Spotlight: Bao Bao
— 3 Jan 2017, 11:03
Bao Bao is located on our Dingwall Road entrance but that doesn't mean they're not one of our most popular traders. They are serving up big flavours with their delicious and authentic Taiwanese dishes and it's not difficult to see why Croydon (and Boxpark) has fallen in love with their menu.
We sat down with, head chef, John and discussed his culinary past, Bao Bao's mission and what he loves most about Croydon.
Tell us who you are and what you do.
Bao Bao is a cosy and welcoming place where you can enjoy authentic Taiwanese street food with modern twists, including Gua Bao, Salt and Pepper Chicken, Taiwanese Beef Noodle Soup and Bubble Teas! I'm extremely passionate about Taiwanese food and I learned the beauty, and simplicity, of hand-made food when I was a child. I used to cook for the senior officers in the army, during my compulsory military service in Taiwan, so I've been developing my cooking experience over the years.
Which song best sums up your brand?
I've continued to respect the legacy of the traditional way of cooking Taiwanese food but I've also introduced contemporary Asian flavours to bring the street food culture to another level. Our ingredients are locally sourced and we have a team of talented chefs and friendly servers to make you feel at home.
If you're looking for a new food experience, or even if you know Taiwanese food already and you would like to enjoy an authentic menu without incurring the air miles, come down to Bao Bao at Boxpark Croydon and we won't disappoint you.
What is your favourite item on your menu?
It has to be our signature dish - Chicken Bao. The chicken is pre-marinated with special ingredients, then deep fried so that it’s crispy on the outside whilst keeping perfectly tender and juicy on the inside. Together with the home-made kimchi and other sauces, this dish really comes alive!
Which other Boxpark Croydon trader would you recommend to customers?
We have tried quite a lot of the food from the other restaurants at Boxpark. We absolutely love all of them but if we must pick just one then Bread Tree is a very interesting trader. We love all their pasta and their chefs are from Italy, so their resources are very original. Also, the Pho from Bang Bang Hawker makes us feel good in this very cold, wintery weather!
What is your favourite thing about Croydon?
Definitely the local neighbourhood! We have met so many lovely new customers who live in the area and they are so nice and interesting to talk to. A lot of them have even become regular customers!
If you were on death row, what would be your last meal and why?
It has to be the beef noodle soup cooked by my mum, it tastes like home to me. Now, I have integrated my mum’s recipe into my own, so that I can have a bowl of warm and tasty beef noodle soup whenever I feel homesick.