Merry Christmas All

Hi All,

We just want to wish all our family and precious friends, both here in Taiwan and on distant shores, the merriest Christmas and the happiest New Year. We hope that the blessings of 2008 will be upon you all and those you love and that 2008 would be a wonderful year for you.

Thank you all for your friendship and care. We really do appreciate it.

Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year.

Queenie and Paul


The Red Kitchen - A Great Steak House

Hi All,

We live in a great part of Taipei. We are very thankful for it. Around our neighborhood are many great and wonderful restuarants. And since we live behind the University, most of them are cheap as they are aimed at students. As a result we thought we could introduce a few of them to you.

One of our favourite restaurants is the Red Kitchen. The Red Kitchen is a brillian family run steak house with probably the best customer service in Taipei. Pei Lei is the young lady who runs the front end of the store. Her brother is in charge of the kitchen and the restuarant is owned by their father. Sometimes the grandmother is there too to help out at the cash register.

(Pei Lei at the Red Kitchen)

They sell all kinds of steak that are very resonably priced. We normally get the minature steaks which are around NTD380. They also sell T-bone steaks but if you don't like rare steaks you really need to tell them to cook it well. Aside from that glitch, the steaks are about as good as any you can get in Taipei. They also sell some chicken dishes and fish dishes for those who don't like red meat.

(Minature Steaks)

Coupled with the steaks is the usual salad bar. Although the salad bar is not as big as some of the other ones we have seen, the salads are always very fresh and the variety sufficient. The salad bar with he normal drinks are included in the price of the food.

(Salad From the Salad Bar)

Good steaks in Taipei are hard to find at reasonable prices. One half of this couple being South African meant that we usually had to fork out quite a lot of money for a decent steak. The Red Kitchen opened around the beginning of 2006 and has been a rip roaring success. It is usually about three quarters full. There is enough seating for about 40 ~ 50 people so it is small and quaint although not quiet.

We used to go there once a week but the food was too much so now we have scaled it back to once every three or four weeks. I think we have taken most of our friends there at least once and many of them agree that the steaks aren't bad at all. We also do go there with Queenie's family quite often so we are really big fans of the restaurant.

(Lu Mama, Queenie and Rochelle at the Red Kitchen)

So if you are in the mood for a steak and have a big enough appetite, I recommend you get over to the Red Kitchen, you probably won't be disappointed. The address AND telephone number are below:

No. 1, Alley 2, Lane 118
Hoping East Road, Section 2

Tel.: (02) 2377-6186

It is quite close to the corner of Hoping East Road, Section 2 and Fuhsing South Road. They are open for lunch between 11:30am and 2:30pm and for dinner they are open between 5:00pm and 9:30pm.

See our Taipei and Taiwan Travel Guide for more restaurant reviews


Christmas has Started in Taipei

Hi All,

(Queenie, Paul and Rochelle at the Tree Lighting Ceremony)

The Tree Lighting Ceremony

On Friday night, after my (Paul's) final exam, we took my niece to the tree lighing ceremony outside the Far East Hotel on Tunhwa South Road. Every Christmas the Far Eastern Group will have light a big Christmas tree and some christmas lights that hang out over the trees on Tunhwa South Road. The ceremony is usually led by the head of the group.

A few years ago Queenie's parents' Church had brought over a choir from Malawi and they were the star attraction. This year though they had a special performance from some kindergarten children, a childrens choir and a string quartet.

The Far Eastern Chairman also made us aware of the group's charitable work with a project for amandoned Children in Taipei. Far Eastern Group donated NTD1,000,000 to an organization that helps these Children. They also donated NTD1,000,000 to World Vision and another charity group (we forgot the name).

The Christmas Story

What really touched us was that the Christmas story of Jesus was told. One of Chiang Kai Shek's old pastors (who is now 80 and used to Pastor the Chinese congregation at our Church) was on hand to tell the whole Christmas story in Chinese. Most of the people in Taiwan have never heard the story and think Christmas is some commercial gimmick with no real roots. So it was great for them to hear the story of Christmas.

The Lamest Father Christmas Ever

Now, as a rule, we try not to be negative about performances. We also really do appreciate Far Eastern Group trying to bring a little of the Christmas spirit and festivities to Taiwan, but really, next time get a person who can act like a Father Christmas, and not dress some lame duck corporate executive in a Father Christmas suit! The guy didn't have a clue as to what he was doing. He arrived on the stage with some fairly lame "ho ho ho's" and then proceeded to give a very uninspiring talk of about two-minutes and then left the stage. Ten minutes later he came back onto the stage, just as lamely, and started to give out some sweets!

Next year the really do need a Father Christmas who will take the stage and dominate the crowd. Maybe even get the crowd going with a few Christmas Carols ("we wish you a merry Christmas" which everyone in Taipei knows) and a few more hearty "ho ho ho's".

Christmas Has Started

So the Christmas lights outside the Far Eastern Hotel have been turned on and Christmas in Taipei has started. We will put our tree up soon and hopefully have a great festive season with everyone. Christmas is not a holiday in Taiwan, so we will have to take leave on the day.

May God bless you all and keep you safe during this Christmas season

God Bless Everyone
Queenie and Paul


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