A small restaurant in Taipei is selling some beef noodles at NT$10,000 (~USD330) per bowl.

NT$10,000 beef noodle at 688 Beef Bowl restaurant in Taipei
The NT$10,000 beef noodle (Image via Xinhuanet)

The restaurant is named “688 Beef Bowl”, and is located at Taipei’s busy Zhongxiao Road. The restaurant has been operating for 18 years and most of their beef noodles are priced around NT$150-300… the expensive noodles are only sold on limited basis and need to be pre-ordered.

I am not sure why the beef noodle cost so much; it seems like it’s not using special ingredients… the high cost was probably attributed by the quality of the beef. The restaurant owner has spent 5 years to search for the high quality beef to make this beef noodle… and a nice piece of beef could be really costly, obviously.


A man in Lanzhou, China, has planted some football shaped calabashes to pay his tribute to the Beijing 2008 Olympic Games.

Football shaped calabash Calabash
Football shaped calabash (Image courtesy of Lanzhou Daily) vs a normal calabash

Known as Mr Cha, the Lanzhou citizen wants to present the special shaped calabashes to the organising committee of the Beijing Olympic as a show of appreciation.

Cha took six years of experiments to find a method to grow these calabashes, and has obtained six national patents for his research.

The method of growing these calabashes is simple though… by putting young calabashes into moulds. The difficult part is the extra care needed to prevent the fruits from dying off while inside the mould.

Toilet themed restaurants are not something new in Taiwan; it has been around since 2004 (or earlier) with people dining in a toilet like environment and eating from a mini toilet bowl.

I always thought that the business idea won’t last long; but with the recent exposure by foreign press and bloggers, it seems that these eateries are becoming a bizarre-food icon from Taiwan… something like eating fugu in Japan and live octopus in Korea.

Below are some pictures from Modern Toilet, a food chain that operates 12 toilet themed restaurants in Taiwan; these pics are from its outlet in Shilin, Taipei…

Modern Toilet restaurant in Taipei

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A hundred year old wild ginseng was sold for 1.88 million yuan (~ USD250,000) in an auction in Guangzhou, China, on November 6.

$250,000 wild ginseng
Models showing the US$250,000 ginseng (Image courtesy of Dayoo)

Ginseng is a precious herb widely used in Chinese and Korean medicine.

USD250k seems like an outrageous price for a piece of ginseng, but it’s not the most expensive wild ginseng ever sold… a 300-year-old ginseng was sold for USD400,000 back in August 2007.

Some Chinese chess pieces made of pressed Pu’er tea leaves are shown at a tea shop in Suzhou, eastern China’s Jiangsu province on Tuesday (Oct 23)…

Chinese chess made by Pu-erh tea
Chinese ‘tea’ chess (Image courtesy of Crienglish)

Pu’er (or Pu-erh) tea has been a popular drink in China for over thousand of years. Drinking Pu’er tea is purported to aid in digestion, reduce blood cholesterol and lipid levels. It is also widely believed in Chinese cultures that tea could counteract the unpleasant effects of heavy alcohol consumption.

A Chinese pear was sold for 66,000 yuan (~ USD8,800) in Beijing, China. The 1.505kg pear was crowned the ‘King of Pear’ in a Chinese pear and fruit festival in Beijing last weekend (September 8), and was auctioned off with the astonishing price.

660,000 yuan Chinese sand pear
The King of Pear (Image courtesy of Xinhuanet)

A conjoined watermelon was found at a village near Fuzhou, Jiangxi Province in China. A watermelon farmer that has been in business for a decade found the watermelon in his field on Monday (August 13).

Conjoined water melon
The watermelon breeder and the unusual watermelon (Image courtesy of Jxnews)

A 300-year-old wild ginseng was sold for 3 million yuan (~ USD400,000) in Jilin, China.

300-year-old ginseng
The $400,000 wild ginseng (Image courtesy of Xinhuanet)

The 366 grams wild ginseng was found in Changbai Mountain (Changbaishan) in July 2007. The value of a wild ginseng is often determined by its age, shape and ‘completeness’.

Ginseng is a widely use herb in Chinese and Korean medicine for centuries. The popularity of ginseng is growing worldwide in recent decades, as studies have proven its medical value.

Most of the ginsengs these days are cultivated, but wild ginseng is commonly believed to have better medical value. A good piece of wild ginseng could worth thousands of dollars, and in this case… a whopping $400,000!

What would you do if you have $400,000?



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