It is not difficult for those who are in Taiwan to find lots of Japanese restaurants, shops, or even department stores in each city, and some of the owners are locals instead of Japanese. The Japan trend can be traced back to 1980s or even earlier, whether its J-pop, dramas or comic books. Even now, there are many Japanese products on sale for local customers with higher prices and special designs. Three or four decades ago, some people went to Japan to bring electronic products for daily life convenience such as cookers, freezers, and hairdryers. It is hard to deny that Japanese cultures do contribute some degree of improvements in our daily life, no matter what people think about.
To Taiwanese, Japanese foods are not rare. Ra-men, hot pot, sushi stores are commonly seen everywhere, even though the owners may combine the Japanese word- noの with Mandarin as their shop name without any sense. It does not mean anything, but just the way that owners show their style.
Yoshinoya is famous for its bowl of beef rice with side dishes as a set meal in both Japan and Taiwan. Although some side dishes maybe slightly different depends on regions and countries, people here like to taste the family cuisines with cheap prices. It is said that the Yoshinoya is for men, tourists, and single guys in Japan, however, people here do not consider in that way and simply want to enjoy the foods. So if you are foreigners in Taiwan, it is a good chance for you to try the beef bowl rice without worrying about other people’s attentions though the flavor may not be so authentic.
Sukiya is a good place for people who like curry and beef, if you want to try traditional Japanese breakfast, it is a recommended place with friendly prices. Taiwanese get used to eating stir fry vegetables, but in Japan, many restaurants offer salads or pickles to customers. People can try lots of beef cuisines at Sukiya, so if you feel like eating beef, it is definitely a good restaurant for you.
Daiso is a famous dollar shop with tons of products, ranging from stationery to kitchenware. Japanese snacks, noodles, sauces are available at Daiso, so you can cook a little bit without ordering on Uber Eats or Food Panda. It is a store for travelers, students or people who want to stay at certain city for few days. Daiso is popular in Taiwan with many branches for customers to buy cheaper products without spending too much time searching for their needs.
。Don Don Donki ドン．キホーテ
Donki is a popular chain store in Japan, and it offers more diversified products than Daiso. There is only one shop in Taipei with many people lined up for entering the store when it was opened at the first time. Compared to other Japanese stores, prices at Donki are cheaper with stable quality. If you have free time, you can find some interesting things there. In Taiwan, Donki also sells fresh fruits and veggies from Japan, which are unique and convenient.
Generally, Japanese things are prevalent in Taiwan and it is not easy to explain this phenomenon with one or two phrases. Except the foods and grocery stores, other brands play a part of role in Taiwan, such as Honda, Toyota, Panasonic, Toshiba, Sony, etc. Although we do have our production lines in Taiwan with so many products, some people trust the Japan quality and their service. After all, “made in Japan” has already influenced on the way of life for some people, and it is the symbol of good quality for Japan fans.
Compared to Korea trends, the Japan trends are more widely and penetrated into different ages, not only the past history but also the recent cooperation between Taiwan and Japan to save the pineapple prices for our farmers due to political reason from China. Despite the fact that some young people have followed Korea trend for a while, elders seem to show less interest toward it. Whether citizens prefer Japan or Korea trend, it is their freedom to follow their hearts.