The open-air garden 49 floors up at Asia 49 | Courtesy of Asia 49
In recent years, New Taipei City’s district of Banqiao has enjoyed a sustained period of investment and redevelopment. And as such, there has been an explosion of new restaurants opening in the neighborhood. With so much competition, many in the local food industry have upped their game, and diners in the area are spoiled for choice.
Restaurant, Asian, $$$
Classic Hong Kong Flavors | Courtesy of TimHoWan
Billing itself as Hong Kong’s most famous dim sum, TimHoWan is setting the bar pretty high. But in fairness, they have no problem living up to the reputation. The food at this place is of very high quality, and that is reflected in the prices. Don’t come here expecting to eat cheaply, but if you’re willing to spend a little on your lunch or dinner then it’s a fantastic option. Located in Mega City, the décor and comfort are as you’d expect, and although the food comes out fast, there’s no rush to finish your meal.
The spectacular views alone would make this a restaurant worth visiting, but thankfully the food is pretty good, too. They opened with a claim to be the first five-star dining restaurant in New Taipei City, which seems like a hell of a boast. In truth though, while it’s not quite the fine dining establishment they market it as, it is very good indeed. The menu has been created by the restaurant’s award-winning chef who brings his own particular style to some classic Asian dishes. And when your meal is finished, there’s even an outdoor area where you can enjoy a drink. For the stunning views alone, this place is a worth a first visit, but it’s the fabulous food that will have you coming back for more.
You can't go wrong with wings | Courtesy of BravoBeer
Originally a bar that served a huge selection of Belgian beers, BravoBar has since added an extensive lunch and dinner menu with an international flavor. All the classic dishes are here, and all are prepared very well. It’s a cozy little place that tends to get busy as the night wears on. It’s a good fun place to enjoy a meal before a night out, and with so many beers to choose from, you may end up just staying here.
Mealtimes are an adventure | Courtesy of Ikki 藝奇新日本料理-板橋麗寶
Ikki is a Japanese restaurant located in Lihpao Mall. You get an amazing menu with all kinds of unusual Japanese dishes on offer. The menu really sets this place apart from the many Japanese restaurants you’ll find in Taipei. Everything is also very well presented, and the restaurant itself has an elegant feel with a very quiet and relaxed atmosphere. Having said that though, it’s still kid-friendly and there are plenty of options that kids will enjoy.
This tea house chain started out in Kaohsiung, but now boasts locations all over the island. This particular branch, however, is the only 24-hour Lemon Grass in the chain. There’s an extensive menu that features some classic dishes alongside some really tasty teas. Try the jasmine milk tea – it’s refreshing and a little addictive. Although it’s open 24-hours, it still manages to maintain a nice relaxed vibe throughout the day and night with everything clean as a whistle.
Vegetarians aren’t quite spoiled for choice in Taipei, so it’s a rather pleasant surprise to find that one of the most popular restaurants in Banqiao is actually vegetarian. But don’t assume that this is a place that only your veggie-loving friends will love. The food on offer is fantastic with a huge range of dishes to choose from. Prices are also pretty reasonable, and the service is very friendly.
As one of the most famous restaurants in Asia, Din Tai Fung guarantees you a certain level of service, choice, and quality in each of their restaurants. The Banqiao branch is simply more of the same but is well worth the visit. Diners often have a tendency to avoid restaurant chains, but Din Tai Fung is different, and if you skip this place, you’re missing out. The dumplings are amazing at this particular branch (but then they’re amazing at all Din Tai Fungs!), and the service is top-class. A lot of the staff speak English, too, so it’s quite tourist-friendly.