Archive for March, 2009

restaurant report

Monday, March 30th, 2009

1. Saturday, we ate at Tequila Sunrise, having been told it was the place to go for Mexican here. (The one near the University, not the one in Tienmu.) Verdict:


Ted wanted me to note that it was at least mediocre Mexican food, rather than a bad imitation of Mexican food. No corn or peas on the nachos. We’ve actually had worse in tiny Western towns in the US. But it was nowhere near as good as El Gallo in Tienmu.

2. Sunday we went to a conveyor-belt sushi place. We’d been to one in the Netherlands, but this was much more systematic; a little caddy in front of each place held tea bags, chopsticks, and packets of wasabi, while the tea was actually plumbed in. Not just sushi went around on the belt; there were also plates of broccoli or okra (I think), gyoza (er, I think), and even the occasional plate with a can of Coke. The actual sushi was just OK and there weren’t many of the varieties we liked, but it was worth it for once just for the automation.

3. Tonight we’re going out to a Swedish restaurant. The menu on their website tells me I should get there hungry and I will be well-fed, but I’m not too convinced about authenticity: the menu was completely lacking in reindeer, salmon or lingonberry. Seriously, just about everywhere we ate in Sweden two months ago featured reindeer and salmon – sometimes several kinds – and I do not believe we had a meal in the country without lingonberries somewhere on it. OK, I’m exaggerating – but not by much. However, the menu does include venison and ‘wild forest berries’, so there’s still hope – after all, they may just have figured the other terms wouldn’t be understood here.

what I learned yesterday

Wednesday, March 18th, 2009

You know the old saying that the Chinese symbol for “trouble” or “war” is a picture of two women under one roof?

Nope. There is no such symbol.

However, there is a symbol showing one woman under a roof. It means “peace” or “safety”.

The implications, if any, are left for the reader to analyze. But if it’s misogynous, don’t blame it on the Chinese.

happy Purim!

Sunday, March 8th, 2009

I bet I’m the only person in Taipei who was baking hamantaschen today. Tomorrow I’ll take them to work and see how well they appeal to Taiwanese palates. (My guess is pretty well. I cut the sugar a little, and the cherry preserves I used for filling are pretty tart.) They’re quite, er, homemade-looking, though!