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Restaurants in Taipei
Taipei Eating Guide

J.W. Teres Bulgarian Cuisine, Daan District

Capone's Italian Dinnerhouse, Daan District

Woolloomooloo Cafe International Cuisine, Xinyi District

Zhai Zhi Taiwanese Vegetarian, Xinyi District

Al Dente Cucina Italian, Xinyi District

Taste of Yunnan Yunanese, Xinyi District

Chinese Cookbook Taiwanese, Xinyi District

Shabu Shabu Hotpot, Xinyi District

Mu Ji Beef noodle soup, dumplings, breads, Xinyi District

Hao Pin Sichuanese, Xinyi District

Ming Yue Noodles, dumplings, breads, Xinyi District


J.W. Teres, Bulgarian Cuisine

Taipei vegetarian restaurant
Bar and wine cellar.

You may not have come to Taipei expecting to eat Bulgarian food, yet right here in the city is that rare opportunity; not just Bulgarian, fine Bulgarian dining with commensurate wines. J.W. Teres is a beautifully decorated bar-restaurant with Old World ambience. Chef-owner Krastyu Nedyalkov serves dishes like kiopoolu an eggplant dip with zucchini and garlic yogurt, and Easter lamb pie. When not slaving in the kitchen, Krastyu, wearing his other hat as a wine connoisseur, is on hand to advise on food/wine pairing. His family have been winemakers for 450 years. The wine cellar includes 33 Bulgarian wines, as well as rare whisky and cognac.

Recommended Dishes
Entrée de Surprise: tomatoes, roasted peppers, feta cheese: NT$280
Zucchini Boat: oven baked zucchini stuffed with champignons, onion, garlic, minced meat, cheese, tomatoes & eggs: NT$290
Bulgarian Mixed Grill: pork neck shish kebab, meat balls, chicken breast: NT$660

Taipei vegetarian restaurant
Zucchini Boat.

J.W. Teres "王" 保加利亞餐廳
Address: 4, Ln 208, Siwei Rd, Daan District, Taipei City
台北市四維路208巷4號 ('Technology Building' is closest MRT Station)
Telephone: 0928 095 597
Website: http://www.facebook.com/bulgarianrestaurant
Opening Hours: Mon–Fri 12–2:30pm, 5:30pm–10pm, Sat 5:30–10pm
English Menu: Yes
English Speaking: Yes
Credit cards: Yes

Feb. 2013


Capone's Italian Dinnerhouse

Taipei vegetarian restaurant
Capone's interior.

It's no wonder Capone's has been a Taipei dining fixture for many years. With excellent Italian food, a lengthy bar, and live music every night, Capone's is more than a dining venue; it's a full and proper night out. The classic, classy restaurant interior suggests the Roaring Twenties. The big menu–antipasti, pasta, pizzas, steak, seafood–will please the majority of discerning diners. There's an extensive wine list, and a wide range of draft (Blanc, Guinness), and bottled beer (Duvel, Bitgurber) is available. Be there for happy hour: Sunday to Thursday, 6–8 pm when there is a buy one draft beer, get one free deal.

Recommended Dishes
Baked eggplant stuffed with ricotta cheese, ham and fresh basil (appetiser) NT$390
Grilled USDA T-bone steak NT1,390
Swiss chocolate fondue NT$390

Taipei vegetarian restaurant
Antipasto.

Capone's Italian Dinnerhouse 卡邦義大利餐廳
Address: 312, Zhongxiao East Rd, Sec 4. Taipei
台北市忠孝東路四段312號 (close to Sun Yat-sen Memorial MRT Station)
Telephone: 2773 3782
Opening Hours: Sun–Thur 11.30am–midnight, Fri–Sat 11.30am–1am
English Menu: Yes
English Speaking: Yes
Credit cards: Yes

Feb. 2013


Woolloomooloo Cafe, International Cuisine

Taipei vegetarian restaurant
Woolloomooloo exterior.

Woolloomooloo takes inspiration from the elegant, casual cafes of Australia, and its name from a harbour-side suburb of Sydney. The Xinyi District restaurant is the brainchild of Taiwanese-Australian Jimmy Yang. A former architect, Jimmy is a friendly presence in the restaurant. He is particularly proud of the cafe's design and decor (which features wooden communal tables), freshly baked bread and cakes. Apart from the token Aussie icon, the meat pie, Woolloomooloo's menu is wide ranging and eclectic. Dishes include Vietnamese-style beef noodles, eggs benedict, linguini with pesto and chicken, and pizza. If you enjoy Australian wine and beer (James Boags, Coopers Ale, Tooheys etc.), Woolloomooloo has one of the best selections in the city. Ask Jimmy about Woolloomooloo and he'll tell you that his place is all about freshness, and his delicious coffee, served Aussie-stye.

Recommended Dishes
Linguini with pesto and chicken NT$260
Pizza margherita NT$420
Moussaka with Greek salad on the side NT$380

Taipei vegetarian restaurant
Coffee, Aussie-style.

Woolloomooloo
Address: 379, Xinyi Rd Sec 4, Taipei City
台北市信義路四段379號
Telephone: 8789 0128
Website: http://www.facebook.com/woolloomoolooTaipei
Opening Hours: Sun–Thur 7:30am–midnight, Fri, Sat 7:30am–2am
English Menu: Yes
English Speaking: Yes
Credit cards: Yes

Feb. 2013


Zhai Zhi Vegetarian Restaurant

Taipei vegetarian restaurant
Zhai Zhi Vegetarian Restaurant.

If you are a vegetarian, you are in the right place because Taipei has excellent vegetarian food. Many restaurants like Zhai Zhi make use of mock meat, created with soy protein, mushrooms, or wheat gluten. Chinese Buddhists in ancient times invented meat facsimiles, and they can be remarkably realistic in appearance, texture, and even taste. Whether you are a vegetarian or not, it is well worth checking out Zhai Zhi's range of typical rustic-style Taiwan food.

The easiest way to sample their food is to choose a set meal which includes 'meat,' vegetables, and soup. Deep-fried 'chicken' comes with noodles, vegetables, and a tangy tomato-flavoured soup with pickles. Stewed mince 'pork' on mixed grains, is the house speciality, served with beat sprouts, sweet potato leaves, and a hearty vegetable soup. Three treasures on a sizzle plate is the ultimate feast for any mock carnivore: 'steak,' 'pork,' and 'fish fillet' with noodles, vegetables and soup.

Taipei vegetarian restaurant delicious appertisers
Selection of appertisers.

Recommended Set Meals
Mock Chicken with Noodles NT$100 乾麵套餐
Braised 'Pork' and Mixed Grains NT$90 魯肉飯套餐
Three Treasures on a Sizzle Plate NT$140 鐵板三寶

Taipei vegetarian restaurant meals
Three Treasures on a Sizzle Plate.

Zhai Zhi 齋之傳說素食餐廳 See map
Address: 450 Zhuang Jing Road, Xinyi, Taipei
台北市信義區莊敬路450號
Telephone: 8780 5318
Opening Hours: 11–2 pm, 5–8.30 pm daily
English Menu? No
English Speaking? No
Credit cards? No

Dining Tip
Look out for vegetarian cafeterias (素食自助餐) which uniquely, charge for food by weight. You can sample as many different dishes as you like. Rice costs extra.

Visited Jan. 2012


Al Dente Cucina Italian

Great Italian food in Taipei
Caesar Salad.

Run by a young couple, Al Dente Cucina is cosy place serving European-style pizza, pasta, and risotto at low prices (NT$130–200). Try the Caesar salad, and the chicken and mushroom pesto pasta, or choose from a range of thin crust pizzas. Wash it all down with beer, tea, coffee, or a smoothie. For dessert there is homemade tiramisu, or waffles, and ice-cream.

Recommended Dishes
Caesar Salad NT$160
Chicken and Mushroom Pesto Pasta NT$160
Salami Pizza (7") NT$160

Great Italian food in Taipei
Salami pizza.

Al Dente Cucina Italian 亞緹義廚 See map
Address: 34, Lane 559, Zhongxiao East Road, Xinyi, Taipei
台北市忠孝東路四段559巷34號
Telephone: 2763 1716
Opening Hours: 11.30–2 pm, 5–9.30 pm. Closed Mondays.
English Menu? Yes
English Speaking? Yes
Credit cards? No

Dining Tip
Tipping is not practiced in Taiwan restaurants, but many upscale establishments add a service charge.

Visited Jan. 2012


Taste of Yunnan KItchen

Yunnan restaurant in Taipei
Deep-Fried Chicken with Chilli, Noodles with Minced Pork, 'Steam Pot' Chicken Soup.

Yunnan, a mountainous province in southwestern China is home to a range of ethic minority groups. Taste of Yunnan brings this interesting mélange of flavours to Taipei. Two characteristics of Yunnan food is the hot and sour flavour, and the use of rice noodles.

Noodles with minced pork, in a soup or 'dry,' is a Yunnan staple. While deep-fried chicken with chilli and Sichuan peppercorns is a pungent dish reminiscent of Thai food, 'steam pot' chicken soup, with ham and ginger is uniquely sour-flavoured with the fruit of the flowering quince. The restaurant also serves Yunnan's most famous dish, 'crossing the bridge noodles,' worth trying for the name alone.

Recommended Dishes
Noodles with Minced Pork NT$65 (small)
豬肉紹子粑粑絲(乾)
Deep-Fried Chicken with Chilli and Sichuan Peppercorns NT$130
椒麻雞
'Steam Pot' Chicken Soup NT$150 (small)
酸木瓜汽鍋雞

Yunnan food in Taiwan
Deep-Fried Chicken with Chilli, Noodles with Minced Pork, 'Steam Pot' Chicken Soup.

Taste of Yunnan KItchen 滇味廚房 See map
Address: No. 2, Lane 30, Alley 178, Yongji Road, Xinyi, Taipei
台北市信義區永吉路30巷178弄2號
Telephone: 2766 5027
Opening Hours: 11–3 pm, 5–9.30 pm daily
English Menu? Yes
English Speaking? Yes (Mr. Chen)
Credit cards? No

Dining Tip
Only large, upscale restaurants accept credit cards.

Visited Jan. 2012


Chinese Cookbook Taiwanese Restaurant

Taipei restaurant Chinese Cookbook
Chinese Cookbook Taiwanese restaurant, Taipei

Taipei is a big cosmopolitan city with many regional Chinese cuisines and food from all over the world, but did you ever wonder what home-grown Taiwan Chinese food is like? Whether you are dining alone or with a group of friends, Chinese Cookbook, is a good place to discover the true taste of Taiwan. A microcosm of typical Taiwanese cuisine, the restaurant features an abundance of fresh cooked vegetables, a selection of seafood and meat dishes, served with rice.

Chinese Cookbook is a clean, tastefully decorated small restaurant run by husband and wife team Mr. Ye and Mrs Ye. While she runs the dining area, he is busy in the kitchen stir-frying, steaming, and simmering a range of 'home-style' dishes.

Your meal at Chinese Cookbook will begin with a complimentary appetiser, possibly a suitably mouthwatering bowl of lightly pickled salad garnished with chilli, spring onions and crispy peanuts. After that the choice is wide with soups, meat, seafood, vegetables. Three cup chicken (三杯嫩雞腿): $198, is a pungent, classic braised Taiwanese chicken dish cooked in a small clay pot with lashings of garlic, ginger and chilli. The three cups refer to portions of sesame oil, rice wine, and soy sauce. I also recommend orange-flavored pork chops (橙汁排骨): $198, stir-fried sweet potato leaves (地瓜葉): $108, cod covered in crispy deep-fried tofu crumbs (豆酥鱈魚): $258, and the miso soup with fish (鮮魚味噌湯): $168.

Other dishes worth considering are stir-fried pea shoots, stir-fried squid with celery, and clams with luffa.

For groups, ask Mrs Ye about the special deals for four people ($880), or eight people ($1,880). This fixed price option still allows you a certain amount of choice when selecting dishes.

Taipei restaurant Chinese cookbook dish
Chinese Cookbook: cod and pickled salad

Chinese Cookbook 京宴小館
Address: 194 Songren Road, Xinyi. 信義區松仁路194號
Tel: 8789 2008
English Menu: Yes
English Speaking: No
Hours: 11am–2pm, 5–9pm. Closed Mondays.
Credit Card: No
Getting There: Walk: 20 minutes; Taxi: NT$80–100 (from the old trade center in Xinyi Rd.) See map

Dining Tip
You will always eat better in a Chinese restaurant with companions. The more people at the table, the more dishes, the more variety, and the better everyone eats.

Visited Jan. 2011


Shabu Shabu Hotpot Restaurant

Taipei restaurant Shabu Shabu
Shabu Shabu hotpot restaurant, Taipei

Hotpot, also known as steamboat, is originally a northern Chinese winter specialty. It has spread all over China (and beyond), and is now eaten all year round. The fun thing about a hotpot restaurant is that someone else does all the preparation and cleaning up but you get to sit around the table cooking your own food. And cooking is as easy as dunking then retrieving morsels in the pot, before removing them to your dipping sauce bowl. The Taiwanese version is something of a Chinese-Japanese blend that comes in different combinations but is always characterised by the use of a large variety of fresh vegetables with a sprinkling of meat and seafood.

The basic hotpot ($190) at Shabu Shabu is an individual serve that includes a pot of broth, a choice of wafer-thin sliced meat (beef, mutton or pork), tofu, shiitake mushrooms, enokitake mushrooms, cabbage, garland chrysanthemum, corn, tomato, a meatball, fried soy milk skim, and an egg. Eat it with a bowl of rice ($10) or add mung bean noodles ($20) to the pot towards the end of the meal. That should be enough to fill the average stomach, but if not there all kinds of extras beckoning.

Create your own dipping sauce from ingredients such as soy sauce, chilli sauce, minced garlic, vinegar etc. but for the authentic Taiwan hotpot experience add sha cha jiang, 'sand tea sauce' (沙茶醬), an oily, slightly gritty paste made from dried fish and spices. The egg that comes with your hotpot is normally mixed into the dipping sauce. If don't fancy raw egg, add it to the broth.

Taipei restaurant Shabu Shabu
Shabu Shabu hotpot sauce selection

Shabu Shabu 錢城涮涮鍋
Address: 384 Zhuang Jing Road, Xinyi. 信義區莊敬路384號
Tel: 2729 9238
English Menu: Yes
English Speaking: No
Hours: 11am–2pm, 5–11pm daily
Credit Card: No
Getting There: Walk: 10 minutes; Taxi: NT$80–100 (from the old trade center in Xinyi Rd.) See map

Dining Tip
Some restaurants charge by the bowl for rice, at others all-you-can-eat rice is included.

Visited Jan. 2011


Mu Ji Beef Noodle Soup

Taipei restaurant Mu Ji Beef Noodle Soup
Mu Ji beef noodle soup, Taipei

One of the signature dishes of Taiwan is beef noodle soup. It's not native – it washed in with the flood of KMT-led Mainland Chinese in the late 1940s. So popular has it become, that if you had just arrived and were walking around Taipei, and if, within 20 minutes you had not passed a niu rou mian shop, I'd hazard a guess you were in the wrong place. By wrong place I mean wrong country. Beef noodle soup is that popular in Taiwan. It's not native, but it is completely naturalized.

Few beef noodle shops though have the history or the credentials of Mu Ji. At $160 a bowl of Mu Ji's red-cooked beef noodle soup (紅燒牛肉麵) is expensive by local standards, but few competitors spend 10 hours preparing the dish (don't worry, you will only have to wait a few minutes to get yours). The elderly owner Mr. Mu says the restaurant, "carries on a hundred-year old tradition of noodle making, something that is hard to find in Taipei today." And despite the faded signage and cramped dining space, it is that traditional-style delicious food that brings in-the-know customers back time and again.

Highly recommended is jingjiang rou si (京醬牛肉絲&斤餅): $160, a rich feast of beef or pork slivers in a thick sauce with spring onions eaten in flat bread wraps (Mu Ji's fresh, fluffy bread, made with suet, is some of the best Chinese bread I have eaten). Try also the beef roll (斤餅包牛肉): $100, and choose from a rich range of 30 eye catching appertizers in the refrigerator such as shredded chicken and cucumber salad, sweet and sour tofu. Most appertizers are $40.

Taipei restaurant Mu Ji Appertisers
Mu Ji appertisers

Mu Ji 穆記小吃牛肉麵館
Address: 239 Wuxing Street, Xinyi District. 信義區吳興街239號1樓
Tel: 2723 9372
English Menu: No
English Speaking: Yes (ask for Tobey or Min)
Hours: 11am–9pm daily
Credit Card: No
Getting There: Walk: 15 minutes; Taxi: NT$80–100 (from old trade center in Xinyi Rd.) See map

Dining Tip
Smoking is banned in restaurants and bars. Loud talk, laughter, burping, and slurping, is not.

Visited Jan. 2011


Hao Pin Sichuanese Restaurant

Hao Pin Restaurant

Hao Pin offers mainly Sichuanese food, over 90 dishes in all. From Monday to Friday only all dishes are NT$100, a great deal, though servings are not large, and rice is NT$10 a bowl. The bigger your party, the more dishes you can try. Ask for English-speaking waitress Jen who might recommend “shrimp meat with egg,” “sautéed beef with jie lan (Chinese broccoli) vegetables,” or the well-known “gong bao ji ding” (kung bao chicken), or its even more pungent cousin la zi ji ding (辣子雞丁). I tried “celery with calamary (squid)”, “fragrant peppery hot fresh prawn,” with lashings of dried chillies yet not blisteringly hot, and “sesame chicken with sweet and sour sauce.” Everything was well-cooked, and excellent value.

Hao Pin three dishes

Hao Pin 豪品川菜
Address: 179-36 Jia Xing St. / 嘉興街179-36號
Tel: 2377 1789
English Menu: Yes, with photos!
English Speaking: Yes, ask for Jen.
Hours: 11.30am–2pm, 5–9pm Daily.
Directions: From the old trade centre, go to Keelung (Jilong) Rd and turn left. Continue for 600 metres to Tong Hua St, turn left, then right into Jia Xing St. The restaurant is on the next left corner. See map
Taxi fare: NT$90–120

Visited Feb. 2010


Ming Yue Restaurant

Ming Yue Restaurant

Ming Yue, a comfortable place featuring a glassed off kitchen in the rear, has something for everyone, whether dining solo or with a group. Choose from a selection of cold appertisers on your way in: NT$40–100.

Ming Yue apperisers

Good old fried rice (炒飯) is available in several flavours: fish, shrimp, egg etc: NT$120–150, or you might like noodles with meat sauce and pickles (明月醡醬麵): NT$100, or hot and sour noodles (酸辣麵): NT$90.

House specialities include Ming Yue ‘soup' dumplings (明月湯包): NT$120 for 8, and crispy potsticker dumplings (招牌鍋貼): NT$120 for 10.

Try drunken chicken with shaoxing wine (紹興醉雞): NT$240, or five-flavoured cuttlefish (五味花枝): NT$200, or spring onion flatbread (蔥油餅): NT$50 – golden brown with a steamy soft centre.

Down the road is the Minder Bar and Restaurant if you feel like an after dinner drink.

Ming Yue Flatbread

Ming Yue Tang Bao 明月湯包
Address: 40, Lane 171, Tong Hua St. / 通化街17140
Tel: 2733 8770
English Menu: Yes, simple version.
English Speaking: Not really, but you'll be fine with this article and a smile.
Hours: 11am–2pm, 5–8.50pm Daily.
Directions: From the old trade centre, go to Keelung (Jilong) Rd and turn left. Continue for 600 metres to Tong Hua St, turn right. The restaurant is a few doors down on your left. See map
Taxi fare: NT$90–120

Visited Feb. 2010


 
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Written for the Taipei Cycle Show Daily.
 
 
     

 

 
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