I wrote this up for a friend and might as well share it:
The best Japanese food w/buffet we have had is at Jogoya, www.jogoya.com
In Tainan, 166 Zhongshan Road, 12/F (This is in the shopping mall called Focus Square and you can walk from Tainan railway station). They also have branches in Taipei and we first visited this restaurant in Taipei at Neo19 (This branch is mentioned in another thread on buffets).
The best teppanyaki we have had is in Taipei, at the Lai Lai Sheraton (I think the hotel is called something else now, but the restaurant was still there after the name change).
We couldn’t find a good ramen in Taipei. I don’t think we went to sashimi restaurants in Taipei either, but then you can get sashimi at many other restaurants.
Now for restaurants in Chiayi.
The best Japanese all-round is: Xiao Shan (Small Mountain). There is only 1 cook so you may have to wait. They open from dinner to dawn.
126 Wu Feng North Road - superb sashimi, sushi, fried noodles, fried clams, deepfried tofu. They do not have the number of their stall outside, but it is next to a vegetarian restaurant.
There is a picture of the place and its food at:
public.fotki.com/Shimmertje/good … page2.html
There is good sashimi at the edge of the YuanDong night market carpark. The sign on the booth says ‘Toro’ and there is a display with the raw fish in it. This opens from dinnertime to late at night. Takeaways are common.
This restaurant charges NT$500 per person for a kaiseki type meal. Portions are small so we weren’t that satisfied but quality was good.
Chi chu Yuan Wei (Eat the original flavour)
You Zhong Road no. 510. There is a road junction here and it is a seafood restaurant at the corner. One section of it is a small covered building and the Japanese meals are served here.
This restaurant was recommended by some Japanese. It is slightly on the expensive side but the food is good. The waitresses are quite pushy though and will recommend the most expensive things on the menu, several times.
Aoi. It is a single Chinese word but I don’t know what it is in Chinese.
XingYe East Road no. 304. There is a YMCA there too according to their namecard.
This restaurant was recommended by a friend of a friend. It is cheap but the portions are small, too (you will get better sashimi, cheaper, above). It serves mainly sashimi, sushi and yakitori.
Xiao Pan Zuo Shoushi (Small Pan makes sushi)
Mituo Road no. 232-1
There is also a restaurant that some friends have recommended, near the junction of Guohua street (where the swimming pool is) and Linshen Road (the road of the railway station). It has bamboo walls with some red decoration on it, and is opposite 2 drinks stalls, one called Magic Girl and another selling starfruit juice and chrysanthemum tea. It serves a wide range of Japanese food. Again, dishes are cheap but that’s because the restaurant has split up the dishes. A set would typically be cheaper. I found the food only average and the portions small, so did not take the card for this place.
There is another restaurant, with the word Bamboo in its name, near the Woodpecker on You Ai road. The sign is red. It also serves a wide range of Japanese food. The food was quite nice but service was terrible. The 2 of us and another 2 people at another table were the only customers. The waitresses refilled tea for the other table but not for us. They did not notice that our soy sauce container was empty (I left it at the side of the table with the lid up) until I told them about it. One problem is maybe forgiveable, 2 is not nice. After all, there was nobody else there!
For ramen, Man Long (content dragon?) Ramen. Very good broth. MinQuan Road no. 386. This is along the ZhongZhen Park near the Chinatrust Hotel. Open for lunch and dinner, but goes on holiday erratically.
Also the He Feng ramen restaurant whose card I passed you. Very good pork. MinZu Road no. 733. Open for lunch and dinner. We have only just discovered this place and have found it was closed once so far.
BeniHana Teppanyaki restaurant (In Chinese, Red Flower). This is somewhere near ManLong. The sign is blue. MinQuan road no. 400. Nice teppanyaki, but be prepared to pay NT$280 onwards for a meal (the cheapest is garlic chicken). The soup is terrible but the meats were very nicely done, and there was a small dessert included with the meal. I have to recommend the cod.
Lian Broiled Food. The sign is black on light brown and actually says ‘Lian’s Boiled Food’. Someone once said this is the best teppanyaki in Chiayi but I thought the prices very high - at least NT$399 + 10% - and the portions small. The soup is again terrible, the meat was merely OK. There was no dessert. We left unsatisfied, whereas we were quite full after leaving BeniHana.
Picture of Lian’s Boiled Food here: