This is the seventh of eleven posts on Taiwan. Check out our other posts here:
- Time for Taiwan: An Introduction
- 5 Nights at the Haunted Grand Hyatt Taipei
- Sweating to Taipei’s National Sites
- Taking it to the Streets: Taipei’s Night Markets
- Hiking Elephant Mountain
- Taipei’s Cheap Eats: Savory Edition
- Taipei’s Cheap Eats: Sweets Edition
- Heading to Green Island
- Green Island’s Sites
- Hiking Taroko Gorge, Part 1
- Hiking Taroko Gorge, Part 2
It turns out we did so much eating in Taipei that I couldn’t fit all of the restaurants into one post. If you missed it, yesterday’s post talked about our favorite savory restaurants in Taipei. Today’s will focus on the sweet side.
Boba Tea at the Chun Shui Tang Teahouse
One of Taiwan’s most famous exports, boba milk tea (or pearled milk tea) has swept the States in popularity. If you are Asian or have Asian friends, chances are you’ve tried this dish.
For those that haven’t tried it, boba milk tea is a sugary milk tea drink, typically served cold, that is filled with tapioca balls. I’m actually not that huge of a fan due to textural issues, but I had to try it at the Chun Shui Tang Teahouse, which claims to have invented pearl milk tea.
I hedged my bets and ordered straight milk tea, while Mrs. Selfish ordered pearl milk. Big mistake.
The boba balls had perfect texture and practically dissolved in your mouth with only one or two bites. I can see why this place is the king of pearl tea!
The restaurant is actually located in one of the giant orange buildings outside of the Chiang Kai Shek Memorial Hall, so if you get tired after a long day of sight seeing, make a b-line for the Chun Shui Tang Teahouse.
Mango Shaved Ice
Taipei is hot. Tropical hot. So it’s probably no surprise that mango-shaved ice originated here. Your typical mango-shaved ice consists of shaved ice at the base, fresh chunks of mango, and milk pudding.
Tai Yi Milk King
Located a short walk from the Taipower Building Station, Tai Yi Milk King serves up traditional mango shaved ice.
This was the first mango shaved ice we tried, but given how hot it was outside we demolished it in a manner of minutes. The milk pudding dissolved almost immediately into the ice, and added the sweet component, which the mango added the mango-y flavors we were looking for. In short, it was amazing – and I don’t even like mangos!
From there we decided to up our mango ice game and headed to Ice Monster. Just a short walk from the Sun Yat-Sen Memorial hall station, Ice Monster takes mango shaved ice to the next level.
Where Tai Yi Milk King was about $140 TWD (~$4.50) for a mango shaved ice, Ice Monster was $220 TWD (~7.50). And man, it was totally worth the price difference.
I mean, check out the presentation on this bad boy.
Unlike Tai Yi Milk King, Ice Monster is trendy, and packed. They actually limit you to an hour long stay.
What really makes Ice Monster stand out from the rest of the crowd, however, is the fact that their shaved ice is made out of mangos (!) and has a delicate cotton-candy like texture. So frickin’ cool.
It also felt like they cooked their mangos slightly to give them a gooier texture. I could totally be misremembering that, however. Anyway, point being, if you’re only going to eat one mango shaved ice, make it Ice Monster – you won’t regret it.
Join us tomorrow when we leave Taipei for Green Island, a remote destination located off the south eastern point of Taiwan.