July 27, 2012

Pâtisserie ALEX

Address: No. 18, Lane 553, Section 4, Zhōngxiào East Rd, Sinyi District
Telephone: (02) 2762-3236
Hours: Mon - Sun 11:30am to 9pm
Price: $$

Overlooking the Songshan Cultural Park, Pâtisserie ALEX is a cheery cafe that offers a range of European cuisine. From apricot raspberry almond tarts ($120 NT) to Russian tea cakes ($24 NT for two) to pistachio cakes with tropical fruit mousse and pineapple cream ($130 NT), Alex has a varied dessert menu.

On this occasion, I initially decided to forgo the desserts. All were quite small (as desserts here are wont to be) and I was in the mood for a meal. I ordered the salmon salad ($200 NT) and sat down with my book. I love all the natural light pouring into the cafe! The large windows looking over the park give patrons a nice, sunny view in the summer. It's in a prime location too - one of the exits for the Songshan Cultural Park  is mere feet away.

I wasn't expecting the salmon salad to be quite so huge! And after my experience at the Consulate Cafe, I wasn't expecting the salmon portion to be on the generous side but, surprise surprise!, it was more than I hoped for. The salmon salad included eggs, tomatoes, cucumbers, and some onions. Unfortunately there was a watered down ranch dressing on most of the salad (underneath the salmon). This was my fault though; I've forgotten that salads in Taiwan automatically come with some sort of sauce. Still, I was able to scrap the majority of it off.
I loved that they gave you four slices of slightly buttered bread! The salad is much more filling with a carbohydrate on the plate and, if you wanted, you could turn your salad into a sandwich. I am nothing if not a fan of versatility. I all but inhaled the salad and then decided I had room for some dessert.

Alex offers little desserts, like Russian tea cakes and honey lemon Madeleines ($28 NT for two), in pre-wrapped plastic bags. These desserts are extremely small (they can typically fit in the palm of your hand) but they're a safe bet if you don't want to purchase a $140 NT piece of cake you might hate. I purchased the Russian tea cakes and ate them in the park. Gone quickly, the tea cakes tasted like the ones I remember back home. All in all, a very delicious experience. Maybe next time I'll spring for the more expensive desserts...
Pâtisserie ALEX has a Chinese and English menu, and the waitstaff are extremely friendly and attentive. There's no service charge and as far as Wi-fi goes I wasn't able to find a connection. If you're around the Songshan Cultural Park area, I highly recommend a visit!

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