This under-the-radar spot is the kind of bar where there’s a cocktail called “The Drunken Master” and the most popular feature is the private karaoke rooms in back, where Chinese-speaking twentysomethings order $160 bottle service and croon old David Tao ballads. At a place like this, you don’t expect much from the food. And yet: Dragon Gate serves some of the best Taiwanese dishes in the East Bay. The noodles alone are worth the trip — from an excellent, spicy version of beef noodle soup (Taiwan’s national dish) to the intriguingly named “idiot noodles,” which come topped with a sweet braised-pork sauce. There’s a section of the menu devoted to Taiwanese street foods (e.g., grilled sausages served with slices of raw garlic) and a surprisingly vast selection of traditional home-style dishes. Try the simple dried-radish omelet or the sizzling, sesame-oil-scented “three cup sauce” chicken.
Payment Type: Cash, all major credit cards
Last call for food orders is at 1 a.m. Weekday happy hour specials from 3-6 p.m. (4-6 p.m. on weekends).