14, Lane 40, Alley 181, ZhongXiao East Road
Hours:11:30 am-9:30 pm
Brunch: Saturday/Sunday 11 am-4 pm
visit reviewed: 3/12/2006
The people "in the know" about VVG Table's sister restaurant, VVG Bistro, have probably wandered over to VVG Table to try it out. Lunchwise- I prefer VVG Bistro's roasted chicken dome over my VVG Table lunch of beef bourguignon and something or other chicken when I last went. I don't know if it was an isolated event that I didn't enjoy much of the heavy flavors during that lunch or if it was because I had just gotten over a case of the stomach flu the day before and my tastebuds were still recovering.
However, I thoroughly enjoyed my brunch experience at VVG Table, especially knowing how hard it is to find a good Western style brunch or breakfast in Taipei. There is a set course menu (NT$520) which includes: a small salad, poached eggs with steamed asaparagus, cut roasted potatoes and sausage, crabcakes, avocado milk and a panna cotta with caramel sauce- all served on one tray.
Everything was fresh and delicious. The mixed greens salad was lightly dressed with a vinagrette. The poached eggs tasted as if they were timed just perfectly and a great accompaniment to the potatoes and sausage. Eating the steamed asaparagus made me feel healthier. The crabcakes were flaky and soft, with more crab than crumbs, lightly grilled to a crispy tender pair stacked on top of each other. The avocado milk was not my thing, despite the urging of the others in my party who readily sipped theirs down. The panna cotta was a sweet and creamy ending to the perfect brunch.
The weather was nice enough that we sat outside, at the long bench with pillows to sit on which was a good choice in retrospect. Inside, the long tables and chairs create a more dark, formal woodsy interior compared to the lavendar, modern art interior of VVG Bistro. My friend was eating vegetarian that weekend, and they aptly accomodated with a vegetarian set course, which switched the crab cakes for pumpkin cakes and omitted the sausages from the roasted potatoes.
I also ordered an apple cake dessert to go, would have probably been tastier there. The caramel sauce on the side dripped through the bag, and the very dense cake may have benefitted from being heated. Next time, I will probably try the berry dessert that I spied at another table. I would definitely recommend brunch at VVG Table and would definitely come back and bring friends.
Sunday, May 07, 2006
Sunday, November 16, 2008
VVG BON BON
Sat/Sun:11AM - 11PM
Kid friendliness: no high chairs. displays of candy and sweets everywhere- be prepared to buy something for the kids unless they have no sweet tooth!
Visit reviewed: 7/27/2008
Dining in VVG Bon Bon is like dining in a girly candy store, with its pink walls, glass containers filled with various kinds of candy and rows of cupcakes and sweets to tempt you with. A fantasyland for the 10 year old girl in you or the place not to go when you have a dentist appointment the next day.
I went with three friends for a brunch meeting and it was pretty full at VVG Table- and the waiter suggested we check out their newly opened and nearby third venue- VVG Bon Bon. From the moment you see the entrance, with doors painted purple and white, it's like entering a wonderland far away from the busy streets of Taipei.
There's even a self-serve cotton candy machine and frosted sugar cookies on top of the counters. They should totally give out free cotton candy to people as they leave, as one waiter did for us at Simon in Las Vegas. The restaurant pays only for the sugar and gets the result of the giddy squeals of happiness of the customers who have totally reverted into their childhoods- and word of mouth.
For first impressions, VVG Bon Bon does a great job. Even their business card is eye-catching cuteness, with rows of cupcakes adorning the restaurant's name.
A perfect place to meet friends for afternoon tea or brunch, or maybe to host a baby shower or birthday. They have 4 set menus on their clear plastic menu, all including a cupcake and raspberry soda drink for NT$580. The menu combos looked promising, but ultimately were all much smaller in portions than I expected for the price.
We all ended up ordering different things so I got to eye (and taste) the different meals. The most filling is probably the Bon Bon Bon Bon with the red wine beef stew.
Second most filling is the Bon Bon set with the angel hair noodle soup and french toast. I thought the french toast would be the main feature of the set, but it's actually the noodle soup.
Well, proportion wise, the salad was the biggest and the french toast was the smallest. Plus the french toast had raisins in it (eww).
I chose the crepes (the Bon Bon Bon) since I thought that wouldn't be too heavy. It was TINY. I suppose you could still call it a crepe, but I guess I was envisioning Mamm Goz sized crepes.
After picking all the dill off of the crepe and eating it in two bites, I traded it with my friend for some of his angel hair soup. I hoped my own soup and salad would fill me up.
Unfortunately, it didn't.
The hungry look on my face was probably evident, since everyone offered some of their dish to me. When some guy friends mentioned to me that they liked VVG Bon Bon, I was surprised. I asked, Really? You were full from one set? and the response was, Are you ever full eating at VVG? And I guess it's true- VVG's standard presentation is always beautiful, delicate, but the food never makes you 100 percent full.
The same with their cupcakes. The waitress brought them over with the set and explained what they were in Chinese, so I didn't catch everything, but brought four different kinds for our four different sets. They were almost too cute to eat and at this visit, the exotic flavors like fig cupcake just left me wanting for something more traditional, like a cupcake from Ginjer. The thick frosting was more for show and not taste and the cupcake was dense - there should have been more fluffiness and air in both the frosting and cake.
It should be joyful to eat a cupcake, but in this case it was work. It makes me sad when I don't even want to finish the cupcake.
If I were to go again, maybe I would request to choose my own cupcake. That might make for more happy pairings with the cupcakes and the customers who are going to eat them.
I have been mulling over this review for a long time- for over four months- and VVG Bon Bon isn't so new anymore and I wonder if their menu has changed. The flavors could satisfy any gourmet, but the portions for the price you are paying is just a big factor in a city where you could order a table full of delicious things for the same amount of money which is almost US$18. For that price, I'd rather wander over to Nonzero which has definitely stepped up its game since I reviewed it last year, or L'Idiot which serves a pretty decent brunch and even better set lunch menu.
But in any case, I've never seen anyplace like VVG Bon Bon, and it's definitely something to see in person. The food should be better than the equally pink and girly Hello Kitty Sweets or a great place to browse if you are picking up favors for your latest party.
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Thursday, June 14, 2012
VVG BON BON 好樣棒棒
website: vvgvvgblogspot.com Chinese only
hours: 12PM - 9PM; weekends 11AM - 9PM
$$ (about NT$630/person)
Kid friendliness: no high chairs, lots to see.
Visit reviewed: 4/9/2012
Previous visit reviewed: 7/27/2008
Figuring out a place to throw a baby shower for my friend led us to back to VVG Bon Bon, which I hadn't been for years...
Lots had stayed the same- the princess pink decor, the jars and jars of candy and sweets, rows of cupcakes, and whimsical touches...
But more loungy couch seating areas had been added in the front, like having tea in a hipster friend's living room.
And cupcakes looked fluffier, fancier, slightly bigger. There were also some other desserts, including bread puddings and the divine fudge chocolate marshmallow cake that I loved from the original VVG.
Turned out to be the perfect place for a baby shower- there was even an adorable baby carriage near our seats that our friends asked us if we brought in. Haha!
The menu had also changed- though there was still four set menus to choose from- this season's sets featured lasagna, Indian styled beef curry pot and rice or burger, and an a la carte menu of pastas and salads.
When we started ordering, the waitress told us that they only certain numbers of certain sets available. I thought it was sort of strange, especially since we were the first customers at lunch and we had made reservations in advance, so they knew we had a large group coming. We worked it out, but I don't know if I'd be annoyed if a set I wanted was sold out.
Each set comes with a soup, salad, drink and cupcake and is served in VVG's signature bento style tray, which I've also seen at VVG Table's brunch. I ordered the Beef curry pot with Indian aromatic rice (NT$580) which had a nice sweet and spiciness and it was nice to have actual basmati rice to go with it, which quite a few Indian restaurants in Taipei skimp out on (and serve white rice instead).
Pumpkin soup, fresh greens...
And then the cupcake. I wasn't impressed with my cupcakes at my last visit years ago, but good for VVG Bon Bon, they improved them since then. I felt the syringe of sugar water was kind of strange as I didn't want artificial sugar added into my cupcake, but the chocolate cake and frosting was decent without it. The other cupcakes around the table were also very fanciful. We didn't get to choose our own cupcakes, but I suppose you could request your flavor in advance.
The seating in the back had been changed into a mini shop of sorts- an eclectic collection of candies, ceramics, stationary goods, bags, pillows and stuff. The candy land room was cluttered with salt water taffies, rainbow lollipops, cat shaped pillows, cupcake notecards, animal topped pens, and all sorts of cuteness.
The prices were too high for me to make an impulse purchase, but it could be a place to browse for gift giving.
One could have an Instragram/Facebook/Twitter/Weibo/Fill-in-your-social-media of-choice frenzy in here.
With all the new cute cafes and coffeeshops flooding Taipei's alleys, it was nice to come back to one of the first and see that VVG Bon Bon was worth revisiting.