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Trip to the Emirates


gfweb
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I had some business in the UAEimageproxy.php?img=&key=d2a459cbdaa822cc. A pair of endless flights to come softened by premedication at the American airlines club.

 

 

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And more on board. The Woodford in the glass is the only positive effect of the US/AA merger as far as I can see.

 

 

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Way overcooked beef and decent wine

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Breakfast...nice biscuit

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BA with a far superior meal..."lunch" salad and appetizer

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Beef with a Napa cabbage slaw ...both done wonderfully. Potatoes were nice but not exactly the Lyonaise they were labeled. Maybe the best cooked and conceived airplane food I've had.

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Late night landing snack. Very tasty

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View in the morning from my hotel. The Abu Dhabi Emirate palace and behind it an island that is one of many being converted into luxe housing

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Edited by gfweb (log)
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Snacks at a meeting. Falafel doughnuts and calimari with lime aioli. Very nice

 

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Tea sandwiches, date and honey tarts, shrimp thing, date nut thing..all good

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Dinner at a waterfront Lebanese restaurant

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Fried cheese app and hummus

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Lebanese potatoes and sauteed chicken liver in a sweet vinegary sauce. Excellent

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Mixed grille (lamb, fish, chicken, kafte) and a kafte in a pepper tomato sauce. Also great.

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Panna cotta like dessert and various backlavas.

 

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Edited by gfweb (log)
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Oh wow.  I've always wanted to visit the UAE.  I will never get to, so this is awesome.  Look at that water and that view!  Amazing.  

 

Are those pine nuts on a salad above the sadly overcooked beef?  And yeah, the rest of the airplane meals look really good.

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15 minutes ago, Shelby said:

Oh wow.  I've always wanted to visit the UAE.  I will never get to, so this is awesome.  Look at that water and that view!  Amazing.  

 

Are those pine nuts on a salad above the sadly overcooked beef?  And yeah, the rest of the airplane meals look really good.

They were pomegranate seeds. Interesting.

UAE is pretty cool. Very English language friendly. Hot as can be, but not very humid, so pleasant.

That BA meal would've made me happy in a restaurant. Cooked properly, well seasoned. So not like "the new American Airlines".

Edited by gfweb (log)
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What fun!

 

Please tell more about the fried cheese app.  Do you know what kind of cheese?  What sort of coating did it have?

 

eta: How was the calamari?

Nancy Smith, aka "Smithy"
HosteG Forumsnsmith@egstaff.org

"Every day should be filled with something delicious, because life is too short not to spoil yourself. " -- Ling (with permission)

"There comes a time in every project when you have to shoot the engineer and start production." -- author unknown

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@SmithyThe cheese was a creamy acidic thing. Seemed unaged. Not goat. The wrapper was thin and crisp. Reminded me of something Mexican.

 

Calamari was nothing unique, which is not to say it wasn't great. It didn't age well, sitting under a warming lamp.  Don't think I'd do that with a fried thing unless trisol was in the batter.

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3 hours ago, gfweb said:

Fried cheese app and hummus

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2 hours ago, Smithy said:

Please tell more about the fried cheese app.  Do you know what kind of cheese?  What sort of coating did it have?

 

These may have been cigar bourek (sigara boregi). They look like the ones called that at Bosphorus Turkish restaurant I have eaten before. The menu says they are feta mixed with chopped parsley and onion, rolled in "special" filo dough and fried. The wrapping seemed rolled out a tad thicker than the phyllo I've worked with from the grocery store. Man they are good! So is everything else I've eaten there. They are one of the best restaurants in town.

 

Your Lebanese restaurant looks really good too, gfweb.

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> ^ . . ^ <

 

 

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Huge hotel breakfast buffet.  Euro, Indian, Chinese and local sections. Each one big.  But no screwing around with Breakfast, so I did the Euro one. That meat to the left of the nicely scrambled eggs is veal "bacon". Like back bacon..very mild.

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I was going to make some pun about Emmanuel Macron, but it came out either lame or a bit lewd. So just a photo.

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Humongous Mosque. Too big for even three photos at this distance.

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Snack of Hot Mezze in the lobby bar

More cheese things. Clearly not feta this time..herby maybe goat cheese. Won ton-ish things filled with tart chopped veg,  Lightly spiced (coriander/cumin) ground lamb in fried chickpea coat. All great.20170508_162905.thumb.jpg.4a1ff843c4bb23f50d229a8e4e3a09e2.jpg

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@ShelbyThe UAE is pretty liberal. Hotel guests can be served a drink. Theres a duty-free after customs where you can buy and bring in quite a bit of alcohol. But it is still very much an Islamic country otherwise.

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The macrons are a joy to look at, simply for their color.

 

On the breakfast platter there appear to be 3 meats, with 2 placed between the Lurpak butter (nice to see a familiar friend) and the cheese slices.  One is roughly the color of smoked salmon.  Is that it?  What about the other?

 

Is good coffee available there, or is it more of a tea-drinking society?

Nancy Smith, aka "Smithy"
HosteG Forumsnsmith@egstaff.org

"Every day should be filled with something delicious, because life is too short not to spoil yourself. " -- Ling (with permission)

"There comes a time in every project when you have to shoot the engineer and start production." -- author unknown

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9 hours ago, Smithy said:

The macrons are a joy to look at, simply for their color.

 

On the breakfast platter there appear to be 3 meats, with 2 placed between the Lurpak butter (nice to see a familiar friend) and the cheese slices.  One is roughly the color of smoked salmon.  Is that it?  What about the other?

 

Is good coffee available there, or is it more of a tea-drinking society?

The meats are veal bacon at the top, smoked salmon, and a thing labeled bresciole (?) a cured beef, I think.

 

Coffee is great and ubiquitous, but there's a lot of tea as well.

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Plain old Euro breakfast today with veal sausage.

 

I was going to get shakshuka, but it was weird looking. Scrambled eggy casserole with no evidence of tomato, peppers or heat.

 

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Paradise being built outside my window. Thousands of little sand islands are being built up at an amazing rate. Speed  or maximum employment  ...seems important. At a housing development on the mainland there were about fifty houses going up. Unlike many places where there'd be one or two cranes for the development, this one had one for each house...and presumably a construction crew for each.

 

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Travel day, driving 90 minutes through the desert to Dubai. Desert is sand with rocks and no plant taller than your calf. The govt has planted a belt of trees along the roads. I;ve been told that they are all imported desert tolerant stuff. It looks great, kind of like a Phoenix interstate, but my inner ecologist is upset.

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Now in Dubai whiuch is not at all like Abu Dhabi. More than anything Dubai reminds me of Chicago. Big buildings lining canals...big highways...big.

 

Really tasty sauteed shrimp with baby marrows, mushrooms and tomatoes.

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Completely non-Arab wagyu burger with belgian fries. I'd hoped for more regionality, but there's nothing like that near me.

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Edited by Smithy
Removed duplicate photo at poster's request (log)
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Looks like you're eating well and having a great time!  All that construction is amazing, but i recall reading that it is a half-assed job... building huge buildings above ground, and no infrastructure underground... are there still trucks lined up to haul sewage away because there's no sewage pipe or treatment plant infrastructure?  A relative of mine was one of the designers of the Palm Island project there, so lots of fun stories about how things get done there.

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Christopher D. Holst aka "cdh"

Learn to brew beer with my eGCI course

Chris Holst, Attorney-at-Lunch

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@cdh No sign of honey trucks as far as I can see. I'd love to hear some of those stories. 

 

Reflecting on oil money and standard of living...the UAE has certainly done a better job with their wealth than Venezuela or Nigeria. When I first arrived I was put off by the giant posters and memorials to Shiek Zayed. It reminded me of the Castro stuff in Cuba. But this guy really did serve his people. Took a country that was all dust and camels and poverty in the 60s to a thriving place with an amazing standard of living for the average person. 

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17 hours ago, gfweb said:

Paradise being built outside my window. Thousands of little sand islands are being built up at an amazing rate. Speed  or maximum employment  ...seems important. At a housing development on the mainland there were about fifty houses going up. Unlike many places where there'd be one or two cranes for the development, this one had one for each house...and presumably a construction crew for each.

 

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Well, I'm not privy to the under infrastructure of the buildings, but I'll tell you what, I hope this sea or lake or whatever it is never gets as nasty as the Atlantic. The very first storm that blew though, and it would not need to be a hurricane, would not only devastate all the islands, but bring that multi-story building down too. The water looks placid, so maybe this is a reasonable plan?

Good luck to them, but it scares me a lot.

 

Perhaps they are never subject to strong winds and high seas. I guess that's so since no one would build these things if they were.

 

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> ^ . . ^ <

 

 

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Well, the dining opportunities for this trip collapsed into a couple corporate banquets with lots of buffet food. I couldn't bring myself to photograph it. And the airline food was about the same as on the way over, except BA's offering was less inspired and I stuck to a plate of cheese. Even with this, it was an interesting trip albeit a very long way to go.

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  • 4 weeks later...
On 5/8/2017 at 6:54 PM, gfweb said:

 

Snack of Hot Mezze in the lobby bar

More cheese things. Clearly not feta this time..herby maybe goat cheese. Won ton-ish things filled with tart chopped veg,  Lightly spiced (coriander/cumin) ground lamb in fried chickpea coat. All great.20170508_162905.thumb.jpg.4a1ff843c4bb23f50d229a8e4e3a09e2.jpg

 

The "Won ton-ish things filled with tart chopped veg" are in fact called Fatayer Sabanegh which translation is Spinach Pies. The tartness comes from Sumac mixed with the Spinach. It is essentially a Lebanese dish.

 

The "Lightly spiced (coriander/cumin) ground lamb in fried chickpea coat." are in fact Kebbeh and more precisely Kebbeh Krass or Kebbeh Traboulsieh.

The outer shell casing is not Chickpeas but Crushed Wheat (Bulghur).

 

Were you staying at the St Regis?

 

 

 

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On 5/10/2017 at 0:26 AM, Thanks for the Crepes said:

 

... I'll tell you what, I hope this sea or lake or whatever it is never gets as nasty as the Atlantic. The very first storm that blew though, and it would not need to be a hurricane, would not only devastate all the islands, but bring that multi-story building down too. The water looks placid, so maybe this is a reasonable plan?

Good luck to them, but it scares me a lot.

 

Perhaps they are never subject to strong winds and high seas. I guess that's so since no one would build these things if they were.

 

 

I had to look at a map,  but maybe the Persian Gulf is relatively protected by the Gulf of Oman and geography.  My first thought was rising sea levels  and how low those islands look.  People in the Maldives are afraid their country will be underwater in a few hundred years.  Do the Emirati developers not care because they can afford to rebuild it all later?

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