The Taiwanese diaspora try in vein to replicate the pork chops from home. Those I've sampled in NY are but the distant cousins of the Taipei originals. I don't blame them for trying, something this good should be shared. The 君悅排骨 version were juicy planks of pork kept warm in a crispy, deep-fried coat. They'd no doubt been dunked in a soy sauce, white whine and garlic bath and then dusted with corn flour, sugar and five spice, the most important of the five being the szechuan black pepper. This was a quiet, blind meal, each of us happily chewing with our eyes closed.
The sides didn't readily bequeath center stage, they stood proudly on their own. Most memorable performance went to the hard-boiled egg.
I'd normally consider the side bowl of rice, noodles and pickled veggies a waste of space, but it was the perfect sidekick. I took to carving bits of the chop and dragging them through this jungle on the way to my mouth.
On another day, in a different setting, the fried chicken would've gotten all the attention. It simply couldn't compete, not with two pork lovers grading the test.
I bet this is not even one of the better versions in Taipei. I'm sure there are better but what a step up from the ones I've tried outside of Taiwan!