If you’re like most people, your mother taught you from a young age that you must always wash your hands before leaving the bathroom and also told you that this was of the utmost importance before eating. Whether in a home or a restaurant, this routine endures. But what if the dining room you will be eating with has been carefully constructed to resemble a lavatory?
The Modern Toilet Diner, Taipei
Once you step foot into Taipei’s Modern Toilet Diner you are sure to have a one of a kind sensation. This restaurant is actually part of a chain of restaurants with various themes that are located all over the island. This particular restaurant was designed with humor in mind. Each diner sits atop a toilet and has their meal atop a wash basin or a bathtub with a glass top.
The décor is one thing, but the food takes the bathroom theme further. The entrees on the menu are definitely delicious, but be prepared for it to be served in a bowl shaped like an Asian “squat pot” or a Western style toilet. Yes, you will be eating on the toilet and eating out of the toilet at the same time. Believe it or not, tons of people love this restaurant! A lot of them are even brave enough to order chocolate ice cream.
Are Themed Restaurants Popular in Taipei?
Themed restaurants are actually quite popular in Taipei. Other popular theme restaurants in Taipei include a jailhouse theme and a hospital theme. Diners enjoy these restaurants because they help them to escape the monotony of everyday life and have some fun and a good meal.
The Modern Toilet Diner has 100 seats and they are usually filled and it is not uncommon to see diners walking around taking pictures of the toilet seats, tables, wall decorations and more. In addition to your literal ‘toilet seat,’ you wipe your hands with a toilet roll that hangs just above your table. This theme is so much fun and visitors tend to return again once they have been for a meal.
Many of the diners who love The Modern Toilet are younger, between 15 years old and 35 years of age. The owner of the diner, Wang Tzi-wei enjoys that the curious minds of the students at the three major universities that are located in the area keep the restaurant quite busy. He concedes that perhaps the older generation doesn’t really “get it” or like the type of humor that is involved in the creation of this theme restaurant.
There are definitely those who disagree with this concept. Even some members of younger generations are hesitant to give the Modern Toilet a try. In addition, those who do not enjoy toilet humor or bathroom humor at all tend to shy away, probably because this type of restaurant may not be a good fit for their personality. Some of the dishes really do look like feces but it is just a trick! The food tastes great. If you get too scared to finish off your meal, you can always take it in a ‘to-go’ box so you can eat it after your stomach settles.
The History of the Modern Toilet
The Owner of the Modern Toilet, Wang Tzi-wei watched a famous Japanese cartoon in 2004. This cartoon had scenes that took place within a restaurant that had a great deal of toilet imagery. He was inspired and thus began the Modern Toilet.
The restaurant began by first serving different deserts. The idea was to create dessert recipes that included an oozy and syrupy component like berries or chocolate which when served in a toilet bowl looks suspicious but delicious. After a bit, the restaurant expanded the menu to include entrees and soups that also look foreboding when served within a toilet bowl. The drink list takes the theme even further, so expect to see words that describe types of excrement that actually denote tasty drinks. No matter how vulgar this all may sound to you, just keep in mind that each night multitudes of diners continue to return to this restaurant for another meal.
The waiters even seem to enjoy the theme. Their uniforms include a water closet logo (WC) so they are easily recognizable. You’d better believe that the waiters enjoy the looks of shock and amazement on new diners as they step into the restaurant for the first time.
While you might think that The Modern Toilet sounds strange, the many repeat diners think differently. Business is so good that Wang Tzi-we and his partners are considering expanding to another location. This is one restaurant that you have to see to believe and you really shouldn’t judge a book by its cover in this instance. The theme is creative, even if it is a bit tasteless in the eyes of some. Even if the names of the dishes and drinks on the menu include some colorful items, the food actually tastes great. Just ignore the pieces of plastic poo on the ledges and have a laugh while you eat your meal. Despite what your mother may have told you, at The Modern Toilet Diner you can enjoy your dinner in the bathroom.