So in this Tier 3 time we find ourselves in in Taiwan, we surely must have all been too lazy to be bothered going out, and just picked up the phone to take out or get a delivery of food around Taipei? Let’s face it, eating out is often cheaper (and waaay easier sometimes) than buying and cooking at home.
So, I wanted to share some of the places I feel are worth mentioning for a good bit of grub.
This place has been a solid burger for some time for me, so I figured it’s time to share.
How to order: https://shop.ichefpos.com/store/U2QYdYkz/ordering
The Elvis Burger has been my favourite of 3 burgers tried on the menu so far, pictured here with candied bacon and peanut butter deliciousness running through it. The patty is always perfectly cooked and seasoned and the brioche bun encases it all together nicely.
My only fault?
The chips can quickly go soggy with the condensation of being in a plastic container.
The Elvis and this Peanut Butter burger are quite similar, but one of the main differences is that this one just has bacon chips instead of the full on rashers and also that The Elvis has plantain. Both are delicious, but which will you go for?
Look at that spread, how good is that looking right now?
Here I went for the Black pepper pork roll 黑椒厚切火腿飯捲 hēi jiāo hòu qiè huǒ tuǐ fàn juǎn $130. The roll itself is $130, and if you want a bit more you can pay $60 for the set and get either a drink and a side of the spicy pickled daikon, or a spicy soup and a spicy pickled daikon side.
The black pepper pork roll was good, but I still think the tuna one (鮪魚) remains on top, for me. The pork was peppery, as expected, but it just didn’t add much to the roll. As always, the roll is right on the money, though.
This one here is going to split opinion, perhaps. Here you have the Cheese and walnut roll 核桃奶油芝士飯捲 hé táo nǎi yóu zhī shì fàn juǎn $140. I liked it, but I didn’t love it. Why? The walnut. I loved the cheese. If anything, I would probably go full Korean roll and add some of the spicy Korean fish paste/cake instead of the walnut. Maybe that could be called the Eating in Taipei special, on a secret menu…
Solid, and an absolute must order. 韓式拌冬粉 hán shì bàn dōng fěn $100(Large). I mean, you could go for the small portion and only pay $35. But, don’t do that, go large or go home! These noodles are served cold, lashed with sesame oil, and topped with those vegetables, and it just works really bloody well.
So we did go for the set with the rice roll. And it was well worth it for this side of spicy pickled daikon. On its own as a side, it’s weighing in at $30, which I do think is perhaps quite steep. That comes in at $10 for each little quarter of one ring of the daikon… It’s good, and I like it a lot, I just feel like it’s a bit much in terms of the price.
This was their 2 person set for $1000.
So middle we have some toasted bread, salad, some rice and some crisps. To the left we have 2 individual salads and the rasmalai for 1 dessert. Then on the right we have a gulab jamun, mango lassi, and original lassi.
Everything pictured was delicious, but in hindsight the toasted bread was a little overkill. I had a serious foodbaby when all this food was finished.
The rasmalai was deliciously sweet and delicately spiced, and that gulab jamun went down a real treat. Now gulab jamun is mega sweet and you don’t need many, but you definitely want many!
Lassi is a win every day of the week – go for the mango one.
Those samosas are an absolute triumph, and I will most definitely be back for more. The spicy cheese dish right at the back paired incredibly well with the bread, and the avocado and cheese toasty was great, too. This set definitely not for the carb-haters out there (you know who you are, and i hate you, too. Bread is lyf).
Yum, yum, yum. So those samosa are stuffed with spiced potato, and they just zing with flavour. They aren’t what I would could ‘spicy’, which I was quite thankful for. I like my samosa to sing with flavour, not to blow my head off with chilli. However, that cheese dish definitely has the kick those spice-heads crave. Get that.
Melted cheese and avo on toast – what’s not to love?
貳樓餐廳 Second Floor Cafe
If you haven’t heard about second floors 1/2 price menu throughout the Tier 3 COVID restrictions in Taipei, then where have you been? But, is it really worth getting up at 5:50 to reserve?
How to order: Online ordering through their website
(note: Ordering comes online at 6am. So, what I did was decide on my meal the day before, set my alarm to 5:50, refresh at 5:59, then be as quick as I could with my credit card to hand – It has been known to sell out <5 mins at certain branches. I ordered from the ShiDa Rd branch to take-out, but I don’t know if that makes much of a difference).
Was it worth it? Well, sort of…
If you’re a fan of second floor, anyway, then of course it is worth it – it’s half price food! But, if you’re a first timer or you can take it or leave it, then you have a judgement call to make.
We went for the Keto platter which had mackerel, steak, scrambled eggs, and mushrooms. It was pretty good, actually, and I would probably order that next time I go in. This also came with a salad and drink.
We also went for the double burger which came absolutely stacked. On this you get a patty, 2 slices of fried fish, salad, a bun, a separator bun in the middle, fries, bacon, and cheese. It’s immense. And only $195! However, it was stodgy, and not all that good, truth be told. The bacon was very salty and not particularly good quality, the fried fish was drenched in what tasted like salad cream, and the bun was greasy…
If that wasn’t enough, we got the chocolate cake, too. Would I get it again? Ermmm, probably not. It didn’t have much going for it, apart from being chocolatey.
Confession time, because you guys deserve it: Every time (and I actually do mean every time) I go to either the Zhongxiao Fuxing, ZhongXiao Dunhua, or Nanjing Fuxing station area, I go here and buy one rum and raisin, and one cream crystal pancake. Then, I go over the road to Bee Cafe and get a coffee to wash it all down with. FYI, Bee Cafe also do some good quality, nicely priced coffee beans, too.
This is a personal goal – we ordered so many that we warranted a box. A box, people!
In this box, we had taro, cream, rum and raisin, and curry flavoured wheel cakes/crystal pancakes.
Pictured here are the taro (front and center), curry (back left, obvs), and the rum and raisin flavour.
Priced at $25 each, they’re double the price of the classics sold over at Qinguang Market, but there’s much more refinement to these, and the quality seems a lot better, too. The pancake skin on these is a little on the softer cakey side, and can be chewy at times, too. But I see that as a positive.
The taro one is great. It’s not too sweet, but sweet enough to be a dessert. The curry is good, but I wouldn’t go crazy for it. It has a slightly strange sweet flavour to it. The rum and raisin is a favourite flavour combo of mine anyway, and in one of these I will get it again and again and again. It isn’t hugely alcoholic, and the rum flavour is somewhat fake, but I don’t care, it hits the spot.