With so much attention focused on mainland China’s economic and social resurgence, it seems as though Taiwan has been pushed into the shadows. However, when it comes to Taiwanese food this is a big mistake. Tucked behind a parking lot on a Kego side street lies the inexpensive and enjoyable Binro. Inside this restaurant, it’s easy to imagine you’ve been transported elsewhere in Asia, a marketplace diner in Taipei perhaps. Weather permitting, the ceiling high folding doors are opened to a walled-in outdoor patio at one end and to a turquoise colored, tile counter bar at the other. The walls are decorated with nostalgic looking posters and signboards. Suffice to say, it’s a very cool place to hangout, especially if you arrive before 8pm when all drinks (with a few exceptions) are half price! Be sure to try a can of refreshing Taiwanese Beer 630 yen and then perhaps move onto a Chinese wine. The house wine is served from a large earthenware pot on a cart. It’s a three-year-old vintage served hot, cold or on-the-rocks with sugar or a sour plum for 525 yen (300ml). Or show off and order iguana or snake wines (pit viper, adder viper, cobra) with the critters in full form and view inside the bottles. Assuming you still have your appetite, it’s time to order. Highly recommended are the shrimp and asparagus stir fry 899 yen, sweet sausage 610 yen, seasonal chinese green vegetables 714 yen, steamed pork dumplings 714 yen and their specialty, ruronhan 399 yen, a small bowl of seasoned rice with tender spiced pork. For dessert it’s definitely the binro parfait made with coconut ice cream, azuki, whip cream, basil seeds, kiwi, pineapple, and raspberry sauce – yum!
Shinsekai Binro no Yoru
Omasu Bldg. 2-3-26 Kego, Chuo-ku, Fukuoka
Open: 18:00~2:30 O.S.
Prices: No charge. Draft beer 504 yen, Steamed Pork Dumplings (8 pcs) 714 yen, Frog Legs 830 yen