Taipei’s Ximending is one of the city’s liveliest neighborhoods and finding a place to eat is pretty easy. However, with so many restaurants and cafes to choose from, it’s hard to know where to start. From local noodle shops to western style cuisine, here are some of the best restaurants in and around the area.
They say that in Taiwan you can always judge a restaurant by the lunchtime queue and if the line of people you’ll find at Ay-Chung Flour-Rice Noodle is anything to go by then you’ve come to the right place. This tiny little restaurant serves up some of the best noodles in the city and at a very affordable price. Thin noodles served in a broth with some cilantro and intestines to boot. What more could you ask for.
Open throughout the day and into the early hours of the morning, Mala Spicy Hot Pot is quite the culinary experience. Patrons cook their own meal in a spicy hot pot set into their table and it’s an all-you-can-eat affair. Take as much as you like from the fridges and and make your own sauces. Fresh meat, vegetables, and even instant noodles all go in the pot and when you’re done with your meal there are a few Häagen-Dazs fridges with a seemingly limitless supply of ice cream.
A fantastic restaurant that offers western dishes at decent prices in Ximen. This place has a great atmosphere and the staff are pretty cool and laid back. The menu is good and has some items that you wouldn’t expect to find in Taipei. The Scotch Eggs being the most popular among locals. It’s also a great spot for a few drinks and has some specials on beers. But it’s the huge range of coffees that really impresses customers.
Another small local restaurant that does a roaring trade by keeping it simple. The beef noodles at this place are delicious and very affordable but as with most noodle shops, you may have to wait a while for a seat. Don’t worry though, it’s worth the wait. The noodles are perfectly cooked and the beef is succulent and falls apart in your mouth.
They bill themselves as the best place for brunch in Ximen and they’re not far wrong. This cafe is a super relaxing venue where you can either enjoy a light lunch or a burger in the evening. The staff at this place make a great effort to make you comfortable and the food is some of the best western food you’ll find in the neighborhood. They stay open quite late too and have a very well-stocked fridge full of beers making it a nice spot to meet friends in the evening.
Japanese food always goes down a treat in Taiwan and there’s no better place to get some authentic Japanese ramen than at Rakumenya. This restaurant has more than one location but its Ximending store is probably one of the most popular. The ramen served here are quite delicious with a huge range of options available on the menu. It’s a nice place to eat and the staff are helpful and will recommend dishes to suit your tastes.
Seafood Palace is a small seafood and sushi restaurant that serves up nothing but the freshest seafood in town. It’s the kind of place that locals head to after work or go to at the weekend. Here you can have everything from lobster to oysters and of course it’s all served with ice cold beer. It’s a lively place and you’ll enjoy the atmosphere as everyone is there to enjoy the food and have a good time.