Ducati Panigale 1199 – A Beautiful Affair

One of the most beautiful machines that I have seen in a long time. Ducati do know how to design their machines, I think most Italians do, its rare to see an ugly machine out of an Italian firm and this case the 1199 Panigale is the top of the breed. I have had my eye on this machine for so long, thinking about it, always crossing my mind whenever I see the color red or hear a v-twin engine revving in the background.

I had my chance to try out the Ducati 1199 Panigale when I was in California, it was the best possible setting to try this beautiful machine, and a ride in the mountains and just by the ocean to cool after a long fun ride. I thought they couldn’t make the 1098/1198 ride any better, I was wrong, it takes precision input, gives you the ride feedback and claws on the group like it’s life depended on it. I took every corner with confidence and even when I didn’t know what was coming around the corner and I went in a little too fast, this bike would just keep on gripping, I had few moments when I was almost paralyzed with fear but luckily years of practice and an amazing machine got me out of a possible bad situation.

I have to say that having an 1199 is like having a relationship with a feisty Italian woman, you just don’t know what your going to get out of it. When I rode this bike, its the same exhilarating feeling that I got the first time I rode the Diavel, excitement just shoots through my spine, they did everything right. I thought this is the machine of my dreams, but sometimes dreams are just too good to be true, there was just one fault, one damn thing that Ducati screwed up and for us living in the Middle East, its going to be a little hard to ride this machine, well for me at least. Even when riding in relatively cool weather in California, I would get a little hot under the legs, and especially the right leg, turns out all the heat is being emitted from the engine block, specifically from the piston head area which is devastating. If its getting hot here, how will be in Kuwait, seriously, at every stop light my legs would get hot, and I wasn’t too happy about it, if you are moving, and this machine moves fast then your fine, but if you are stopping then you are going to be in trouble, it gets a little too hot down there.

I for one loved the 1199 and everything about it, if it wasn’t for that one fault I would get one as soon as possible. For now I don’t want to park a motorcycle in my living room just to enjoy staring it, but if I’m going to to do that then the 1199 would be at the top of the list. Don’t get me wrong, it is probably one of the best machines I have ever ridden, but they made just one mistake, I hope somehow they can correct in the next iteration of this beautiful machine.


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Pizzeria @ Harrods

One of my favorite places to eat while in London and it has its own sort of fame over the years and some people would wait over two hours just to get a seat when its really crowded. When I got in line there were a lot of people ahead of me, but luckily I was on my own and I told the Italian Maitredee and he had a seat ready to go.

It was my last day in London, my flight is later at night, I finished up most of my errands and I was going to stuff myself silly on this food before taking off. I love the smell of the place and they made it bigger then it used to be but the service is still good, and they have tables now but I only love eating at the counter.

I didn’t even need to look at the menu, I ordered four things:

  • Roca Salad
  • Margarita Pizza
  • Lasagna
  • Coke with Ice & Lemon

I didn’t leave a bite on the plate when I was done, and I had a huge smile on my face. Honestly the food tasted better then I expected, I always think that over the years it wouldn’t maintain their level but somehow they got even better. Of course at the time in the beginning of July the place was packed with people from the GCC (Mostly Saudi, Emirates, and Qatar). I just came for the meal and it was worth it, even right at this moment I’m thinking about that Pizza and Lasagna.


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Q Cafe @ The Village

The Village has turned into one of the hot spots in Kuwait, and so many restaurants have opened up with a few more to go. The place is always packed but one of the hidden gems is Q Cafe and I think it is the best restaurant there by far. Its tucked in the back and just recently they have expanded the parking there which is much better but still there are a huge amount of people going their daily. The atmosphere of the place is trendy and classy, and the outdoor seating is great for when the weather was sunny and chilly, now its a little bit too hot.

The Cuisine is an Italian Fusion which is very interesting with a lot of items to choose on the menu. By far their choices of pasta items are fantastic and I loved their Gnocchi and especially their risotto. Their Chinese Chicken Salad is out of this world, I have picked it up a few times to go because I honestly love it. You can tell that they put a lot of effort into their food and really do work on it, I’m one very picky person and I have tried a lot of items on their menu and love them all. Their burgers are pretty good, I wasn’t expecting it to be from an Italian Fusion place but still it was good.

Their desert is something out of this world, I’m not a desert person but the items they have are worth trying. Whenever I go there my diet goes out the window I make sure to spend a bit more time at the gym if I know I’m going to pass by Q Cafe. I have been there probably 5 times this month and I can’t get enough of it.


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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

Dusty Ride

A Sandstorm came in just as the weekend was about to start, and I was hoping it would clear up just before Friday morning. I woke up around 5:45 AM to see that it was still hanging in the air, I was hoping it would clear up and by 7 AM it cleared up a bit and I headed out. We were just a few riders heading out and the roads were empty, as if we have been invaded by Zombies, nobody was out on the street, it seems the dust kept people in.

We were 3 vetren riders and one new guy to join the group so we were a bit slow in the beginning but we started pushing on the corners, but we tried to take it easy because of the dust, we didn’t want to slip while riding but still we were enjoying ourselves and the empty roads. I just detailed my bike the other day so all this dust was driving me nuts, but it wasn’t going to stop me riding.


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Lamborghini Aventador LP700-4 – A Thing Of Beauty

I was passing by Shuweikh the other day and decided to pass by Audi to check out the S8 only to spot an Aventador parked in the lobby. So I walked over to the other side to see a mean Stealth Grey Aventador parked right in front of me, I always thought it was a beautiful machine, but pictures do not do it justice at all, it is a completely different creature when you see it in front of you.

It is extreme in its design and its performance, uncompromising in its standards and technology, and unmistakably Italian in its style and perfection. This machine looks like its speeding while parked in that showroom, then I got a sneak peak to see one getting prepared for his owner, Mashalla mashalla I was in awe. I loved the machine in both Stealth Grey and the lovely hue of Orange.

Is 0-62 Mph in 2.9 seconds fast enough? Well thats what the Aventador can do and thats even faster then a lot of bikes. And when I sat inside that cockpit I felt like I was about to go to warp speed, so after Lamborghini builds these machines they will build the Star Trek Enterprise, when your sitting inside the vehicle you feel like you are inside a Jet Fighter which is ready to fly into space. Technology has been infused into this machine perfectly the driver digital display feels like something out of Minority Report, completely digital and changes to what you need, all I needed was to start the turbines, adjust the flaps, and I fly out. And yes I started the car and I was about to drool, I was already mesmerized by the way it looks and the sound just took it to another level.


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2012 Ducati 1199 Panigale

At last the sexy beast from the Italian firm has been unveiled after months of teasing, we at last get to see the machine we have all been craving to see. Its faster and lighter then 1098 & 1198, and a few design changes have been made to make this a menacing looking machine. Sanity was thrown out the window when they had this machine in mind, its 22 lbs lighter and 20 more horse to get this machine rocketing past any thing on the road.

Ducati have taken it a step further with the Panigale which was unveiled in EICMA at the beginning of November. I really do love the lines of this machine, and especially the LED lights that give it this futuristic look, the first full-LED headlight on a motorcycle . I was always a fan of the underseat exhaust but they wanted to lower the center of gravity to handle better so they took the exhaust down, I’m liking it, I’m really wondering how it sounds but knowing Ducati I know it would sound damn good. The package will set you back $17,995 for the base model, while S trim nudges the MSRP to $22,995. The top-of-the-line S Tricolore will fetch a more heart-stopping $27,995.

They have a lot of electronic additions to this vehicle and one of them the GPS Data Aquisitioning system to give you all the Data Logging info that you could want. You get the traction control system as standard on all bikes but ABS is optional on the Panigale. But the most interesting part for me is the electronically adjustable suspension system which will really change how the ride feels. I really want to get my hands on this bike, so many rumors and to see it in real life would be something else.

Link: Asphalt&Rubber
Link: Autoblog


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Lamborghini Gallardo 570-4 Super Trofeo Stradale

Looking rather fetching in its flawless coat of Rosso Mars paint, which the automaker proudly claims recognizes Italy’s famous red racing cars, this latest version of Lambo’s V10-powered supercar is based on the LP570-4 Blancpain Edition that was unveiled at last year’s Paris Motor Show. That means it weighs 2,954 pounds and makes good use of its 570 horsepower to hit 0-62 miles per hour in 3.4 seconds. That massive rear spoiler is manually adjustable to help keep the wheels on the ground, and both it and the car’s hood are crafted from carbon fiber. Lamborghini will happily plaster the interior with carbon goodness in place of the standard black and red motif, surely for an extra charge.

Now Lamborghini have done it again making one very sexy looking machine with the Super Trofeo Stradale Gallardo. Only 150 of these special Gallardos are earmarked for production, in either the aforementioned red hue or, optionally, in Grigio Telesto or Bianco Monocerus. They keep improving these lovely machines and with that massive rear spoiler I don’t know how it handle on the track but it has a sexy rear end to it.

Link: Autoblog


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Riding Around The Corner

Ramadan has been amazing this year, I just love Ramadan in Kuwait even though its hot you get to see a lot of family and friends, it feels like your working a day shift and a night shift but your getting a lot done. I get excited about water activities and riding every weekend, its only the weather that decides what I do and I know its still too hot to ride but once or twice over the last few weeks I went out for a quick joy ride, even though its still pretty hot at night.

The funny part is that the rest of the world rides when its too hot for us to ride and I honestly get jealous that they can ride and I can’t. I have been looking at parts nonstop for the last few months to upgrade and customize my Diavel to my tastes but as usual very few parts are available for this lovely beast, and I have to wait until the Italians get back from the holiday this august to see any parts at the beginning of September. I know I’m still a few months off from Riding but it doesn’t stop me from getting excited, I see the bikes every other day in the garage I can’t help but get pulled to them and take a look at them. I have modified a few things and luckily the first thing I changed was the exhaust and it sounds very beefy right now. I have ridden in a few different countries over the years but I would love to take my Ducati out of town with me, it would probably Pyro because I just love that bike so much. I can’t wait until its riding season but for now I’m going to enjoy the water as much as possible.