Hakka Restaurant Industry and the Quality Construction of Hakka Cuisine: A Case Study of Hakka Restaurants in the Greater Taipei
Since the mid-1980s in Taiwan, the Hakka cuisine with ethnic and local characteristics raised rapidly. It also became a significant food product for the restaurant industry to provide and an important food option for customers to select and experience in Taiwan. Since the 1990s, the Hakka cuisine played a more significant role in constructing local Hakka image and gradually became the cultural properties in and strategic tools for local development in a new era. In response to increasingly expanding public customers’ demand for multi-dimensions, multilevels, and multi-types of qualities in food, the Hakka restaurants in the Greater Taipei—where is mainly characterized by a dense population, well-educated residents, and multicultural combination of communities—have the distinctive importance to the mode of operations and characteristic feature of Hakka restaurant industry in Taiwan. In order to learn the sketch of Taiwan’s Hakka food industry and explore the quality construction which is increasingly associated with Hakka cuisines, the research takes Hakka restaurants in the Greater Taipei as major cases and examines these cases closely by employing a variety of research methods such as in-depth interviews, content analysis and field survey. In addition to conducting field investigation on their current business operation and examines their information on the Internet, this paper also interviews with the owners of Hakka restaurants in the Greater Taipei. Based on the multi-dimension analysis of the Hakka restaurants in the Greater Taipei, this paper tries to illustrate how the Hakka restaurants in the Greater Taipei demonstrate series types of developments and continuing reconstructions in food qualities, and how the quality constructions of Hakka cuisine make adjustments to other competitors and subtle transformations in the context of dynamic cultural economy.