Taipei 2012 - Jiufen Food Street
Besides its rustic and scenic charm, Jiufen is also popular for its local street food, and you can find it all at the Food Street. Like all the other food streets in Taipei, the variety of street food on offer is quite dazzling. However there are a few items which are must-trys here.
First is the famous fish ball shop. Everyone orders the fishballs here, but it is actually the tofu filled with minced meat that is the gem. Very soft, fluffy and full of flavour, the tofu is definitely the star here. The fishballs are a bit bland to my taste - and lack the required springiness.
They also have a version served with glass noodles. This is also quite tasty.
Another must-try item is the taro balls sweet soup. This is a popular Asian dessert, but here they have made it colourful and look really enticing. It is a simple yet satisfying treat.
One surprise discovery was this shop which sells grilled sea snails. They are simply slow-cooked over charcoal and served with a spicy chili sauce. The sea snails are springy and crunchy, sweet and with a fresh taste of the ocean. Really yummy.
With a charming hill town to explore and great street food, you won't regret a visit to Jiufen. In fact for my next visit I would definitely stay overnight in order to soak up the atmosphere. There are some interesting accommodation options that are cropping up here just for that purpose.