A Taste of Taiwan: Sushi Takeout!

Posted by on Jun 19, 2012 in Eating like an Emperor - in Taiwan | 3 comments

Hey everyone! I’ve officially been living in Taiwan for about a month now, which was enough time to stuff myself fat and take a couple hundreds of pictures of food. All for you guys! At first I contemplated making my first Taiwan series post an overall view of what I’ve been eating and visually drown you all in delicious pictures of food. But what’s the point of dozens of pictures without words…right? So I’m gonna break it down into categories, starting with da da da DUMMMM….Sushi Takeout! Now pretty much everyone who knows me can verify my obsession with sushi and sashimi. Usually, I only get to gobble the babies up for special occasions when we decide to go to a restaurant or something. But recently I have been able to sate my sushi cravings whenever I want, and that is because ladies and gentlemen, there is a delicious Sushi Takeout shop in practically every subway station in Taiwan! Not only that, but everything is made fresh throughout the day (as it should be) and the prices are laughingly cheap and only get cheaper with every hour at night when items are discounted to sell out the days worth of food. Of course, you would assume that the sushi must be plain, simple, and average tasting if the prices were that low. NOT SO. Here’s proof: At Sushi Takeout, you can either custom make your own meal by taking the various plastic container sizes they have available and filling it with individual sushi pieces which can vary in price from 5NT to 15NT (15NT being 50 cents), or you can grab one of their custom made options. These include several sushi, nigiri, and bento options. Above, I got a delicious meal of eel, salmon roe, shrimp, broccoli, and a whole bunch of rice with egg AS WELL AS a separate container not pictured full of around 10 pieces of handpicked sushi for around $6!!! All the sashimi is fresh and the sushi filled with chewy rice that’s not mushy, limp, and stuck together. Yum yum. This wonderful place also sells the typical convenience store wonderfulness of breads, drinks and snacks, but I will talk about convenience stores in another post! For now, just ogle and awe at the greatness of Sushi Takeout. I know I do! Even without the nightly discounts, buying during the day is also a great lunch or snack for cheap. If it wasn’t so filling and if Taiwan didn’t offer so many other delectable foods to devour, I would just stuff myself with sushi…but thank goodness that isn’t the case. Hope you enjoyed this toast and make sure to try out the easy convenient sushi if any of you visit Taiwan! Btw, did anyone notice I typed toast and not post? Yes, I love food…ok that was corny. Anyways, thanks for reading ^_^   – Jas                                                                           Photographs taken by Jasmine...

Read More

Fontana Famous Pizza & Gyro

Posted by on Dec 17, 2011 in New York Eats | 0 comments

Whenever I think of Greek food, the first thing to pop into my mind are gyros. Succulent strips of meat with some lettuce, tomato, and onion all wrapped up in a soft pita bread and smothered in yogurt dip. What could possibly be better than having one of those wraps in hand?  Well, only to have the small portion of a wrap doubled!  Fontana’s is the only place I’ve been to (so far) that serves up a satisfyingly large portion when you demand a gyro platter.   For $10.90, Fontana’s gyro platter is served with a salad, pita bread, Tzatziki sauce, and your choice of fries, rice, or lemon potatoes. Needless to say, this thing is big enough to be shared. This isn’t just another gyro platter from any restaurant where all of it manages to fit into one take out container. This place seriously wants to make sure that their customers leave sated and feeling as if the food was well worth their buck(s). So much so, that they cram a heaping amount of gyro meat and fries into one container, while filling another with salad. Of course, you can’t forget the pita bread and yogurt dip that’s included as well! The gyro meat is tender and carved right off the giant rack of…well, slow roasted gyro meat. Unfortunately, I lost that particular photo (the guy was even nice enough to pose for me -sigh-) so you’ll have to use your imaginations there. While the salad isn’t anything spectacular, their generous cubes of cheese have always sat well with me. In fact, my sister and I are always bickering over who gets the bigger half of the split cube. Aside from that, all I can say is that the next time you’re driving past Northern Boulevard in Bayside, keep your eye out for Fontana’s little ‘island’. Parking may be a pain, but the food is well worth the effort. Check out the menu on their website here. Fontana Famous Pizza & Gyro 200-02 Northern Blvd., Bayside, NY 11361 (718) 631-0147 ~ AJ ~ Photographs taken and provided by AnnMarie...

Read More

Afternoon Tea: The Rose House in Flushing, NY

Posted by on Dec 4, 2011 in New York Eats | 5 comments

Hey guys! I’ve been inactive for a while, but I’m back! Finals are soon approaching but I thought I’d share this quick post just to let you all know I’m still here ;D The Rose House in Flushing, NY is a nice little girly place to visit with your friends if you want a cozy place to sit, drink deliciously expensive tea, munch on cakes and sweets, and chat. The place is pretty overpriced in my opinion, and I would recommend going if you’ve got money to splurge and aren’t very hungry. The inside of the shop has individual private tables, couches, and cushiony soft lounge chairs which gives a really nice atmosphere to the place. Your tea also comes in an expensive teapot, with expensive tableware to match. I wouldn’t suggest breaking anything here, as you’ll probably have to pay for it. I went with my friend a while ago, and we enjoyed their Belgian waffles with honey and freshly whipped cream. For tea, we had a peach milk tea. They have an insane amount of teas and snacks to choose from, along with various combos and specials, but we just stuck with the basics. The tea was pretty good and I could definitely taste the fruity flavor of the peach, but it wasn’t extraordinary. The waffles however were delicious! As we were determined not to waste our money, my friend and I made sure to use up all the whipped cream and honey that came with the waffles (which was quite a lot in fact) and we ended up smothering our waffles with as much whipped cream and honey as they could hold. Hubba Hubba! Very very satisfying I must say! What do you guys think? Are you always determined to eat your money’s worth? Let me know in the comments! Hope you all enjoyed this quickie post! – Jas                                                                                                                                                                        Photographs taken by Jasmine...

Read More

Ciao Baby

Posted by on Nov 19, 2011 in New York Eats | 0 comments

Something I’ve noticed that most Americans seem to have in common is that we want things to be larger than life. Towering skyscrapers, luxurious living, speeding-around-town-in-a-hot-rod-with-some-super-model-girlfriend-in-the-passenger’s-seat…but who cares about any of that when it comes down to giant portions of food? Personally, being able to get more for a buck is always a win in my book, but I’m sure we all look for quality as well as quantity. Or at least I do, possibly because I’m a picky snob. (Or am I? That is the question. Mwahaha…ahem…) After being introduced to giant meatballs on Man vs. Food, we had to check it out for ourselves. Softball sized meatballs simmering in a savory red sauce for hours before being served up on an overflowing bed of pasta – how could we possibly resist! Upon arriving at Ciao Baby, a chic little family restaurant, we were raring to dig into their infamous dish — Nonna’s Old World Meat Platter ($35.95). It was huge…we definitely weren’t disappointed. Ecstatic more like. Each and every one of their dishes were served in portions so big that it’s impossible to leave without a ‘doggie bag’. Then again, if you’re actually able to finish everything…more power to ya. With two different links of sausage on the side, it was like a meat lover’s pasta dish on steroids. Three giant meatballs were the star of the dish, and one bite showed that it was everything we expected it to be. Soft, tender, and packed full of flavor. You would think that such a large ball of meat would be tough or undercooked, but the way the meatballs disappeared said otherwise. However, meatballs aside, the overall dish wasn’t nearly as impressive as it was hyped up to be. The ziti was cooked perfectly al dente, though you can request them to be cooked longer if that’s what you’d prefer. The sausages paled in comparison to the meatballs, to the point where they seemed no better than a store-bought brand. Yes, that is just how good the meatballs were. Overall, I can probably nom on those meatballs all day, but I could easily pass on the rest of the dish. Nonna’s Old World Meat Platter aside, the rest of our dinner was pretty phenomenal. All of the dishes were served on generous platters and heaping portions, there wasn’t much to complain about when it came to the food itself. The service was great, and they were very flexible with their menu as everything was literally cooked to order (pasta was al dente or not, the type of pasta used, the inclusion or exclusion of certain ingredients according to personal preferences). If it’s impossible to squeeze in the necessary time to whip up a Thanksgiving dinner, then keep Ciao Baby in mind as a potential restaurant to eat at for the holidays…or just any occasion really!  Check out their menu here! Commack 204 E. Jericho Turnpike Commack, NY 11725 (631) 543-1400  Massapequa 50-74 Sunrise Highway Massapequa Park, NY 11762 (516) 799-5200   ~ AJ ~ Photographs taken and provided by AnnMarie...

Read More

CN Tower & Sausage Dogs

Posted by on Nov 12, 2011 in Canada Eats | 2 comments

During our short, but enjoyable, weekend trip up to Canada, we spent a good deal of time cruising around in search of…yep, food. But before we could stuff our faces, we needed to work up an appetite. And what better way to scare up a craving than an adrenaline rush? A visit to the CN Tower’s Sky Pod gave us a beautiful view of Toronto sprawling out beneath us. Personally, I still find that no place can truly compare with New York City’s skyline. Doesn’t mean I can’t appreciate other places though. The fun really began when we found the glass paneled floors. All of our previous claims of how we weren’t scared of some silly glass floor located exactly 1122 ft above ground came back to haunt us. Looking down, our bravado faltered as intimidating fear gnawed nervously at our stomachs.  Which didn’t stop us from stomping all over it just to prove how brave (or stupid) we really were. In fact, I daresay we may have gotten a bit too comfortable on it. Near the exit (or entrance, however you want to look at it) of the CN Tower, and near the giant football stadium, little hot dog stands were cleverly situated in hopes of grabbing the attention of passerbys.  Of course, my dad, who is a complete sucker for hot dogs and sausages of any kind, was immediately drawn in by the nearest cart and ordering himself a spicy Italian sausage ($3.50). What’s so special about these hot dog carts you ask? Well, for one thing, they don’t just sell hot dogs. These carts are ready with options to satisfy nearly anyone. With chicken dogs and veggie dogs, you can opt for the healthier choices. But where’s the fun in that? As for me? I decided to venture out on a limb and order the Oktoberfest sausage ($3.50) despite having no idea what the heck it was. Turns out it was actually a white sausage made from veal. Yum, baby cows, must be tender. If those options still weren’t enough to satisfy your palate, then maybe the sheer amount of toppings available will. Remember Bad Dawgs from last week? My main complaint had been that while their toppings were plentiful, the hot dogs themselves weren’t anything special. For these sausage dogs that we found in Toronto, no such thing. The sausages themselves were big enough to be a filling meal on its own, and while they may not have had as many different topping choices as Bad Dawgs, there were certainly enough choices that my Oktoberdog pretty much disappeared beneath its new blanket of goodies. Something else I found interesting were the buns used. Unlike regular hot dog buns, these weren’t the usual kind you’d find out of a bag at the supermarket. Bigger and softer, these steamed buns were better off without being toasted. The last thing you’d want is for your toasted bun to split in half and watch the pigeons fight over what should’ve been happily settling down in your stomach. However, with the addition of the sausage and toppings…well, the bun became an afterthought as the star of the show stole the spotlight. If you ever find yourself in Canada, or in the Toronto area, scope out the corners of tourist hot spots and you’ll be sure to find one of these hot dog stands just waiting to take your money serve up a satisfying ‘dog’. While the sausage dogs are somewhat on the pricey side, I think they’re well worth it. Not only are the sausages deliciously filling, but the whole thing is still $0.25 cheaper...

Read More