It would be an understatement to say that chefs and restaurateurs are quirky people. If you’ve ever worked at a restaurant – even as a Barista at a cafe – you have first hand experience with the madness. In front of the customers it’s usually all business, forced rapport and big smiles, but we know that behind-the-scenes you have to deal with a Tom Cruise-level personality who would be hilarious if only you weren’t Katie Holmes-level concerned for your personal safety on a daily basis.
Usually the ‘quirkiness’ never makes its way into the character of the restaurant itself, but – when it does…well, see for yourself as we investigate some weird and strange restaurants from around the world:
Modern Toilet – Taiwan, Japan & Hong Kong
Everyone eats, everyone goes to the toilet: fact. Ex-banker Wang Zi-Wei must have had these two nuggets of priceless information flying around his head when he had an earth-shattering epiphany; why not combine the two? Usually pitching this idea to investors would lead to an awkward silence followed by a distinct lack of start-up capital, but luckily Mr. Zi-Wei had already received positive reviews from a previous venture that sold ice-cream served in mini-toilets. Yes, you read that correctly. Enter ‘Modern Toilet’, a concept so popular in Asia that it has become a franchise with restaurants in Hong-Kong, Japan and Taiwan. (*Note to self: first date with Monica?)
Kayabukiya Tavern – Utsonomiya , Japan
Have you ever heard the saying “you pay peanuts, you get monkeys”? Kaoru Otsuka evidently has, deciding to fast-track the process by hiring two macaque monkeys to serve the customers at his sake house in Utsonomiya, Japan. In addition to taking drink orders and offering hot-towels to patrons, the monkeys also perform shows which include wearing girl-masks and performing the ‘sexy dance’. (*second date)
Heart-Attack Grill – Las Vegas, USA
While other restaurants pussy-foot around with all their ‘gluten-free’ blah and ‘low-fat’ whatever, the Heart-Attack Grill in Las Vegas is giving the people what they want – nay, demand; 8,000 calories in a single burger (called the ‘Quadruple Bypass’, without irony). Other options include ‘Flatliner Fries’ cooked in pure lard and soft-drinks made with real sugar. Regular customer? Life just gets fatter better because if you weigh over 160kg you get to eat for free, right after your pre-burger weigh-in. (*Proposal?)
Eternity – Truskavest, Ukraine
Nothing says “I’m an upbeat person” like dining in a giant coffin. At Eternity in Ukraine, you can partake in light-hearted banter with that special someone while surrounded by funeral wreaths in a windowless pine-box, and it’s still guaranteed to be more fun than lunch with the in-laws. Run by a local funeral parlour, Eternity is also the world’s largest coffin, which should make the dinner invitation exciting enough in its own right. (*First date: Sarah?)
Those are just a few of the weird and wacky restaurant themes out there, and we could easily make a top 10 from Japanese restaurants alone! Have you ever visited any of these restaurants? What’s the strangest restaurant you’ve ever been to? Let us know in the comments, we’d love to hear from you!