L’Idiot Restaurant (Taipei)

May 19, 2012 in Food, Reviews, Taiwan, Travel by pacejmiller

It’s quite astonishing that there are so many “fine dining” restaurants in Taipei considering how painfully low average salaries are.

One of the more well-known fine dining restaurants in L’Idiot, which offers a fairly wide range of modern western-style dishes. We went for lunch on a rainy day a few months ago because we heard they served good main courses and brunch.

The restaurant is situated on the ground floor of a commercial building on section 3 of Minsheng East Road. The interior is huge and very stylish, dominated by this massive tile-laden artwork in the middle. The waiters are obviously well-trained and friendly, and offered some nice suggestions.

In the end, we went with one brunch dish: the Homemade Gravlax Benedict, which also comes with salmon roe, potato hash, greens and cherry tomatoes; and one main course: the Grilled Pork Chop with brown butter apple, pumpkin, salty caramel sauce and aligot.

Of course, the courses also came with free house bread, which was just okay, nothing special.

The first to arrive was the Benedict. The salmon was supposed to come with it but we asked for it to be placed on a separate dish as my wife was still pregnant at the time and wanted to avoid anything that wasn’t fully cooked.

I have had many a Benedict in my time, and this one was neither one of the best nor one of the worst. The strength lies in its hollandaise sauce, which is flavoursome but not too creamy or salty, and the salmon and salmon roe went well with it. However, the English muffin didn’t taste particularly fresh and kind of crumbled too easily. The accompanying potato was good, and the salad was fresh but that’s about it.

Next came the pork chop. The pork chop itself was not bad, but not great either. It wasn’t too hard, but I’ve had others that were much more succulent and juicy. More sauce also would have helped. The highlight turned out to be the mashed potato (the aligot, if you will), probably because it had a lot of oil and cheese in it!

So that’s that. L’Idiot turned out to be a tiny bit disappointing because of all the good things we heard about it. Put it this way: the pictures looked better than the food actually tasted.  It certainly wasn’t bad or anything, but considering the price (it was around NT$500 per person, inclusive of the 10% surcharge — though we only got two dishes in total) I had expected a little more. Mind you, we only sampled a tiny portion of the menu, so perhaps we missed out on the best they had to offer. While I’m glad to have tried it I’m not sure if I will go back again.

7 out of 10

Details

L’Idiot Restaurant

Address: No. 156, MinSheng E Rd, Sec 3 (nearest MRT: Zhongshan Jr High School, brown line)
Phone: (02) 2545-6966
Opening hours: 11:30 AM – 2:30 PM, 5:30 PM – 10:30 PM (Fri/Sat until 12 AM)

Website: http://www.lidiotrestaurant.com/