at MIRAMAR MALL, 5th FL
22 JING YE 3rd ROAD
visit reviewed: 11/18/2007
When the Miramar Mall or Mei Li Hwa first opened a few years ago, it was a popular destination for its shopping, movies and IMAX theater, but mostly the ferris wheel (the third largest in Asia). Families, couples and tourists waited for over an hour for a 17 minute ride in a private seat for a sky high view of Taipei. Nowadays, you can hop on the ferris wheel for less than a 10 minute wait.
While visiting Miramar, our family wanted to eat somewhere decent, but not at the food court. While checking out our options on the 5th floor, there was a 20-30 minute wait at Hwa Young which seemed packed with customers eating amidst dim sum carts, a Japanese restaurant and a steak place. We ended up putting our name on the list for Hwa Young- thinking it must be worth the wait- it must be good if that's where everyone is eating. The wait sped by as we shopped nearby and waited for our cell to ring.
The inside was booked with a wedding, so the seating was limited to the outside seating area, sort of like a patio that provided a view of the escalators and the mall. After checking out the website, apparently much of their business is offering wedding banquet services.
The extensive menu, in English and Chinese, had a lot more to choose from than I expected- lots of main dishes, dim sum options and specialty appetizers with nouveau sounding names. We stuck to dim sum with a few side dishes- kon ching tsai vegetables, fried tofu and duck.
I was excited by the first few bites of duck, but overall the dim sum was a disappointment. Partially because I expected more with the higher mall prices, but everything tasted flat and lacked the right flavors. I wouldn't go there again and I wouldn't recommend it to others.
The vegetables were not bad, though the fried tofu was totally not what we expected- not the classic cubes of deep fried tofu. Instead, it was if the chef mashed the tofu into chunky bits, reformed it with some vegetables and then pan fried it. It would have been okay if it tasted good, but it didn't.
I don't know if it was because they were busy making the better food for the wedding banquet, or if that is just the style of their dim sum or if we just ordered the wrong things off the menu, but I'm sure there are a lot of other better options to choose from nearby. The search continues... any recommendations?
HWA YOUNG BOUTIQUE CUISINE
at 101 Mall
No. 45, Shih Fu Road
HWA YOUNG GOURMET AND BANQUET
No.209, Sec. 3, Civic Blvd.,
Jhongshan District, Taipei