Hello everyone and welcome to another entry on Mastication Monologues! I’m nearing the end of my series of vacation posts, but I’ve saved some of the best restaurants/foods for last. I’ve already sampled snake soup, durian, and some great dim sum in Hong Kong, but now I’m moving onto the isla formosa a.k.a. Taiwan. I had a great time in Hong Kong, so I was doubtful that Taiwan could top my experiences I already took part in. Food-wise, it just got better and stranger. Stranger not in the Camus sense, but rather my first meal in Taipei was at a restaurant where I ate out of a toilet and drank out of a urinal. I’m talking about Modern Toilet located at 2樓, No. 7, Lane 50, Xiníng South Rd, Wanhua District, by the Ximen metro stop. Here is their website. I had seen it previously on a Travel Channel show with its feces-inspired dishes, so it was too odd not to pass up.
I knew I couldn’t miss the actual restaurant because the outside of the restaurant sported a giant porcelain throne as the neon beckoned me inside to finally try their bizarre dishes. Everywhere you walk in the restaurant, you can’t escape the extra Japanese kawaii (cute) piles of anime excrement.
I guess that’s the end result of all of that Pokefood that Brock was always feeding to Pikachu and his Geodude. Sorry, nerdlinger moment there. Going back to the food, I wasn’t really shocked with the decor until I walked into the main dining room.
Every square inch of the place had something to do with the one room of the house where it’s pretty taboo to do any form of eating.
The tables consisted of sinks with glass over them while I sat on a stylized, non-functional toilet. Oh yeah, and the lights were also piles of poo. Thankfully they didn’t include the authentic smell with all of these dookie inspired designs. Their menu has a mix of curries, au gratin dishes, noodles, and desserts that all revolve around bathroom functions. I went with a simple chicken curry for 220 TWD which came with a drink on the side along with an ice cream dessert. To drink, I got a urinal of jasmine green tea for 40 TWD. The drink came out first, and it was in an actual hospital urinal complete with the clear plastic cap. As if it wasn’t kitchy enough, the jasmine tea looked like real urine, but thankfully did not smell/taste like it (no, I’ve never tried it like Patches O’Houlihan). While sipping it out of my urinal using my crazy straw, its herbal and honey tinged notes really quenched my thirst for a cold drink since it felt like a swamp outside the restaurant. Fun fact, if you get the urinal sized drink, you can take the urinal home for free as a souvenir! Eventually, my food came out, and it lived up to the kookiness of the restaurant.
Not only was my curry hanging out in a mini-latrine, but my pickled cabbage was kept fresh under a plastic cover shaped like, yep you guessed, it, poo. The actual curry was well made but nothing out of the ordinary. It went well with the rice on the side. The warm radish soup was pretty good, and I didn’t expect it to come with my meal. It was fairly bland, but kind of had a chicken broth undertone to each spoonful. Once I ate all of that food, there was one last act in this three ring circus: the ice cream dessert. Most places serve ice-cream in a classic cone or cup, but in Modern Toilet, they serve you your chocolate and vanilla swirl ice cream in an Eastern-style squatter toilet.
The ice cream melted very quickly, but it was delectable especially the chocolate part since it had an unexpected coffee aftertaste. I left Modern Toilet a very satisfied diner, so if you want to try some average food in an extraordinary environment, pop a squat at Modern Toilet in Taipei.
Next post, I celebrate the Moon Cake festival with an opulent and very diverse banquet.