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FYI SOUTH Magazine, November 2006.

Hola Spanish Restaurant

578, HeTi Road, SanMin District, Kaohsiung
(07) 343-3045
Hours:Everyday 11:30 am-2:30 pm,
5:30 pm-10:30 pm
Major credit cards accepted.
10% service charge added.
English and chinese menus available.

Hola Spanish Restaurant greets you warmly in every way possible--a gorgeous interior filled with Spanish paraphernalia, an inviting bar and smiling tri-lingual staff. If you arrive early, enjoy an espresso or a thick hot chocolate Caliente (one of this writer's favorite items in all of Kaohsiung--NT$80). The ground floor also hosts a small shop with various Spanish goods for sale.

The owner, a Spanish expat, does all the cooking, ensuring each dish is an exquisite delight. Try starting your evening with a bottle of Spanish red wine, well worth it at NT$1100. The waitress even knew the serving rituals, down to the cork and "sip of approval" from the one who ordered. Delicious appetizers are too many to name, but the Setas a la Plancha (Grilled Mushrooms with garlic and Spanish parsley--NT$160) comes highly recommended. More decadent diners will enjoy the Crepe Rellena de Mariscos (NT$240), a soft crepe filled with seafood and spinach.
From the list of main dishes, this writer had the Dorado Asada al Horno--a fillet of gilthead with olive oil, toasted garlic and lemon (NT$480)--and one pot of Paella (NT$540). A traditional Spanish specialty, this dish consists of a cast iron pot filled with slow-cooked saffron rice, mixed seafood, vegetables and other spices.

To finish it off, try a round of espresso and sample several desserts, each at NT$120. Whether you choose the Creme Brulee, the Helado de Pera Al Vino (pears cooked and served with red wine sorbet and a crisp cookie) or one of their amazing ice creams, you are sure to leave Hola with a grin on your face and a very content, full belly. The meals may seem expensive, but make no mistake--dining at Hola is a full evening's event and well worth every penny. Regulations require FYI South to remind you not to drink and drive.

FYI South is required to remind you not to drink and drive.

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