I used to think it’s a sad sad alternative to eating. Imagine never sinking your teeth into the meaty juicy goodness of a steak. It feels so wrong to me. It feels like I am making myself suffer for unfathomable reasons.
And then came Mia Cucina.
|the garlic and mushroom pasta that I am completely and irrevocably in looooove with!|
One bite and things were never the same.
Mia Cucina is one of my favorite restaurants here in Taiwan. It’s the place that introduced me into vegetarian eating and made me enjoy the experience. It totally debunked all of my preconceived notions about the depressing state of eating leafy veggies only.
It’s not just the food that’s nice here. It’s also the ambiance, the portion size of the food, the wait staff, and of course, the free Wi-Fi. The place is always bustling with a mix of locals and foreigners who are all there having a good time with friends.
|those wine bottles are indeed a toast to good health|
You can call in advance to book a reservation since most times, the place can get packed and waiting for a table may just be inevitable.
The menu is written in English which I suspect is part of the reason why I like the place so much. However, the meals are kind of a double-edged sword. Why? Well, so far everything I tried on the menu would fit a minimum of two people. There are days when I drop by here for takeout and find that I will buy a meal that’s already good for dinner and lunch the next day. Both meals would leave me extremely satisfied and full.
|glorious semi-toasted garlic and mushroom drizzled generously with balsamic vinegar|
The food choices are superb because the ingredients are fresh. Though waiting time can be as long as 15 to 20 minutes after you order, I always find it very much worth it. Salads are made with the choicest fruits and vegetables with a nice drizzling of vinaigrette or olive oil.
|*strawberry phenomenally pecan salad|
Pastas are also the same, making me love sauteed garlic on a whole new level. Their pasta choices have found a way to just bring out the full flavor of mushroom. What I particularly love about their pasta is the way it’s so al dente. It stays al dente even if I eat the leftovers for the next day. Cheeses are also very tasty and creamy without making you feel like you are eating somethig processed.
|pesto pasta sprinkled with the nutty goodness of pine nuts|
The sandwiches are also nice and filling. My favorite is the Caprese sandwich which also has a starter version. The vinaigrette and extra virgin olive oil melting the toasted wheat bread together just leaves that lingering deliciousness on your palate without overpowering your tastebuds.
|“Have I told you lately that I love you…”
Mia Cucina makes and crafts foods that are so yummy, it’s almost hard to believe they are actually very healthy. I suppose part of the reason why they are able to produce such great food is because Taiwan’s climate is actually very conducive to growing vegetables.
|the original Caprese which interestingly tastes like chocolate’s been layered on top of it instead of balsamic vinegar and cream instead of extra virgin olive oil|
So finding fresh leafy colorful eats packed with all the health benefits you can think of are pretty easy to come by here. Eating healthy is a way of life in Taiwan. Vegetables are as staple as rice is in the Philippines.
You can also try to have their set meals, which costs around 450 NTD per person, but that’s already a full course meal–soup, salad, pasta or sandwich, dessert, and drinks. The servings are also big enough to fill a person and weren’t in any way compromised just because it’s part of a set meal.
|*creamy soup…not sure if it’s pumpkin or mushroom but who cares. SO DAMN GOOD with a dash of pepper, cilantro, and more EVOO (extra virgin olive oil, thanks Rachel Ray hehe).|
Mia Cucina is a must-try for vegetarians who visit in Taiwan. It can be reached by taking the MRT red line and then getting off at Zhongshan station. Exit via Dexing W. Road and then go right on the first street that you will find on your right as you exit the station. Go straight ahead ’til you see the big SOGO building looming in the distance. Before you reach 7-eleven on your left side, you will most likely see Mia Cucina’s menu board already.
To date, I always make it a point to eat from Mia Cucina at least once month. It is that habit-forming. Whether it’s eating cherry tomatoes, gorging myself with pumpkin, or sipping a hot fresh cup of tea with honey.
Mia Cucina has everything you wanted or never knew you wanted when it comes to vegetarian healthy goodness.
|Your sweet tooth can be satisfied minus the guilt because they use the lightest cream with the most flavorful twist.|
P.S.: I still eat meat. But if I can have Mia Cucina as my free kitchen, I would gladly cross over and never look back. 😛
P.P.S: *Photos taken by my friend who would probably kill me if I create an online footprint that points to said friend’s identity. Anyway, thank you for sharing these photos. 🙂