Taiwanese food sucks!

I really think people who don’t like the food just haven’t found the exact thing they’re going to like yet. Even when you find a restaurant you think is okay, there’s no guarantee you’re going to choose that one dish you’ll find absolutely delicious. It took me years to find some of my favorite foods in Taiwan. And you can’t always rely on friends to introduce you to something you may like because they’ve got their own tastes.

Exactly this. My big revelation was 三杯雞 and I was here for about 5 years before I’d tried it. Still love it, but of course some places are better than others. I’ll eat 三杯 anything, really. Another one I remember getting me was 紅油炒手麵, and I was here about 10 years before I’d tried it. Again, not every place does it great but the shops I like do an amazing job.


Some Taiwanese food is great. Just need to explore.
Them again I often eat real home cooked food fresh from the markets and it is very different than western food in many respects.

A lot of restaurants have small margins so their noodles will have little meat or veg inside . Basically just subsidence food but at least it’s light.

Do need to go around 150 ntd and up and can easily find good Asian food everywhere . Western food generally not great though.

Like gaboman it took me many years to discover my favs and also my palate changed so I could accept different textures and flavours and gradually grew to like them (tofu, bean curd, smelly tofu, mapo tofu., Zhajiang mian, suanla tang…all good now…None of which I really liked when I first tried them ).

Also a lot of meat is on the bone here and they use off cuts , they don’t waste food and they know how to cook the offcuts , ligaments, tendons, bones and make amazing herbal soups and they don’t tone down the flavours for mass consumption …they are culinary masters in many respects.


I never said they shouldn’t. If they like, it good for them. My point was just that Dontknow isn’t making a revolutionary or groundbreaking point here.

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A lot of the street stands generally suck but there are good places, you havent been here long enough to know where. A lot of the local foods are made with cost cutting and cheaper ingredients/distribution suppliers in mind instead of pride for their food/recipe.

Also Taiwanese tend to like soft squishy texture foods…Bawan, Boba, Mochi, overcooked rice, oyster omlete, Stinky tofu, Tang yen, oyster noodles etc…everything is soft sticky and glutenous.

If you like a good burger thats cheap I suggest Burger Spot near Zhongiao Fuxing.
I know lots of good local spots if theres something in particular you like let me know.

The only thing you won’t find in Taiwan is good Mexican food and good Pho

When I first came here I was excited about all the street food and small eateries… so many options! so colourful!

It lasted not very long.

My impressions by then was that all the freaking dishes were “wet”. Even “dry noodles” were wet. Disgusting.

But there are some nice and interesting dishes. True, you don’t eat them every day, and food is not necessarily cheap here. I mean, it can be cheap if for “food” you understand “flour”.

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Yea its not cheap at all given the half portion sizes.

Not only portions. Meat and even vegetables in your “meals” are sized as samples in Carrefour.

My money is on Shida area. The place has gone downhill.

It actually isn’t easy to find good restaurants with reasonable prices, especially in university areas. They are out there, but they are just hard to find. You may need someone to show you the ropes, and let you know how to order to get the kind of dishes you prefer.

If you only visit places around university areas, you are gonna get either crappy cheap food, or expensive crappy food.

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A lot of people get that impression, but you really have to get a local or upperclassmen to show you around or just…get in line when there’s a huge line.

That trick works in most places in Taiwan, but just not in Hsinchu. 5 out of 10 times people are standing in line for mediocrity in Hsinchu.

Esoecially all those fake bruncj or past aplace sthat have cropped up like mushrooms in a damp forest. Those are the worst in general terms.

It’s either taht or the self serves that are not exactly high cuisine. The local specialty stores in those areas have been prived out and what you have are the chain stores which are really awful.

Finding small mom and pop shops which do things the right way is a blessing, as well as anyone who cares that people like their food.

You have to learn what to order where. Try here and there, learn more Chinese, ask questions, go with friends, locals who can introduce you to their favorite spots.

And one more thing: I agre you have to pay more, especially nowadays. 200 up will get you a pretty decent meal.

Where I work, there is literally nowhere to eat around it. Lo and behold, walk a few blocks and you will hit jackpot.

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The Night Market food is all the same distributors low quality ingredients to make a buck. I remember Taiwanese food used to be better when they were mom and pop stores
I use Google maps and make sure the reviews are over 4 with at least 200 reviews done

That’s because when you look up “mediocre” in the dictionary it says “see Hsinchu”.


My guess is that as real estate prices skyrocket and basic salaries stagnate, it becomes more and more difficult for most people to cook at home.

In the past people almost have every meal at home, and eating out is for occasions and celebrations. They want the food to be of a much higher quality than what they would have at home.

Now, for most young people at least, they can’t afford apartments with a kitchen, and eating out is a daily routine. They just want it cheap and get it over with, without breaking their already thin wallet.

A shift in the dining out culture is killing Taiwan’s culinary cred.


Totally agree with this. When I find a place that actually cares about their quality of food and its taste, and cares about getting repeat business, I’ve found a gem.


That was my conclusion too. Also a lot of the children went to college and didnt want to continue the family food biz so their ageing parents closed. I guess they got more “face” for having an office job 9am-9pm making 35k and treated like a peon.

I used to work in a hospital kitchen as a dishwasher. I thought that sink water was disgusting at the end of shift. Then I went out for hotpot. Sorry, “famous” hotpot. I once had to bag a 2 day dead raccoon in the summer heat, never gagged so much until I was stuck at a red light next to a stinky tofu cart. If you search out Hakka food it can be good’-ish.

stop being a bum and rent a place with a kitchen. if you can’t manage that you might want to go home, you don’t seem to be cut out for travelling.

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So many chain stores now in Taiwan towns and cities, some can be decent but they ain’t the same as the independent family places. Not that all family places are great at all but they when they know how to cook they can be really good !

Years ago you’d get a lot more fresh veg and condiments with your noodles then over the years as wages stagnated they cut back on the veg in particular. Now a lot of places are basically serving noodles with some sauce , couple of tiny leaves and a few bean sprouts !

I don’t eat Bian dang either most are terrible and semi warm at best.

Some veg buffet places are excellent, some are awful and dirty ,again best if somebody shows you the ropes.