January 28, 2010 Off

Witch Cloud 巫雲 (Taipei: Shida)

By in 10: Taipei, Favorite Food Entries

Witch CloudFor dinner Jon’s friend took us to Witch Cloud, a very interesting Yunnan restaurant at the Shida/Taida area. It used to be a popular food stall in the Shida night market and it was relocated to the current bigger location 2 years ago. The owner Lao Wu was born in Burma and then grew up in Yunnan (or was it vice versa? I’m not sure), so the Yunnanese dishes has some Burmese influence. He’s also a huge music fan and owns over 40,000 Vinyls in his collection. The signage says “Yunan home cooking, spicy and sour,  LP music appreciation – rock jazz classical”.

Witch Cloud

Love the interior! Homey and personal, it gave you the feeling that you have stepped into the owner’s home. There were peace signs and other 60s-70s rock memorabilias all over.

I forgot to take picture but basically the entire wall behind me is filled with LPs and there’re more LPs in the back room too. I read that on some nights they’s DJs and they would take requests. One of the Creedence Clearwater Revival albums was playing while we were there, so the vibe felt extra hippie.

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Menu is is even written on a record LP. Knowing that we would be eating very strong flavor and spicy food, getting beers was a wise decision.

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chilli sauce and Cold mix rice noodle which has chillis and vinegar. The chilli sauce was very spicy, but all the other dishes weren’t as spicy as I expected. I think the spicy level was adjusted for Taiwanese who aren’t used to spicy food.

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Pan fried Cabbage – the only non spicy dish. The “balance” dish of the night.

Scramble Tofu with Thousand year old egg – very very delicious. One of my favorites of the night.

witch cloud

A dish called “Huang Mun Chicken” (黃燜雞), or yellow simmer chicken. The chicken and potatos were fried in hot oil until golden and then simmered with sauce for a long time. It’s curry-like and was very hearty and flavorful. Another of my favorites.

witch cloud
Yunnan thin slick pork (雲南大薄片) – this is a signature Yunnan dish, I’ve had it at LA’s Yunnanese restaurant before and the meat was bacon-like. This one is much less oily and not as spicy. Very delicious.

witch cloud

Pan fried Yunnan pickles and meat (雲南醬瓜炒肉) – The strongest flavor dish of the night. So glad for the beer and I ended up eating two bowls of rice for the night for all the flavorful spicy food.

Witch CloudGreat food, good vibe and the space is full of character, Witch Cloud is a must go place that’s probably out of most western Travel guide’s radar. If Jon’s friend didn’t take us here I probably wouldn’t find out about it so I was really glad. Owner Lao Wu seems to be quite a character (Jon’s friend called him “The last hippie in  Taiwan”) and he seems like a fun and easy going person. There were portraits of him people have painted on the walls. Apparently it’s a popular hang out spot for music fans and other artistic types, who would hang out there for as long as they want like it’s their home.

Witch Cloud 巫雲
7, Alley 9, Ln 244, Roosevelt Rd Sec 3, Taipei City

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