[Taiwan] Volando Urai Spring Spa & Resort – Creative Cuisine
On a rainy afternoon, we arrived at the Wulai District of Taiwai, an area famous for hot springs. After stays in a hotel, motel, and a minsu, we were ready for a stay in a “resort”. When it comes to accommodation, Volando Urai Spring Spa & Resort is without a doubt the highlight of our trip to Taiwan. The first part of the review would focus on the creative cuisine of Volando, which absolutely surprised us.
A stay at Volando is inclusive of the following perks :
– afternoon tea
– guestroom midnight snack
As you can see, it already includes all four meals upon checking in and prior to checking out, not to mention the mini-bar beverages which are free of charge!
After checking in and settling down, we headed to the open-air cafe area where afternoon tea is served. As we took our seat, we couldn’t help but notice that the clientele seems to be either couples, or TaiTais.
For the afternoon tea, the setup is a simple selection of light snacks and a choice of tea.
A carefully plated selection of light snacks to go along with our tea. If I recall correctly, these are mochis, jelly and baked pastry.
The napkins on the table are carefully laid out and secured with a couple of pebbles. Love the details!
Before we arrived in Taiwan, we have already confirmed our dinner choices via email correspondence. For our dinner, we were given a choice between French and Chinese cuisine. We chose the French cuisine.
Before dinner is actually served, freshly baked bread is served while we waited. When the bread was being served, the service staff took the effort to let us know where the butter was made. We would later know that with each dish, the staff who served us would give a short explanation of what the dish was, or how it was prepared, or what ingredients it contains.
Pardon the English names of the dishes, I took most of them from the official menu which don’t really do the dishes justice.
Wild king-prawn salad.
Wild Mushroom Truffle Egg. The funny stuff you see on top is actually foam. When the dish is served, it was recommended to us that we mix the foam with the egg so that we can experience the different textures as we ate.
Chicken Soup and Smoked Duck with Papaya Quesadilla. The soup was served in a mug and supposed to be drank directly from the mug, instead of using a spoon.
Risotto (with the foamy stuff again).
Organic Rose Sorbet to refresh our taste buds after the heavy tasting cheese, before we start on our main course.
Wild cod fish with spicy seafood and tomato sauce.
Chinese tea served after our main course.
Pre-dessert – macaron and sour plum jelly. That’s right, this was actually served before the actual dessert. Like the Organic Rose Sorbet, this is refreshing and sour in nature, which helps after a heavier-tasting dish.
The main dessert consisting of cheese cake and ice-cream.
It was a most interesting dinner in many sense. The details and attention that was placed into the dishes were superb, with varying taste, texture and presentation. The intricacy of each dish was explained so that we are able to better appreciate them, and of course they tasted great to begin with.
When we were getting ready to leave after dinner, we were surprised when we were asked whether the dining experience was OK and if there was anything that they can improve on. Not only that, they wanted to know which was our favourite dish – I’m pretty sure this was the first time this has ever happened.
Guests who want to have supper can request for it to be delivered to their room. We stay up pretty late in general, and telephoned the front desk for supper to be delivered to us.
A short while later, a tray of midnight comfort food has arrived in our suite. A light supper consisting of plain porridge, vegetables, fried egg with preserved turnip, pork floss and fermented bean curd, though simple, was great for filling up our tummies at night.
The very next morning, we woke up for a hearty breakfast. Likewise, there is a choice for breakfast – we chose the Western breakfast over the Chinese breakfast.
Once again, bread is served.
Mini jars of jam are placed on our table should we want to eat our bread with them.
We had both orange juice and tea.
Besides the main breakfast, there is a mini-buffet available for guests.
By the time the kitchen prepared our main breakfast items, we were already pretty stuffed!
We have thoroughly enjoyed the dining experience at Volando, and it is definitely right up there with the best we’ve been to!