’t get the right consistency for my taste.

Super Markets

  • Lulu Hypermarket & Sultan Center – Before the specialty spots opened these were the burger sources for decent burgers and their burgers are still good, as long as you order burger meat with about 20% fat 80% lean so you can get a juicy burger when on the grill. When ever we are in need and nobody can provide these guys always seem to get it right. And my supply for lamb chops is always from Sultan Center, they always have the New Zealand Lamb Chops in stock and they are the perfect choice for the grill.

    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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    Jones The Grocer – Dubai

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    A lot of restaurants open in Dubai and usually in or around some sort of mall and over the recent years that is Dubai Mall since everyone flocks over there to that mall. Rarely do you explore other locations, but thanks to MFW he took to me a new location a little while back, and thats Jones The Grocer, a singular building next to Jumeirah’s residential area just off of Sheikh Zayed Road. Literally nothing around it but a small shopping complex with a few businesses and a gas station.

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    You walk in and it is genuinely a unique restaurant/cafe/store, they have a very nice food selection in their menu. Loved their salads and sandwiches, I have been there close to a dozen times over the past 6 months, I make it a point to go there and try something new when I go.

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    It’s not your typical place, different types of seating in different sides of the building, with the cafe display cases in the middle, and the outer areas of the restaurant has cooking and food related items for sale from high end coffee machines to cook books and Turkish delights. Literally something for everyone in that place, and if you are cheese connoisseur you will enjoy the selection they have. Try the greek salad with steak and the chicken sandwich, they are very good dishes, and even the meat dishes are good there.

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    If you have been there then you are missing out since it out there not next to anything you feel like you are in a unique hip place. Feels like a place that should be in New York or San Francisco, it has this unique vibe to it and the best thing is that the food tastes just as good as the place looks.

    Link: JonesTheGrocer

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    JUMEIRAH MESSILAH BEACH HOTEL & SPA

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    It took so long but it was worth the wait, the only real luxury hotel has opened in Kuwait at last. We have been talking about it, seeing it, and even saw when they first branded it Jumeirah everyone was excited. For once we will have a hotel which is at the level of a Luxury 5 Star Resort from Dubai based on the management and the quality of a hotel that had no expenses spared to build it. Kuwait only has some decent 4 star resorts such as Movenpick & Hilton Manguf, or business Hotels such as Four Points Sheraton, Holiday Inn Downtown, Courtyard Marriott. But none of these hotels are even close to what a five star hotel should be, and the Sheraton & JW Marriot should be demolished and completely rebuilt, they are just too old. Walking into this hotel you know that they really worked on it and are doing everything they can to bring a world class 5 star resort with the management and this amazing property. I was amazed when I walked in, its the soft opening and anyone can go to it, its officially supposed to open in October.

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    We went their for breakfast early Friday morning and we were surprised to see so many people at the hotel. It was an impressive entrance and even more impressive when you walk out to the pool area, it is seriously beautiful, you forgot that you are in Kuwait, you really feel like you are transported to a resort with everything you want at your finger tips. The pools looked so good that I really wanted to jump in, especially the pool close the seaside, they even made a beautiful cove for people swimming at the hotel so you don’t get the rough seas, too bad the water is still not clean enough to swim in but thats beside the point. They even have an amazing ramp to take boats and jet skis down but I’m not sure if that is available for guest use but I would hope they would let you.

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    They opened up 8 restaurants and varying cuisines which I am very much interested to try. We had breakfast at Garden Cafe, the presentation was nice and the breakfast was good, but the other restaurants like Pepper and Olio seem to be the highend restaurants, Pepper is open now which I hope to try soon and Olio will open in a month and I want to try it. The Tea Lounge is totally for women, that place is so posh and proper with biscuits and teas of every kind, I can see who this place is targeting.

    Restaurants:

    • Olio – Italian Cuisine opening in June
    • Salt – Seafood Cuisine opening in June
    • Pepper – Steakhouse open now
    • Arabesque – Arabic food restaurant with shisha, open now
    • Garden Cafe – International cuisine, also open for breakfast
    • Mint – Beachfront all day casual dining
    • Aqua – Healthy lite bites, open in June
    • Tea Lounge – International tea and coffee lounge
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      There are 400+ Rooms and several Chalets for guests, but right now they have only made available 100 Rooms and the Chalets. There 3 Bedroom, 4 Bedroom, and a 5 Bedroom Chalet starting at 500 KD a night which have already been booked for three weeks out. And most of the guests that I saw staying there are Kuwaitis to my surprise. Of course prices aren’t completely set yet and of course it depends what day and when they are in demand, but the Chalets looked very nice, and they have their own private entrances. We didn’t have a chance to check out the rooms but if the quality of the what we saw says anything I’m assuming its going to be just as good, but with varying tastes. I know where I will be sending guests when they come from out of Kuwait, and I might even try the place when I have a chance to stay there, it would be interesting.

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      Now for the part that surprised us was the Ball room, its huge with a separate entrance for the guests. They really thought about the ball room, it can be separated into three different parts or used as a whole. Its seriously huge and the go to location for weddings be it male or female is currently Al Rayah Ball Room in Kuwait City, I know for a fact that women are going to go nuts when they see the size of this place, I would assume that its going to get booked up very soon with a lot of weddings. It also has a lot to do with the catering and I know for sure they are working on it and they currently have a huge line up of cuisines so it will be interesting to see how soon people can book for weddings.

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      If you haven’t been to Jumeirah Messilah Beach Hotel then you really need to check it out, it is above and beyond all expectations. I was surprised by what I saw and very happy, and I think most everyone has. The contact details are below.

      Phone: +965 2226 9600

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