Known for their night markets, street food and bubble tea, Taiwan has been all about getting delicious food fast (but without paying much attention to food presentation).
But in recent years, there’s been an uprising in Taiwan’s cafe culture and what followed are beautifully plated food, playful creations and classics with a local twist.
Here, six cafes in Taiwan that serve yummy desserts worth checking out:
#1 Ten Ten Den Den (點點甜甜)
Located in a quaint neighbourhood of the Banqiao district, this popular cafe serves a variety of immaculate-looking, picture-perfect bakes like cakes, tarts, cookies and more; all of which are made from high quality ingredients that they pride themselves in using.
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The signature Matcha Chiffon Cake, which incorporates high-grade Japanese matcha into the cake to deliver intense colour and flavour, is their bestselling item. Japanese adzuki beans are then mixed through the whipped French cream to cut through the matcha to create a rich, yet light chiffon cake. To balance out the flavour, it is served alongside a bitter-sweet matcha white chocolate sauce.
Other crowd favourites include the Red Oolong Chiffon Cake, Lemon Tart, and Strawberries & Cream Cake; a deceptively simple bake that consists of fresh ruby red strawberries and French whipping cream, but one bite in and you’ll realise what the fuss is all about. Opens daily Mon-Sun 12pm-8pm, No. 2, Alley 2, Lane 45, Guangzheng Street, Banqiao District, New Taipei City, Taiwan 220
#2 The Waffle Club
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With pink walls, neon signs — one of which is a giant David Bowie — this little hole-in-the-wall is hard to miss. Desserts here are centered around the Hong Kong-style egglet waffles which are cooked on a special griddle till the edges are golden and crispy, while the hollow egg-shaped centres remain soft and puffy. The waffle is then shaped into a cone and cooled before ice cream and other sweet toppings are added.
Combinations here are endless, with you being able to customise your waffle (and ice cream) pick. The waffle flavours: Original, Uji Matcha, Red Velvet Chocolate, Black Truffle and more. Ice cream-wise, choose from Vanilla, Strawberry, Passionfruit Mango, and other monthly limited edition flavours.
Other menu highlights: Combos such as Chocolate Smores, Berries, Tropicana and other seasonal ones. Each is piled high with ice cream and toppings like marshmallows, fruits, caramel sauce, and even a sparkler (our favourite!) for some. Opens daily Sun-Thurs 1.30pm-9.30pm, Fri-Sat 1.30pm-10pm, No. 8, Alley 29, Lane 205, Section 4, Zhongxiao East Road, Da’an District, Taipei City, Taiwan 106
#3 Tamed Fox
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Looking to satisfy that sweet tooth without that dreaded sugar crash? Tamed Fox serves up better-for-you (aka healthier choice) treats and drinks that look and taste good. Founded by a certified dietician, the cafe menu is made up of yoghurt bowls, salads, sandwiches and other mains. Trendy superfood drinks like matcha, turmeric and black (comprising black sesame paste and activated charcoal) lattes also make an appearance.
The highlight? The baked treats made with wholesome ingredients like whole-wheat flour, olive oil, yoghurt and more. Recipes are constantly refined to make them healthier while retaining the original flavours of their sinful counterparts.
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Their brightly-hued donuts are a must-have, with the colourful frosting being made from natural ingredients like pink dragonfruit and blue pea flowers instead of artificial food colouring. The donuts are also baked and come in flavours like Carrot Cake, Chocolate, and other seasonal flavours. Opens on Mon-Tues, Thurs-Fri 8.30am-5pm, Sat-Sun 10am-6pm, Closed on Weds, No. 56, Lane 122, Section 4, Ren’ai Road, Da’an District, Taipei City, Taiwan 106
#4 Hërs biströ
The first thing that catches your eye of this cafe is its garden-like exterior walls covered in flowers and its brick-red door. With a recently revamped menu, Hërs biströ’s offerings just got a whole lot cooler and quirkier. While they do serve mains, desserts and drinks here are taken to the next level, and look almost too good to eat.
From a mango mousse cake (check out the swimming pool with little people swimming and sunbathing) to a mocha tiramisu that replicates a mini garden with frolicking animals, these desserts will have you forget what you ordered until you dig in.
Drinks here are equally as cool, with smoothies and cocktails served in orb-like glasses, resembling clouds in a sky or a mermaid’s playground, complete with a tail poking out! Opens daily Mon-Sat 12pm-9.30pm, Sun 12pm-9pm, No. 4, Alley 22, Lane 553, Section 4, Zhongxiao East Road, Xinyi District, Taipei City, Taiwan 110
#5 Matcha One
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It doesn’t seem like Taiwan’s obsession with matcha is ending anytime soon and thanks to dedicated matcha cafes like Matcha One, we can get our fill of green tea-filled treats. Upon stepping into the cafe, you’ll feel as though you’re transported to Japan with its wooden furniture and touches, and minimalistic aesthetic.
Enjoy their signature Matcha Mille Crepe in its original form – wafer-thin matcha crepes layered with intense matcha cream; or with adzuki beans, seasonal fresh strawberries, or sakura cream. Turn up the sweet factor with the matcha sauce! While here, you also can’t afford to miss these cult offerings: Matcha Swiss Roll with a velvety white buttercream and rich dark green matcha buttercream centre; and Bubble Matcha Latte; a Taiwanese twist on the classic Japanese drink with the addition of tapioca pearls. Opens daily Mon-Sun 12.30pm-9.30pm, Yong Kang Outlet: No. 16, Lane 75, Yongkang Street, Da’an District, Taipei City, Taiwan 106, Zhongxiao Outlet: No. 10, Lane 116, Section 1, Da’an Road, Taipei City, Taiwan
#6 Forest Soft Serve (森淇淋)
A quick scroll on this cafe’s Instagram location tag will leave you gushing at their sweet creations. While they only sell drinks and ice cream, you’ll be spoilt for choice choosing a handmade 3D marshmallow or hand-painted macaron to accompany your drink or dessert. Trust us when we say that it’s going to be challenging choosing from all the adorable little animals.
Order a cappuccino, hot chocolate, or green tea latte, and choose a marshmallow that’s served separately for you to put in your drink; giving you plenty of time to snap away as their little heads bob above the surface!
If you’re craving for ice cream, check out the soft serve option, boasting imported milk from Hokkaido and take your pick from Original Milk, Matcha, Strawberry, and other limited edition flavours. Layered in a cup with cereal and popcorn, opt for the cutest add-on, an animal macaron; each with a different flavour. Opens daily Wed-Sun, 1pm-8pm, No. 155, Yude Road, North District, Taichung City, Taiwan 404
Main image credit: @emily9895’s Instagram
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