Fri, Mar 07, 2003 - Page 19 News List

Restaurant: Jill Kitchen 吉兒

Address: 19, Lane 216, Nanking E. Rd, Sec. 3, Taipei (台北市南京東路三段216巷19 號)
Telephone: (02) 2773-6866
Open: 11:30am to 2:30pm; 5:30pm to 9:30pm. Closed on Sundays
Average meal: NT$250 to NT$400
Details: Chinese and English menu. Credit cards accepted

By Vico Lee  /  STAFF REPORTER

Pasta is Jill Kitchen's specialty.

PHOTO: VICO LEE, TAIPEI TIMES

Pasta is Jill Kitchen's forte, and a variety of flavors are on offer. Spaghetti with squid and spicy tomato sauce, tagliatelle with shrimps and spicy tomato sauce, Italian style mixed mushrooms with spaghetti, and more than a dozen others are available at between NT$160 and NT$220. Considering the generous servings and generous toppings, this is value for money.

Spaghetti with bacon and spicy tomato sauce (NT$160) is one of the most popular. The cooking did justice to the ingredients, which retain their respective tastes. The taste of the sauce is on the piquant side and yet not so tart as to numb your taste buds.

Joyce Chen (陳文文), proprietress of Jill Kitchen, revealed the secret to these tasty dishes. "Pasta is basically a very simple kind of food, but it allows cooks so much freedom. With good and fresh ingredients, you can experiment with different pastas and ingredients at home and make the kind of pasta you like best," Chen said. Chen's personal favorite is a no-frills spaghetti with garlic and onion sauce. This off-the-menu dish is available, and customers may also order other "custom-made" pastas.

Apart from pasta, Jill provides a wide range of dinner items such as duck breast with fresh orange butter sauce and seasonal vegetables and Beef fillet. All come in sets at decent prices. Not restricting itself to the Italian and French, Jill has recently added German pork knuckle and sauerkraut with mustard sauce to its menu. The chunky de-boned pork has proved quite popular.

For salads, tuna with mixed vegetables (NT$160) is a nice choice. Dressed with red wine vinegar, the salad tastes light without being plain. Jill is also very good at desserts. Chocolate souffle, the recently fashionable French dessert, is new on the menu. Served right out of the oven, the warm cake tastes of thick yet smooth chocolate, which is partly melting at the core. The accompanying apple and kiwi slices nicely lightens its taste. Milk puddling with mango (NT$60) is served with a mix of the common orange-skinned mango and the green-skinned Taiwanese strain.

A serious addict of various kinds of coffee, Chen makes coffees which are no less good than her spaghettis. She recommended low-caffeine Antigua volcano (NT$90), which has a slightly sour aftertaste. Espresso with vanilla ice cream is another recommended item.

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