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HOME > CENTRAL TAIWAN > TAICHUNG CITY > NIGHTLIFE >

COMPASS MAGAZINE, May 2005

Much more than great Bellini's
at
The Dive


125, ZhongCheng St. (corner with HuaMei W. St.) (04) 2320-6037
HoursíGLunch until Late/(closed Mondays)

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By Alice Wu Translated by Liu Fang Ru


Those who haven't been to The Dive lately may find that the once-bar-only has now been replaced with a newly-renovated, more relaxed, more restaurant-oriented version of itself. Recently reopened in March, this Canal District hang-out has undergone some drastic changes, courtesy of owner Shawn Kidd. What once was a wall is now an open patio. What was once standing-room only now includes several tables and chairs, where Shawn invites anybody--from the studious students to the late-night partiers--to sit and enjoy the brand-new atmosphere. And brand-new and inviting it has become.


Not only does The Dive continue to offer ALL of its regular drinks, but it now also serves low-priced lunch specials for those on a tight budget. Popular dishes include bagel sandwiches (NT$80-150, including salad) and the delectable Curry Chicken Perogies Plate, with garlic bread, sour cream and salad for NT$180. There are specials every week, depending on what Shawn finds menu-worthy, so there's sure to be variety.
For those who come for the drinks, rest assured the entire assortment is still here, including Shawn's famous Bellini's, a frozen mango-and-rum mix that can be enjoyed all night on Wednesday Ladies Nights for a mere NT$50 (ladies only, of course). For everybody else, there are NT$50 drink specials from 7 p.m. to 11 p.m. other weeknights, and mini jug/Corona bucket specials on weekends (NT$200-300). Otherwise, most drinks are a very affordable NT$100.


And there is more yet to come with this transformation. Come April, Shawn hopes to be well on his way to perfecting his basement lounge--a groovy, sofa-laden environment where patrons can simply relax, unwind and listen to the music. In addition, he'll be polishing up the look of his brand-new patio, adding extra tables, lighting and even a weekend-afternoon DJ playing Chill House music for loungers. Shawn also plans on acquiring a cappuccino machine, providing tasty, cheap caffeine to those in need of a pick-me-up. For native Taiwanese looking to brush up on their English, he'll be offering private lessons, complete with coffee or tea. And, for everyone's benefit, he offers a free wireless connection and a free Internet-ready PC station for those without laptops. Not bad for what was once just a bar.

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