I wasn’t even looking forward to this trip. When I knew that I had to go to Kaohsiung, Taiwan, for a work trip about a month ago, I got myself the last flight into and the first flight out of this second largest city in Taiwan. Frankly, what’s there to do in this city? I heard of people getting excited over Taipei, but Kaohsiung? Errr… nope. And it was not till the second last day of my work trip that I discovered that there’s more to this quaint laidback city. On hindsight, I should have given myself another day to explore this colourful place, especially the cafes.
CENTRAL PARK STATION – J CAFE
One of the cafés that I chanced upon is the J Café. I got out of the Central Park subway station and was walking towards my hotel when I saw this café in the park. It was exceptionally pretty especially in the midst of the blooming flowers. The menu was rather limited then because it had opened less than a month and the kitchen wasn’t ready yet. I was told that they would start serving food when the kitchen was completed.
J Café Kaohsiung
Nevertheless, when you’re there, you have to try the delish toast with ice cream and caramel sauce. This dessert is not for the faint-hearted. It is three layers of crispy thick bread toast drowned with whipped cream, caramel sauce, nuts and a scoop of ice cream. Although I skipped lunch, I couldn’t even finish this decadent dessert. I strongly recommend that you share this dessert with another friend so that you feel less guilty for stuffing yourself with this heavenly toast.
J Café - delish toast with ice cream and caramel sauce
No. 6, Zhonghua 3rd Road, Qianjin District, Kaohsiung City, Taiwan 801
Tel: (886) 07 272 -1999
XIZI WAN/ XIZI BAY – SUMMER CAFE (大隻佬茶餐廳)
XiZi Bay (or XiZi Wan) is located at the western part of Kaohsiung city. Close to the Kaohsiung Habour, this scenic bay area is highly popular for its beach and seafood. Of course, the spectacular sunset is a magnet for lovebirds too. If you happen to be there, why not drop by this Hong Kong style café. The Summer Café looks rather quirky in this XiZi Wan neighbourhood with its interior and exterior all filled with unique knickknacks from the 1970s.
Summer Café 大隻佬茶餐廳
Summer Café’s affordable prices and well-liked Hong Kong styled dishes are highly popular with the students from the nearby National Sun Yat-sen University. It’s hard for you to go wrong here not when they served classic Hong Kong teahouse dishes. It’s a great place to rest your feet after a long walk along the bay.
Summer Café 大隻佬茶餐廳
Summer Café 大隻佬茶餐廳
No.66, Binhai 1st Road, Gushan District, Kaohsiung City 80443, Taiwan
Tel: (886) 07 531-9563
THE PIER–2 ART CENTER, Kaohsiung, Taiwan 駁二藝術特區大義倉庫群
THE PIER–2 ART CENTER
The Pier–2 Art Center is located in the YanCheng district of Kaohsiung City. This place used to house quite a number of abandoned old warehouses that have since been converted into cafes and studios. Located near to the famous Love River and Kaohsiung Habour, this is the place to visit if you love the arts. And it was when I discovered this exciting art centre that my entire opinion of Kaohsiung changed and wished that I had stayed a day longer. The following three cafes are all located within the art center.
The Pier–2 Art Center 駁二藝術特區大義倉庫群
No. 1, Dayong Road, Yancheng District,
Kaohsiung City, Taiwan 803
THE PIER–2 ART CENTER – CHEER FOR CAFE
One of my favourite cafes at The Pier-2 Art Center has to be the Cheer For Café. It is situated within the Cheer For store, a gift shop that sells designer stationery and household items. Although the café-within-store concept is not unique, it is still a pleasurable experience to rest your legs after browsing through this interesting lifestyle store.
Cheer For Café
The café, which occupies a small corner area of the store and stretches over two floors, serves mainly snacks and light dishes. The Thai-flavoured Chicken Wings with lemon is gorgeous. If not because I need to watch my weight, I would have ordered another portion of these delectable fried chicken wings. The chicken wings were so well marinated and the flavour was simply heavenly. This is a must-order snack for those chicken wings lovers.
Cheer For Café - Chicken wings
Cheer For Café
No. 2 DaYi Street, Kaohsiung City, YanCheng District, Warehouse C6-4
Tel: (886) 07 531-0188
THE PIER–2 ART CENTER- ARTCO.C6 BISTRO AND BAR
I was attracted to the ArtCo.C6 because of its interior design. It is probably the biggest F&B outlet and only bistro and bar in the art centre. ArtCo.C6 houses two different sections, one bar area that serves drinks in the evening and the other bistro area that serves food throughout the day.
ArtCo.C6 with Little Danny
What is particularly fascinating about ArtCo.C6 is that they have lots of eye-catching art pieces and sculptures within the bistro. When I was there in late March 2015, the main exhibit was Little Danny, a dog sculpture that was made up of many smaller Dalmatian toy dogs. It was really adorable and I bet many people dined at the bistro and bar because of that. The food variety leans towards Italian cuisine such as Panini and pasta. The food quality is generally acceptable although I haven’t eaten enough to give an objective review. Nevertheless with so many interesting art pieces within the place, it is easy to focus on the art and forget the taste of the food.
ArtCo.C6 - Panini
ArtCo.C6 Bistro and Bar
No. 2 DaYi Street, Kaohsiung City, YanCheng District, Warehouse C6-11
Tel: (886) 07 521-1936
THE PIER–2 ART CENTER – NOW & THEN CAFE by NYBC
When I was at the art center in March, the place has just been opened for slightly more than a month. Many of the stores and studios were still unoccupied or under renovation works. If I had not walked to the other end of the art center, I wouldn’t have found this hidden gem.
ow & Then Café by NYBC
When I walked into Now & Then Café by NYBC, the first feeling that I got was that this place reminds me a lot of my favourite city, New York. The interior design is very much inspired by a NYC loft. The high ceiling and somehow industrial look of this café stood out and captivated my attention.
ow & Then Café by NYBC - Brownie with Strawberry Ice Cream
It is undeniably a great place to enjoy a meal or coffee. I had the brownie with strawberry ice cream and it was so good, although some people might find it a tad too sweet. Since Now & Then Café by NYBC is located at the last warehouse, it does not enjoy a lot of foot traffic. This means that it’s the best place to spend a lazy afternoon. This is definitely a café that I would return again when I revisit Kaohsiung.
Now & Then by NYBC
No. 2 DaYi Street, Kaohsiung City, YanCheng District, Warehouse C9-19
Tel: (886) 07 531-6999