What's your favorite place to eat and why?


[b]Many people say that the food in Taiwan is ‘amazing’ and often ask us for recommendations on where to go for the ‘good stuff’. What’s your opinion?

Click on the “Post Reply” button to submit your comments.[/b]


Although Taiwan does boast a number of quality restaurants, I’d have to nominate Talking Heads (Tan Hua Tou), at the corner of Hsin Yi Rd. and Dun Hua S. Rd. In addition to having a rather bizarre interior design, (eg, bare wood tables, black painted ceiling and a split level non-smoking section) It has some of the most remarkable food in town. Even the most standard of dishes get remakes at Tan Hua Tou. They have a great selection of Taiwanese favorites including a year round offering of Fried Sticky Year Cake (Chao Nian Gao). And situated in the front of the restaurant on the right hand side when walking in the door, is the dumpling dude,(my affectionate term) who offers a wide variety of Chinese Jao Tze. Try the soup dumplings (Tang Bao). It also seems to be the place where Taiwan’s art community hangs out. Probably because it’s a rather unassuming place. It’s obvious that management hasn’t set out to be the hip hangout in town, it just happens that they are. Great English menu with glossary of terms makes ordering lenghty but fun. Five dishes you don’t want to miss:

  1. Beef Fried Sticky Year Cake ( I order without the mini prawns)
    2)Stir fried Bamboo with pork and celery
    3)Red Pepper Beef with Dried Tofu
    4)Shrimp Dumplings
    5)Green Pepper Beef Fried Rice (not ordinary)
    Give it a go- Prices are high for local food (Cong Xin Tsai runs $150 a plate) but this ain’t your ordinary Chinese restaurant-They also divide the prices into three classes, breakfast/lunch/dinner. Two people can eat well for a little over a thousand NT. Also, Talking Heads is open until 1:00 am, a big plus for teachers getting off work late!


One of things I really like to eat in Taiwan is the cold noodles (liang mien) with the peanut sauce, and I have to admit, I’ve eaten that stuff in many different places before finding two joints that really know how to make a good sauce.

The first place is only open at night (until the sun rises) and is where all the cops and gangsters go after hours… seriously! Food there is great though, located on Nanking East Road Sec. 5, right across the street from the 24-hour Watsons in the little alley… you have to go into the alley for a bit before you realize that there’s anything going on there. As long as you don’t stare at anyone, you should be fine.

The other place I know of only serves cold noodles until lunch time and is located just south of the Sun Yat-Sen Memorial in the day market… you can’t miss it because they have all the tubs of noodles hanging out near the street.

One more place which I haven’t gone to in awhile and which only serves cold noodles in the morning is on BeNing Road just behind the Taipei Sports Stadium (the main entrance of which is off of Tun-Hwa S. Road)… near the corner of Pa-Teh Road.


I have to say… that every time my friends and I want to get together for dinner, it’s really hard to come up with a decent place to eat that stands out in our minds.

We usually end up going for Thai cuisine or Western cuisine, not because we don’t like Chinese food but because it’s hard to justify the PRICEY prices of formal Chinese restaurants for stuff we can get on the street for 1/3 the cost… so usually we end up at some Western joint because quite frankly, it’s cleaner (or at least it looks cleaner) and the atmosphere/ambience is more in line with what we are looking for.

That leaves us with Very Thai, Dan Ryan’s, TGIF, and the usual Italian restaurants around town. Is that pathetic or what?


Speaking of Italian food, my favorite Italian restaurant of all times in Taipei is “Mr. Pacos”, right behind the Fubon Bank building on the north side of Jen-Ai Road near the circle (directly in front of California Fitness, in the alleys).

The prices are reasonable, the service standards are very good, Paco himself is usually quite accessible, and the food is awesome. My favorite dish? The seafood pasta, with creamy tomato sauce.


7-11 ham sandwiches with wasabi rules!


The Best Dumplings:
Din Tai Fong in Hsinyi road. Contrary to what most locals say, I don’t find it pricey. And I don’t think it’s a “celebrity” haunt as people claimed to be since the ambience isn’t classy at all or maybe I don’t know too much local celebs. (Downside: You have to get a number and wait outside for at least 30 minutes esp. if you’re going there on weekends.)

The Best Burritos and Western grub:
G’Day Cafe in a small alley on Fu-Hsing North Road. If I crave for Tex-Mex cuisine, I go to this place since they really know how to do it right minus the hype and hoopla!

The Best Taiwanese Food:
Old Street(Lao Jie). It’s right along Kwang Fu North Road near the corner of Nanking East Road (they use wood as part of their facade and interior design). They’ve got this melts-on-the-mouth fish with loads of garlic on top among other dishes that make Taiwanese food very palatable for those with discriminating taste buds. Underrated but very good.

Except for the Western franchises of restos here or western-managed restos, I have doubts whether the local entrepreneurs can really cook up a very good Italian dish. Either the noodles are too soggy or have been soaked in too much water or they mix weird ingredients on the pasta (e.g. corn), to make Italian dishes more palatable to the locals.

Hmmm…I wonder why nobody has thought of bringing Taco Bell, Kenny Roger’s here. LOL!


The only thing that I don’t like about Din Tai Fong is the weird entrance way. You have to walk between the cooks, and are often bumping into them while trying to get in and out of the restaurant. It’s a serious fire hazard!

For the best tuna melts, Grandma Nitty’s over near the Shi-Da area is #1, hands down.

For the best Rueben sandwiches… Cheers at the Grand Hyatt.

Authentic lox bagels can be found at New York Bagels just a few blocks west of the Westin Hotel on Nanking East Road.

… and finally, nothing beats a Hot-Dog-on-a-Stick which is sold at the Warner Village Cinema Complex…

Wait… is this forum confined to Chinese/Taiwanese food only?


Most overrated place in Taipei?

Grandma Nitti’s without a doubt- lousy food, non-existent service and totally over priced. Also, it’s full of crusty, tree-hugging english teacher types.

Originally posted by Bomber: [b]Most overrated place in Taipei?

Grandma Nitti’s without a doubt- lousy food, non-existent service and totally over priced. Also, it’s full of crusty, tree-hugging english teacher types. [/b]

I second the motion.

Originally posted by Hedonist: [b] I second the motion. [/b]

I third this motion Grandma Nitties is terrible. I could never understand why foreigners talk about it. Terrible food, cold coffee and SNOTTY staff. All with the outrageous prices!!