There are many ways couples can share their lives with each other. These couples choose to make good food, while living in this nice, friendly city--Taichung.
La Terrasse Bistro: European and French Cuisine
Terry is from Australia. He has been living in Taichung for more than ten years. He and his wife Ms. Hsu had had a lot of catering experience before they opened up “La Terrasse” on Dasheng Street, which offers European and French cuisine including snacks.
When Terry was young, he worked for many restaurants as a bar tender or a waiter. Several years ago, Terry was working for Pig and Whistle as the bar manager of Taipei, Taichung and Kaohsiung. He has also run an Italian restaurant in Taichung with a friend. Terry is a diligent learner. He can cook many types of European food and is able to make all kinds of sweets. Now he is responsible for the bar and the baking at La Tarrasse. His wife is in charge of kitchen coordination. “Baking is not hard, as long as you practice everyday and keep trying.” Says Terry, confidently.
We are “famous!”
Red and white, the typical American fast food restaurant decoration, selling fresh homemade pizza and sandwiches; this is the Pa Pa's restaurant run by Patrick and his wife Anita.
Pa Pa's sells fresh homemade sandwiches, pizza and subs. Patrick and Anita use good quality cheese, and they make everything by themselves--from the sauce to the pizza dough.
When you see the restaurant's sign, you can find the sentence: ”We are famous!” It's actually a joke. Patrick explains, “Normally when Taiwanese say ‘famous’ (in Chinese), it's like saying ‘popular’. They always say, ‘Oh, this shop is very famous.’” To tell the truth, a person or a place could be famous for bad reasons! We don't want to be famous; we want to be popular!
Patrick worked for many restaurants during the time he went to college. He met Anita while dining in a restaurant, and after being together for a while, ‘running a restaurant’ became the lifestyle of how they would spend their lives.
A Determined Sushi Master
Mr. Nakashima Osamu has also been living in Taichung for over ten years. He had been a very good traditional Japanese cook, but he has since retired and now lives a quiet life.
Mr. Nakashima Osamu and his family used to live in Nantou. But after the 921 Earthquake, they moved to Taichung. His wife says his best cuisine is palm sushi. Local cable TV and newspapers have reported and written about how good he is at traditional high-class Japanese cuisine. I asked him if the Japanese comic story of sushi masters was true or not? He answered: “To attract more readers, of course the story is more or less exaggerating ! ”
A Warm and Friendly Restaurant
Spring chicken and pork ribs BBQ are two of the most commonly ordered food at La Terrasse. In addition, there are burritos, goose liver pate, and baked escargots are also on the menu. “Since most customers are repeated customers, and there are also many families, so we need offer as many varieties as possible [sic].” La Terrasse has been designed as a place good for families. Smoking is prohibited indoors, but the courtyard is open to smokers. You can see some foreigners chatting easily here; the place is filled with a warm and calm atmosphere.
The reason why Terry and his wife decided to stay in Taichung is the smaller population and better quality of life. “Taichung has been developing a lot. It became more and more informative and advanced. It also has more foreign restaurants.” In his free time, Terry likes to go to Taichung Metropolitan Park to take a walk, or go to Dakeng for mountain climbing. This couple would like to make La Tarrasse more popular among families in the future.
Creativity Catches the Customers’ Stomachs
Pa Pa's sells sandwiches, pizza and subs, and there are so many varieties to choose from. They also sell soup and salad. Pa Pa's promotes new dishes every three months, for example, salmon pizza and new flavor subs.
At leisure, Patrick likes to go to the movies with Anita, and sometimes likes to visit the Art Street, or go to Dakeng for a nature walk. Speaking about the future, Patrick said he would like people to come to Pa Pa's for the food, not for “The foreigner shown on a magazine! ”
Cooking: A Whole Life Mission
Mr. Nakashima can be considered a pioneer of Japanese food in Taiwan. Several years ago, he suggested that some people open up a chain sushi store, or a Japanese or Korean BBQ restaurant in Taiwan because he thought these types of restaurants would become very popular. Now we know that he was absolutely right. His best cuisine is high-class traditional cuisine, especially those from Kansai and Kyoto areas. To him, cooking seems to be a life mission. He rarely smiles when being interviewed, but as soon as he sees a food article in Shining Taichung, he starts to study the ingredients in the dishes in the magazine, and becomes more willing to answer questions--especially about food.
“Playing golf is much cheaper than Japan!” says Mr. Nakashima Osamu. He goes to golf courses in Fengyuan and at CCK golf club in his leisure time. Now, Mr. Nakashima and his family live a very quiet life. Is he going to run another restaurant sometime in the future? They say that answer is still unknown.