Yes, Brick Works is another toy brand-themed restaurant, this time based on the popular Lego property. Much like Tokyo, themed restaurants are quickly becoming the norm in Taipei. In fact, the restaurant that I would say kick-started and popularized the genre locally was the obnoxiously pink, faux Victorian Hello Kitty Sweets, created as a partnership between a local businessperson and the Japan cultural staple organization Sanrio.
As I pointed out in last week’s Top 5 Taiwanese Street Market Foods article, there are many more great eats to be consumed than just the five in my list. In fact, there’s a good chance that my top 5 doesn’t even contain one of another Taiwan residents top 5. So, here is some overflow designated as Honorable Mentions.
Last Saturday, as we often do, my family went to our closest Taiwan street market, the Raohe Street Night Market in Taipei. As we were sitting in the taxi for the short trip from our apartment in the northeast corner of the Songshan District to the market entrance, which neighbors the Songshan train station ten minutes away, I listened in on the excited words being passed between my kids and my wife. Their conversation consisted almost entirely of which snacks they were planning on eating at the market and which snacks they were planning on taking home to eat later.
And who can blame them? I was mulling over the exact same thing.
Both my taxi driver and and my sister-in-law claimed that this is currently the best restaurant in Taipei to get seafood. Im not much of a fan of seafood myself (Im kind of the opposite of a pescitarian), but the street-side kitchen made for a cool photographic subject. If you do enjoy giant crab and happen to be in Taipei, you can find 89 Seafood here.
Now on to the pictures.
So a couple of weeks ago I stopped by the nearest Taipei City street market, Raohe Night Market, which sits next to the Sungshan Train Station, to pick up some dinner. I was also interested in visiting because a coworker claimed that on her last visit she had come across a Texan selling deep fried Oreos.
A Texan in Taipei with a stall at a local street market selling deep fried Oreos.
Well, I confirmed his existance and went home with dinner, some photos from the market, and confirmation that this guy does exist (along with deep fried banana pieces).
Taipei now has a second officially Sanrio-approved eatery and, thankfully, it involves far less pink. In fact, there’s no pink at all. Kiko’s Diner in Taipei soft-opened about a week ago and is set to have it’s grand opening January 1st. Contrary to it’s older sister Hello Kitty Sweets, which sits just a couple of blocks away, Kiko’s Diner is less of a novelty-themed restaurant and is more in the style of a business lunch restaurant in both appearance and menu items.
Boyfriends and spouses of the Sanrio-obsessed need not fear.
On the way back home from the firefly farm in Wulai this past Saturday we stopped in the center of the town so that we could grab a bite to eat on the long ride home. We had 15 minutes, then we had to get back on the bus.
So heres pictures of Wulai, late at night, in 15 minutes.