As a Brit my favourite drink is tea and not coffee, but a couple of years ago I bought a Nespresso coffee machine because
my idol George Clooney is the spokesperson it was convenient to make a good cup of coffee at home. More importantly, it looks so cool in my kitchen.
Since coming to Taiwan, I realised there is a strong coffee drinking culture here. Starbucks is popular as they are all around the world, but the coffee culture I’m referring to are the individual small cafes, often run by the baristas themselves. Although I’m not big coffee drinker, I love to explore the cafe scene in Taichung to soak in its lovely atmosphere. Here’s a list of my favourite.
The cafe with no name
Yes, that’s what it’s really called. This is my favourite bolthole, located in a small alley with no sign outside. It’s very low key, jus like walking into somebody’s house. Everytime I come here I feel like coming back home.
這家真是叫做沒名字的咖啡店，隱藏在小巷弄裡，沒有門口招牌 。不知道的話 ， 路過絕對不敢進去。我我就是喜歡這裏低調，有回家的感覺。
Cafe Shih & The Ark
Before I came here, I had walked past this many times without noticing it. It’s subtly located at a small street next to some local shops homes and doesn’t have a big sign outside. The owner is a young guy who wasn’t quite sure what he wanted in life, but loved coffee so decided to take an opportunity to start his own cafe. Inside is very contemporary and comfortable with a choice of desks, comfy chairs or the bar counter where you can chat with the owner.
以前經過這家多次都沒有留意過。 原來店主是一位年青男士自己第一次嘗試創業 。內裏裝潢現代化，設有吧枱可以跟店主聊天，他非常建談。
This is located near one of the local universities so has lots of desk space for students to read and work. This is my favourite desk when I visit. The other great place nearby is a cinema that shows second round movies ie movies that have premiered a couple of months ago. Tickets only cost USD1.6 so whenever go to watch a movie, I always drop by for a coffee as well.
Fleet Street is a famous street in London where all the newspapers used to operate out from, so coming here feels a bit like being back in London. I like the interior of this cafe, spacious and tiled, very cool. There’s also a lot of books and feels like you’re in a book store rather than a cafe.
The barista here has won many awards and his latte art is definitely mesmerising as were their black sesame cheesecake. I’m not normally a fan or either black sesame flavour nor cheesecake, but I have to say both desserts got a massive thumbs up from me.
This is literally one minute walk from my old flat, located in an old house down a little alley. I used to come here all the time when I didn’t want to walk too far. This is my favourite seat by the front window overlooking the front garden. I like this cafe as it has a very clear political stance, something which can be quite sensitive for some poeple in Taiwan.
The first time I came here, I fell in love with this cafe as it is located on a road lined with tall trees on both sides, very European feel. The owner used to be an architect so the design and layout of the cafe is very comfortable and relaxing. But the big bonus for me, is that I have now moved near to this cafe, and it is only less than 5 minutes walk away from me!
I’m blessed with so many great cafes around me, and its great to see that the coffee scene is not dominated by large multinational chains in Taiwan. Each of these cafes are unique in their own way, and everytime I visit a one I feel like I’ve discovered a new gem. That’s what I love about the coffee scene hear.