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Address: No.96, Sec. 2, Nanjing East Road, Taipei (台北市中山區南京東路二段96號) (map)

Tel: (02) 2551-1838

MRT: Songjiang Nanjing (Exit 3)

Hours: 11:30~14:30, 17:30~22:20

Accepts: Cash, Visa, Mastercard, Amex

Service Fee: 10%

Price: $$

Dim Sum For Less

I guess my girlfriend and I have been on somewhat of a dim sum kick lately, which is funny because growing up I never really appreciated dim sum all that much. After trying several different places for dim sum in Taipei and being disappointed every time, we finally hit upon the very good Xin Pu Yuan which, despite being on the pricey side, was a very good dim sum experience. My girlfriend told me that one of her friends highly recommended Bamboo Village , which, according to her, was “just like Vancouver.” It was indeed a bold claim, and something I had to verify for myself. Could Bamboo Village live up to the Taiwan Yum level of scrutiny?

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Bamboo Village definitely takes it’s design cues from the very traditional Cantonese seafood restaurant. Walking inside you’re greeted with several tanks filled with lobster, abalone, and some of the largest king crabs I have ever seen.

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The decor is adequate, but uninspired, especially the cheesy backdrop on the back wall. If anything, it brought back memories of some of the older eateries in good ol’ Chinatown back in Toronto, except this one was opened quite recently.

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Dim sum dishes ranged anywhere from $80 to $150NT, with most items being in the $90 range. This was quite a bit cheaper than Xin Pu Yuan. We started with the Steamed Rice Roll with Shrimp ($95), and I’m happy to say that they did a good job with this one. The rice roll had a great chewy texture and the shrimp were large and delicious – very close to home.

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Unfortunately, the Steamed Shrimp Dumplings ($100NT) fell into the same trap of being too small, and also having an overly thick skin. Both my girlfriend and I were unimpressed with this one, but to be fair, we haven’t found one place in Taipei that matched up to Canada so far.

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Next up were the BBQ Pork Buns ($90), and they were delicious.

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The bun was nice and fluffy, and the BBQ pork was tasty, if a little on the sweet side.

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The Steamed Beef Balls ($90) came next, and after trying the one from Xin Pu Yuan, this one just would not do. The beef itself was not bad, but the choice of vermicelli for garnish was a little odd. It’s a good thing there was Worcestershire sauce, otherwise we may have left this one unfinished.

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Now, I’m not a fan of eating internal organs, but my girlfriend did enjoy the Braised Cow Stomach ($95) a lot. In fact, she ordered two plates!

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The Soup Dumpling ($150) was also an item that Xin Pu Yuan did worlds better. My girlfriend didn’t finish this one either, and actually left most of it uneaten. It’s a shame as it was the priciest dish on the dim sum menu.

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Then came the Chicken Rice Wrapped in Lotus Leaf ($90).

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This dish was a tad on the dry side, but the lotus leaf flavor did come through nicely.

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For dessert, we just had to give the Flowing Custard Buns ($90) a try, since this is an item that’s not always offered. I thought they did a good job with this dish as well, but like I advised with Xin Pu Yuan’s Pumpkin and Custard Balls, this is something you should wait at least 3-4 minutes before eating, lest you completely burn the inside of your mouth.

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The taste was very nice, and like the BBQ Pork Buns, leaned on the sweet side but not overly so.

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So did you like it or what?

Overall, I have to say I enjoyed Bamboo Village. The overall quality of both the food and the decor was not as high as Xin Pu Yuan, but it was also less expensive, making it a good choice if you’re hungry for dim sum but not wanting to pay too much. It’s a place to go if you’re hungry – not a place to impress the out-of-towners. My girlfriend and I spent over $1000NT on this lunch, but we admittedly ordered around two dishes too many. Decent food at reasonable prices nets Bamboo Village 3.5 Yums. – TY

3.5 Yums

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