Fri, Dec 10, 2004 - Page 15 News List

Restaurant: Club 75

Address: B1, No.22, Songshou Rd, Xinyi District,Taipei (台北市松壽路22號B1)
Telephone: (02) 8786 1591
Open: Daily 6pm to 2am (3am on weekends)
Average meal: NT$500 to NT$100
Details: Credit cards accepted. Service and menu in English and Chinese

By Diana Freundl  /  STAFF REPORTER

Club 75: A place to eat.

PHOTO: DIANA FREUNDL, TAIPEI TIMES

It's always great to find a restaurant with excellent food or a venue with good music, but it's better when you discover a place that offers both. Billed more as a Latin dance bar than a restaurant, Club 75 attracts patrons who turn up to have a few drinks and listen to the nightly live entertainment. But the food should not be over-looked. The club serves up a tasty selection of both light and substantial meals.

Open for nearly three years, Club 75 relocated in September from its Tianmu location to the basement of Neo 19 in the Xinyi district. The rent wasn't the only thing to increase after the move: the new venue is twice the old venue's size and has more tables and sofas, as well as a bigger dance floor.

The interior decorating was done by the club's owner, Patrick Lee, who also designed the neighboring bar, Patio. Lee also uses his establishment as a mini gallery to showcase his own paintings. The spacious layout, dim lighting and small tables positioned around the dance floor create an ambience and look similar to a 1960s jazz club.

The most popular appetizers are the grilled beef or chicken salsa (NT$260) and, given the portion sizes, they could be shared or satisfy as a light dinner. The pasta dishes offer the largest selection including meat, seafood and vegetarian options. The vegetable spaghetti in herb tomato sauce (NT$260) was one of the best pastas I've had outside of an Italian restaurant in Taiwan.

There is a selection of larger entrees that include mostly meat or seafood dishes served with mashed potatoes and a side salad, which comes with a flavorsome red wine dressing. The service is fast and friendly and the kitchen stays open late, which is convenient for late-night cravings like potato wedges (NT$180). The list of drinks is longer than the food menu and offers a healthy selection of cocktails, bottled beers and wine with prices comparable to other lounge bars in Taipei.

The reasonable prices and quality food make Club 75 worth going to just for dinner, but after a few cocktails or when the entertainment begins you might find you want to make a night out of it. The band begins at 10pm with Latin music Thursday to Saturday, jazz on Wednesday and world music the rest of the week.

There's a minimum charge of NT$350 per person during the week and NT$500 on Friday and Saturday. VIP sofa areas are also available for a NT$4000 to NT$6000 minimum charge during the weekends.

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