Modern Toilet – Taipei, Taiwan
Bottoms up! That’s right, a toilet themed restaurant. As ideas go, it may seem like total sh*t, but since its opening in 2004, Modern Toilet has expanded across Taiwan, becoming a surprising success. Motion carried. With devoted fans and a menu stretching far beyond their initial speciality of chocolate ice cream served in a small ceramic toilet bowl (we know…), it’s certainly worthy of it’s space on our list. We’re flushed with excitement at the thought of it (ahem).
Guo-Liz-Zhuang – Beijing, China
You’ll willy like this one… a restaurant which specialises in the preparation of over 30 types of animal penis dishes! It’s a long-standing belief in China that eating an animal’s member can increase a man’s sexual potency, and the aptly named Guo-Liz-Zhuang, which translates literally as ‘the strength inside the pot’, gives adventurous diners the opportunity to test this out for themselves. Sadly the guarantee of a libido boost does not apply to women, as many of the menu’s ‘ballsier’ items may have undesirable side-effects, such as unwanted beard growth… Spurious medicinal benefits aside, these stomach churning dishes have been such a hit with the locals that new branches are springing up across Beijing. The exotic menu incorporates the ‘severed nethers’ of a host of different animals, including dogs, reindeer and ox – even tiger with enough notice – and features the playfully named “Phoenix Rising” and “Head crowned with a Jade Bracelet”. Don’t worry though, if that doesn’t whet your appetite, there’s always the stewed deer face…
Ka-Tron Flying Chicken – Bangkok, Thailand
Up next, an interesting concept from Ka Tron in Bangkok: at the ringing of a ship’s bell, guests can enjoy the spectacle of a helmet-clad waiter wheeling into action on a unicycle, ready to catch a flaming chicken on his head, launched from a catapult across the patio. That’s certainly a ‘winner winner chicken dinner’ in our books! Whether or not you feel it merits a visit is up for debate, but the dodgy website translation alone is worth a read: apparently there’s a ‘free chicken squeeze every table’ – not quite sure what that means, but we’re certainly ‘game’…
Disaster Café – Lloret de Mar, Spain
This gaff looks harmless enough on the outside, but once on the inside diners are set to experience a terrifying earthquake – an earth shattering 7.8 on the Richter scale – whilst eating their meal! Customers don’t know when the next quake will be, so you could end up with a lot of your food anywhere but your mouth. We’d recommend bringing a bib… or maybe even a poncho.
Alice’s Fantasy Restaurant – Tokyo, Japan
For a ‘curiouser’ experience, transport yourself down the rabbit hole and into Wonderland at one of Diamond Dining’s six Tokyo-based Alice’s Fantasy Restaurant branches. Each of these cleverly themed establishments offers a unique interpretation of Lewis Carroll’s classic fantasy tale, featuring cosy tea-cup shaped tables, topiary inspired seating, giant playing cards and other enchanting curiosities. In keeping with the theme, dishes are served up by waitresses in blue Alice costumes, and include such specialities as Caterpillar sushi roll, Cheshire Cat parfait and Tweedle Dum and Tweedle Dee twin cocktails. We have to agree with the Japanese, that this is super ‘kawaii’ (cute)!
Dinner in the Sky – Worldwide
Don’t look down! With Dinner in the Sky, there are no surprises. You’ll be dining suspended 50 metres in the air, with up to 3 chefs in the middle of the table cooking your food right then and there. Certainly a unique experience; it’s bound to make any meal memorable!
Kayabukiya – Japan
One revolutionary restaurateur, Kaoru Otsuka – owner of Kayabukiya Tavern in Japan – has taken the expression ‘if you pay peanuts, you get monkeys’ to a whole new level. His two pet macaque monkeys, 12 year old ‘Yat-Chan’ and 4 year old ‘Fuku-Chan’ have become a real hit with diners at the sake-house, taking drinks orders and delivering refreshing hot towels to each table. Tips from grateful customers come in the form of boiled soya beans (each to their own…). Otsuka claims that he never deliberately taught his pets; they simply picked up these skills by watching him work. Disturbing fancy dress aside, you’ll be pleased to hear that, due to Japanese animal rights regulations, they are only allowed to work for a maximum of 2 hours a day and their environment has been inspected to ensure a proper standard of care.
E.R. Alcatraz – Tokyo, Japan
E.R. Alcatraz is undoubtedly an ‘interesting’ experience: it combines hospital and prison themes, scaring its customers silly with sudden darkness and screaming! Diners can enjoy cocktails such as the “Brain Buster” and “Strawberry Boobs”, but to place an order, you need to get your waitress-nurse’s attention by banging a pipe on your dining cell bars. Don’t get on her bad side: they’re known to de-trouser diners and administer (fake) injections with giant syringes. Definitely for those who like a bit of fun and a fright.
Villa Escudero Waterfalls Restaurant, The Philippines
Post lunch hose-down, anyone…? Located at the Villa Escudero Resort in the Philippines, the Waterfalls Restaurant sits at the foot of the Labasin Falls in a beautifully lush region formerly occupied by colonial coconut plantations. Guests can enjoy authentic local cuisine at handmade bamboo dining tables, whilst experiencing the sensation of clear spring water running over their feet: nature’s answer to a Scholl foot spa.
Barbie Restaurant – Taipei,Taiwan
Attention, Barbie fans! Finally, it’s happened: an entirely Barbie-themed restaurant! Perfect for those who prefer to take life pink, fluffy and sparkly, this establishment will certainly bring out your inner princess – plus, they fortunately serve alcohol. All together now: ‘A life in plastic: it’s fantastic!’