It wasn't much of a surprise to find the following items on the Asian-inspired set menu. Singapore Chicken Rice, King Prawns Laksa, Bah Kut Teh and Wok fried Hokkien noodle. Another reason for order from this menu was because of the price! I mean for a normal lunch here, it will set you back NT500, that's not cheap locally speaking. The Singapore Chicken Rice was unexciting, the texture of the chicken was quite soft and slightly on the bland side, an approach I am fine with only if the sauces were good enough. The Bah Kut Teh was the herb-based type instead of the peppery type but it was overly light. Served with white rice, vegetable and a small dish of marinated pork knuckle, I certainly hoped for something more mouthwatering. As for the Wok-fried Hokkien noodles, moist it should be but the one served was soaked in the sauces. It was too salty as well, not just my opinion but all of us who tasted it. Enough with the bad, let's head over to the great excitement!
For those unaware of the following facts, there is a piece of land (until recently a farmland) literally opposite of Taipei 101 and Taipei World Trade Center which remained undeveloped over the years because the indigenous residents there refuse to sell the plot of land to both government and / or developers at any price they are willing to offer. Originally the site of 四四南村 (Xi Xi South Village) is now transformed into nowadays Xinyi Citizen Assembly Hall 信義公民會館, an official historical site for both museums as well as work site for Taiwan's various creative and cultural preservation groups. Located inside is where one can find Good Cho's Bagel, Cafe and Goods 《好,丘》(No.54, Songqin St., Xinyi Dist., Taipei City).
In order to reach Good Cho's cafe, one will pass by the Simple Market where they sell locally produced goods such as jam, soap and many other daily necessities.
Quite lovely I have to admit. I wish I had more time to look around and more luggage space for more items as well! Anyhow, I was here for the cafe and I was more than surprised by the pleasant environment and atmosphere here, exactly what I have been looking for and exactly what I needed as well!
Guests here were chilling, reading and relaxing on a weekday afternoon!
Good Cho is famed for its Bagels and I can see why.
With more selection than I can imagined, I was even more surprised to see flavors such as Black Sugar and Black sesame or sweet potato + red bean paste or even spicy fillings as well! Yes, those flavors were not provided as spread but most were filled into the bagels.
These are not your typical bagels but enjoy them with an open mind for their creativity in adjusting to local flavors. With full explanation at the counter and excellent service, I was very pleased!
I ordered the Sweet Potato and Red Bean Paste Bagel because I wanted to check out the fillings. Served as a whole without cutting in half, I have to do it myself which I actually preferred. Treating it as a dessert, it was quite filling. I should have asked it to be toasted which would make it slightly more flavorful and crispy. Personal preference again. :)
In addition to bagels, the cafe do offer other items such as scones and of course coffee and tea! We ordered the scone set which came with milk pudding and rose jam! The scone was not as good as the one we had at Smith & Hsu, it was on the harder side but the rose jam made it way better.
I really do admire how they focus on bagel, an item not very commonly consumed in Taiwan or even in the Southeast Asian region and then put a twist to it making them into a daily item. Thumbs up! Not to mention about the location itself, 5 mins walk away from Taipei 101 and you will find yourself in tranquillity.
This ends my trip to Taipei - Aug 2011. I will be back soon I promise and come back to try more bagels! :)
~ end of day 4 of 4 ~