Tag Archives: expensive

S.T.A.Y

9 Jun

I -finally- went to Stay in Taipei 101 (only 101 for friends), the restaurant of Yannick Alléno , the 3* Michelin chef.

The place is really nice, bigger than l’Atelier and in beige and maroon. I like the walls and  the light especially. The waiters are nice and you can partly see the kitchen.

I picked the smallest menu which was already big enough and had exactly what i wanted inside.

The “canapés”: tomato bavarian, really fresh and nice, a piece of pork terrine (really small but ir reminded me French ‘charcuterie’), and a tofu piece that i found ordinary.

As a starter: Buffalo di Buratta, tomato, basil, crispy bread. It was the best Buffalo i’ve ever had. I love buratta but i never had a real fresh one. I know it’s becoming trendy in Paris and you have some Buratta Bar where you only eat that, but i loved how melting it was with its small milk. The sauce going with it was also nice.

The soup: Pesto vegetable soup, bacon, parmesan stick. I liked the stick and the bacon in the soup that gave a little flavor in the pesto, however i found the pesto a little too oily/greesy in mouth, so i didn’t fully enjoy it. The flavors were here, not the texture.

Endamame “fricassée”, fresh mangos, lemongrass and curry emulsion, crispy onion. I liked the dish very much, even though i’m not a fan of emulsions, but the curry and the beans were just nicely done.

Pan fried Amandai, spring onion, shellfish and yuzu sauce. The sauce was delicious. That was the best thing in the dish.

For miniardises, we had a small lemon pie and a chocolate puff cream. The puff was ok, a little too wet for me and the lemon pie was nicely done.

As for dessert, i was greatly surprised. First it was chocolate, and truthfully, if i can, i prefer to avoid chocolate desserts. ut this was actually more a fruit dessert than a chocolate one: Chocolate fuseau, fig ans raspberry jelly-sorbet, egg white, fresh mint. It was really delicious, the chocolate flavor was really light, but you had the whole sorbet that popped up in your mouth. The mint and the egg white together were also a good harmony with the sorbet.

The macaron with the coffee, spritz and cinnamon biscuit however was pretty bad. The shell were empty and broke too easily. The sptiz was ordinary, only the cinnamon biscuit was nice.

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香宫 Shang Palace – Shangri-La

24 May

I was invited to a Chinese and Cantonese restaurant, supposely to be one of the best of the city when it comes to dim sum. However we went there for Chinese food. I’m not a real Chinese food lover and my friend wanted me to change my mind.

We started with a Pu’er tea from Yunnan, and some beans as appetizers.

For the main dishes, we had  fried rice with crab meat and purple rice, beef, roasted duck, hot and sour shrimp soup, and some beef.As for the dessert, it was some steamed black sesame buns.

I’m really not an expert when it comes to Chinese food, but the purple rice was the better i ever had. I need to know how to cook this. The roasted duck was really different from the one i had in Beijing, it was nice but i still prefer the real Beijing duck with the crepes. The beef was really tender and in nice slices (not small pieces of beef with only fat like you often find). The soup wasn’t really spicy and had a nice flavor. I’m still not used to the thickness of some Chinese soups but so far it was the best i had in Taiwan.

For the dessert, the steamed bun were nice. I like sesame because it has a pretty strong flavor and not too sweet. It’s a pity we can’t find more pastries with sesame in France.

Shang Palace
Shangri-La 6th Floor
201 Tun Hwa South Rd, Section 2,

New Hama – Teppanyaki

9 May

I was invited to New Hama, a Japanese restaurant in Zhongxiao Dunhua area.

The restaurant is located in the basement, but it’s really large and a little classy but in the Chinese way i would say. As an appetizer, we had some raw veggies with sauce, and a some pumkin soup, really creamy. You can choose between a pumpkin and an onion soup. The garlic butter bread given with it was horrible though. I think i’ve never tasted a bread as bad as this. Too dry, tasteless. However it was the only bad thing of the diner.

Then we had some fish with fried onions. The fish was really good and at the perfect temperature, warm but not hot, and the veggies were not too greezy as they often are, which usually make them tasteless. Here they were cooked but a little and not in a liquid. 

Then we had scallops (I think it was, i didn’t recognize the word in English) and a mushroom. The scallops were also nicely cooked, but they had a really different taste, softer than usual. I prefered these one.
Then a salad, you can choose your sauce. If I want to be picky, i would say tha again, that’s not a real salad, but i totally gave up on eating a proper salad in Taiwan. That’s just not possible.

And the main dish, Australian steak. Sooooo good! I miss meat so much here, and this one was delicious! I mean, teppanyaki is a really good way to cook meat, but this one was really really good. With yellow wasabi, soy sauce and onions, that was to kill for.

If you can, go there. But that’s not cheap: the minimum is 2,400NTD.

Also, I tried a new product. You like whisky, tea and don’t like having a headache the next morning after drinking?
Then you should like Onore King, which is a brand that produces a whisky based on tea (but ou actually don’t feel the tea) and with which you can’t have headache the next day, even though you drank a bottle. It’s pretty strong, but it’s quite good.

Yen Bar

5 Mar

On top of the W hotel, you can find the Yen bar, with a nice view over Xinyi area. The bar is really small, so you better come early. The place is fancy and trendy, and the cocktails quite good. I tried the Ms W with truffle infused vodka, rose, vanilla and champagne (if i remember well). Quite pricy (it starts around 600NTD), but the bar is nice and you have free refill of sweet potato chips. It’s a good option if you want to go to clubs after.

Yen Bar
34th floor (i think)
W hotel in Xinyi area

Pierre Marcolini

29 Dec

Yesterday as i was walking on the streets i saw that Pierre Marcolini had a shop in the area. As i didn’t know him before Christmas thanks to his beautiful “bûches” and chocolates that where everywhere on food blogs and other websites, i decided to go for a try today.

I bought 12  milk chocolates and one small white chocolate bar, and a small gift for friends as i always eat their bread. Hum, be ready to empty your wallet: 2700TWD for this. But god dammit, that was so delicious.

For the small chocolates, i chose:
Thé Earl Grey: nice and light
Thé Citron: this one is really nice, you really have a strong flavor or the lemon
Safran: this one i wasn’t that impressed and i don’t think it was really special
Mangue: the mango flavor comes at last, and it’s quite refreshing. However i would have like the mango taste a little bit stronger
Fleur d’oranger: it was like eating a Maghrebian pastry. Really nice, one of my favorite
Palet Or Lait: ok, this one is just a killer: caramel, vanilla, just everything that i love…
Calin Lait: this one also is delicious, with caramel, “dentelle de quimper” for the crispy part, and vanilla.
Caramel fondant: with melted salted caramel. Well it’s just awesome, i can’t say more. I just love caramel and this one was nicely salted.
Quatre épices: this one is impressive, because you really feel like eating a ginger bread. Really strange and nice.
Rose: i am not fond of this one, maybe it is because i think rose flavor is too chemical.
Ginger: nice and fresh. Chocolate ginger is always a nice mix i think.
Café Cardamone: the coffee taste was here (i can’t even  to the Godiva truffle where i couldn’t taste it).

The white chocolate is really nice: you can really feel the vanilla. But maybe i would have put a little less salt, because a part of it was quite salty i think.

If you want a sweet treat with chocolate, i can only recommend you this place. So far there are one of the best chocolates i ever had. However, it’s really expensive and small for the price. But good quality often means small size too. My favorites are the ones with caramel, but you should try the quatre épices and fleur d’oranger for something unusual.

Pierre Marcolini
Shin Kon Mitsukushi A4 2F
MRT: Taipei City Hall

Godiva

29 Dec

I was in lack of chocolates. Even though i’m not fond of chocolate, i must have my Christmas chocolates. So i went for a raid: Pierre Marcolini and Godiva (yeah, when i start things, i do it well and throughly). I went to Godiva for a “Milk Chocolate decadence”, a drink, which was cold and nice. Not too heavy, less expensive than in Starbucks and with Chantilly as i like. Then i saw the truffles, and as they didn’t have any at Pierre Marcolini, i bought 4 of them.
Almond truffle: it is more like a chocolate i think, with almonde praliné inside. It was nice.
Crème brûlée truffle: the best of the four, sweet but with the real taste of crème brulée.
Bailey’s irish coffee truffle: the alchool taste was strong, but i couldn’t taste the coffee.
Cappucino truffle: no coffee taste at all, i was quite disappointed.

In general, the chocolate of the truffles isn’t that tasty i think, and the chocolates aren’t exceptional. I have had better ones, but they have a nice choice of flavors. I will have to try the chocolates later.

Salon de thé Robuchon

3 Dec

Maybe i was expecting too much of this salon de thé, i don’t know, but i must beforehand tell you that the review is gonna be quite harsh. After all, Robuchon is a cook, not a pastry chef, i might have forgotten that on my way… What a big disappointment. I won’t go there again.

The shop is nice, like the restaurant, and the staff also nice. They smile a little when i said that i wanted the 2 person set for myself, but they didn’t say anything. The customers are mainly foreigners or English-speaking Taiwanese (each time i go to restaurant i seat near Taiwanese that always speak in English, strange isn’t it?…)

The set for 1040 TWD, includes 2 pastries, 2 macarons, 2 drinks and 2 madeleines. Or so they said: i had financiers instead of madeleines…hum they should do what’s written or at least inform the customer before: First mistake.
On the website it’w written they have Coffee Religieuse (the main reason i came), and they hadn’t (not because it was already sold out, just because it wasn’t the season anymore): Second mistake for a salon de thé of this level. It takes 2 minutes to change your menu on your website.
So i chose a tiramisu and a lemon pie, with 2 espresso. What’s nice is that they ask you if you want your 2 espressos at the same time or one after the other.

Espresso, like in the restaurant, they were nice and it’s always a pleasure to have nice coffee once in a while here.


The lemon pie. I think the jelly layer they use to protect the cake (i don’t know its name) was too thick, it spoils the lemon custard. This was nice, but i would have prefer it with a stronger taste. Then you had a mousse inside. It was nearly tasteless. The little insert of lemon was nice, that was the only thing that had a lemon taste strong enough to call the pastry a lemon pie. And the pastry dough was again tasteless. It usually have some almond taste, or a taste, but here it didn’t have anything special. Maybe because it wasn’t cook enough or because the cake was too cold? I don’t know, but the lemon pie wasn’t strong enough.

The tiramisu. Nice in look, but so not convenient to eat. The chocolate layer was too hot, so the chocolate was soft. What was unacceptable was that my pastry was damaged on the top. It either means the pastry was not well-conserved since it was made, or that they had a problem while tempering the chocolate. For the price, in both way i can’t tolerate it. The mascarpone cream was light, but again, bland. Concerning coffee, it had some taste, the biscuit was well impregnated, but i would have expected a stronger coffee taste. And the chocolate made it difficult to eat it, so you couldn’t eat all the layers at the same time (which is bad, as if in a mille-feuilles you couldn’t eat all the layers at the same time). There was too much mascarpone for the coffee, that’ why the overall was not strong enough. My mother’s one is a way better, and i’ve tasted a lot better one elsewhere.

The financiers: too dry. Nothing else to say.

The cannelé. OMG, what a horror. Where did they see that it had so many blisters after being cooked? There was definitely a problem in the way it was heat: the inside was nearly not cooked, while the outside was too cooked. And i don’t talk about the Rum. Where was it? A Cannelé is based with rum, and here the rum was really behind. You could taste it, but i had to focus on it, that was the opposite of the one i had in L’Assiette, what was a way better, or even my mother’s ones. This was a total failure for me.

Luckily for them, they have awesome macarons. Coconuts and Violette one were my favorite. The Coffee one is ok, and the mango not strong enough for me, but maybe it was too cold again (cold kills taste, that’s horrible, you can’t eat pastries if it’s too cold).But they’re even more expensive than Pierre Hermé’s macarons that are the most expensive of Paris, so don’t make me laugh, 80 TWD (2 euros) for a macaron, that’s only because it’s called macarons that they can show those prices.

So as you saw, i was really disappointed. Everything is in the design, the look, but the taste is far behind good pastries in France. Sadaharu Aoki’s pie was a way better. The breads aren’t worth neither compared to Lalos as i already tried them in the restaurant. If you want to show off around foreigners and wealthy people, go there, but if you’re interested in good pastries, well, go to the basement instead and eat at Sadaharu Aoki. That’s all i can say.

This is an average pastry shop with of high quality pastries prices.

Salon de Thé Robuchon
Bellavita 3F
MRT: Taipei City Hall

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