07 February 2013

Taiwan Yes ~ Taiwanese - CBD / Chinatown [CLOSED]

Taiwan Yes has been on our 'gimme eat' list ever since it appeared in place of  Ten Ren's Tea on George Street some months ago.

Taiwan Yes is run by same the uber lovely folks as the Taiwanese stall  in  Dixon House food court. This stall is very popular with Taiwanese folks, especially the lunch crowd.

The thing we love most about Taiwanese food is that every restaurant is different. Even classic staples differ from joint to joint, it's always a little adventure. At Taiwan Yes the food is cooked in a homely, rustic style, with the big flavours and in generous servings.

After three visits we're thinking the best stuff comes from the bainmarie-of-delights at the front counter. We've had some good cooked-to-order stuff but the most 'wows' came from the preprepared dishes, such as the pork mince, the pork sausages, and the amazing veggie dishes. You can order these dishes pick'n'mix style, or the menu has some set combos, we've ordered the pork mince and rice set twice and giggled with food nerd delight both times.

We love the folks that run this place, everybody has been super nice. We dig.

Taiwan Yes does most of it's business takeaway from the front counter. But there's an upstairs dining room which is pleasant escape from the city. We like to grab a table by the big windows and gawk at the endless parade of humanity that is George Street.

#9 Braised beef noodle soup - $9.80. This classic Taiwanese soup has become a favourite of ours. A dark, sweet, meaty broth and hunks of slow cooked fatty stewing beef. The noodles are fantastic, thick and flat like linguine with the perfect amount of chew to them. Very happy.

#15 Braised pork mince with egg noodle soup - $9.80. This soup was a much plainer style than we expected, we were hoping for the same dark sweet broth that comes with the braised beef soup. It was nice but it's the braised beef noodle soup that we'll come back for.

#3 - Braised pork mince with rice - $9.80. Mr Shawn explodes with delight when this is plonked in front of him. He really digs the pork mince, it is topped with a little pork floss that gives it a real edge. It is served bento style with some killer side dishes: a lovely sloppy homely tofu and pork mince dish; some strips of bamboo shoots with tangy pickled vegetables; a pork sausage; a tea egg and some green beans and snow peas which is given a salty kick with some black beans. We order it again next visit. Awesome. Awesome. Awesome.

Alison is magnetically drawn to Asian sausages. How could she resist the Famous Taiwanese HM Sticky Rice Pork Sausage $4? It's kind of like a sticky rice hotdog, with a smidgeon of sweet peanut-ish sauce, topped with strips of bamboo shoots and tangy pickled veggies. We ordered this because it looked so daggy on the menu, but it was surprisingly good. The pork sausage is great and all the bits went well together.

Taiwan's Famous Oyster Pancake - $8.80. A thick batter with oysters and greens covered in a sweet sauce. It didn't work for our Western tastebuds, a bunch of stodge in a super sweet sauce, but Google tells us Oyster Pancake (or oyster omelette)  is a popular Taiwanese street food dish. We're intrigued. We're off to Taiwan to investigate as soon as we can.

Check out this youtube clip of a tops Taiwanese lady making oyster pancake. How awesome is she?

Taiwanese fried rice with pork leg (or fried chicken or fried fish) - $10.80. A mound of homely fried rice with plenty of pork sausage and school prawnies, with several hunks of stewed pork leg tasting of soy and star anise. The pork leg is like pig's trotter, all skin and bone, great for gnawing, love it.

Black ice tea ($2.80) which is super refreshing, nice and cold and not overly sweet. And Taiwanese sarsaparilla ($2.80) tastes like regular sarsaparilla, but better, because it's called Taiwanese sarsaparilla. Ditto for the Taiwanese Calpis, which tastes like Japanese Calpis (a sweet yoghurt-y soft drink), which is utterly delicious.

Taiwan Yes is at 696 George Street, Hayarket/City. Next to Happy Lemon, near corner of Goulburn Street.

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  1. my friends, i went to taiwan january of 2012. I loved it so, so much that I plan to make it my home some time in the future. The food there beats ANYTHING i've ever eaten except for japan.

    If you think the food you have eaten above is awesome, then just wait till you go to Taiwan and eat it like it really should be!

    In fact it would be super awesome to take you around and stuff our stomachs full =) so full that you don't want to eat the next morning...but still roll out of bed and down the street, grabbing a milk tea on the way.

  2. By the way just saw you mention 'Taiwanese sarsparilla' and I have a feeling it is named that because it is PROBABLY from the brand "hey song" who is an asian drinks manufacturer originating from taiwan. many of their drinks can be found in the asian grocery stores!

  3. There is a new Malaysian hawker style place going in here it seems, I walked past today and there were construction workers putting up signs that said that the place would serve 'Malaysian hawker style dishes' and that they would cost 'no more than $5 a meal'. Can't wait until it opens, sounds interesting.

    1. They've been working around the clock, it should be open soon, "Penang" something it's called...


Thanks for your comment joy - please keep your musings happy - if you want to complain about a restaurant please do it on a restaurant review site (or your own blog) - we're all about celebrating cultural diversity and the great eats that come along with it :-)

Our ethics: We pay for all our own meals and travel (though sometimes Mum shouts us).