Diamond Tony’s PANORAMA Fusion Cuisine Dining Pub
One of the few iconic places in Taipei is arguably the Taipei 101 building. Having being the tallest building in the world in recent history once, the Taipei 101 is a sight to behold. Look forward to the New Year and the Lunar New Year countdowns where fireworks can be seen exploding at the sides of the building in perfect synchronization and harmony. It was my second time to the national landmark and thanks to a friend’s recommendation, I’m dining at the peak of the building.
After you’re escorted to the 87 storey through numerous elevator trips, hopefully you will be greeted by the seats near the window panes that offers a panoramic view of the city skyline. That is if the fog does not set in for the day. The restaurant has a posh, sleek and mainly black interior. Shiny silverware and smooth velvet high booth seats made our wallets shrink by a tiny bit. The lunch set menu allows you to choose one soup, one appetizer and one main course. Price ranges from 580NT -32800NT depending on the choice of main course. Certain appetizers such as foie gras would require a top-up of 300NT.
Complimentary Home-made bread with special Crab sauce: This was divine and comforting for our rumbling tummies. The bread was soft, delectable and well-baked. For once, I couldn’t stop at one piece. In addition, the bread went perfectly well with the crab sauce which was smooth, creamy and savoury. Perfect complement to the mild sweet taste of the bread.
Wild Mushroom and Truffle soup: What more can I say? Though I’m not an expert with truffle, this mushroom soup is definitely one of the best I’ve tried. Deep, woody taste coupled with a smooth and velvety texture. You will find yourself lapping up the bowl.
Sashimi Salad in Matsuhisa Dressing: Not exactly what I envision when you say salad. Instead of having pieces of salmon tossed in a bowl of veggies, three thick salmon slices are placed immaculately on a round plate, garnished with cucumber, tomato and onion. As you slice through the salmon, you will be delighted to find out that only the edges are cooked and the inside is perfectly raw and fresh. The sweet pinkish meat goes perfectly well with the Matsuhisa dressing, invented and made famous by a Japanese Celebrity Chef, Nobu Matsuhisa. Arguably, the best sashimi or salad I’ve ever tried.
Smoked Calf ’s Tongue decorated with Capers and Tuna Mayonnaise: Yes, you did not get me wrong. This is smoked calf’s tongue indeed. Concentrated taste liken to your normal ham, the tuna mayonnaise is a great occasional indulgence to pair along. The more adventurous will most probably by piqued by this dish.
Lightly pan-fried Seasonal Fish with Spices & Lemon-herb Couscous: Slightly crispy on the outside, the fish is yet still tender and flaky inside. The sauce and couscous are the perfect finishing touches. This dish is well-suited for those with a milder palette.
Pan-seared Duck Foie Gras with Mixed Berry Sauce: This is my first encounter with the highly coveted dish. Foie Gras is French for fat liver, a result after the duck has been force-fed with corn. Ignoring the process of how this dish is created, you will be able to enjoy this dish many times better. According to my friend in company, the foie gras in this restaurant is not top-notch. But to an amateur, the liver is distinctively smooth and melts right in your mouth. A splendid experience for me.
Seared Beef Fillet scented with Cepes Mushroom and Demi-glace: Despite not being a steakhouse, Diamond Tony serves a mean piece of seared beef that is a notch above most versions I have had. The steak is well-seasoned and not overwhelmed by the taste of the sauce. The slab is tender and yields under the cut of the knife easily, I’m glad that I went along with my craving for some heavy meat.
Half A Lobster baked in Garlic and Parsley Butter, served with Lobster Bisque and Linguine sautéed with Olive Oil, Chili, Garlic, and Assorted Seafood:Pretty much nothing can go wrong with lobster, unless the chef decides to butcher the dish by making it too dry. But fortunately, the chefs here know what they’re doing. The meat is obviously fresh as its peeled from its shell with much ease and grace, for the benefit of patrons. The pasta is well-seasoned with a citrus tang, giving a refreshing and delicious taste that never bores you.
Roasted Steak & Seafood (Char-grilled Prime Fillet with Black True, and Baked King Prawn): Just like my steak, this dish does not fail in the beef department. Well-seasoned and well-seared, the steak only desires for more. And for those surf and turf friends out there, this would be a good choice to satisfy both cravings for red meat and seafood. Fresh tantalizing grilled king prawn that excites your taste buds, what more can you ask for?
Tiramisu: This is definitely not my first time having Tiramisu for dessert. But everyone on my table, including myself were blown away by this dish. Perfect moisture of the sponge, on-point density of the mascarpone cheese and the mild hint of coffee. The Tiramisu here has definitely hit the spot for me, or us. This is definitely a must-try, especially since it’s complimentary!
Excellent food quality, reasonable price range, panoramic view (check out the toilet) and impeccable service. (The service crew is well-versed in both English and Mandarin. Saving us the embarrassment of stuttering our orders.) Fine dining has never been so exquisite. And I highly recommend you to indulge at this restaurant when you’re at Taipei.
Some things to take note before dining at this restaurant. Be sure to make reservations either by their website online or phone. We had our hotel’s reception to do the booking on our behalf. Secondly, the restaurant is located at the office building, not the main shopping building. Take the escalator to the second level and inform that you’re heading to the restaurant. A crew will appear magically, check your reservation and escort you through the gantry and instruct you further. You will need to take at least 2 separate elevators before reaching the 85 storey.