We were honored to invite a non-vegetarian to write an independent and objective review this time. If you’re interested in writing such a review for us, please let us know. ;-)
台湾七哥美味素食Taiwan Brother 7 Delicious Vegan Food
Taiwan Zone, B2, SML Plaza, 618 Xujiahui Road, Luwan District, close to Dapuqiao stop of metro 9 上海卢湾区徐家汇路618号日月光中心广场B2 台湾馆,近地铁9号线打浦桥站 021 – 34693077
The restaurant is situated in the basement of a mall and next to a metro station, which is convenient but not very sexy. The whole mall is very F&B-focused and it gets quite busy at noon with many office workers from the surrounding area dropping by for lunch.
The restaurant is a tiny canteen style, open face eatery. It has something like a 20 person capacity, if well packed in. Nothing very exciting about the ambiance.
We were greeted upon arrival it was obvious that the waiters and floor manager were doing their best to satisfy us –at the point we seated they knew we were here for a tasting review- although there were a couple of hick-ups. My friends’ soymilk glass was filthy with finger prints, since the drink goes automatically to each diner I guess they didn’t even bother to clean them properly. I had to get up to grab stuff (napkins, soy sauce, oh yes and chopsticks, duh) several times but once again, I don’t except butler service from a canteen.
The restaurant usually does only serve set meals at lunch. They have a selection of 20-ish dishes composed of the choice and the usual spread of rice, soup and the aforementioned warm soymilk drink.
They served us proper dishes from the dinner menu for us to taste, and précised those could usually not be ordered at noon which I think is sad for two reasons. First I can imagine this place getting creepy at night (I mean at European dinner time, 7:30 onwards) and second I like variety in my plate, not one type of veggie dish and rice to stuff myself up, so I wouldn’t go back in those conditions at noon.
Now to the dishes, we picked 10 asking them in smaller portions than usual (so I can’t judge on the usual size) which to my memory went like that:
String mushrooms and vegetable stripes with mock bacon in dry pot style (ganguo): great taste to this dish and allot of fun to be able to bite in chunky pieces of -fake- pork fat. The downside to this dish is even if the food was taken out of the dry pot and set on a plate, it was swimming in oil.
Lemon chicken: no resemblance to chicken meat, look or texture-wise. It was drowned in a thick, sweet and overwhelming lemon sauce, making it impossible to taste the chicken.
Sweet and sour fish filet: once again no resemblance with fish (not that I mind if the taste is there) and no taste of fish, rather a dish of nice tasting tofu with not so sweet and sour fragrance to it.
Fried beef with pepper sauce: looked like beef briskets, tasted like it too. Delicious on top of that.
Vegetarian sausage: it was amazing to see how this reddish sausage even had fake bits of fat in it. It looked a bit plastic and did not taste exactly like sausage but I enjoyed it (sausage standards are not the same in china, this was actually quite resembling to Taiwan-style sweet sausage)
Dumplings (shuijiao): served dry on a plate with a chili oil and peanut dip, filled with mushrooms and veggies, this was good but not memorable, plus it is not unique to vegetarians.
Beef slices (cold dish): so-so, I can’t even remember why.
All in all an interesting experience, and space left for improvement at this place. Prices are pretty low too. I’m not sure I would go back by myself though; I would probably explore some other non-exclusively vegetarian place in this mall without my rabbit friend.
reviewed by Sebastien Barma
photo by Annie Taylor Chen
Disclaimer: All reviews published herein express the reviewer’s personal opinion and not the views of SHVC or its editorial staff.