Posts Tagged ‘cafe’

write up: carmel for spaghetti bolognese

April 11, 2011

Situated in the North District of Taichung City, Carmel is a beautifully designed new cafe/restaurant offering an selection of western-style food with authentic flavours. No salads covered in Thousand Island here and raisins to be seen!

Carmel only just recently opened but has proven popular with the trendier locals. We walked in on Sunday and the place was full, the only seating option available was a table for two on the mezzanine, which actually proved to be a perfect spot from which to take photos and spy on what other patrons were eating.

I wolfed down an amazing spaghetti bolognese which was full of real garlic, rosemary and truly al dente high quality pasta. My lunch companion the seafood pasta which they praised as highly. Portion sizes were just right, not too overwhelming, and the food was presented in shallow white bowls perfect for pasta twirling.

It was lucky the pasta was amazing because the outing could have easily been soured by the fact that everything else on the menu, sandwiches and rissoto selections, had sold out. I know if was Sunday but it had only just passed midday! Oh well, I’ll just have to head back there this week.

Coffees and deserts are also worth mentioning. As we slurped our strong but not burnt iced coffees, my dinner companion and I shared a cheesecake  which reminded me of my mum’s home baked version. So good!

Anyway, here are a few pics so you can see for yourself. Worth a visit!

 

Spaghetti bolognese (near) and seafood pasta (far). Excuse the messy plates. I took the photo after we had started eating!

Yes, I had coffee AND an orange juice. I was thirsty!

Behind the counter.

Carmel interior.

Carmel interior.

I'm a sucker for cheesecake!

They write their table numbers on a teensy little blackboard!

You can sit at the bar and chat with the friendly wait staff.

Carmel exterior.

What: Carmel
Where: Cnr Donghan St & Taiyuan Road (Section 2), North District, Taichung City
Food: Western-style | Pasta, sandwiches, risotto | English and Chinese menu
Price: $70-$400
Map: Get directions here

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Copyright © 2011. This website is for personal non-commercial use only. All written work and imagery copyright to jar of buttons unless otherwise stated.

reads: mollie’s used books live underground in taichung

October 18, 2010

Friends of ours have been staying with us on their way from Southeast Asia to India. I was out and about with them on Saturday, checking out the early hours of the opening of this year’s Taichung Jazz Festival, and stumbled across this haven of the printed word on Gongyi Road, right next to the 7/11 near the People’s Park.

Mollie Used Books has a good feel to it. Located at basement level it is was a bit of a struggle to find the entrance until we noticed the not-so-clear sign on the glass shopfront pointing it out. It has a cafe with some pretty good-looking food and a decent and varied selection of English books. Of course, if you can read Chinese there’s an enormous selection of books printed in this language. Adding to the excitement there’s also an exhibition space, currently showing photography.

Here are some pics so you can get a feel for the place:

Inside Mollie Used Books, a new second-hand bookstore in Taichung City, Taiwan.

A view of the Mollie Used Books cafe area. The second-hand bookstore chain has just opened a new store in Taichung City, Taiwan.

I bought three books that day. Martin Amis: The Essential Guide (Reynolds and Noakes, NTD80), Of Mice and Men (Steinbeck, NTD60), and The Dharma Bums (Kerouac, NTD150).

Books bought from Mollie Used Books, a new second-hand bookstore that has just opened in Taichung City.

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JoB likes: HUNTING FOR WATERFALLS

March 30, 2010

I had spent most of Sunday morning studying Chinese, so by the time 3pm rolled around I was ready to road trip it to the mountains for some fresh air and greenery.

I found this video on YouTube about a waterfall supposedly 30 minutes outside Taichung City, called Siannyu Waterfall. My boyfriend and I decided we must find it as summer is just around the corner and it would be great to have a place to swim and escape the crazy Taiwanese summer heat.

So… off we went.

The Bat Hole (Toubiankeng Bat Cave) – a series of very narrow caves that you can climb through. We didn’t go into the caves because we didn’t have a torch and my shoes were too precious to me to risk them being covered in bat s*&t, but we’ll go back another time better equipped.

Some locals were swimming in a large waterhole in the river below the caves. One kid was contemplating jumping from the cliff into the water  but he backed out in the end.

Carrying on down the road we saw this sign. We were on our way!

Plantations of fruit trees and betelnut palms covered the hills either side of the road. Each piece of fruit was individually wrapped in a white paper bag, giving the hillsides a polka dot pattern that you can’t really appreciate in this photo.

We made a quick detour from the task at hand to climb the hill and check out the view. Amazing!

Found it! After a dodgy drive down a crazily small and ill-kept road we finally found the start of the waterfall. Very remote and surrounded by amazingly steep mountain peaks.

There are tons of potential swimming spots downstream from the start of the waterfall.

A secretive cafe just up from the waterfall, filled with pottery casks of… something. We didn’t try it out this time but it looks like the perfect place to relax post-swim. Bring on summer!

How to get there: Take Highway 136 from Taichung City and follow the Siannyu Waterfall signs. They’ll take you past the Toubiankeng Bat Cave. The waterfall is in the Taiping Wine Cask Mountain area. The drive should take you between 30 – 50 minutes, depending on which part of Taichung you are coming from and how comfortable your scooter seat is.

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Thank you for supporting jar of buttonsCopyright © 2010. This website is for personal non-commercial use only. All written work and imagery copyright to jar of buttons unless otherwise stated.