Pei Wei Rewards Fans for Exploring Asian Markets on New Website

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SCOTTSDALE, Ariz., Nov 03, 2011 (BUSINESS WIRE) –
Today, Pei Wei Asian Diner, a fast-casual concept by P.F. Chang’s China
Bistro Inc.


/quotes/zigman/79398/quotes/nls/pfcb PFCB
+0.93%



, announced the launch of a new interactive
website, PeiWeiMarket.com. The site invites fans to tour the markets of
Asia alongside top Pei Wei chefs as they explore China, Japan, Korea,
Vietnam and Thailand.

In addition to recipes, travel and video content, fans will be rewarded
for sharing in the journey as they discover hidden Fortune Cookies that
unlock exclusive offers. The first Fortune Cookie, available through
November 10, offers one free Pei Wei entree with the purchase of another.

“As a chef, it’s my job to constantly be exploring, learning and trying
new flavors so that we can bring those experiences back to our guests,”
said Pei Wei Executive Chef Eric Justice. “The goal of the site is to
share our travels and reveal the culinary and cultural traditions that
inspire Pei Wei’s menu. We hope our fans enjoy exploring as much as we
have.”

The user-friendly website includes the following sections:


Five Countries of Flavor Tourism: China, Japan, Korea, Vietnam,
Thailand


Videos from the streets and markets


Featured content on cuisine and culture, recipes


Fresh ingredients from the markets


Learn about our chefs’ travels


Chefs: Meet the chefs behind Pei Wei Asian Diner


Chef Eric Justice, Vice President of Culinary Operations for Pei
Wei Asian Diner


Chef Brad Borchardt, Culinary Director of International
Development for Pei Wei Asian Diner


Chef Mark Miller, one of America’s foremost chefs working in
regional cuisines and international flavors


Chatter: Check our latest comments, Tweets, status updates and
video posts. Investigate for hints and clues to find great deals on
this site


Fortune Cookies: Find clues to discover hidden Fortune Cookies
and special rewards throughout the site. Rewards are constantly
refreshed — so check back frequently and follow us on Facebook and
Twitter to find out when and where they might be

For more information, visit
www.PeiWeiMarket.com .

About Pei Wei

Pei Wei Asian Diner, owned and operated by P.F. Chang’s China Bistro,
offers a menu of fresh, high-quality Asian cuisine. The restaurant
provides a comfortable, quick and casual dine-in experience as well as
the flexibility, speed and convenience of take-away service. From the
exotic aromas rising from the sizzling 600-degree woks to the hip decor,
Pei Wei Asian Diner serves freshly prepared made-to-order dishes from
China, Japan, Korea, Thailand and Vietnam in a modern diner environment.
Pei Wei currently operates 173 restaurants in 23 states. For more
information please visit
www.peiwei.com .

SOURCE: Pei Wei Asian Diner


        Pei Wei Asian Diner
        Investor:
        Allison Schulder, 480-888-3000
        Allison.Schulder@pfcb.com
        Media:
        Rachel Gillman, 312-577-1759
        rgrischall@oco.com

Copyright Business Wire 2011

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Air China ties up with Abacus to upgrade reservation inventory participation …

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In a bid to upgrade its reservation inventory participation system to Direct Connect Availability (DCA) Air China recently signed an agreement with Abacus International. According to a release, Abacus’ DCA connectivity is a highly evolved system interface that enables travel agents to compare rates and availability directly from travel supplier in-house systems. Abacus DCA also  provides airlines control of point of sale quota allocation by deciding which flights can be processed.

“By adopting Abacus DCA, airlines have control of the supply and demand for seats to better cater to travellers’ demand patterns,� said Ho Hoong Mau, Division Head of Airline Distribution of Abacus International. “Air China can now better optimise its revenue generation for maximum yields and reach in Asia, and agents have instant access to what’s available. It also paves the way for Air China to explore tapping Origin/Destination (OD) business by using Abacus’ suites of revenue optimisation products like Abacus Married Segments.�

“With a fast-growing China market, we need to work with the right partner to take advantage of this growth and expand our business in the process. Abacus’ vast presence in the region through an extensive network and our long-lasting relationship has made this decision an easy one to allow more agents and passengers enjoy our products,� said Li Dong, Deputy General Manager, Network and Revenue Management Department, Air China.

In addition to the upgrade to Abacus DCA, Air China and Abacus International also embarked on a landmark three year marketing programme that will allow for greater growth by Air China across the region.

Under the programme, both Abacus and Air China agree to work closely together in expansion efforts for the airline through the Abacus network. This will allow for more revenue maximisation opportunities through the Abacus system as well as greater reach for its agents. In addition to  more co-operation opportunities and strategic leverage by the partnership, Air China can offer increased fare promotions through the Abacus FareX system.

Ho added, “Maximising growth and managing costs savings will help drive airlines in the region. Through Abacus’ seamless access and our marketing programme, we are delighted in our role to help Air China both drive a better match of passenger demand pattern to capacity as well as leverage our productive network to reach more customers in Asia. Abacus’ long-term relationship with Air China is testament to how we strive continuously to deliver value to all our suppliers and partners.�

Please leave John F Kennedy rest in peace

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Stephen King

You know how they say it took Richard Nixon – someone with strong anti-Communist credentials – to visit China back in the 1970s?

Well, maybe it’s going to take an Irish Catholic to say something uncomfortable about John Fitzgerald Kennedy.

Enough.  Really.  Enough.

Horror master Stephen King has just writing a 900-page time-travelling novel about how the JFK assassination could have been prevented.

So.  Enough.

This might be the kind of reaction you would expect from a Kennedy-bashing conservative, or a twentysomething slacker who has no interest in any history prior to the great Y2K scare.

That’s not me.  And yet, I’m compelled to, if not banish all Kennedy-related studies, then at least declare a moratorium.

Later this month, we will again mark the anniversary of the assassination that supposedly changed everything.

Fittingly, as the fateful date approaches, new waves of Kennedy studies wash upon our cultural shores.

Last month there was a new book from Caroline Kennedy about her mom, Historic Conversations on Life with John F. Kennedy.

Now there’s Stephen King’s tome and TV pundit Chris Matthews’ new (500 more pages!) book Jack Kennedy: Elusive Hero.

Matthews does an interesting job putting the Kennedys on the couch, psychoanalyzing the family dynamic as well as the lingering bigotries they had to confront.

Joe Kennedy Jr., of course, was seen as the family’s brightest light.

For his parents, Joe “would be their bridge to both joining and mastering the WASP society from which they, as Roman Catholics in early twentieth-century America, were barred.”

JFK, meanwhile, had to carve out a space as the “second son,” which is the title of one of Matthew’s chapters.

“Unlike his older brother, bound to a more conventional blueprint, Jack wasn’t under the same pressure. There was a lightness to him, a wry Irishness that blended with the WASP manner rather than aspiring to it,” Matthews writes.

“With that combination, he could enter where his father, mother, and brother could not.”

I’m not suggesting the Kennedys in general and JFK in particular are not interesting.  But I can’t help but think the amount of energy which we continue to focus on this clan means we are no longer interpreting the family and their times.

We are now interpreting the already-countless, already existing interpretations.

There’s also a lot of nostalgia involved in this.

Yes, every generation is susceptible to this.

Nevertheless, certain children of the 1960s have clung to Camelot with a passion bordering on disturbing.

A Washington Post contributor recently wrote, “As a prominent television personality himself, (Chris) Matthews understands the riddle of being constantly in the public eye, but also in another space the public doesn’t see. And he has brought this intuition to a reexamination of JFK, who you might think is the most chronicled and therefore the best understood president in modern history. Not so.”

Not so?  Well, maybe that’s best as it is.

Maybe we already know enough about this president, not to mention his killer and the folks who surrounded this president and his killer.

If you don’t think so then consider King’s new book, simply titled 11/22/63.  If Oliver Stone, in his movie JFK, depicted the assassination of Kennedy as a crime so heinous it simply must have been hatched at the highest levels, then King goes Stone one better.  (FYI: Early reviews suggest King’s book accepts the notion that Lee Harvey Oswald acted alone.)

What King’s book does feature is a character who stumbles upon a portal which allows him to travel back to 1958 and, thus, possibly stop the assassination before it happens.

Maybe the world would still be a great place, then, right?

It’s hard not to look at all of these Kennedy books and realize they have little to do with JFK himself.

They seem to give a voice to our own fantasies about bold, youthful leadership and more innocent times.
 
Very basic questions, of course, would force us to confront the fact that there really were no more or less innocent times.

Ending our JFK obsession would, I believe, force us to grow up a little bit more as a nation.

So let’s let Jack rest in peace.  For a little while.

(Contact “Sidewalks” at tomdeignan@earthlink.net or facebook.com/tomdeignan)

Topics:
JFK


Peking Opera Festival opens in central China

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<!–enpproperty http://www.china.org.cn/travel/2011-11/03/content_23813026.htmwww.china.org.cnThe 6th Peking Opera Festival kicked off on Wednesday in central China’s Hubei province as part of the government’s efforts to revive the traditional artform.2011-11-03 11:29:29.0Peking Opera Festival opens in central ChinaPeking Opera ,Festival ,China,Peking Opera Festival opens in central ChinaPeking Opera Festival opens in central China10077074061Highlights/enpproperty–>

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The 6th Peking Opera Festival kicked off on Wednesday in central China’s Hubei province as part of the government’s efforts to revive the traditional artform.

The festival will features 33 operas to be performed by 33 troupes from all over China, including renowned opera artists Mei baojiu, Yu Kuizhi and Shang Changrong.

The festival will cover a wide range of Peking opera styles, including new versions of ancient operas, modern performances and traditional operas.

“Peking opera is the quintessence of our country and a treasure that most represents traditional culture,” said Minister of Culture Cai Wu.

Peking opera, which combines instrumental music, vocal performances, miming, dancing and acrobatics, was recognized as a form of intangible cultural heritage last year by the United Nations Educational, Scientific, and Cultural Organization (UNESCO).

The government established a special fund in 2005 to support key troupes around the country in developing new scripts and adapting classic stories.

The festival, sponsored by the Ministry of Culture, has been held every three years since 1995.

Congress still travels well, despite ethics rules

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ON THE ROAD

Privately funded travel taken by Indiana lawmakers, Jan. 1 to Sept. 30, 2011:

Sen. Richard Lugar, R-Ind.
• $6,738 trip for Lugar and his wife to Banff, Canada, in August for an Aspen Institute conference on education.
• $5,967 trip for Lugar and his wife to San Juan, Puerto Rico, in February for an Aspen Institute conference on energy security.

Rep. Joe Donnelly, D-Granger:
• $10,042 trip for Donnelly to Tel Aviv, Israel, in August paid for by the American Israel Education Foundation to educate lawmakers about the U.S.-Israel relationship.

Rep. Marlin Stutzman, R-Howe:
• $18,290 trip for Stutzman and his wife to Tel Aviv, Israel, in August paid for by the American Israel Education Foundation to educate lawmakers about the U.S.-Israel relationship.

Rep. Todd Rokita, R-Indianapolis:
• $953 trip for Rokita to Steamboat Springs, Colo., in August for a conference sponsored by the Steamboat Institute, a group that advocates for limited government and other issues. Rokita spoke on a panel with other freshmen lawmakers.
• $1,277 trip for Rokita to Santa Barbara, Calif., in February for a conference on Ronald Reagan’s views on liberty, sponsored by the Liberty Fund of Indianapolis.
• $1,168 trip for Rokita to Simi Valley, Calif., in January for a “In the Steps of Reagan” retreat for conservative lawmakers, sponsored by the Heritage Foundation, a conservative think tank.
• $100 trip for Rokita to Palm Beach, Fla., in January to be part of a panel discussion at a logistics industry conference, sponsored by BG Strategic Advisors.

Rep. Dan Burton, R-Indianapolis:
• $24,107 trip for Burton and his wife to Taipei, Taiwan, in April paid for by Fu Jen Catholic University to understand U.S.-Taiwan relations.
• $2,855 trip for Burton and his wife to Simi Valley, Calif., in January for a “In the Steps of Reagan” retreat for conservative lawmakers, sponsored by the Heritage Foundation, a conservative think tank.

Rep. Larry Bucshon, R-Newburgh:
• $19,842 trip for Bucshon and his wife to Tel Aviv, Israel, in August paid for by the American Israel Education Foundation to educate lawmakers about the U.S.-Israel relationship.

Sen. Dan Coats, R-Ind., and Reps. Pete Visclosky, Mike Pence, Andre Carson and Todd Young have not reported taking any privately funded trips through September.

Source: House and Senate disclosure reports

Chinese spacecraft dock together in orbit as nation moves closer to having own …

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The U.S. and Russia are the only other countries to master the space docking technique. It was “a milestone success and sets a sound foundation for continued missions,” Wu said.

The joint assembly will fly for another 12 days doing tests, then a second docking will be followed by two days’ flight. Shenzhou 8 is scheduled to return to Earth on Nov. 17, she said.

“Our aim is to try our best to perform multiple tests within one launch so as to maximize our benefits through limited launches,” Wu said.

China launched its own space station program after being turned away in its repeated attempts to join the 16-nation International Space Station. That was largely on objections from the United States, which is wary of the Chinese space program’s military links.

Experts see no explicit military function for the Chinese space station.

In terms of technology, the launch of the Tiangong-1 places China about where the U.S. was in the 1960s during the Gemini program. But experts say China progresses further than the U.S. did with each launch it undertakes.

Two more docking missions with the Tiangong 1 model are planned next year, one of them manned. China will set up a space lab by 2016, Wu said, and its actual station will be launched in three sections between 2020 and 2022.

All the parts of the docking mechanism and the more than 600 onboard instruments were designed and made by Chinese state-owned and private companies, she said.

President Hu Jintao praised the docking in a message from France en route to the Group of 20 economic summit. Premier Wen Jiabao and other top officials watched the docking from an aerospace center in Beijing, the official Xinhua News Agency reported.

At about 60 tons when completed, the Chinese station will be considerably smaller than the International Space Station, which is expected to continue operating through 2028.

China launched its first manned flight in 2003, joining Russia and the United States as the only countries to launch humans into orbit. The Chinese space program also calls for one day landing on the moon, possibly with astronauts.

Asked by a reporter what real benefits the Chinese government’s investment in its space program brought to ordinary citizens, Wu said “It’s fair to say that aerospace technology is closely linked to the everyday life of the people.”

She said the benefits of past space travel ranged from the use of satellites for navigating in cars and television broadcasting to the designs of diapers for babies and the freeze-drying of ingredients used in instant noodles.

___

Follow Gillian Wong on Twitter at http://twitter.com/gillianwong

Copyright 2011 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

EVA Air passengers well connected

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EVA Air’s first passenger flight into Terminal One at John F. Kennedy International Airport (JFK) landed on October 31, 2011. The airline is starting with flights on Mondays, Wednesdays, Thursdays and Saturdays and exploring opportunities to add to its schedule. Ready ground transportation and connections on domestic airlines through JFK combined with onward flights from Taipei’s world-class Taoyuan International Airport to 17 cities in China and dozens more to business and leisure centers throughout  Taiwan and Asia make travel to and from some of the world’s fastest growing economies exceptionally easy, convenient and competitively priced. Travelers can book flights, buy tickets and select seats through travel agents, by calling EVA toll free or on the airline’s website.

EVA is operating comfortable new Boeing 777-300ERs on flights between New York and Taipei, Taiwan.  Flight BR 31 departs JFK at 23:50 (11:50 pm) and arrives in Taipei at 7:20 (7:20 am) so that passengers can get to morning meetings in Taiwan or connect onward to be in Shanghai by lunch. Return flight BR32 departs Taoyuan at 19:30 (7:30 pm) and arrives back at JFK at 22:00 (10 pm). Inbound service from Taipei to New York is nonstop.

The airline configured its B777-300ERs in three cabins, the luxurious Premium Laurel Class business, award-winning Elite premium economy and exceptional Economy. It put an Audio/Video on Demand (AVOD) entertainment system with movies, features, shopping, music and video games in every seat and serves fresh, seasonal meals, outstanding wines and a wide selection of snacks and beverages. Above all, EVA’s service is warm and friendly.

EVA began serving the East Coast in 1993 via Newark International Airport. Along with relocating passenger services to JFK, the airline is providing courtesy shuttle service to and from the airport and East Hanover Township, Piscataway Township, Jersey City and Fort Lee in New Jersey.

In addition to New York, EVA serves Los Angeles, San Francisco, Seattle, Toronto and Vancouver. It makes more flights to Taiwan with more easy, one-stop connections onward to more destinations in China and throughout Asia than any other airline.

China desert city woos sightseers as tourism market lulls

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DUNHUANG, Nov. 3 (Xinhua) — Dunhuang, a desert city in northwest Gansu province known for the Buddhist frescoes in its Mogao caves, has halved hotel rates and ticket prices hoping to draw more tourists.

From Nov. 1 to April 30, a visit to the Dunhuang Mogao Grottoes, a world heritage site, costs 80 yuan (12.6 U.S. dollars), compared with 160 yuan per person for the rest of the year, a spokesman with the city’s tourism administration said Thursday.

The slack season visitors will also gain access to five additional caves that are off-limits to tourists during the peak season from May to October, said Wang Binyin, the administration’s general office director.

Meanwhile, all star-level hotels in Dunhuang have halved their room rates hoping to attract more guests, Wang said.

Besides the Mogao Grottoes, he said most other tourist destinations in Dunhuang city also offer special discounts to tour groups, including a “buy 10 tickets and get two for free” package for Yueya Spring, a crescent-shaped lake surrounded by deserts.

Wang said his administration was working to promote new tourism routes in winter and spring, including expeditions into the Gobi desert, snow mountains and glaciers.

The city government will also subsidize air routes between Dunhuang and major tourist sources including Beijing, Shanghai, Xi’an, Lanzhou and Urumqi, to ensure flights are available during the winter holidays, said Wang.

Dunhuang was a wealthy oasis town and major stop along the ancient Silk Road. The frescoes and carvings in its Mogao grottoes are some of the best preserved examples of Buddhist art in China. The Mogao Grottoes, or the Ancient Caves of 1,000 Buddhas, were listed in 1987 by the United Nations’ Educational, Scientific, and Cultural Organization as China’s first world heritage site.

Tourists to most parts of the underdeveloped Gansu province have decreased as winter approaches.

Even the Lhamo Monastery, a 260-year-old Tibetan monastery in the Tibetan autonomous prefecture of Gannan, has few visitors and pilgrims other than the local Buddhists.

“I’ve chosen to visit Gannan in early winter hoping to avoid the crowds,” said Zhou Changxing, a tourist from Shanghai. “But it’s too quiet here.”

Zhou said he was disappointed that many highly-recommended bars and restaurants were closed, and even Buddhist observances were not held daily at the monastery.

Scientific exchanges with China broke law

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Obama administration officials broke the law by holding science and technology exchanges with Beijing contrary to legislation banning such cooperation, members of Congress and congressional auditors said Wednesday.

John Holdren, director of the White House Office of Science and Technology Policy (OSTP) “defied the legislation,” Rep. Frank R. Wolf, Virginia Republican and sponsor of the law, told a hearing of the House Foreign Affairs subcommittee on oversight and investigations.

Both OSTP and the National Aeronautics and Space Administration were named in a section that Mr. Wolf added to the omnibus appropriations act passed by Congress in April to fund the government.

The section blocked the agencies from spending any money on bilateral meetings or exchanges that boost science and technology cooperation with Beijing or Chinese companies.

“OSTP violated [the] provision,” said Thomas H. Armstrong, a lawyer from the Government Accountability Office, Congress‘ investigation and audit arm.

Mr. Holdren said at the hearing that he sought legal guidance from the Department of Justice “because of the importance of OSTP’s role in diplomatic relations with China” and the “value to the country” of the exchanges and visits the agency was conducting.

The Justice advice was “very clear in its language that the section was unconstitutional” and that his agency could continue to go about its bilateral business “as agents designated by the president for the conduct of diplomatic relations with China” – who were not subject to the legislative branch – Mr. Holdren said.

“Their opinion is binding on me,” Mr. Holdren said of the Justice Department lawyers. “It represents the view of the administration.”

The GAO’s Mr. Armstrong said the law was passed by both chambers of Congress and signed by the president – without any accompanying statement that successive administrations have used to indicate reservations about aspects of legislation.

That meant the law was “entitled to a heavy presumption in favor of constitutionality,” he said, and, “absent a judicial opinion from a federal court of jurisdiction,” ought to be enforced.

He noted, however, that enforcement would be a job for the Justice Department.

Subcommittee Chairman Rep. Dana Rohrabacher, California Republican, said there was a “major constitutional issue to be resolved,” about the extent to which Congress could use the purse strings to dictate policy, especially in the arena of foreign affairs where courts and lawmakers traditionally have given a great deal of deference to the executive branch.

Mr. Rohrabacher criticized the administration’s policy on science and technology cooperation with China.

“Any efforts on our part to reach out to the Chinese communists, to engage them on matters of technology is, quite frankly, not just naive, it is dangerous,” Mr. Rohrabacher said.

“When personnel from either of these organizations travel to the People’s Republic of China, collaborate on projects, share data, or attend conferences … it is a serious national security problem.”

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Starwood plans China growth – e

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Expending its Asia presence, Starwood Hotels Resorts Worldwide has released plans to open five more Sheraton hotels in China before the end of this year.

The five new hotels are planned to open up in Hangzhou, Xian, Daqing and two in Changzhou and are a strategic move to expand the Sheraton brand within the country.  

The news comes in addition to seven other properties opening up across the country, increasing the brands footprint in China to 46 hotels in Greater China by the end of this year and 100 properties by the end of 2012.

With plans to open more next year, Sheraton Hotels and Resorts global brand leader Hoyt Harper explained the company is aiming to meet Chinese traveller’s needs within China.

“We continue to expand our established upper upscale brands in emerging markets and as the Chinese pick up their pace of travel, they are going to stay with the brands they know and love,” Starwood Asia-Pacific division president Miguel Ko explained.

“The rich legacy of the Sheraton brand in China has given Starwood a considerable head start in this fertile market, where we now have nearly 100 hotels in development.”

According to Sheraton figures, Chinese outbound travellers are expected to hit up to 100 million by 2015.