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Sogo Taipei – Things You Can Buy

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If you are a Westerner living or travelling in Taipei there is a good chance that at some point you might get a craving for Western food or would prefer to have a stock up in your apartment or hotel room if and when that time comes. For most people, if they do not have a membership to Costco they instead go to Jason’s located at 101 or at Sogo near the Zhongxiao Fuxing MRT station.

It may not seem like a big deal for people who are travelling to Taipei to see certain products from the West in these stores, but for the long-time resident we tend to flip out. Starting from the unhealthy side of things, Jason’s market offers Dr. Pepper, Mountain Dew, and all sorts of Pepsi flavors in their soda-pop area. That is in addition to a weird assortment of Shasta that is promoted as a type of high-end drink, which if you are from North America probably know that is not at all considered a high-end drink. There is also Gatorade, but tends to disappear quite often for whatever reason and is usually more readily available at the 101 location.

Beer lovers will also find a pretty good assortment of Belgium, British, American and Canadian beer/cider in addition to a fine wine selection at the back of the store. The wine selection offers red wines mostly from South America such as Chile, Australia, France and California, and there is also a selection of white wines and dessert whines. Next to the whines are a wide variety of cigars including Cuban cigars, which are legal in Taiwan, and whisky, vodka as well as many others.

Continuing on the unhealthy bandwagon, the Sogo location also offers a variety of packaged baking goods such as pancake, waffle, brownie and cake mixes, cupcake pans and packaging, powdered sugar, frosting and chocolate chips. There is also a huge assortment of cheeses in front (ok maybe not so bad) in addition to a wide variety of processed meats and sausages, one of which is yellow and coined as the cheese sausage. And yes, the cheese sausage tastes as good as it sounds.

In terms of cereals, Sogo from time to time supplies Captain Crunch, Frosted Flakes and other branded cereals but again, they disappear either due to low demand or stock running out quickly. There is a wide variety of Thai and Vietnamese spices, noodles, broth flavors in addition to all sorts of curries from Japan. Not much of an Indian food selection, however. Lastly, you can find an assortment of nice cut meats and fresh vegetables on another end of the store where there is also an assortment of fruit, albeit quite over priced.

The Jason’s location in 101 is better in my opinion as it has a constant supply of ground beef, tortilla shells, sour cream and spices for making Mexican food like tacos. There is also a deli that sells fruit, salads and other dishes by the ounce as well as fresh New Orleans rotisserie chickens that the cooks will help you cut and package. I usually stock up there and put it all in containers for eating over a week period in addition to the food I buy at Costco.

All Jason stores in Taipei take foreign credit cards and are trained in English service even though they typically greet foreigners in Chinese. In addition to the 101 location, the same level has a huge variety of restaurants that you can snack on before entering the store, which is always the rule of thumb for grocery shopping in order to avoid over purchasing. There is also a MRT station that links directly out of the basement level as of November 2014 where it is located so you can quickly gain access to the train back to your residency.

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