Tunghai Nights: Pub crawling on the hill
By Nick Sylvester
Translated by Naomi Lai
There is a road seldom traveled by those surrounded by the comforts of Taichung and, for many, the reason is that the Tunghai University/Science Park area is just too far for a night out. Maybe the fact that it's uphill confuses some into believing it might be further than it actually is, but I managed to persuade a few friends to sample some different night spots just a short taxi ride away from downtown.
First stop was at Easy Pub (3, Lane 118, YungFu Rd; tel. 2463-1428), a fairly large bar, which immediately had one member of our party wondering why there wasn't a place with such pub-like qualities downtown. It turned out to be a great start for a few friends on a Friday night, and would also suit a quiet date. But choose your days accordingly, as there is a pole on a small stage, which is used on Saturdays by a sexy dancer for a rather surreal moment in the middle of the evening. We didn't have the pleasure of a show, so we all had a go instead as the drinks flowed.
After the fun at Easy Pub, we moved to The Fish (11, Lane 118, YongFu Rd; tel. 2465-5665) next door. This is a quieter and more tranquil dive. Enjoy the family-style coziness by taking a sit on the long bar for some television entertainment and beer. We then conveniently headed to a nearby bar called December Saloon (7, Lane 118, YongFu Rd; tel. 2463-5958). Its ever-friendly boss makes you feel more welcome than most, whether you're sitting at the bar or upstairs. There's no pole dancing but it's the perfect venue for a chat with the staff or your fellow patrons, or for simply relaxing on any night of the week. The Fire Bikini cocktail made me feel like I was wearing one, and it would have been nice to settle there for the night.
A few blocks over is Cosby Saloon (166-35, XiTun Rd, Sec 3, (04) 2461-9557), an American biker-themed bar with a hearty menu of burgers and steaks. The owner, Robert, is himself an enthusiastic rider of Harley-Davidson motorcycles and drinker bourbon whisky (not at the same time, of course!). This is the spot to grab a burger and chase it with a shot of bourbon.
However, we ended the trip just few minutes further up TaiZhongGang (Port) Road at The Black Cat (18, Lane 19, Yishu St, Longjing Township, (04) 2632-4567), which is situated just a block across from Art Street. It opens when the shops close, and shuts its doors when the last customer leaves. The decor is rather unique with a quaint military theme, and it's frequented by a younger crowd from the local universities.