While a decade ago there were only a few restaurants in NYC identified with Taiwanese cuisine, now there are dozens. The menus offer a mix of regional Chinese fare, plus, for geographic and historical reasons, dishes showing Japanese, Korean, American, European, and Southeast Asian influences. Culinary wonders may include dishes favoring pork chops, chicken with basil, elliptical rice cakes, crisp tempura, hearty (and often spicy) noodle soups, oyster omelets, and pickled mustard greens in varying roles. Bubble tea may be the island’s most popular export, invented in Taichung, Taiwan in the 1980s, and quickly becoming a food fad in Hong Kong, Tokyo, and the rest of the world.
Taiwanese food is being further remade in the modern era. “It’s because young Taiwanese don’t always want to eat the food of their parents,” says Cathy Erway, author of The Food of Taiwan. She points to new steakhouses, bubble tea parlors, vendors of newfangled ice creams, and fast food outlets concentrating on things like dumplings and popcorn chicken, as evidence of this trend. Here is a choice collection of the city’s best Taiwanese restaurants, old and new.Read More