Dexter99 wrote:They difference between this restaurant and the other "Western types” is that this genuinely serves what you'd expect from a simple diner – simple, tasty, good-size servings at a price that anyone can afford. Others, like the TGI types go for the whole awful fake “western experience"- the gaudy flags, the oversized hellos, and ...
I finally discovered why I really like this restaurant – it’s because they don’t tax you purely because it’s western food! In many restaurants in Taipei, if you want a simple western food item – a decent burger for example, you pay for the local beef in the burger, and then you also pay a “it’s seems kinda foreign” tax, a tax that is justifiable for occasional imported items, but is generally abused!
I also don't like the "oversized hellos" and other things associated with those places. I especially hate when I speak Chinese to the staff at those places and they respond in Chinese. Especially when they make a question out of what I said. (Me looking at the menu and speaking Chinese) "I'll have the ......." (Them speaking English) "Do you want the ........?" TGI and Dan Ryan's aren't too bad in this department, but Chili's is terrible. At Chili's one time a guy passed by and broadcast to the whole room "Is everything alright?", as if to say "Look at me, everyone!! I'm speaking English to the foreigner!" Even Alleycat's is guilty of this.
I also don't like the gouging that restaurants often do just for selling something "foreign." Economically, however, it does make some sense that if something isn't completely appealing to locals, it should cost more to make it worth the cost of producing it. I highly commend the Diner for their new angle toward selling Western food. If the owners truly have TGI background, we probably shouldn't worry about the bread becoming yellow, shiny, smelly, soft, and sweet and sweet-corn kernels suddenly appearing in the soups and salads, etc. (I quit going to Costco and haven't paid membership because their whole-grain bread became sweet, among other reasons.)
I hope their items from Costco can last as long as possible. As Costco continually localizes their fare, I hope the products that the Diner buys are still available. In Tainan, we have already lost the best hot dogs and tacos because Costco quit selling the dogs and shells. I have seen many Western menus with that "li ke dai" stuff on it (that roll-on correction tape or whatever)--all because "Costco quit selling the item." I have a long list of items I formerly loved from Costco, but in my 5 year membership I've rarely found anything new or great. (Plus, I got a credit card that I could use there and and it didn't work about 1/4 of the time. If I have to have cash on hand before going, what's the purpose of having the card? We are NOT family!!!!) They'll still sell you a huge Whirlpool-brand washing machine with both hot and cold water inputs (which locals would rarely use), but...no more chicken enchiladas! Locals simply won't eat food that isn't sweet.
Good for the Diner!!!
I get hungry every time I look at this thread. I can't wait to visit this place! It sounds excellent! I really want to try the double double burger or whatever--with the bacon that "isn't bacon sashimi, like Mei-er-mei". LOL!!!!
Question: Is Mary's Hamburger charging too much? (The "kinda foreign tax")?