Pearl Qatar Beach Pop Up QIFF 2016 – First Impressions
- We knew they were coming – now that we have seen them they are an interesting mix of mainly fast-food food trucks. But we are a little disappointed with the overall experience. Surprisingly the one venue we had great anticipation for has flopped, whilst the one we knew nothing about has fast become the secret star of the show!
- Although it is a satellite venue and we understand it will has smaller events it just felt a little neglected – mainly because some of the food trucks opened a lot later than the event timings.
- Low pricings is being hailed as one of the cornerstones of QIFF, and Burgeri and Buffalos Express just have their normal menu. We understand that Burgeri has been established as a food truck for a long time now, but all the food trucks have been specifically invited for the Qatar International Food Festival which has capped pricing at QR5-QR35 for the food stalls.
- We expect it to be busier at the weekend due to the film screenings and the live cooking by some of the headliner chefs (see the schedules at QIFF 2016 – Schedule of Cooking Theatre & Entertainment for more details.)
- But for the Qanat Quartier, and a beach popup, it lacked energy and that ‘buzz’ factor that you expect form an urban street food concept. We were very excited about the food trucks coming but we think that someone needs to go back to the drawing board on this one. Food turcks does not have to equal junk food or snack food. Please see what’s happening in LA and Dubai and then you will understand what a food truck popup actually entails. Thankfully Ghanim Al Sulaiti was there showing us all how to make his signature green smoothie!
- We give it a few positivies – in the sun Qanat Quartier looks fantastic; the water taxis are an excellent cheap way to avoid the crazy traffic; the entertainers are doing their best; DFI Film screenings will put back some atmosphere! And if you live locally and don’t want to join the traffic heading to the corniche then maybe think about giving it a go thos weekend – when we hope things run more smoothly, especially since the professional chefs will be on stage cooking for visitors.
- Oh, and the beach part of the ‘Beach PopUp’ is behind the cooking stage.
WHAT’S ON AT THE PEARL-QATAR
Food Trucks vendors are from local brands here in Qatar and regional favourites from Kuwait and KSA.
Entertainments – will include Nily Nils juggling on his unicycle, Barbs, Chefs & Waiters comedy show and LED Drummers. There will also be a Lion Dance performance at The Pearl-Qatar!
Live Cooking – Cooking from some of the headline chefs including Chef Massimo Capra, Chef Vineet Bhatia and Qatari vegan social influencer Ghanim Al Sulaiti.
Movie Screenings – Doha Film Institute will screen popular food-related movies Cloudy With A Chance of Meatballs and Ponyo!
QIFF 2016 at The Pearl-Qatar:
Weekdays from 4:00pm until 10:00pm.
Weekends from 1:00pm until 10.00pm.
Please be aware of the last timings for the water shuttle at 9.15pm
QIFF 2016 – Water Shuttle Taxi
The water shuttle service from MIA Park to Katara or The Pearl-Qatar will be ticketed at QR25, and will run every half hour. Arrangements have been made for a free bus service at 1 La Croisette The Pearl-Qatar from where water-shuttle users can take a bus to Qanat Quartier.
The schedule for the water taxis for #QIFF2016 runs from 4.00 to 9.00pm. See the detailed image below for full timings. No boats at 8.00pm due to fireworks. Tickets cost QR25pp each way.
Age restrictions apply. Update: Age restrictions are very loosely enforced. Young children are allowed on with parents; and it is advisable that you keep them close as there are no seatbelts and the waves can get choppy. Don’t stand and be sure to use the life vests provided.
Water Taxis have limited seating and are available on a first-come-first-served basis. Water taxi services will stop during the daily fireworks display at 8:30 pm for safety reasons.
Route One: MIA Park to Katara – Katara to MIA Park
Frequency: Every half hour. First boat departs 4:00 pm, last boat departs 9:15pm.
Route Two: MIA Park to The Pearl-Qatar – The Pearl-Qatar to MIA Park
Please note that water taxis will dock at La Croisette. A free shuttle bus will be available to transport visitors to the Festival venue in Qanat Quartier. Frequency: Every half hour. First boat departs 4:00pm, last boat departs 9:15pm.
Private Car services and Limo Services are also available.
The Pearl-Qatar QIFF 2016 – The Food Trucks and Menus
Burgeri from Qatar
Al Tabkha from Qatar
Wafflemeister from Qatar
Pick N Shake from Qatar
Potato Hut from Qatar
Buffalo’s Express from Qatar
Grill 2 Go (The Village) from Qatar
Burger 3al6ayer from Qatar
Areej Café from KSA
Rotisserie from KSA
Bo3ram from Kuwait
Pearl Qatar Beach Pop Up QIFF 2016 – Entertainment
Pic Credits: EW