Taipei: Pao Pu Café

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The Pao Pu café is reminiscent of the McDonald’s from Woody Allen’s futurist feature Sleeper. It has crisp white walls and an outer lying trough of clear water which is thankfully devoid of the rather mundane normality of having a school of Koi float around in it. In their place; pebbles. Keeping Allen in mind there is rag time jazz playing (which seems as out of place here as said film). From my brief description you can tell the Pao Pu looks more like an architects house or a pristine gallery than somewhere you might pick up a latte.

The menu here, in keeping with the music, is on a mock album record and the drink selection as sparse as the open plan walls, concrete floor and minimal glass. Although the Pao Pu possesses an upstairs, there are no tables or chairs, like below it too is framed by an outer ring of pure water, soothing the pebbles beneath it on this hot summer’s day. I am so taken with the place I forget to ask what happens should a downpour occur, I notice no doors. I do ask who the owner is and if there is a website to glean more info but reliably (though not purposely) the two guys serving me are somewhat arcane, as their English is as nominal as the wonderful café I find myself in.

If you like architecture, art, a passion for place and a taste for space to aid your latte thoughts and dreams, look no further.

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