Taiwan: Arriving in Taipei and Checking into Hotel Papa Whale

On the 6th day of our trip, we left Taichung and headed off to Taipei for the next leg of our trip. Before we made our way to the HSR, our driver recommended this really yummy fen yuan in Taichung and I have to agree that it’s the best I have ever eaten so far! smile

東東芋圓 is located on a small street leading to Xinshe, we had to park across the street and do a takeaway. I was so stoked that they had taro paste, which was a great addition to the dessert!

We were very much looking forward to what Taipei had in store for us when our first impression of the city was ruined. We flagged a cab the moment we arrived at Taipei HSR station. As our hotel is just a 5-10 mins drive away, the grumpy driver started lashing out at us and nagged throughout the whole trip. He then purposely stopped his cab across the street and told us to take out our luggages from the car boot ourselves else he would charge us NT$20 for it. We were so annoyed and we told him that he can jolly well keep his 20 bucks. This was a far cry from the friendly residents in Taichung and we were pretty shocked about it, even until today. sad

Hotel Papa Whale is probably one of the worst hotels I have ever stayed at. Even though it looks fancy at the lobby area, the room was so tiny that we felt claustrophobic. I couldn’t sleep during all the 5 nights we were there. sad There was a group of Koreans staying on the same level as us and they couldn’t stop talking even until 2am or 3am. The rooms were so badly sound proofed that I could even hear them using their plastic bags or packing their luggages. We complained to the concierge at least 2-3 times but it wasn’t of much help as it repeats on a daily basis. A real torture for light sleepers like myself. angry

As you can see, our trip to Taipei started on a bad note but of course, it doesn’t affect the rest of our trip! smile

We took a quick stroll to Ximending and had some light bites and drinks at this awesome pub. Sadly, we couldn’t find it when we wanted to visit it again.

Check out my other posts on Taiwan:
heart Taiwan: 你好 from Taiwan!
heart Taiwan: Ay-Chung Flour-Rice Noodle 阿宗麵線
heart Taiwan: Addiction Aquatic Development 上引水產
heart Taiwan: Arriving at Taichung and Visiting Fengjia Night Market 逢甲夜市
heart Taiwan: Miyahara 宮原眼科
heart Taiwan: Sightseeing in Taichung
heart Taiwan: Lavender Cottage 薰衣草森林
heart Taiwan: Our Experience At Cingjing 清境
heart Taiwan: Arriving In Taipei And Checking Into Hotel Papa Whale
heart Taiwan: Banana New Paradise 香蕉新樂園

Five Nines 999.99 Dishes Out European-Japanese Fare

Fives Nines, which is formerly located on Keong Saik Road, reopens its doors at Cuppage Plaza and now serves affordable, European-Japanese fare prepared with seasonal ingredients from Japan. I was quite impressed by the dishes then during my first visit and was very much looking forward to the second tasting. smile

Here we are, trying out their 6-course set dinner at $49++, which has to be pre-reserved as there are limited ingredients from Japan.

We started off the dinner with Marinated Botan Shrimp and Couscous Salad with Tosazu Vinegar and Salmon Roe. The shrimp was really fresh and nicely marinated with Tosazu Vinegar, a mixture of soy sauce vinegar and bonito flakes to give it that robust flavour.

Foie Gras Terrine and Bruschetta was presented in a dramatic-style where the dish was filled with smoked orange jam. The citrus scent is a mood-booster and helps to whet the appetite as well. The only downside of this dish is probably the portion size, which was barely a mouthful.

Moving on, we had Garlic Flavored Squid Ink Tagliolini Topped With Snow Crab as one of the main dishes. Chunks of snow crab were generously sprinkled on top of the pasta. This was my favorite dish compared to the rest.

Steam Cod Fish Rolled With Parma Ham Porcini Cream Sauce was the second main dish. Again, the portion size was a letdown. The fish was surprisingly soft, which was a pretty uncommon texture for cod fish. If not for the parma ham, it can get a little too bland. Honestly, I had mixed feeling for this dish.

The Mozzarella and Lamb Tender Loin Fritto with Celeriac Puree & Japanese Pepper Fond De Veau Sauce was the final main dish. Presented with its cheese oozing out, I didn’t quite like the meat as the distinctive lamb flavour is too strong.

Creme Brulee With Raspberry Sorbet was the dessert of the day. The creme brulee was nicely charred and paired with a delicious scoop of sweet and sour raspberry sorbet.

Lots of hits and misses for this menu, wish they would bring back the good old stuff.

Five Nines 999.99
5 Koek Road, #04-04, Cuppage Plaza, Singapore 228796
Tel: (65) 6732 0195