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Aug 23, 2013 04:54 PM

Taipei Cuisine in Quincy - any experiences?

Opened in the old Lucky 68 space on Billings Rd recently (I think). Lucky 68 didn't last very long either, so not sure if that rings any bells for locals.

A new Taiwanese place is always welcome, especially in my 'hood.
Even website is bare bones so far:

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  1. I just had lunch at Taipei Cuisine in Quincy with my family. We ordered soup dumplings (called "Mini Juicy Dumplings wit Pork" on the menu), pan fried pork buns, Ja-Jun Noodle with Ground Pork, and Scallion Pancake.

    a) Soup Dumplings - The skin was not too think and had excellent broth. The skin didn't tear while picking up. Very tasty.

    b) Pan Fried Pork Buns - Haven't seen this item in other Taiwan restaurants in Chinatown. The bun was pan fried till golden brown and was very tasty. Not too greasy. The bun was light and not too thick or chewy.

    c) Ja-Jun Noodle - In Chinatown, this dish has beans in it but, this one didn't. The sauce was not greasy or salty. Good meat/tofu/sauce to noodle ratio. I liked it.

    d) Scallion Pancake - Not too greasy. Perfectly fried. Did not become rock hard like other places that serves this app when it's cooled. I liked it.

    My overall all impression is that this restaurant is a great addition to the neighborhood where there is already an over representation of Cantonese Cuisine. I no longer need to head to Chinatown to satisfy my soup dumpling cravings. The restaurant filled up quickly with the lunch time crowd by noontime.

    1. Thanks, HDawg. I dined there tonight with a friend who had never had Taiwanese cuisine before, and we both enjoyed our meal.

      We also ordered the soup dumplings - a promising rendition. The skin is thicker than I like, but the soup and the filling were super tasty. I didn't care for their vinegar/ginger dipping sauce though. Too much soy and too little ginger. The dumplings were flavorful enough that I didn't mind not having it.

      Ordered the 3 cup chicken - another solid rendition. Would have liked a little more sauce, but it was good and you can really taste the basil.

      We ordered the eggplant and basil which was a big hit for my friend. I would have liked a touch more spice, but she is not as big of a spicy eater and it was a tasty dish (and big portions!).

      Also ordered the crispy tofu for starters which was nice with a semi sweet/tangy sauce, and side of pickled cabbage. Good but perhaps not more notable.

      The staff was friendly, and I was glad to see 4-5 full tables for a quiet Sunday night dinner (just shy of half full) - this is more than I've ever seen in its previous incarnations. I hope this means this place will have more staying power than its predecessors, because it left a good first impression.

      1. Oh this place! I didn't realize I had been here a few weeks ago - I had forgotten the name - until I saw the photo of the restaurant on Yelp. Which also has lots of photos of dishes by helpful users:

        I enjoyed my meal. A Chinese friend ordered a fish dish with bones that had great flavor but not much flesh and high difficulty of eating. We also had the soup dumplings - agreed with the other reviewers - very flavorful. I wish I remembered the other dishes - it was dinner after a couple of hours of Carson Beach volleyball, and my brain was pretty much dead.

        That 3 cup chicken dish sounds great. Looks like lots of whole garlic.

        1. The pictures on the Web site certainly look good. I'm glad the early reports were promising and I'm looking forward to trying the place soon. I've never had a soup dumpling that was actually filled with soup.

          1. So I just went there last night for some take out. Very nice and clean/modern/bright inside. Very pleasant server, although I was glad I had the menu in front of me to give my order, and point to the Chinese characters.

            I ordered the Taiwanese style Pan Fried Dumplings, the 3 cup chicken and the Pork and Calamari stir fry in Black Bean Sauce. The Dumplings were excellent. Eight in an order, with very thin skins and a large amount of meat filling.

            The 3 cup chicken was tasty, with some 5 spice powder, loads of garlic and ginger, but not much basil from what I could see. I didn't like the type of chicken they used though. It was on the bone, and some pieces had no bone and others were almost all bone. Also, even the pieces that didn't have much bone, did sometimes have a bone fragment. I almost broke a tooth on one of those. I wouldn't get it again just because it's too hard to eat and I'm afraid I would break a tooth.

            The pork dish was very tasty though, with lots of meat and calamari, relative to the mushrooms.

            Portions were quite large and I've had plenty to take for lunch today and probably lunch tomorrow as well.

            I picked up a menu, and it says they offer Delivery which is great. However, given the language problem I had, I might be hesitant to call for delivery unless you want to cross your fingers that you get what you think you ordered.

            I was sorry that the restaurant that used to be in this location, Open Rice Bistro, closed. But this seems to be a worthy successor to it. I do wonder what happened with Open Rice, it seemed to be popular and the food was good, but it wasn't open very long.

            2 Replies
            1. re: mwk

              The 3 cup chicken I had was loaded with basil - maybe even more than I wanted because I kept getting a few leaves of basil while I was going for chicken. I hear you on the chicken with bones. Growing up Chinese, I ate plenty of chicken with bones and I don't mind it, but something about the smaller pieces in this dish make the bones particularly hazardous. But this seems standard to the dish though, as I've had it this way at various Taiwanese restaurants.

              If you prefer bone-free, you can always go for the 3 cup squid/calamari - same delicious sauce with no bones to contend with.

              1. re: kobuta

                I've eaten lots of Chinese-style, bone-in chicken, where they just hack it into pieces. On a regular half soy/ginger chicken it's fine that way. But this dish, the chicken is in tiny nuggets and it was just really difficult to eat. Maybe I will try the squid next time, I'm sure that will be easier on my fillings.