japanese: tai-po teppanyaki (大埔平價鐵板燒)

date august 24, 2011

contact No. 58, Shi Da Rd., Taipei/台北市師大路58號/02.2369.8085

hours not listed, but I think they close at 23:00.

price 100NT-150NT (per person)

rating ♥♥♥ (3 out of 5 hearts)

nearest mrt Guting MRT (捷運古亭站)

I’ve actually been to Tai-Po Teppanyaki many times, but just never reviewed it. Since I haven’t really been eating out much, I figured, why not review it.

Tai-Po Teppanyaki is at Shida Night Market. It’s on the corner of the alley with all the food on the opposite side of Shida Rd. from where the night market is. The sign is bright yellow and red, so it’s pretty hard to miss.

The inside of Tai-Po is just a giant grill that sits about 20-30 people. This place gets pretty busy at dinner time and often has a wait; although the turnover is pretty fast so if your party is small, you probably don’t have to wait over 30 minutes.

The menu at Tai-Po is in both English and Chinese. There are menus all over the restaurant: there are two outside of the restaurant, and several posted on the wall behind the grill. All of the options (except the eggs and rice) come with cabbage, bean sprouts, soup, and drink (the soup and drink are self serve). Over the last two years I’ve probably tried almost everything they have on the menu. This last time I got the clams and my friend the tofu teppanyaki, John Dory fish, and enoki mushrooms (gold mushrooms).

When you sit down the first thing they do is put down aluminum foil in front of you and start to make the cabbage and bean sprouts. They make both in large batches for several people, but if you want more garlic or it to be spicy or whatever, you can tell them and they’ll put aside a little and add or subtract whatever it is you want or don’t want. I generally find that both the cabbage and bean sprouts are fine the way they are. Neither are too salty or too garlicy. Note, if you leave them on the grill too long, they will get softer. The portion of the grill that is right in front of you is not hot enough to cook on, but it’s still warm to keep the food warm, so they’ll continue to cook.

I really love clams so I got them the last time I was here. The clams (蛤蜊) are 100NT and I think pretty good. Pretty much everything you get here has the same sauce. Most everything, including the clams, are cooked with onions, green onions, pepper, salt, soy sauce, garlic, and a little flour to thicken the sauce up. One great thing is that I’ve never gotten a clam here that I can’t eat because it hasn’t opened, so that’s a plus.

One of my favorite things is enoki mushrooms (金針菇), they call them gold mushrooms on the menu here and its 80NT. I like them a lot here. You get a lot and it goes good with the onions and green onions.

This was my first time getting the tofu teppanyaki (鐵板豆腐) for 90NT. Well actually I didn’t get it, Ashley did, but I tried it. It was pretty good. Tofu-like?

One of the few things on the menu that isn’t cooked in onions and sauce is the fish; the filet also isn’t. The John Dory fish (香煎多利魚) for 110NT is cut up and lightly powdered with flour then pan fried on the grill. It’s pretty tasty. They only season it with a little salt and pepper, so it’s pretty simple and tasty.

I’ve had all the meats they offer on the menu before, except the lamb because I don’t really like lamb. Both the beef and pork (牛肉與豬肉) for 110NT and 100NT, respectively, are decent enough. Neither are high quality meat or anything. It’s all just precut thinly sliced frozen meat. Either way, it’s not bad.

Overall this place is good for cheap fast food (fast as long as you don’t have to wait). It’s no Benihana, there’s no crazy show where the chef flips shrimp into his hat, but it’s cheap and it’s tasty enough. You get a decent amount of food for relatively cheap. Rice is 10NT a bowl so feasibly you can get a meal for like 90NT. Nothing here is particularly outstanding, but it’s good for the price and quantity; plus you get to watch them cook in front of you.

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