15 hours in Taipei

Back in the food-obsessed city of Taipei but this time around only for 15 hours. In order to save time, I took the new MRT from the airport to the central Taipei station, and unsurprisingly, the ride was highly efficient and the interiors are squeaky clean with free wifi that actually works! Got to love Taipei compared to other Asian capitals.

Let's all make love. Not war.
My first visit to Taipei last year was filled with memorable bubble tea and temple runs. With the clock ticking though, my main objective for the next few hours is discovering another side of the city that I haven't seen before.

I started off with a typical Taiwanese breakfast, a fried donut and soya milk, at a 24-hour, mom-and-pop shop called Yong He Soy Milk King then headed back to central Taipei station to meet a Taiwanese friend. She recommended that we jet off to the northern part of the city in Danshui where seafood abounds. (insert smiley with stars on the eyes here!)

Nothing can go wrong with deep fried donuts and soya milk for breakfast at this 24 hour joint! 
At Danshui's Old Street. Not too busy for a weekday.
After strolling the Old Street, the best part of the day came with our lunch at a seafood restaurant that specializes in mussels. Our clam, mussels and vegetable meal, which had a dose of chopped garlic, was delightful and, of course, I couldn't leave Taipei without the crispy, deep fried oysters.  I also learned about the Three Cups style of cooking, which is a traditional Taiwanese recipe for meat and seafood combining a cup each of sesame oil, rice wine, and vinegar or soy sauce. It sounds like a Filipino adobo recipe but with sesame oil and rice wine. I must try this at home!
Nom, nom, nom. My favorite here is the fried oysters. 
Happiness is staring straight at me with the right amount of saltiness and crispiness.
The chopped garlic came in a bit bigger than expected so just imagine that I had garlic breath to fend off the vampires until I got back to the airport and brushed my teeth.
To burn calories, we took a short boat ride to explore the Fisherman's Wharf and the Lover's Bridge, which reminded me so much of a bridge in Rotterdam. It was a quiet Friday afternoon with the sun beaming high. Our much-needed stroll was cut short because of a Taiwanese mochi dessert that we couldn't pass up.

Before heading back to the city center, don't forget to shop for snack items that are hard to find elsewhere. My pick included the shredded fish floss, which is great for topping bland meals, and fish crackers that were gone in an instant when I came back home. Who can bring me more, pretty please?
Hello there! Danshui has these characters everywhere.
Knowing how Taiwan is addicted to anything matcha much like I am, we were able to squeeze in a visit to a matcha cafe, Myowa Japanese Sweet Cafe, in Da'an District. Even though we were running out of time before I needed to head back to the airport, we quickly dashed (thanks to speedy MRT) to Myowa and had our fair share of matcha latte, sundae, lava cake and ice cream - all devoured in under 30 minutes. Everything, of course, came in that healthy green glow that made me giggle like a little girl in a candy shop. I instantly went to matcha heaven!

matcha ice cream
Must try the matcha lava cake. So fun to see the matcha oozing out. 
Not as good as Tsujiri but passable. 

Time does really pass by fast when you're having fun. My foodie adventures ended, and I'm truly grateful for friends who take the time to tour me around their hometown. Thanks, Lucy!

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