Wednesday, 17 September 2014

Taiwan Sep 2014: Food and Souvenirs

FOOD

Hu Xu Zhang Lu Rou Fan 须张卤

One of the must-try local food is braised pork rice. There are many outlets in Taipei. One small bowl TW$35 is enough for an average eater. The lard literally melts in your mouth. Do try the poached vegetables as well as white bitter gourd soup. You can even bring home vacuum-packed sachets of braised pork sauce.

We visited the ones near Zhongxiao Xinsheng and Minquan W Rd stations.












Yong Kang Street Braised Beef Noodles 永康街牛肉面
This eatery serves a generous portion of noodles and braised beef chunks (there is the option of all beef, beef and tendon or all tendon) in soup with a good selection of appetizers. Expect to queue during peak hours.




Nearest station: Take MRT to Dongmen station (from Taipei Main station: 2 stops red line eastward toward Xiangshan)

Din Tai Fung 鼎泰丰
A visit to the original 5-storey main branch is a must for all travellers to Taipei even if there is Din Tai Fung in your country.

Access: Take MRT to Dongmen station (from Taipei Main station: 2 stops red line eastward toward Xiangshan)

Smoothie House Mango Snow 思慕昔芒果冰
After a meal at Din Tai Fung main branch, exit the restaurant and make two left turns to this cafe for the famous mango snow, made from ice shaved so fine it feels like you are eating snow.



Access: Take MRT to Dongmen station (from Taipei Main station: 2 stops red line eastward toward Xiangshan)

White bittergourd juice with honey
A very refreshing and healthy drink to detox the body, they are everywhere. I tried the ones at Shilin Night Market and Ximen Ding.

Soy bean milk

I like that the soy bean milk in Taiwan is freshly made and non-sweetened. Had mine at the resort in Wulai =)

Others

If you are daring, you can try the stinky beancurd, pig’s innards, Taiwanese sausages and whatnots at Shilin Night Market. The chicken cutlet is also supposed to be very good. I’m not quite a fan of the insides of pigs, smelly food or food deep-fried in recycled oil so I didn’t try any of these.

SOUVENIRS

Pineapple Tarts 梨酥
The pineapple tarts at Yuan Le have really cute dog prints, Taiwan iconic prints and mahjong prints. You can even customise for weddings. 






My colleague made her Yorkie pose with the pineapple tart! Hahaha!
Besides pineapple tarts, they also sell baumkuchen, a layered cake (like our kueh lapis). However, these have shorter shelf-lives so are not suitable as souvenirs.



Access: Take MRT Zhongxiao Xinsheng station (from Taipei Main station: 2 stops blue line eastward toward Taipei Nangang Exhibition Center). The shop is between exits 6 and 7.

http://www.ipie2.com

Sun biscuit 太阳

Sun biscuit is another favourite souvenir to bring home from Taiwan. We bought ours from a shop in old street Jiufen that makes pineapples tarts and sun biscuits fresh from the oven. Just walk along the old street and follow the lovely smell of cookies.

Oolong Tea 乌龙

There are many Chinese tea-houses all over Taiwan. Ten Ren is a reliable brand to buy from if you are unsure. There is one within walking distance from Din Tai Fung main branch.


A pretty gift set for my Japanese teacher
Jiufen has many old tea-houses where you can pick up some oolong tea and lovely tea-sets. I especially like the designs offered by Eilong, available in Jiufen and Taichung station.




Here's a Taipei map for reference.


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