Located in a small alley off Zhongshan North Road (中山北路) in Taipei, Island Cafe (二條通．綠島小夜曲咖啡館) may hold particular interest for antiquarians and fans of architecture.
According to the establishment’s Web site (theisland.tw), the house was built in 1925 by a Japanese photographer as his residence. The two-floor Japanese-style home was renovated by Taiwanese architect Chung Yung-nan (鍾永男) a couple of years ago, and part of the house was turned into a cafe.
The building’s wooden facade exudes a faded elegance, while a tall camphor tree towers above an outdoor seat, but inside, the plain furniture and floral oil paintings fail to impress.
The cafe offers a decent selection of coffee and tea drinks, salad, waffles, sandwiches and other savory items. There is free wireless Internet access, and the venue hosts occasional musical performances. For more information visit www.wretch.cc/blog/theisland01.
Island Cafe is located at 1, Ln 33, Zhongshan N Rd Sec 1, Taipei City (台北市中山北路一段33巷1號), tel: (02) 2531-4594.
Correction: On July 29, Tidbits incorrectly reported that Feebie’s Pizza (非比薄脆披薩) boasts that it is the only pizzeria in Taoyuan to use a wood-fired brick oven. Proprietor Carey McGregor says it is the only pizza restaurant in the area to use “an authentic 19th-century style brick oven.” The Taipei Times regrets the error.