My Rest & Relax Taipei Trip Part 1

Sunday, January 19, 2014

[Holiday + Food Trip] Hello everyone! 
This is a SUPER backdated post ~ something that I have always wanted to really sit down and write .. but it was almost impossible to do so! Til now.. hahaha! Firstly I have to thank the weather lately, coz its been so nice and chill that Im actually in a great mood right now, perfect to sit down with a cup of warm water and infront of my laptop. Secondly I have to thank my husband.. for finally passing me all these pictures becoz..(wait for this) he LAZY. {Insert zzz face} Anyways there will be several parts to my Taipei post but I promise that there will also be a short video on this so apologies for being so late!
Taipei Day 1
Remember my previous post on Eyelash Extensions
Well, I did them specially for my Taipei holiday! This trip was a quick getaway with the hubby and all we wanted to do (seriously speaking) was to eat! Yes.. we simply wanted to enjoy the cold weather (it was in October) and go there stuff our faces silly.
View of 101 from our hotel
The first thing we did after touch down was to head to our favorite SHILIN NIGHT MARKET!
I dun care what people complain about the 'new' or 'old' Shilin, coz Shilin is just Shilin to me and I love it for what it is! I always head there to buy peanut candy and eat my favorite smelly tofu so thats all I need la.
It was dinner time so we were naturally famished and wanted some dinner!
The basement hawker center at Shilin is slightly more congested and crowded now being underground and all, but its still quite lively and the toilets are much cleaner!
We Q-ed for the grilled squid because hubby likes squid ... ok not really. Coz we saw queue la. #SoSingaporean! HAHAHAHAH 
After squid, we sat down to have some local beers and oyster omelette!
YUMMEH
Cannot resist!
The weather was perfect for strolling night market!
Have to eat my all-time favorite smelly tofu and its really so nice and smelly and crispy that my hubby, who initially NEVER eats anything remotely smelly, let alone smelly tofu - has a craving for it! He badgers me now to eat smelly tofu all the time. I really dunno what I got myself into.
Ended the night trying to shop but actually nothing much to buy coz its all warm clothes! All too thick and hot to wear in Singapore, one!
Taipei Day 2
We had a good night's rest and woke up fresh to head all the way to Shidong Wet Market!
Why Shidong you ask? 
While I was watching a Taiwanese variety show, they introduced this place called A-ji-shi (阿吉師) sushi stall, a standing sushi stall at the Shidong fish and vegetable market (士東市場) in Tianmu. It is the place to go if you are looking for the freshest catch of the day!
Not only do you get the very freshest of fish — thanks to eight full-scale fishmongers surrounding the sushi stall boasting crustacean-filled aquariums fit for an ocean park — you also get creatures you might not expect to see on a dining table, including various sea insects served any way from completely raw and almost kicking to slightly charred with a Bunsen burner-like flame thrower. -- from taipeitimes.
It is a only-standing sushi bar and its quite easy to find!
Excited!
Its very self-serviced, so be prepared to even grab a bowl and fill your own soup for your meal! But its also very clean, no fishy smell at all even though we're literally in a fish market! Can u imagine how fresh the seafood here is! There are several price ranges, and its not really cheap (considering that its in a fish market and there are no proper chairs) but I assure you that you will not regret as the quality of the food is really good.
The boss would ask you what you prefer (there is NO menu) and what you don't eat so do prepare what to say in advance as they work very fast to ensure a maximum turn-over rate as the seatings are quite limited. 
We had grilled prawns with a sauce made of mentaiko 明太子 and cheese.
The Uni handroll was also very good, but the clear winner that morning was our fresh ama ebi (Japanese sweet prawn) that was so fresh and sweet, it actually tasted like nothing we had tried before! Even the top restaurants in Singapore no fight pleaseee!
Ama ebi #FTW! (For The Win)
A-ji-shi 阿吉師
Address: Stall 88, 1F Shidong Market, 100 Shidong Road, Taipei City 
(台北市士東路100號士東市場一樓88攤)
Telephone: (02) 2834-6136
Average meal: NT$800 or NT$1,600
Open: 10:30am to 5pm or 6pm, closed on Mondays
Details: No menu, credit cards not accepted
There's nothing much in Tianmu, but we spotted a small shopping mall and decided to rest our legs (after standing and eating!)
I need COFFEE!
There was an Agnes B cafe (not found in Sinagapore) and I had their Rose Coffee Latte which was actually very good! I caught a whiff of rose whenever I took a sip of coffee ~ I love roses so the drink was quite delicious to me.
Since we had nothing to do, we took a cab (public transport in Taipei is soooo affordable!) to Wu Fen Pu Wholesale Market. 
The Wufenpu Wholesale Market has become the largest garment wholesale market in Taipei and there are more a thousand of clothing stores. Every Monday is the day fixed wholesale, (do not go) where you will see hawkers from around the world, with a super large bag, buying clothes.
I've been here so many times but I still get lost in the many many rows of shops!
Cute dog!
Although its not as big as wholesale markets like Bangkok's Chatuchak market - my advice is to take it slow but buy it once you see anything you like. There's really no point comparing prices as the prices are quite competitive. The owners here are generally easy-going but it is a wholesale market afterall so sometimes they dun really entertain you if you intend to buy only one or two pieces. It is really much easier to shop here in a group to share the costs or if u intend to buy in bulk. Some of the prices quoted are really quite expensive so I didnt really buy much there. 
Wu Fen Pu 
MRT: Houshanpi Station Exit 1 after Bannan Line
Train: Songshan Railway Station (Station)
It was in the late afternoon when we decided to cut our losses (haha waste time only this WufenPu) and head to another favorite place .........XiMenDing!
Ximending 西門町 is a neighborhood and shopping district in the Wanhua District of Taipei, Taiwan. It is trendy and extremely crowded with the young and fashionable. 
Side alleys
Im always quite excited in Ximending coz always got ALOT of things to see and eat, one!
Frankly I dun buy much in Ximending because most of the items here can be found in Shilin at a cheaper price but I would head to the StayReal store to check out if they have any nice stuff! 
StayReal Ximending Store
 臺北市萬華區昆明街78號
(Near Lux Cinema)
After shopping ....... must eat AH ZHONG MIAN XIAN!
Our favorite street snack! Eat a bowl by the roadside ~ shiok!
Ah Zong Mian Xian 阿宗麵線
 台北市峨嵋街8號之1
After shopping and eating non-stop... we headed back to the hotel for a quick break and changed to head out to our most anticipated dinner reservation in Taipei!
Sasa Sushi 笹鮨, recommended by a good friend of ours - it was the epitome of fresh sushi and sashimi in Taipei! Outside of Japan, perhaps Taipei is probably one of the best cities in the world to get authentic Japanese food. There's at least a dozen of sushi restaurants in Taipei at Michelin-level and Sasa Sushi (according to rave reviews) was one of them
We had to get our concierge to make reservations the moment we touched down and unfortunately they were so full, we could only have dinner there once during the entire trip! Its a small nondescript restaurant along one of the alleys but once you walk in, its totally transformed into this buzzing place! There was a small party that night made up of the restaurant's regulars (we could hear from their conversation how this place is so fully booked) so it was quite entertaining the whole time.  
We decided to go for the Omakase dinner and our soft-spoken but extremely wonderful sushi chef was so patient and with every dish, - he carefully explained what he was doing/cutting and serving. The rest of the wait staff was also very professional and friendly, and the service there is really top-notch.
We had 3-4 different kinds of Uni that night, with each getting better than the previous one and it was really a trip! I could taste the sea in the uni, and that is as fresh as fresh could get.
I didnt want to spoil my wonderful dinner by constantly being on the phone/or using the camera - so do pardon me for the lack of pictures at Sasa Sushi.
My first double-layer tuna belly (Otoro) sushi and til now I still drool thinking of it!
What a wonderful, wonderful dinner. We will be back.
Sasa Sushi
No.5, Ln. 42, Sec. 2, Zhongshan N. Rd., Zhongshan Dist.,, Taipei, Taiwan
Thanks for looking everyone! 
Its getting late and I have yoga and a facial appointment tomorrow morning so I kinda have to head to bed now ... and dream of sushi.
"Sometimes we need to stop analyzing the past, stop planning the future.. And just see what happens." -Carrie Bradshaw. 
Look of the Day : Open-shoulder top from Bangkok, #Mcqueen Skull Scarf and $8 #sunglasses from #Shilin night market.
xo

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7 comments

  1. Hi Elaine, which hotel did u stay at Taipei? Many thanks

    ReplyDelete
  2. Hi babe! For this trip it was the W Hotel in taipei :)

    ReplyDelete
  3. Hi Elaine , great review!
    will definitely try the Sasa Sushi during my coming trip to Taipei, you made it sound so good, & those pics...wow !!!:)
    By the way, how's the "stayReal store", any good? What can I expect from that store? tia

    ReplyDelete
  4. Hello Colette! The StayReal store in Ximending is quite good! They have a 2 storey one near the XMD cinema (u can google or ask a local) and its quite well stocked.

    ReplyDelete
  5. Hi Elaine,

    Could I know where you went for your facial? Am heading to Taipei and looking for beauty and hair salons.

    Thanks!

    ReplyDelete
  6. I also enjoyed Taipei trip very much, here's sharing a timelapse video on Taipei https://vimeo.com/112815780

    ReplyDelete

Hello there, Pixie! Feel free to leave a comment, thanks! xo

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