The Connection between Dads and BBQ

7 08 2009
BBQ Roasting

One Taipei BBQ joint gives patrons marhmallows to roast, which are then dunked in something very unusual. Continue reading to find out what!

When it comes to dads and cooking, most people think of BBQ.

There’s something decidedly manly about the flames, the roar of the grill and huge slabs of meat. The communal nature of the activity — men gathered around a massive metal cooking machine wielding tongs, knives, some “tall cold ones” and baseball talk, is enough to separate the men from the boys. And when it comes to cooking steak, I am but a toddler.

Fortunately in this week’s Father’s Day edition of Feast Meets West, I’m joined by new father and BBQ afficionado Konraad Kordula, who shares his thoughts on fatherhood and his passion for grilling. But first, you may be wondering, how can August 8th be Father’s Day?!

Jeannie, Andrew, Anne

My marshmallow roasting companions: Jeannie (left) and Anne (right).

The word for “eight” in Mandarin is pronounced “ba”. So August 8th would be “ba ba”. And the word for father in Chinese? You guessed it: “ba ba.” Hence the reason why Father’s Day is celebrated on August 8th in Taiwan.

Barbecuing is pretty popular here, but you may be surprised to see what people are barbecuing. Many more parts of the animal make it onto the grill here — things like tongues and feet are de rigueur. There’s also been a renewed interest in BBQ restaurants (called “shao kao” in Chinese). Many of them are inspired by their counterparts in Japan.


Once it's lightly toasted, the marshmallow gets dunked into a little bowl of whiskey -- to cut the sweetness and give it a little kick.

Perhaps one of the most unusual and surprisingly delicious treats I’ve discovered in a BBQ restaurant in Taipei, is roasted marshmallows dipped in whiskey (pictured). Naturally, as I was preparing today’s show on dads and barbecuing, I had to mention this unique combo which pairs the gooey sweetness of marshmallows with the aged smokey kick of whiskey.  I couldn’t help but think that in some small way, this unique combination is reminiscent of the pairing of dads and their newborn babies.

Happy Father’s Day to Konraad and all the dads in our lives; here’s to many more years of barbecuing, no matter what it is you throw on your grill. Just make sure to let mom watch the baby while you’re out back with the boys!

Dad Konraad Kordula holds one-day old Trystyn. You'll find another photo from a different angle posted for our "mother's day" show on 5/10! Together, these two shows mark the birth of a lucky young lad.

Dad Konraad Kordula holds one-day old Trystyn. You'll find another photo from a slightly different angle posted for our Mother's Day show on 5/10! Together, these two shows mark the birth of a very lucky young lad.

You’ll find marshmallows and whiskey on the menu at:

大河炭火燒肉 “Big River” Roast Bar

Address: 10, Alley 27, Lane 216, Chunghsiao E. Rd. Sec. 4, Taipei

Phone: (02) 8771-0937

Web Page:




9 responses

7 08 2009

I’m a Taiwanese, but I don’t know the way about enjoying marshmallows is such interesting! …Dipped them in whiskey!!!
How funny! I want to try it when I go to BBQ restaurant next time!!

8 08 2009

Kurrkit– make sure you go to the restaurant that I mention… I haven’t heard of other restaurants doing this! 😉

8 08 2009

I thought that marshmallow/whiskey combo was interesting, too. We should bring it stateside.

8 08 2009

I’m wondering if there’s an even better way to get the perfect marshmallow-to-whiskey ratio. Floating marshmallows in whiskey is definitely not okay. But what about skewering a bunch of smaller marshmallows and then basting them with a thicker whiskey-based sauce?

9 08 2009

You wrote Chunghsiao S. Rd. for the address but on their website they have Chunghsiao E. Rd.

9 08 2009

Indeed, I did! Thanks for pointing that out.

30 12 2009

just went here tonight. i marked this restaurant in advance for my trip to taiwan after reading this post a few months ago, and i’m glad i was able to try it out. marshmallows and whiskey… very interesting. how did you find out about the whiskey though? closest thing we found on the menu was 棉花糖 (marshmallow) under “snacks.” had to ask about the whiskey.

5 01 2010

I’m glad you liked this place; I think I’m overdue for a trip back! When we were done with our meal, they actually asked us if we wanted to try marshmallows with whiskey. We’d been chatting with them a bit, so they suggested it. What other places did you visit? I’d love to know what you tried!

7 01 2010

This place had pretty good dumplings:

Just tonight we had ramen at 二子山 in Tianmu (they have a couple locations there) that was cheap and delicious.

Next time you’re in Hualian definitely check out 液香扁食店:
if you haven’t before… their wonton soup is really good.

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