Sunday, August 2, 2009

Why midtown might have an edge on Taiwan

This is the only reason I hate my job. There is absolutely nothing good to eat around my workplace, which is part of the reason I go to 7-11 all the time. Anyway, as part of my first week in the lab (see how long ago this should've been put up?), I went out to lunch with my coworkers a few times. One of the first places they took me was a noodle shop called 老家好麵 (Old Family Good Noodles... it's official, I give up on trying to translate properly). In any case, it's just like every other noodle shop you might see. Small, dimly lit, poorly air conditioned, and cramped to boot. There is absolutely nothing that would draw you into this store, yet I'm sure they make an absolute killing in terms of profits. A number of factors plays into this, Academia Sinica has no other good food options, it is the first shop along a line of mediocre food establishments, and did I mention that the people in Taiwan are incredibly lazy? To explain how bad the area is for eating, I would be indescribably happy if only a Mos Burger would be right across the street (nevermind the fact that I love Mos Burger... it's still fast food!).

Onto the food! For 55 NT (just a shade under $2), you can get their special... something called 'biang biang noodles.' Of course you could also get their beef noodles for 100 NT ($3), but after having so many better options, I figured I might as well not disappoint my tastebuds with more mediocrity. Did I succeed? Hell no, this bowl of noodles was terrible. Imagine store bought Chinese flat noodles, minced pork meat sauce tossed with some tofu pieces, mixed with an egg and tomato sauce mixture, with a side of scallions and bean sprouts. Does that sound awesome to you? because I assure you it's not. To be fair, it didn't taste terrible, but it's also not something I would want to pay for (or buy again). If I had made this at home, I would gladly finish it, but it's definitely not a dish I'd try to replicate. So listen, do yourself a favor, if you're ever in the area around Academia Sinica, just go to 7-11... your stomach (and wallet) will thank you.


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oh snap. I can control the text here?