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HOME > CENTRAL TAIWAN > DINING

COMPASS MAGAZINE > January 2015
 

Still great after decades: Long-standing Western restaurants in Taichung--Le Jardin de Giverny, La Terrasse French Bistro, The People's Cafe, Frog

Translated by S. Ying


Le Jardin de Giverny

(04) 2376-9755
58, WuQuan 7th St, West Dist
Hours: breakfast 8-10 am, lunch 11:30 am-2 pm, tea time 2-4 pm, dinner 5:30-9 pm
English menu
10% service charge (except breakfast).
Free Wi-Fi.
Credit cards accepted.

This French-style establishment was the first venture for well-known local restaurateur Debbie McGuire and one of the first Art Museum Parkway dining spots when it opened back in 1995. It has continued to evolve with a broad selection of tasty, reasonably-priced French/Western entrees, appetizers and salads, plus coffees, juices and herbal teas. Also popular is a NT$268 mostly-Western healthy breakfast buffet, plus 4-6 person set meals (NT$1,980-2,980) and tea times. The focus here, including the attached gourmet food shop, is on healthy, natural ingredients/products personally selected by Debbie from local farms and businesses. --By Douglas Habecker

A: Roast Chicken with Rosemary (NT$620) is a long-time favorite here; others include Duck Breast Prosciutto with Red Wine Stewed Apple Salad (NT$380).

B: New dishes are regularly introduced to the fall/winter and spring/summer menus. Currently on the former is Sea Bass and Deep-Fried Soft Shell Crab with Sea Urchin Sauce (NT$360).

C: The entrance, framed by lush greenery and a fish pond, and spacious sun-lit interior all exude a relaxing vibe.

Le Jardin de GivernyA.. Le Jardin de GivernyB. Le Jardin de GivernyC.

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La Terrasse French Bistro

(04) 2325-6982
43, DaSheng St, South Dist 
Hours: 11:30 am-2:30 pm, 5-10:30 pm
open all day holidays
English menu
Credit cards accpeted.
10% service charge.

This well-known European/French bistro is now owned by head chef Jenny Lo, who puts her excellent culinary skills to good use. The menu selection includes meat dishes, sandwiches and pasta entrees, ranging between NT$160 and NT$480. For an extra NT$180, you can enjoy a set meal with soup, salad, dessert and drinks. --By Niang Chen

A: BBQ Pork Rib (NT$480) is marinated in a special sauce for a nice, smoky flavor, while Diablo/Spicy Vegetarian pasta (NT$260) has a spicy taste that goes well with its very rich creamy sauce.

B:Chef's Salad (NT$290) includes scallops, clams, shrimp, squid, yellow peppers, carrots and purple cabbage. The Bread Butter Pudding (NT$85), pictured with Carrot Cake (NT$85), is very soft and sweet, made in a traditional style and baked at low temperatures.

C:La Terrasse continues to offer the same menu selection that has made it popular for so many years.

La Terrasse French BistroA.. La Terrasse French BistroB. La Terrasse French BistroC.

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The People's Cafe

(04) 2310-5577
1, DaRen St, West Dist
Hours: 11:30 am-2:30 pm, 5:30-9:30 pm
Credit cards (except AmEx) accepted .
English menu.
10% service charge.

For 21 years, chef/owner Antonny Yeh has impressed diners with Western cooking skills at his restaurant, hidden on a lane behind the TGI Friday's YingCai branch. Popular picks here include steaks and seafood, such as 10 oz. Grilled Sirloin (NT$899 dinner set), plus other full-course meals like Surf & Turf (NT$799, NT$1199), pairing a half lobster with three meat/poultry options. There are also various pasta, risotto and 9-inch pizza (NT$399 dinner set) entrees. Similar, cheaper, a la carte lunch choices can be upgraded to sets for NT$99. --By Douglas Habecker

A: A best-seller from the beginning, Roasted Pig Knuckle with Mustard (NT$739 dinner set) tempts with its crispy skin and tender meat, served with sauerkraut handmade by Chef Yeh.

B: The Classic Beef Business Set Lunch is among several NT$249 weekday (11:30 a.m.-2:30 p.m.) noontime options.

C: This restaurant's spacious, striking interior is matched by its exterior castle-like appearance. The second floor also has outdoor seating and a private VIP room that can be used for various gatherings.

The People's CafeA.. The People's CafeB. The People's CafeC.

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Frog

Frog 1
(04) 2321-1197
105, HuaMei W St, Sec 1, West Dist
Hours: 12-10 pm
Frog 2
(04) 2203-0182
30, YuDe Rd, North Dist
Hours: 11 am-12 pm; Fri-Sat 11 am-2 am
http://blog.yam.com/frog88
English menu.
Cash only. No service charge.

Frog restaurants have been going strong since 1985 and excel at a personal, part-of-the-family touch with, for example, all their recipes derived from family, friends and guests. The owners, a husband-wife team, are widely known for their charitable activities and strong support for the arts, both at Frog and elsewhere. --By Courtney Donovan Smith

A: Frog 2 opened in 1992. This beautiful building is covered in vines and surrounded by trees and vegetation, giving it a jungle-vacation feel. Vines cover much of the windows, extending that feeling indoors.

B: The inside is cluttered in a whimsical, homey sort of way. There are also amusements to be had, with dartboards and a foosball table.

C: The oldest dish is the Sirloin Steak Fried Rice (NT$200, NT$270 set), which has been with Frog since the beginning and is based on owner Brian's mother's recipe. This wonderful dish is peppery, hearty comfort food prepared with care.

FrogA.. FrogB. FrogC.

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