Food in Taichung

Some people eat to survive, I eat because I love food. And when I travel, food is one of the most important parts of the whole experience. How can you know that you went somewhere if you just ate the same things as you do when you are home? Food is the essential part of every culture, is part of many rituals, celebrations, and also of everyday life.

I have read so many times that Taiwan is the food capital of Asia, that they have the best food, the most amazing night markets,… Only superlatives. So my expectations were pretty high, even though I wanted to keep them down a bit, because my experience with Chinese food (I know Taiwanese food is not the same as Chinese, but this is as close as you can get to it if you live in Slovenia)  has never been good.

On our very first night in Taichung we went to Zhongxiao Road Night Market. It is small, very local nightmarket, close to the Taichung Cultural and Creative Industries Park. We were tired after being on the road for the whole day and very hungry. Walking down Zhongxiao Road and being surrounded by food stalls filled with foods we did not know and no one who would be able to explain to us what it is, was quite overwhelming. We kind of gave up, stop at one that had many people around (for me lots of people in a restaurant or in front of a food stall means good food) and tried to figure out how to even order. I know that some travelers feel the need to blend in completely and not to look like a tourist, but since we were the only non-Asian people there it just did not make any sense to pretend we are anything more than just two lost and very confused tourists. Thankfully one guy spoke a bit English and we managed to order some things to eat. Except from tofu, broccoli and cabbage we have no idea what we ate. 🙂 We got a whole bag of food for around 2,5 EUR. It was not the best food we had in our time there, but it filled us up and cabbage was really good.

Taichung night market
A little bit of this and a little bit of that

When you are in Taichung, you will probably go to Chun Shui Tang, the original store of  Taiwanese pearl milk tea. It was founded by Mr Liu Han-Chieh who came up with the idea of cold Chinese tea in the early 1980s. Few years later his manager put sweetened tapioca pudding into her ice tea. It became a huge hit and soon it spread all over the world.

On our first visit to Chun Shui Tang we tried mango pearl milk tea and steamed handmade crystal pork dumplings, which came in the most amazingly delicious sauce ever. They were quite tricky to eat with chopsticks, as they were both slippery and it was our first food there we had to use chopsticks to eat it. And when you order tea you can choose how much ice you want and how sweet you want it to be. We always decided to on 30% ice and 30% sweet and it was more than enough.

Next time we went there for lunch and we ordered Japanese Barbecue Pork Set and Spring Onion Teriyaki Chicken Leg Set. They both came with ice tea. We decided to try Iced Oolong Tea and Iced Tieguanyin Tea. The set with tea was 280 NTD (around 7,8 EUR). Pork was mostly bones with a bit of meat on it, but the sauce was again delicious.

Taichung food

If you want something sweeter than ice tea you have to visit MiyaharaOnce eye hospital is now turned into shop selling house brand ice cream, chocolate, tea, pineapple cake (which was the best we tried there), cookies and everything very pretty which makes it an ideal spot to buy your (expensive) souvenirs. The whole store is like you just step into a scene of Harry Potter. High ceilings, shiny floors, wall book cabinets, medicine chests, stairs,…

But what brings crowds here is their huge selection of ice creams. They have 18 varieties of chocolates, 17 types of tea ice creams and all kinds of fruit flavours. We decided to order triple ice cream with waffle which was 235 NTD (around 6,5 EUR) and we also got three toppings to chose. For the flavours we chose one tea (Oriental Beauty), one chocolate (Carribean 66%) and one fruit (Kyoho Grape) and for the toppings: waffles, rum raisins and pineapple cake. It was a huge portion and we barely finished it. Tea flavour was a bit watery (but that was kind of expected), chocolate was not so creamy as we are used to, but the Kyoho Grape was really good.

Miyahara ice cream Taichung food

Have you been to Miyahara in Taichung? What was your favourite flavour?

11 thoughts on “Food in Taichung

  1. I absolutely adore Taiwan.. I was only there briefly, on a business trip, but we did visit that tea house in Taichung because I convinced the group it was worth seeing 🙂 Your photos bring back some great memories, too. And though I haven’t been around Asia that much, I think the food in Taiwan is some of the best I’ve ever had.

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  2. Everything looks so good. I like eating local food as well but I can relate that it is daunting especially in a foreign language. Also, I can relate to being non-white in Asia and sticking out. I’m black so I feel like I doubly stand out from the locals anywhere I go in the world..Europe…Asia….(USA where I’m from lol). So I know how you feel but I just stay brave and adventurous. Luckily, everywhere I traveled, locals, have been pretty helpful and sometimes in English to explain the food. So glad that you were able to showcase Tawain food. I will remember this if I ever take a trip there. Love your pictures btw. Keep it up!

    Teri – http://millennialadulting.life

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    1. Thank you so much Teri! People are usually extremely helpful, even if they don’t understand you best. We didn’t have any bad experience there and would definitely visit Taiwan again. Food was delicious, nature stunning and cities so amazing, what’s not to love about that?

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  3. O my the Miyahara ice cream looked delicious! If I ever visit, I want to try the crystal pork dumplings, sounds like a perfect blend between sweet and salty. I agree with you, when you travel, you should invest in trying different things because food is part of the experience. Even when I visit restaurants in my city, u always order a different dish to get in the habit of being explorative.

    Natonya | https://www.justnatonya.wordpress.com

    Liked by 1 person

    1. It is huge! Definitely something you will wanna share. Taiwan has amazing food and we always try to taste different things. It is quite fun when you don’t know what excatly will you get. 🙂
      I also love playing a turist in my city, it is so different when you see it from that perspective.

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