Friday, October 27, 2006
CLOSED! dessert/american: K2 GELATO & i do not recommend STATES FRIES
Warner Village outdoor food court
16 Song Shou Road
Xin Yi district, Taipei 110
EDIT 6/22/2007 walked by States Fries the other day, and now there is a Irish Potatoes in its place. Didn't get too close for a look, but seems like the same thing- maybe new management? or just a new name?
EDIT 10/27/2006: about a month ago, K2 gelato has been replaced by a donut place, which is a bit strange considering Mr. Donut is just down the block. Has anyone seen it relocated somewhere else, or is it the end of K2?
date visited: 7/25/2006
When I first heard about States Fries, I thought that the owners were a bit insane. Charging $80-$120 NT for just french fries? That's the equivalent of US$2.75-$4. Every time, I passed by- the oily aroma of freshly fried french fries would waft towards me. The menu included chili fries. I was tempted. Then they renovated the food court indoors, and somehow States Fries ended up outside, next door to K2 Gelato. Sometimes I would see a short line. I ended up nicknaming them "devil fries" because they were so bad for you, but so tempting!
So I caved recently, while walking around on a hot afternoon near Warner Village. I blame the gelato. You know how sometimes when you have something sweet, then you crave something salty, or vice versa. It was hot, so I had some gelato. Then I had the fries.
So which do you want to hear about first?
K2 is a tiny gelato nook with about 10-14 flavors. The guy who scooped my flavors said that they make it there every few days. I sampled few flavors, which are labeled in Chinese and what I assume is Italian. I ended up getting 2 flavor cup (NT$80) the caramel which is a sweet, sugary flavor, which tastes like caramel (well, duh) and banana (which I did not sample because I felt bad because I already had three samples).
Now, I always make this mistake. I feel bad asking for samples, although I should not because ultimately I spend money there at Fill-in-the-blank ice cream/frozen yogurt/gelato place. Often times, after I've had three or so samples, I will decide on a flavor I like, and then sometimes pair it with another flavor that I think I will like, but not actually sampled, but think will be okay because all the other flavors I sampled were okay, and how bad could it be.
Caramel and banana. Sounds good right? Well, for whatever reason, I didn't like the banana gelato. And I like banana! Something was off about it... I don't know if there was additional flavor that was added, or it was from a syrup rather than fresh? But I ended up eating all of the caramel and none of the banana. If I had known this advance, I would have just gotten the 1 flavor cup (NT$60). I like the gelato at K2... It's not as dense and heavy as the ice cream at Haagen Daaz, and it's not watery like some of those mall places where they make ice cream from ice and chocolate syrup. I will have to try their fruit flavors one day.
So back to States Fries... it's hard to find chili cheese fries here. And yes, it's not good for you. But sometimes, you just want to eat them! States Fries offers fries plain (NT$80) or with various toppings such as honey mustard, cheese, chili, chili cheese or even sweet toppings that you can see on their menu wall. They also have combos where you can pair the cup of fries with a sandwich and drink.
But sadly, the chili fries (NT$95) are another thing that are just not as good here. The chili is watery, bland and made the fries soggy and watery and not very tasty. I go back to the counter and request that they add the cheese, hoping it will save it. After telling them that the chili is too watery, the fries guy says something along the lines of that the chili didn't sell well earlier, so it was in the freezer or fridge, and when it was reheated became more watery. Basically admitting that they gave me bad chili. And they also take my extra NT$20 for the cheese, instead of apologizing or offering up the cheese for free.
Unfortunately, the cheese, which is melted from an oven and then put onto the fries (not a cheese sauce, for those of you that are curious), does not save this chili fry mess. The cheese becomes cold fairly quickly and of course, can't change how watery or bland the chili is. I end up being unable to finish it.
Long story short, if you are desparately craving, you can make better chili cheese fries yourself at Chili's. Their chili soup is actually not bad, at least relative to this, thick with meat, beans and tomatoes the way it should be; their fries are also crispy and hot. A better choice would also be to enjoy the fries with your combo at McDonalds or Doner Kebab nearby- and get a whole meal for the price you would pay at States Fries.
PS.. It's too bad they don't have garlic fries. Now if made properly, that would be pretty delicious. I wonder if you could find garlic fries in Taipei