Part restaurant, part bar, and completely Western, Carnegies is one of those places you can go anytime of the day or night. Hanging out in SE Taipei by The Diner, Carnegies has a prime location and the bar itself is large. It’s also one of the main places to go out for many foreigners and Taiwanese alike; however, there is something different about this place.
Carnegies is actually an internatonal chain with locations in Hong Kong, Australia and China in addition to Taipei’s branch. The company is consistent in design, quality and service throughout all of its locations. So how does Taipei’s branch stack up?
When you want variety, Carnegies is the place to go. Ranging from English food to Tapas to Mediterranean, Carnegies’ menu has all of the bases covered. The portions are large and the quality is really high, with a high price to match. Most main dishes will cost anywhere from NT $350 to NT $1000, but you will probably average around NT $600 with a normal meal and a drink.
Don’t let the price turn you away though, the food is good and the setting is choice, especially earlier in the afternoon. It’s a very nice place to meet old friends or business clients, and there is also a happy hour every week day until 9PM, so you can save a few bucks.
Remember when we said Carnegies was a little different? Well, let’s just put it out there. After dinner time is over and Carnegies has turned full bar, the first thing you will notice is the crowd…this bar is mostly for older foreign men along with verging-on-desperation Taiwanese women, as well as exotic SE Asian women (if you catch our drift).
That isn’t to say Carnegies doesn’t have its moments. We wouldn’t put it up here if we hadn’t had several good times coming to this bar. We’re just saying that you should be prepared for what awaits. And if you are student-aged, then you probably won’t wanna come here (nor would you have enough money to come here most likely).
Now, to be fair, we have also met some really cool people here, both young and old. However, the majority of what you will find is the previously mentioned crowd.
Setting the crowd aside, Carnegies is one of the nicest bars in Taiwan. Not only is it very well decorated with a classy bar and rock memorabilia, but it is spacious with lots of seating space and a patio as well.
In the middle of the enormous bar filled with every kind of alcohol you can think of, you will find a “wheel of fortune” that you can spin for NT $200. You can win a variety of drinks, some cheaper than NT $200 and some more expensive, or you can win absolutely nothing, which has happened before… 🙁
The music at Carnegies varies between new tunes and retro Western classics. Any true fan of music will totally dig what the DJ is throwing down, although it doesn’t always make for the best dance scene.
Once again, the prices are high for all drinks. There are usually promotions of some sort going on, but discount drinks aren’t always agreeable. The staff is super cool, and always on the ball. We’ve found it is fairly quick and painless to get a drink even during busy times.
Carnegies is an amazing restaurant and bar with classy design and quality food. Though its a nice place with good music, you are more likely to end up drinking with friends than actually meeting new people. Furthermore, this is a place for mostly older, successful foreigners so don’t come here planning to see all of the hip, young Taiwanese people (especially not girls). Carnegies can be a lot of fun depending on what you are looking for, and it’s a restaurant that people in Taipei should really check out.
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