I'll be in Taipei for work for about a week starting the coming weekend. I'll be mostly on my own, and I don't speak Mandarin (English only). I'll be staying near Roosevelt Rd., Sec.2. This is a last-minute trip and I haven't had much time to prepare; I'd greatly appreciate any pointers I can get -- particularly: what are some chowhoundy highlights that will be accessible to an English-only speaker? What dishes or specialities should I seek out? What should I watch out for?
Haven't been in a while, but here goes:
1. Night Market just north of the downtown area. Try the hsiao lung bao (steamed dumplings, the name means "little dragon eyes'), Guatieh (open ended pot stickers). Chicken and scallion kabobs. I have never been able to duplicate the thin sauce.
2. Peoples: Ask the hotel where this is. Some of the best food I have ever had. Really, really great fusion.
3. Ask your hosts if you can go to a hot pot restaurant. Not really the right season, but a memorable experience.
4. Not a restaurant, but try going to a a Daiichi Department/electric store. We bought all kinds of cool gadgets we never saw int eh US. Favorite brand translates to "pot baby."
Shin Yeh http://www.shinyeh.com.tw/
Be careful how much you order! We ordered what we thought was a small meal (based on the price) but ended up leaving lots - and I hate to be wasteful!
The staff were lovely and showed us how everything should be done, even though I speak no more than a couple of phrases of Chinese.