Last time I was in Taipei, I was overwhelmed by the sheer number of cafes present on every street corner, I didn't even attempt to make a cafe list.
This time, traveling while six months pregnant, but having regained my taste in coffee, I was determined to try as many cafes as possible.
Unfortunately, for a city as large as Taipei, with as many cafes as there are, and with the two full weeks I got to spend there, I really didn't go to many cafes...only eight. I blame this on the weather, which was incredibly hot and humid with an occasional burst of a storm, and on being six months pregnant, which left me slow and sluggish. Also, on the fact that I spent all day every day with my family, so I couldn't well drag them all over town on a cafe safari.
I'm still pleased with the cafes I got to visit, which gave me a good sampling of what the city has to offer. In order of favorite:
Mountain Kids boasts amazing drinks, donuts, and probably the best view of Beimen in the city. The cafe definitely feels inspired by the likes of %Arabica and other Japanese cafes. I I really enjoyed reading and writing here with a great view.
Boven is a magazine library, were for a yearly fee it's members can work from its comfortable space as many times as they want and read selections from its impressively huge magazine library. Most of the magazines are Japanese or European. One floor above is the cafe, where the public can enjoy a small selection of the magazines it had to offer...and some damn good coffee.
The Jen Library
A gorgeous cafe and library located in a pristine office building. One of their special tea features a dried lemon soaked in salt, which was absolutely amazing. The cakes and pastries are also good, but expensive. This is a great place for working and also socializing.
Notch Cafe is clearly the hang out spot for college students to come, order one drink, and spend hours studying. Three levels with eclectic seating arrangements and they are almost always full every hour of the day. I really enjoyed this vibe, which reminded me of Too Fast Too Sleep in Bangkok.
Costumice is a place people come to take instagram photos, and indeed I probably saw three photoshoots within the hour I was sitting there. A very hip Melrose-esque cafe with vinegar soda served in a wine glass and good lattes.
Green Steps is a quint little cafe in a Secret-Garden space in Dongmen. Their Puer latte is unique to the cafe and worth a try. Loved the vibe.
Best Coffee is a tiny cafe in a house located near where I live in Xindian. It's really a place to come if you are a coffee enthusiast as they have beans from all over the world.
LouisaLouisa is a coffee chain native to Taipei. I was pleased with my latte but the atmosphere did feel a bit small and generic. This is more of a grab-and-go place.