Bystro Restaurant Grill is the absolute best restaurant in Taichung. [EDIT: was the best – they are now gone] For me, it’s not just the best restaurant in Taichung, or even Taiwan: it is my favorite restaurant in the world. And I have my reasons. The husband/wife team of Patrick and Anita really have it figured out.
First and foremost, they make the most fantastic burger I have ever had. The Blue Demon: a grilled 180g (6.3oz) hand-pressed sirloin patty that you barely have to chew…topped with bleu cheese, smoked bacon, lettuce, tomato, and onion…served with hot sauce and (upon request) barbecue sauce…on an in-house-made bun…served with shoestring fries and cole slaw…for only TW$300 (US$10). I can not over-sell this burger – it’s that good.
Now, you’ll notice I have a drink there. That is one of Anita’s specialties, the hard-to-find and highly-coveted-by-me Tequila Sour. It’s basically an extra-sour fresh-squeezed lemonade with tequila in it. It’s my all-time favorite drink, and just like nobody makes a burger like Patrick, nobody makes a Tequila Sour like Anita. She literally squeezes the lemons right in front of you when she makes the drink. No drink leaves the bar without her extracting a teaspoonful and taste-testing it, in an effort to constantly improve her craft. The fact that they have a buy-one-get-one-free happy hour every day from 4pm-7pm doesn’t hurt, either. Instead of paying TW$180 (US$6) for that drink, I’m paying half that, which is an absolute steal.
The crowd is a good mix of native Taiwanese and foreign businessmen. Local expats certainly show up, but with their sense of what they feel prices for a meal/drink should be, it’s often cost-prohibitive for them. But for anyone who’s lived “back in The World” during the last decade, a ten-dollar burger that looks/tastes like that is one of the best deals there is. Fish and chips will run you TW$260 (US$9). Most of the pizza and pasta dishes will cost around the same, give or take TW$30 (US$1). The best value on the menu, though, is most expensive item: the ribeye, which will run you TW$880 (US$30).
Service is extremely important to Bystro. While Patrick runs the kitchen and Anita runs the service-end, they do their share of cross-training. You’ll often find Patrick coming out of the kitchen to observe the restaurant, a trait virtually never seen in a chef. Anita, as well, bakes bread, pies, tarts, and filled-to-order cannoli (because there’s nothing worse than soggy cannoli). They work hard to make sure their customers have the very best dining experience possible.
Here’s a fast walk-through video I took to give you a feel for the best kept secret in the city – the best restaurant in Taichung:
They’re open from 4pm-12am every day except Tuesday.
Their address is 台中市精誠路50巷27號 – just copy-and-paste it into Google or print it out and hand it to a taxi driver.
If you’re looking for a reservation or just more information, their phone number is 04-2327-1563.
Bystro Taiwan: the best restaurant in Taichung.
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