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Wednesday, August 26, 2009

romantic/dessert: happy Chinese valentine's day- 10+ taipei romantic sweets for your sweet

Happy Chinese Valentine's Day! I can never remember when it is every year, but someone somehow reminds me about it. I sometimes get some emails asking for advice for suggestions for very special occasion places and there are definitely a lot of suitable places to woo your date.

I'm a dessert girl (if you couldn't tell) and always give a restaurant brownie points if they have a memorable or delicious dessert. So I'm just gonna throw together a little list of places you can see if you can make last minute reservations (if you haven't planned something spectacular or sweet already) for tonight.

1. Joyce East or Joyce Cafe - SOUFFLE

I love, love, love their souffle- you just have to make sure to order it in advance before you finish your meal so they have time to make it. Not too sweet, always fluffy, it will always be the first place I've ever had a souffle. Choose chocolate, vanilla, Grand Marnier or green tea, or get more than one! Their warm lava cake ala mode is also amazing.
Joyce Cafe- No. 22, Ching Cheng St, (02) 2713-8362;
Joyce East- No. 128 Xin Yi Road, Sec 5, (02) 8789-6128

2. Flavors Swedish Restaurant - APPLE CAKE

No kids allowed at this restaurant- so you will definitely have a nice night out without having to deal with food thrown on the floor or seeing other kids running around. The meatballs and new potatoes are fantastic, but their apple cake is like the best apple pie/crumble you will ever eat.
No. 13, Alley 26, Lane 300, RenAi Rd, Sec. 4, (02) 2709-6525


A recent find- this place is a steal at lunchtime for NT$400 for a full rustic French lunch set including full sized desserts. It's hard to choose between warm chocolate cake, apple tart, meringue or creme brulee, but you know what my pick is! The lamb shank and duck confit and sauces will blow you away.
No. 14, Ln 219, Fuxing S Rd, Sec 1, (02) 2751-0185


You don't have to spend a lot to get something memorable- pick up a freshly made mille-feuille to-go for something different. Best eaten chilled, so deliver it to them right away, or keep it in the fridge for an after dinner surprise. This place is desserts and coffee/tea only, so come after lunch or dinner.
No. 5, Lane 41, Yong Kang St., (02) 2393-8098

5. Ben Teppanyaki- WARM CHOCOLATE CAKE (and Foie Gras!)

Splurge on some surf and turf and foie gras, but save room at the end of your meal with Ben Teppanyaki's warm chocolate cake.
No. 2 Lane 102, An Ho Road, Sec 1, (02) 2703-2296

6. Macaroni Grill- LEMON PASSION CAKE

Feeling something other than chocolate? Then try the Lemon Passion at Macaroni Grill which is ultra-moist because it's soaked in a sweet cream and then topped in a lemon mousse. It helped when I was craving Lemon Meringue and needed something different. Of course you can order any of their other super sized desserts- tiramisu, cheesecake, chocolate cake or apple crisp.
at Neo 19, 30 Sung Shou Road, (02) 2722-4567

7. Tai Yi Milk King- SHAVED ICE

Okay, so Tai Yi isn't quite a romantic hang out (maybe the opposite), but it's so hot and humid outside, the thought that someone would bring shaved ice to me so that I didn't have to sweat it outside myself is pretty noble. Who wouldn't want some shaved ice relief? One of the pleasures of living in Taipei is the ability to get shaved ice almost everywhere (thanks to Meet Fresh), but I still think Tai Yi is the best! My favorite combo is the red bean and rice ball with condensed milk.
No. 82, Xin Sheng S. Road, Section 3, (02) 2362 3712

8. Big Tom's Ice Cream- ICE CREAM AND WAFFLE

Go for dessert or take home a few scoops, Big Tom has lots and lots of flavors without being too sweet. Plus their waffle is delicious- crispy on the outside, soft on the outside, without being too cake-like. My favorite flavor is peanut butter.
No.505, Ren-ai Rd., Sec. 4, (02) 2345-4213;
No.233-2, Jhongjheng Rd., 2 FL, Danshui, (02)2626-1622;
No.1, Lane 63, Sec. 7, Jhongshan N. Rd., Tienmu, (02)2875-5511;
No.219, Sec. 2, Chang-an E. Rd., Songshan, (02)2772-2658

9. Ginjer Cupcakes- Cupcakes

I overindulged in the cupcake craze back in LA (Sprinkles, Auntie Em's, Yummy Cupcakes, Crumbs), but somehow it hasn't hit Taipei yet. But you can still get American style cupcakes at Ginjer - my favorites are the ones with cream cheese or chocolate frosting. Pick up a few or plan ahead next time and get custom order designs.
No. 20, Lane 233, Dun Hua S. Rd, Sec 1, (02) 8773-3061


Pay the price that you normally wouldn't for the apple tart, strawberry napoleon or macarons. They also have a full menu now with crepes, sandwiches, omelettes and eggs, so you can also eat before you indulge in your desserts.
No. 107, Ren Ai Rd, Sec. 4, (02)2771-3200

So some quick suggestions from the top of my head. Of course, we don't have to have a fancy dinner or dessert. No matter what, just take a few minutes today to express your love with some hugs and kisses. I always loved getting handwritten cards. But something sweet to make the endorphins rush and the heart beat a little faster never hurts.

A few other ideas to-go:

- Macarons from Paul, Franciacorta or VVG Bon Bon. (I'm not that familiar with macarons in Taipei- any suggestions??)
- Hello Kitty dessert from Hello Kitty Sweets
- Blueberry cheesecake from 85 Degrees C
- Room for Dessert's waffle
- Pozzo's chocolate ganache cake
- Black as Chocolate chocolate cake
- Movenpick ice cream
- Beard Papa cream puffs
- Napoleons or tarts from Paul
- Fondue? (Is there fondue in Taipei?)
- Frozen yogurt from YoFroYo
- Warm brownie from the Diner
- Dessert tofu from Sweet Dynasty
- Warm chocolate cake from Chili's
- Egg tarts from Parent's Restaurant
- Nutella crepe from Crepes Suzette at NYNY

I know I haven't eaten everywhere in Taipei! What are your favorite desserts or romantic spots?


Anonymous said...

great list! thanks!!!! looks so yummy

Anonymous said...

Fishing for comments on twitter? I'm disappointed, don't be so needy!

Jean said...

hey anonymous #2.. worked on you, right? don't be a jerk.

hungry girl - loved the post! it's so cute. i think my fave choice is the teppanyaki for the warm choc cake & the foie gras!! WIN!

Baby Madison said...

you're horrible... i'm *drooling* all over this post. i'm on a *diet* plan. i guess the plan is out the window, lol. :)

Baby Madison said...

i'm dying to go to PAUL. that tart looks amazing :)

kirbie said...

OMG, these desserts look amazing. I'm a dessert girl too! Hehee. Even the shaved ice...though it's not fancy, I'm always searching for shaved ice (not so available in San Diego)

Nanciful said...

You are sooooo lucky that you live in Taipei! All the great food and the not so sweet but oh so delicious desserts! Love the waffle with ice cream!

Nanciful said...

By the way, the Paul's in Taipei must be better than the Paul's in Shanghai. The Shanghai one did not impress me at all. :(

Ruby said...

omg. i am living on the wrong side of the ocean.

Jc said...

Mannn wish I was in taipei!

Lea said...

Hey Joan! Wonder if you check your gmail?

joanh said...

Anonymous #1: thanks!

Anonymous #2: what else is twitter for but to rant and rave about what i'm thinking? i'm disappointed when i get 0 comments. wouldn't you be?

jean: thanks! we will have to go there next time you are in taipei!! :)

Baby Madison: you are so good.. don't let me be a bad influence. maybe we can find some healthy desserts. :)

kirbie: i know! awesome shaved ice is easier said than done.

Nanciful: hahah. have to make the best of it! glad to finally discovered lots of great places. ps. I think there are a bunch of Paul's in Shanghai? maybe Taipei has more of a sweet tooth?

Ruby: hahah. :) come visit soon!

Jc: hahha. thanks.

Lea: got it! thanks!