Taipei: Fresh And Aged – December 2014

I know what I want. I dream about it. I daydream about it. The images are vivid and the images are not just images. They are 8K resolution real. They are smell-o-matically aromatic. They are taste-buds-plugged-into-Oculus-Rift-Ten.Point.OH MY HALLUCINATING brain cells aromatically real. Damn those foodstuffs in Taipei. They infect your mind like twenty days before you actually get there. And then when your plane lands at around 5 A.M. all you can think about is getting to where you’re staying so that you can dump your luggage and drive or walk or take a taxi or take the MRT to … Continue reading Taipei: Fresh And Aged – December 2014

Taipei: Fresh Station

It seemed entirely possible to bypass the brunt of the thing with a quick five minute drive to the restaurant. The basement was its usual damp-smelling self when I went down to pick up the car. There were a few little puddles here and there, but those came more from the carwash lady washing the cars than from any sort of flooding. And the rain wasn’t really that bad when I left the garage. There was maybe a medium drizzle accompanied by an almost imperceptible breeze. Typhoon schmyphoon. Exaggerate. That’s the bread-and-butter of all-news channels in Taiwan. Where’s the knee-deep … Continue reading Taipei: Fresh Station

Taipei: Marlin rice noodles

Dihua street. Oldest street in Taipei. Old money. Lots of it. Crouching tiger hidden dragon – meaning you would not know it if you weren’t told about it. Multi-millionaires, billionaires, and multi-billionaires walking amongst their employee hundred-thousand-aires, and the common, pedestrian ten-thousand-aires milling about grocery shopping or Chinese medicine seeking. Old money I am not and old I was not when I was growing up in Taipei. I knew nothing and only now know but a little of the secrets of the street. What I know I learned and I absorbed from my father-in-law and mother-in-law, both of whom grew … Continue reading Taipei: Marlin rice noodles

Taipei: Advanced (Sien Jing) Seafood

They must have had an advanced cloaking device or something, because I’ve been hearing about this place from my father for two years and for two years he hasn’t been able to find the place. And it wasn’t for lack of trying either. I’ve witnessed with my own eyes my parents leaving their apartment so that they could try and find the place. More than once. Then, all of a sudden, they found it. Then it was an ordeal to get into the place. If the place wasn’t full when my parents tried to walk in, the reservations were full … Continue reading Taipei: Advanced (Sien Jing) Seafood

Taipei: Addictive Aquatic Development

I love the name of this place; so contrived. In fact, everything about Addictive Aquatic Development seems deliberate and ¬†purpose-driven. Its location, for example, is brilliantly chosen. It’s located behind a commercial fruit marketplace and a commercial vegetable market. It is surrounded by butchers and fishmongers and loads of other traditional open-air meat and produce vendors. It is boxed between a highway and the the runway of the second-busiest airport in the city. It is physically located in a building that housed a wholesale seafood marketplace. Addictive Aquatic Development itself serves as a stylized seafood market with tanks and pools … Continue reading Taipei: Addictive Aquatic Development

Taipei: 55 day dry-aged ribeye at Fresh and Aged

Ever since reading about the 240-day dry aged steak at Carnevino in Las Vegas about five years ago, I’ve had countless 5K-resolution-oculus-rift-real dreams where I was almost able to put a piece of that eight-month-dry-aged-ethereal-slab-of-protein inside my mouth. Almost. Every single dream ends with me frustratingly awake realizing that I was no more closer to trying that piece of bovine perfection than when I first read about it. My pathetic steak routine usually revolves around the standard 21 to 28 day dry aged prime-grade beef from some name-unknown-to-me industrial butcher in Alberta. Every once in a while I get lucky … Continue reading Taipei: 55 day dry-aged ribeye at Fresh and Aged

Taipei: Shin Yeh Taiwanese Cuisine

I’ll make it real simple: If you visit only one Taiwanese restaurant in your lifetime, it absolutely has to be Shin Yeh Taiwanese Cuisine. No, it is not regarded as the best restaurant in Taiwan. And no, it does not have a celebrity chef manning its kitchen. Shin Yeh is actually not one single restaurant. It is a chain of (mid-to-up-market) Taiwanese restaurants in Taipei that is as popular with the locals as it is with tourists. On weekdays, you’re likely to see more Japanese tourists than locals at any of its locations. On weekends, you’re likely to see more … Continue reading Taipei: Shin Yeh Taiwanese Cuisine