Unique Restaurants in Taipei: 12 Fun & Quirky Places to Eat You’ll Never Forget

by Jen
Unique Restaurants in Taipei
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Taipei is filled to the brim with quirky dining spots and extraordinary eateries. From cafes that transport you to different worlds to restaurants that turn meals into adventures, Taiwan’s capital truly stands out. Join us as we uncover the most unique restaurants in Taipei, where every bite tells a story of creativity and passion.

Taipei, a city in Taiwan known for its towering skyscrapers and bustling night markets, holds a secret that few have fully explored: a world of dining experiences that defy the ordinary. Imagine relishing a gourmet meal inside a vintage car. How about dining in a place that transports you straight into a scene from a beloved TV show? In Taipei, the line between reality and fantasy blurs, especially when it comes to its zany and extraordinary eateries.

But beyond the quirky interiors or the playful themes, these restaurants serve up dishes that are as delightful and unique as their settings. From traditional Taiwanese delicacies presented with a modern twist to global cuisines reimagined in the most unexpected ways, the culinary journey is as thrilling as the ambiance.

For those with a penchant for the unusual and a palate ready for surprises, Taipei’s dining scene is a treasure trove waiting to be discovered. Every visit promises a story, a memory, and a dash of magic. So, are you ready to embark on this culinary adventure? Fasten your seatbelts and let’s dive deep into the world of unique restaurants in Taipei, where every bite is an experience and every moment is unforgettable!

The top restaurants to visit in Taipei right now
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Unique Restaurants in Taipei: 12 Culinary Treasures for the Curious Foodie

Embark on a gastronomic journey through Taipei, where the culinary landscape is as diverse as the city’s vibrant tapestry of streets. Are you set to explore the most unique restaurants Taipei has tucked away in its bustling lanes and towering buildings? The city’s food scene is a feast for the adventurous, seamlessly blending the traditional with the unabashedly modern. Read on to discover where to eat in Taipei for an eating experience that’s as captivating as the view from Taipei 101.

Ever dined in a restaurant that’s a shrine to cinematic history, or enjoyed a meal where the plates are as artistically crafted as the city’s famed temples? Taipei’s array of fun eateries promises to enchant and surprise you at every turn. Let this be your guide to the most unforgettable and distinctive dining spots in Taipei, where every meal is a story waiting to unfold.

1. Crazy Cart Cafe

Imagine a place in the heart of Taipei where the thrill of racing meets the joy of dining. Crazy Cart Cafe offers just that, making it one of the most fun places to eat in Taipei. As you savor Western-inspired dishes like meatball spaghetti or succulent pork ribs, the indoor go-kart track that runs around the cafe beckons. Located at Global Mall Nangang Station Store, this unique eatery promises an experience that’s both exhilarating and delicious.

Once your meal is done, the adventure doesn’t stop. The cafe’s indoor track extends to a larger circuit outside. This allows guests to drift around corners and race against friends. It’s not just about the food; it’s about the thrill of the chase, the wind in your hair, and the adrenaline pumping through your veins.

In a city filled with fun restaurants, Taipei’s Crazy Cart Cafe stands out. The cafe operates from 12:00 pm to 8:30 pm on weekdays and has slightly extended hours on weekends. While reservations aren’t mandatory, it’s a good idea to check in advance, especially if you’re planning to race.

Crazy Cart Cafe is one of the unique retaurants in Taipei.
Crazy Cart Cafe in the heart of Taipei combines the thrill of racing with the joy of dining.

2. PS Bubu

In the bustling streets of Taipei, there’s a restaurant that transports you straight into a scene from the iconic Taiwanese drama, Meteor Garden. Welcome to PS Bubu, a themed restaurant that’s a dream come true for fans of the show. Located in Shilin District, this establishment is a trip down memory lane.

The restaurant’s retro vibe, complete with cars cut in half, sets the stage for a unique dining experience. As you settle into the light pink convertible, reminiscent of the one Dao Ming Su and San Chai had their date in, you’ll feel like you’re part of the drama. It’s one of the themed restaurants in Taipei that offers a blend of nostalgia and delicious food. And speaking of food, don’t miss out on their banana split, a dish that holds special significance for Meteor Garden fans.

But what truly sets PS Bubu apart in the realm of unique restaurants in Taipei is its dedication to the Meteor Garden theme. From the decor to the menu, every detail is a nod to the beloved show. If you’re planning a visit, it’s worth noting that the restaurant can get crowded, especially on weekends. Reservations, especially for the coveted convertible seats, are recommended. The restaurant operates from 12:00 noon to 9:00 pm daily, and the set meal price per person is around NTD 700.

PS Bubu is a themed restaurant that brings the iconic Taiwanese drama "Meteor Garden" to life for fans of the show.
PS Bubu is a themed restaurant that brings the iconic Taiwanese drama “Meteor Garden” to life for fans of the show.

3. Real Guts Café

Dive into the world of cinema at Real Guts Café, a haven for movie enthusiasts. Situated in Zhongzheng District, this café is one of the coolest restaurants in Taipei. It offers patrons a unique blend of film history and delectable dining. Created by Taiwanese director Wei Te-sheng, whose film “Cape No. 7” made cinematic history in Taiwan, the café is a tribute to the world of movies.

As you step inside, you’re greeted by old film cameras and director clapboards from Wei’s movie sets. You’ll even see two real Golden Horse awards, often referred to as the Oscars of Chinese-language cinema. The ambiance is a delightful mix of nostalgia and cinematic charm, with storyboards, set design drafts, and even T-shirts of endemic Taiwanese animals available for purchase.

The menu, while offering typical café fare like coffees, teas, and sandwiches, also boasts dishes that resonate with the movie theme. A standout is the barbecued pork, thinly sliced and paired with a sunny side-up egg, served over rice. This is a dish that movie buffs might find familiar.

While the food is a draw, the main attraction remains the café’s dedication to film. It’s one of the unique restaurants in Taipei for dinner, especially for those who appreciate the art of cinema. If you’re planning a visit, keep an eye on their Facebook page for temporary art exhibitions and film screenings. And remember, while the café is a popular spot for work-from-home folks and students, it’s always a good idea to book in advance.

Real Guts Café combines film history with delectable dining.
Real Guts Café combines film history with delectable dining.

4. Draft Land

Amidst Taipei’s culinary scene, Draft Land emerges as a beacon for cocktail enthusiasts. Nestled in Taipei’s Da’an District, this bar is a game-changer in the world of mixology. For those diving deep into a Taipei restaurant guide, Draft Land is a must-visit.

What sets Draft Land apart? It’s their groundbreaking concept of “cocktails on draft.” Spearheaded by the renowned mixologist Angus Zou, this bar offers meticulously crafted, pre-batched cocktails that flow straight from the tap. Gone are the days of waiting for your drink to be shaken or stirred. Here, precision meets efficiency, ensuring that every guest gets a consistently delightful cocktail experience.

Beyond the drinks, it’s the ambiance, the vibe, and the promise of something different that makes it one of the hidden gem restaurants in Taipei. The minimalist decor, paired with an illuminated menu, creates an atmosphere that’s both chic and inviting. And while the cocktails are undoubtedly the stars, don’t miss out on their selection of gourmet bites. This is truly perfect for pairing with your drink.

Draft Land in Taipei's Da'an District is a game-changer in the world of mixology and a must-visit for cocktail enthusiasts.
Draft Land in Taipei’s Da’an District is a game-changer in the world of mixology and a must-visit for cocktail enthusiasts.

5. The Restaurant Bus

For those seeking a dining experience that’s both mobile and luxurious, The Restaurant Bus in Taipei offers just that. This double-decker bus, which roams the streets of Taipei, combines sightseeing with gourmet dining, making it a standout in any list of unique Taipei restaurants

As the bus winds its way through the city, guests are treated to views of eastern Taipei’s stunning cityscape, including the iconic Taipei 101. The meals, provided by 5-star hotels, are a culinary delight. Depending on the time of your booking, you can indulge in a sumptuous afternoon tea or a delectable dinner. The afternoon tea, for instance, features treats like smoked salmon sandwiches, shrimp & avocado bruschetta, and a delightful fruits salad.

Booking a seat on The Restaurant Bus is straightforward. While you can reserve directly on their official website, it’s often cheaper to book through platforms like Klook. The bus operates every day except Mondays, with afternoon tea at 2 pm and dinners at 5 pm & 7.30 pm. Each journey lasts about 1.5 hours, starting and ending at the MRT City Hall Station Exit 3.

The Restaurant Bus offers a mobile and luxurious dining experience on a double-decker bus that roams the city's streets.
The Restaurant Bus offers a mobile and luxurious dining experience on a double-decker bus that roams the city’s streets. | Source: https://taipeirestaurantbus.com/

6. The Top 屋頂上

Perched atop Yangmingshan, The Top 屋頂上 offers diners a mesmerizing birds’ eye view of Taipei’s shimmering nightscape. This restaurant, with its resort-like ambiance reminiscent of Bali, has quickly become a favorite for couples seeking a romantic date night or groups of friends looking for a scenic place in Taipei to eat.

The menu at The Top is diverse, with a focus on Asian stir-fried dishes infused with local flavors. Whether you’re craving a succulent steak or intrigued by their barbecue offerings, there’s something for every palate. However, certain menu options are exclusive to specific seating areas, so it’s wise to check in advance.

But what truly sets The Top apart from other unique restaurants in Taipei is its unparalleled view. As the city lights twinkle below, the ambiance inside the restaurant is equally captivating, making it a sought-after destination for both locals and tourists. If you’re considering a visit, be aware that while they don’t accept reservations for regular tables, private rooms are available for booking. There’s a minimum spend requirement, and it’s a cash-only establishment.

The Top 屋頂上 offers a mesmerizing birds' eye view of Taipei's nightscape.
The Top 屋頂上 offers a mesmerizing birds’ eye view of Taipei’s nightscape.

7. RAW

In the heart of Taipei’s Zhongshan District, RAW stands as a testament to culinary artistry and innovation. This restaurant, under the guidance of the acclaimed Taiwanese-born chef André Chiang, has swiftly ascended the ranks to become one of Taipei’s best restaurants.

Opened in late 2014, RAW’s reputation has soared, not just for its aesthetically pleasing interiors but also for its avant-garde tasting menus. The restaurant’s approach to food is described as “bistronomy” – a fusion of bistro and gastronomy. This means you get dishes made with locally sourced ingredients from Taiwan’s 24 micro seasons, but presented in a more relaxed, bistro-like manner. It’s where fine dining meets accessibility.

The dishes at RAW are a celebration of the best food in Taipei. From the Freshest Taiwan Milk, a delightful play on textures with milk in powder and liquid forms, to the Caviar Aubergine with Silver Fish and Crispy Noodles, each dish is a journey through Taiwan’s rich culinary landscape. And for those who truly appreciate fine dining in Taipei, the restaurant’s tasting menus, priced at NTD 1,850 and 2,680, offer a gastronomic experience that’s both sophisticated and memorable.

Located at No. 301, Lequn 3rd Road, getting to RAW is straightforward. Take the MRT to Jiannan Rd Station, Exit 3, and a short walk will lead you to this culinary gem. But a word to the wise: securing a reservation here can be a challenge, given its popularity. So, plan ahead and be ready for a dining experience that’s nothing short of extraordinary.

RAW is a testament to culinary artistry and innovation, ranking among Taipei's best restaurants.
RAW is a testament to culinary artistry and innovation, ranking among Taipei’s best restaurants.

8. Raohe Night Market

When it comes to diving deep into the culinary heart of Taipei, Raohe Night Market stands out as a vibrant epicenter of flavors and aromas. This bustling market, one of the city’s oldest, is a haven for those seeking cheap eats in Taipei. As you stroll through its lively lanes, you’re greeted by a symphony of sizzling grills, bubbling pots, and the chatter of eager diners.

Raohe is a treasure trove of Taiwanese street food. From the crispy and golden brown Black Pepper Buns, a Fujianese classic, to the iconic oyster omelets slathered in a gooey sweet-and-sour sauce, every stall has a story to tell. And for those brave enough, there’s the renowned love-it-or-hate-it “stinky” tofu. This is a deep-fried delicacy that’s as pungent as it is flavorful. But Raohe isn’t just about traditional treats. Modern innovations, like the Deep-Fried Milk on a Stick, offer a delightful twist on classic flavors.

Located conveniently near the stunning Ciyou Temple, Raohe Night Market is more than just a place to grab a bite. It’s an experience, a journey through Taiwan’s rich culinary heritage. For visitors and locals alike, it remains one of the fun places to eat in Taipei. It truly offers a sensory overload that’s hard to find elsewhere.

Raohe Night Market is a haven for those seeking cheap eats in the city.
Raohe Night Market is a haven for those seeking cheap eats in the city.

9. Spring City Shrimp Fishing Restaurant

Imagine a dining experience where the thrill of the catch is just as important as the taste of the dish. At Spring City Shrimp Fishing Restaurant in the Shilin District, you get just that. Tucked away on Zhi Shan Road, this unique restaurant offers patrons the chance to fish for their own shrimp. This makes it one of the best places to eat in Taipei for those seeking a hands-on culinary adventure.

The concept is simple yet engaging. Guests are provided with fishing rods, bait, and a pond teeming with shrimp. The challenge? Catch your own meal. Whether you’re a seasoned angler or a first-timer, the excitement of landing a shrimp is unmatched. And the best part? Once you’ve made your catch, you can grill it to perfection. Be sure to season it with either fish sauce or salt, and savor the fresh, succulent flavors.

But what truly sets Spring City apart from other unique restaurants in Taipei is the camaraderie it fosters. As you sit around the pond, fishing rod in hand, you’ll find yourself bonding with fellow diners, cheering each other on, and sharing tips and tricks. It’s a communal experience, one that’s both fun and fulfilling.

The restaurant operates 24/7, ensuring that the fun never stops, no matter the hour. And while the ambiance might be rustic, with its open-air setting and simple furnishings, the joy of catching and cooking your own shrimp elevates it to a unique restaurant in Taipei that’s not to be missed.

At Spring City Shrimp Fishing Restaurant, you can catch your own shrimp for a unique dining adventure.
At Spring City Shrimp Fishing Restaurant, you can catch your own shrimp for a unique dining adventure.

10. Money Jump Fun & Restaurant

In the bustling Neihu district of Taipei, Money Jump Fun & Restaurant beckons families with its vibrant ambiance and a plethora of activities. This unique restaurant in Taipei is an entire experience that promises fun and frolic for both kids and adults.

As you step inside, you’re greeted by a dazzling array of amusement facilities. From a fully functional carousel that takes you on a whimsical ride to an interactive ball pool where kids can dive in and play, there’s no end to the entertainment. And if that’s not enough, there’s also a parent-and-child reading room for some quiet bonding time, and a peekaboo tunnel that promises giggles and laughter.

But it’s not all play and no food. Money Jump offers a diverse menu that caters to all age groups. For the little ones, there’s a dedicated kids’ menu with set meals and even a selection of purees for babies. Parents can indulge in delectable dishes like salmon fillets, pork chops, and sirloin steaks. And if you’re in the mood for some Italian, their pizzas are a must-try. To wash it all down, there’s a full wine list that promises to elevate your dining experience.

Located at 127, Minshan St., the restaurant operates in three sessions daily. This ensures that no matter when you visit, fun is always on the menu. In the vast landscape of fun restaurants in Taipei, Money Jump stands out, offering a blend of dining and entertainment that’s hard to find elsewhere.

Money Jump Fun & Restaurant is an entire experience that promises fun and frolic for both kids and adults.
Money Jump Fun & Restaurant is an entire experience that promises fun and frolic for both kids and adults.

11. Farmer’s Table

In the heart of Taipei’s Zhongzheng District, a stone’s throw away from the iconic Chiang Kai-Shek Memorial Hall, lies Farmer’s Table. This establishment has carved a niche for itself among the best restaurants in Taipei, especially for families who prioritize health and well-being.

Farmer’s Table prides itself on its organic menu, ensuring that every dish is not only delicious but also nourishing. As the little ones don their cute aprons and engage with wooden food toys, parents can relax in the chic, laid-back ambiance. The children’s meals here are thoughtfully curated, ensuring that even the youngest diners get a taste of healthy, organic goodness.

But what truly sets Farmer’s Table apart from other unique restaurants in Taipei is its commitment to creating a holistic dining environment. The hip interior, with its earthy tones and rustic decor, complements the organic theme perfectly. And once the meal is over, the fun doesn’t stop. With a children’s bookstore right next door and the renowned Hsin Yi Read and Play center just upstairs, families have a plethora of post-meal entertainment options to choose from.

Farmer’s Table is one of the best restaurants, catering to health-conscious families.
Farmer’s Table is one of the best restaurants, catering to health-conscious families.

12. Mr Tree Station

In the vibrant Da’an District of Taipei, Mr Tree Station beckons families with its unique ambiance and child-friendly features. Designed to mirror the charm of a London Underground station, this unique restaurant in Taipei is a haven for young adventurers.

The moment you step inside, you’re transported to a whimsical world. The restaurant boasts a sprawling play area that’s sure to captivate the little ones. Whether they’re diving into the ball pit, building castles in the sandpit, or splashing around in the water area, there’s no end to the fun. And for the tiniest patrons, a separate play space ensures they too can join in the merriment safely.

While the play areas are undoubtedly the star attraction, the menu at Mr Tree Station doesn’t disappoint. While it may lean towards the traditional, dishes like tomato risotto and spaghetti promise to please even the pickiest eaters. Parents can relax, knowing their children are not only entertained but also well-fed.

Located in the heart of the city, the restaurant does see a steady influx of patrons, especially during weekends. Hence, reservations are advised to avoid any wait times. Also, there’s a nominal entry charge. However, given the many activities and delightful menu, it’s a small price to pay for a memorable dining experience.

Mr Tree Station is one of the unique retaurants in Taipei.
Mr Tree Station offers a London Underground-themed dining experience for families and young adventurers.

Frequently Asked Questions About the Unique Places to Eat in Taipei

Before we wrap up our culinary tour, let’s address some common questions about the unique restaurants in Taipei and the city’s dining scene.

What do locals eat in Taipei?

When it comes to local favorites in Taipei, the city offers a delightful mix of traditional and modern dishes. Locals often indulge in staples like beef noodle soup, braised pork rice, and stinky tofu. Street food, especially from night markets, is also a significant part of the Taipei dining scene. From savory treats like oyster omelets to sweet delights like bubble tea, the city’s culinary landscape is as diverse as it is delicious. For those seeking a unique restaurant in Taipei, the options are endless. This is thanks to many establishments offering their own twist on these local favorites.

What is the famous Taiwanese restaurant chain?

One of the most renowned restaurant chains in Taiwan is Din Tai Fung. Originating in Taipei, this chain is celebrated for its xiao long bao (soup dumplings). It has since gained international acclaim, with branches in various countries around the world. While Din Tai Fung stands out, Taipei is home to many other unique restaurants that offer a blend of traditional and contemporary dishes.

What is Taiwanese traditional food?

Taiwanese traditional food is a rich tapestry of flavors, influenced by various cultures. Some of the most iconic dishes include lu rou fan (braised pork rice), gua bao (pork belly buns), and danzai noodles. Desserts like taro balls and pineapple cakes are also beloved. Each dish tells a story of Taiwan’s culinary heritage, and many unique restaurants in Taipei take pride in serving these traditional delights with a modern twist.

A charming small cafe in Taipei
A charming small cafe in Taipei

Are there vegetarian options in Taipei’s restaurants?

Absolutely! Taipei is quite accommodating to vegetarians and vegans. Many restaurants offer vegetarian versions of popular dishes, and there are also establishments dedicated solely to vegetarian and vegan cuisine. Whether you’re looking for a traditional vegetarian meal or a unique restaurant in Taipei that offers innovative plant-based dishes, the city has got you covered.

Is street food safe to eat in Taipei?

Taipei’s street food is not only delicious but also generally safe to consume. The city’s health regulations are stringent, and vendors take pride in maintaining cleanliness. However, as with any travel destination, it’s always a good idea to observe the stall’s hygiene and go where there’s a crowd, as locals often know the best and safest places to eat.

How expensive is dining out in Taipei?

Dining out in Taipei can cater to all budgets. From affordable street food stalls to high-end unique restaurants in Taipei, there’s something for everyone. On average, a meal at a local eatery might cost you around TWD 100-300, while a fine dining experience can range from TWD 1,000 and upwards.

Can I find international cuisine in Taipei?

Certainly! While Taipei is a haven for Taiwanese cuisine, the city’s cosmopolitan nature means you can find a plethora of international dishes. From Japanese sushi bars and Korean BBQs to Italian pizzerias and American burger joints, Taipei offers a global culinary experience.

Are reservations necessary for dining in Taipei?

While many local eateries and street food stalls don’t require reservations, it’s a good idea to book a table if you’re planning to visit a popular or unique restaurant in Taipei, especially during weekends or holidays. This ensures you have a seamless dining experience without long wait times.

Final Thoughts on Unique Taipei Restaurants

Taipei offers a gastronomic journey like no other. From the bustling night markets serving delectable street food to upscale dining establishments that push the boundaries of traditional cuisine, there’s something for every palate. But what truly sets the city apart are the unique restaurants in Taipei.

These establishments, with their blend of tradition and modernity, offer experiences that linger long after the meal is over. Whether you’re a seasoned traveler or a first-time visitor, Taipei’s dining scene promises to surprise, delight, and leave you yearning for more. So the next time you find yourself in this vibrant city, take a moment to explore its culinary wonders. It’s only then, when you’ll discover the flavors that make Taipei truly unique.

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