By Josie Wu Translated by Diva Yang
Photos by Andy Lin
128, XinYi Rd, Sec 5
Hours: 11:30 am-11:30 pm
Credit cards accepted. 10% service charge.
I had walked past Joyce EAST several times and always wondered what it was like inside. It wasn't until a friend offered to take me out to dinner at this upscale establishment that I actual went in for a meal. As soon as I walked in the door, I was smitten with the place. The high ceilings perfectly complement the chic and modern decor. Natural lighting shines in through the gigantic glass windows. A lounge area boasts an extensive wine collection and a wide range of mixed drinks. The purple curtains and silky velvet sofas are very fitting and comfortable.
With such a neat look, I was hoping the chef's offerings would be equally fresh and appealing. Amingo, the head chef, first brought a silver pot and a soup bowl to our table. He explained the pot contained Porcini Mushroom Soup with "foie gras" custard and black truffle paste (NT$320). It is a complicated dish to make; first the duck liver and sauteed mushrooms are pureed together, and then stewed in a pot of chicken broth. Another dish, Flat Grilled South Africa Abaloe atop Stewed White Turnip in Clarify Truffle Chicken Jus (NT$680), also requires complicated cooking procedures. After tasting the appetizer, Amingo won my respect and I no longer doubted his skill.
If you want a tasty meat selection, try the Pan Roasted Prime Rib Eye (NT$1,500/400g), which is served with Bearnaise sauce and semi-glazed. The meat quality determines the taste, so Joyce EAST is meticulous about the handling and storing of meat. With strict refrigeration and preparation methods, about 20% of the original meat isn't even used--Chef Amingo believes that such sacrifice is necessary and worthy because it makes the rib eye just right. Another delight is the White Truffle Pasta (NT$680) which comes with the table-side service to help you mix and shape it. It's a hot plate served with fresh, grated truffles.
After dinner we moved to the lounge area for coffee. I don't recall much of our dinner conversation. All I can remember is that I was hypnotized by the feast in front of me--what a great friend, right?