Here There and Everywhere

Expat wanderer

Tang Chow in Kuwait

I grew up eating Chinese food. When we would visit my father’s large family of sisters, cousins, aunts and uncles, one of my favorite memories is going to Chinatown, (now called International District by the politically correct, although the Chinese still call it Chinatown) for Chinese food.

Everyone got an eggroll. And every person, even kids, ordered one dish, and then the dishes would get passed along a table of twenty something people. Of course, as kids, there was always some cousin who, being funny, would order something gross, like octopus, or shark or something that seemed very strange, but we would all take a bite.

One of our favorite recent memories was being in Seattle on Christmas Eve Day, and getting a call from a good friend asking if we were busy. It just happened that we had everything done, and we could spare time to get together with these very good friends. She is Chinese. She took us down to China Town, to a place we would not have even recognized as a restaurant. We were seated in the back room. I asked her if we were in the back room because we were the only non-Chinese there, and she said no, just wait, and within minutes, the back room was also full. The dim sum cart would come around and my friend would tell them what we wanted – we trusted her to know what was good or not so good. It was a wonderful day, and a great memory with some very special friends.

So I was so delighted to see so many Chinese restaurants when I came to Kuwait. The only problem is, most of them are so dumbed-down that you can barely recognize the food as Chinese. We have tried many, and come away mildly unsatisfied. That is, until we tried Tang Chow.

Tang Chow isn’t cheap. We often groan when the bill comes, and figure it’s just the price you pay for food you really like, and in a hotel (it’s in the Holiday Inn on Gulf Road in Salmiyya.) But we never have any complaint about the food. The food, and the food preparation, is excellent.

My all time favorite is the Peking Duck. I love the little tiny pancakes, the slivered green onions and the hoisin sauce. My husband gravitates towards the prawns with black bean sauce, which is also a little gingery. We both love the Hot and Sour soup, although the Seafood Soup is also very good. There is a mixed appetizer you can order with bites of dim-sum, also very good. Actually, we have never left there unhappy. And we always order too much, so we have a bag of leftovers to enjoy again. My husband says when you think of what you pay covering two or three meals, then it cost averages out pretty well. 😉

They have taken classic, even trite Chinese decorations and used them in new ways – those little red Chinese lanterns blown up to giant size and hung in a high-ceilinged room have a totally new look. The little beaded lamps which could be so tacky look surprisingly elegant when grouped together, five or six times normal size.

We also enjoy the luxury of space, and privacy, and spare elegance at Tang Chow, being able to have conversations without others nearby listening in, being able to entertain friends without the curious eyes of others prying into our business. Tang Chow provides all that. We also like the easy parking, and the open kitchen, where you can watch meals being prepared.

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If you have other recommendations for Chinese restaurants, we would love to hear them!

May 12, 2007 Posted by | Eating Out, ExPat Life, Kuwait, Living Conditions, Lumix, Photos, Seattle, Uncategorized | 5 Comments

Fish on Friday

Early on Friday morning in Kuwait, the water is still and flat as glass. The only people awake, it seems to me, are me and the fisherman.

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Even at 7 in the morning, the temperatures are hot, although the air is dry.

May 12, 2007 Posted by | ExPat Life, Kuwait, Living Conditions, Lumix, Photos, Weather | Leave a comment