March 7

QQ Stands for Quick & Quality

Find Taiwanese street food and grab-and-go fare at this new neighborhood hot spot.

In an area so full of lunch options, it’s hard to find truly unique offerings. But QQ Bites, a new Taiwanese eatery tucked in between South Lake Union and Belltown at 2325 Sixth Avenue, is full of flavors you can’t find elsewhere in the neighborhood.

QQ is a follow up to the super popular Bellevue restaurant Facing East, which serves modern Taiwanese food made with fresh produce and quality proteins. A good chunk of QQ’s menu is madeup of Facing East’s classic hits, including the guaw bao, or Taiwanese pork burger. This explosion of flavor is a magical pinch bun filled with braised pork belly, pickled mustard greens, cilantro, roasted sugared peanuts, and a tangy sweet and sour sauce. Other Facing East favorites on offer include the five-spice fried chicken, stewed pork over rice (slow-cooked pork belly, pickled daikon, hard boiled egg), and beef noodle soup (braised beef shank, bok choy, pickled mustard greens, cilantro, and green onions), which owner Yu Ling Wong says has been the most popular order for visitors since opening.

“We simmer the stock for six to eight hours, there’s no MSG, just natural ingredients. There are lots of places that sells this in Seattle, but not many that do it using bone stock. It takes a lot of work to make, it’s not easy. But it’s a labor of love,” she says.

The daily menu also includes a collection of Taiwanese sandwiches, known as sao bing. These delightful bites are stuffed with ingredients like braised matsutake mushrooms and tofu sheets, slow-cooked and pulled beef brisket and, cucumber, cilantro, green onion, tea-smoked organic chicken, and thinly sliced lamb. The housemade crispy and flaky sesame flatbread is an ideal vessel for these sandwiches.

Look for rotating items in QQ’s grab and go section, too. Entrees like spicy ma po tofu and beef stew are standouts, and it’s worthwhile to pick up some housemade bbq bao or tea-smoked duck for snacking, too. All of these items are sold cold, so you’ll want to reheat for opimum flavor (but fyi, cold duck is still quite delicious).

QQ sells bubble tea, organic orange juice, housemade organic soybean milk, and something called QQ Special Juice, which made of a white fungus and served with longan berries and dates. The texture is fascinating (it sort of looks like you’re drinking a bottle of jellyfish) and flavor is surprisingly sweet. Wong says the drink offers health benefits for the skin and lungs.

“My goal with QQ was to bring quality Chinese food with fast service to this neighborhood. Taiwanese food is a mix of a lot of different cuisines, and we want to share that with our diners.”

Photos & story by Ethan Chung.

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