To start off, Gongzheng Street (公正街) in Hualien City would be a good place to begin the food trail. At the beginning of the street is Gongzheng baozi (公正包子), aka xiaolongbao 小籠包 or meat buns. These baozi are a little different to my impression of the Shanghainese counterpart. It’s a tougher version of xiaolongbao; thicker but with fluffy skin and every bite is filled with plenty of juicy meat filling. The store opens 24 hours, satisfying hungry souls any time.
Address: No. 199-2 Zhongshan Road, Hualien City, Taiwan. Opens 24 hours. 花蓮市中山路100-2號
Yixin Bubble Ice (一心泡泡冰) with its smoother-than-slurpee texture and a multitude of flavors to choose from, it’s is a summer delight. My personal favorite flavor is the black sour plum, unique with a sweet and sour taste.
Address: No. 16 Zhonghua Road, Hualien City, Taiwan. 花蓮市中華路16號. (In the vicinity of Gongzheng Street).
Hualien being the home of many aboriginal tribes in Taiwan, mochi is the dessert that is specific to the Amis tribe (阿美族), originally made for special occasions and festivals. Today it has evolved into one of Hualien’s most popular souvenirs to bring home. There is Tzen Ji mochi in the vicinity of Gongzheng Street, and Amei Mochi in the Hualien train station as well.
Address: No. 161 Zhonghua Road, Hualien City, Taiwan. 花蓮市中華路161號.
Night markets are always the best places to find local delights.
In Tze Chiang Night Market (I) 自强夜市 of Hualien, expect to find 1. Chiang Family’s Hualien Style Coffin Toast (棺財板) that may sound scary but in fact it really is a kind of deep fried sandwich with your choice of filling;
and other snacks like the “babu” ice cream, Taiwanese sausage, polo buns, fried pork ribs, fresh juices and of course, the national drink, the bubble tea! Thought Tze Chiang Night Market (II) is not as big as the famous Shilin Night Market in Taipei, but it will still take a good 2-3 meals to sample all the food.
Address: At the intersection of Tze Chiang Road and Heping Road, Hualien City.
Moving away from Hialien City, live jumping shrimps are a delicacy commonly found alongside of Liyu Lake. It may sound a bit cruel, but eating the heavily seasoned shrimps is quite an experience. Salty, garlic-y crustacean shells with a bit of sweetness and fishy smell.
There is also the cooked version available if you don’t like it raw. The shrimps are deep-fried till crunchy with appetizing red shells. Mix it with white bait to get the best of both worlds.
Address: No.100, Huantan N. Rd., Shoufeng Township, Hualien County 974, Taiwan. http://www.erv-nsa.gov.tw/user/article.aspx?Lang=2&SNo=03000108
In the Fonglin Township, tourists flock to eat Manmei Pork Knuckle (满妹猪脚) by the bus-load. In the business for the past 43 years, the tender and melt-in-your-mouth pork knuckles are highly praised by both tourists and locals.
Address: No. 10, Wànsēn Road, Fonglin Township, Hualien County, Taiwan 975
Tel: +886 3 875 1298
Well, that’s pretty much all the good food that I have covered in my 3 days of stay in Hualien! There’s still a few things that I didn’t get to try, but that will have be next time.
Like this post? See my Food List in Taiwan here 🙂