While most of the Taiwanese cafes in Singapore focuses on the likes of Lu Rou Fan and Mee Sua, Tai One Wei (台ONE味) purports to be the first Taiwanese-style “zhu chao” aka zi char style eatery in Singapore.

Its name “Tai One Wei” is a play on the words “Taiwan taste”.

(Also read: 20 Best Taiwanese Food Places In Singapore If You Miss Taiwan)

Located along North Bridge Road, Chef Tony Chen who helms the kitchen is originally from Nantou County in Taiwan, and aims to serve up home-style Taiwanese dishes. (Nantou is the second largest county of Taiwan.)

Before I go on to talk about the food, do note that as they are rather new, reservation can be rather tricky and is best done online.

Also, as the eatery is small and narrow, it can only fit in that many tables. Diners may be disappointed if they choose to walk in during peak hour timings.

In terms of vibes, it did bring me back with the familiar feeling of being in Taiwan, as there was a certain homely ambience, surrounded by Taiwanese diners (hearing their accents).

During the weekends and occasional days, there are vegetables dishes which are specially imported such as Stir-Fried Water Lotus, Stir-Fried Fern with Cordia Dichotoma, and Stir-fried Luffa with Ginger. These are charged at market prices.

The Signature Braised Pork Rice aka Lu Rou Fan ($3) was appetising with savoury braised pork that wasn’t overly oily, though the rice could be a tad mushy and undercooked.

If they could fine-tune a little, this would have been one of the more memorable bowls available in Singapore.

The other part of the menu is interestingly divided into categories of $5, $10, $15 and $18.

For $5, there are items of Squid Salad and Braised Pork Intestines.

Moving to the $10 section, there are more interesting choices of Deep-Fried Pork Intestine, Taiwanese Meatball Soup, Signature Fried Chicken, Deep-Fried Taro Balls, and Crispy Egg Tofu with Pork.

Okay, I almost ordered all the dishes with the “thumbs up” on the menu.

The Handmade Taiwan Sausage (handmade?) was a surprise, though slightly pricey at $10 – especially if you compare to what you can get in the supermarkets and pasar malam.

Sliced into small pieces, it was sweet and juicy, served with loads of garlic, and had a certain Taiwanese savour unlike other ‘Taiwanese sausages’ I had here.

As for the Stir-Fried Cabbage with Sakura Ebi ($10), it did taste like what a Taiwanese family would serve right at home to guests – simple and unassuming without the commercial flavour.

The Taiwan Preserved Radish Omelette ($10) and Signature Fried Chicken ($10) were straight-forward and unpretentious, decent though without major surprises.

The most appealing dishes seem to appear in the $18 section though, with Crispy Fried Oyster, Salted Crispy Squid, Three Cups Squid, and Stir-fried Clams with Basil.

The Crispy Fried Oyster ($18) was my favourite and a surprise, with crispy batter wrapping around juicy and considerably plump oysters.

(I know some people do not like oysters for they may have a strong mineral or oceanic taste, but this was mild and fresh-tasting.)

A thing to note is that garlic and basil seem to be heavily used in many of their dishes, at least those that were recommended.

While many Taiwanese restaurants in Singapore do seem to focus on a couple of dishes, Tai One Wei does allow Taiwanese to have a taste of home and Singaporean diners to be exposed to wider spectrum of dishes.

Worth a support (except that it will probably even more crowded after this post gets out).

Tai One Wei 台ONE味
751 North Bridge Road, Singapore 198719
Opening Hours: 12pm – 3pm, 5pm – 10pm (Mon – Sun)

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Isshin Machi (Selegie)
Abundance (Lengkok Bahru)
True Breakfast 初早餐 (Cuppage)

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