Add: No. 34, Lane 252, DunHua S. Rd, Sec. 1 台北市大安區敦化南路一段252巷34號
Tel: (02) 2775 1627
Price: 150~200 NTD/drink, 180 NTD/dessert, 320~480 NTD/pasta
Visited: Oct 2011
Note: this branch of Whiple House may have closed; call ahead to verify before heading over.
Whiple House is my preferred type of gathering place. Located on a quiet lane behind Sogo, this hidden gem is part apparel shop/part home decor retail space/part cafe. It has the combination of chic, stylish decor and light, comforting food. The best part? It’s empty even though I visited on a Sunday afternoon.
The 1st floor is a retail space for Whiple, a Taiwanese apparel brand.
The 2nd floor is surprisingly spacious. 2/3 of the area is used as an exhibition/retail space for random knickknacks collected by the owner over the years (more pictures on this later), and the rest consists of an open kitchen and dining tables.
We started with a cup of hot milk tea (150 NTD), which had an alluring aroma from the extra sprig of mint that was used in the brewing. What a brilliant idea that can be easily done at home! The milk tea itself wasn’t especially memorable, but the mint made all the difference.
We then tried a plate of truffle pasta (380 NTD), cooked al dente and smelling heavenly with sauteed garlic and mixed mushrooms.
More interesting was the less commonly seen sea urchin & crabmeat pasta (480 NTD). Each strand was covered in sea urchin creaminess, the flavor so definite I can still taste it at the tip of my tongue. For those who like sea urchins, this would be a good choice.
We were intrigued by the tulip seafood risotto (380 NTD) on the menu and decided to give it a try. It turns out that they don’t use real tulip flowers, but instead tulip flower powder to give the risotto a golden color.
The salmon tart (280 NTD) was meh.
The only dessert available for the day was an apple cake (180 NTD), a mousse/jam dessert sitting on top of a thin graham cracker crust. Not especially memorable, but a sweet and very light ending to our late afternoon meal. FYI, the branch in ATT 4 Fun (B1) apparently has a much larger dessert selection.
Fully satisfied, we went around exploring the many quirky gadgets on the 2nd floor. Some things are useful, many are useless, everything is stylish, and everything is expensive. A small pack of iron nails for 800 NTD? Whew!
While I had an excellent time at Whiple House, I have heard feedback about bad service and overpriced food – see comments below for details.