I think almost every Kuching bloggers have tried out Taipei 101 and blogged about the place, and basically all the reviews and pictures have been prominently displayed all across the Kuching blogosphere. The newly opened restaurant has earned itself some reputation, and many people have talked about it recently, since this is not the typical kopitiam style or just another boring Kuching Seafood restaurant. Like usual, I am always late for most things, and so me and Chun Chow decided to pop in the place for dinner yesterday. He came to fetch me from work and off we went to Taipei 101 for some not-so-authentic Taiwanese Cuisines for dinner.
Arriving at the place, I could not see what all the hype was about. There was nothing particularly stunning about the interior and furnishings. Just a slightly above average class kind of feel, with fully wooden dining tables and chairs, yellowish bright lighting hung up high above the wide open ceiling. The entire place gave me the feeling of being boxed in, with squarish perimeters, and neatly arranged furniture. The workers dressed themselves up in black and orange themed uniform, and the colours matched the interior harmoniously. The way they walked and talked gave me the impression of nothing more than normal Kuching Chinese folks putting on an act like some foreign Chinese. And the way they over-excitedly greet the customers, and say goodbyes in their harsh, loud and sharp tones from across the room, doing that together in unison of 7-8 people, I think it was plain scary and uninviting. Ironic, but true. Some people may think its cute and adorable, but to me its just plain silly. No offense, and no joke either.
Sadly, not everything on the menu is translated to English. For a “banana” like me, it definitely was a challenge. And the waitresses there do not seemed like they can speak any English at all. Somehow, I managed to order something, and even when those food came, I was not entirely sure if it was what I have ordered.
Here comes the food…
The Main Dish
Chun Chow had BEEF NOODLES
I had PORK RIBS NOODLES
The noodle was generally good, and very very well prepared. There was nothing extra-ordinary in the flavor, but it was not bad tasting either. I was pleased with the soup, but one thing any normal Kuching folk would make a fuss about – the quantity. Two words, NOT ENOUGH !!! Maybe they purposely have the servings in such small portions that the customers would want to order side dishes to fill in the gap in the stomach.
And so we had…
The Side Dishes
The side dishes come in such small portion that I thought they did not help to fill any space in the stomach at all ! I particularly like the Taiwanese Sausage, the taste was like no other sausages I have eaten before. It is definitely much better than typical Chinese pork sausage. As for the Wonton, there is nothing special, any ordinary wonton served at Kolok mee stalls would do just about the same. And of course, the ones served at the Kolok mee stalls are way cheaper.
I do not know why, but I think somehow those people love to shake their drinks and bubble them up on the top of the glass. A trend maybe?
On the whole I do feel that there is a lot to improve on the food, especially the quantity !! I am not complaining about the price, since it is a general understanding that when you dine in a place with different theme, you have to pay extra. However, I am expecting to be full after dinner. I know I had huge stomach capacity (which is growing by the day) but one example of similar food available in Kuching (ok, not so similar) would be at Full House, Central Park. Try the pork rib noodles there, and see the difference.