Sunday, June 10, 2018

[Taiwan] One Night in Taichung @ Fengjia Night Market 逢甲夜市

This is my second trip to Taiwan and this time round, we (Tracy, Hence and Ivan) the 4 Makanteers decided to stay in Taichung for one night and we got to explore the famed Fengjia Night Market. We stayed at Hotel 7 Taichung, and Fengjia Night Market was only a short 5 minutes walk away. At least, to its entrance.

entering the night market from our hotel direction

But, I was a tad hungry as we only reached Taichung around 8+pm and by the time we walked to the night market, it was near to 9pm. Passed by a stall selling fried pork ribs 排骨酥 and just got to get myself a small pack. Small pack has about 6 to 8 small pieces of pork ribs. Most of it have bones. The meat itself was well marinated and served piping hot. Good enough to satiate the hunger while we source for other eats.

Wu Ji Pai Gu Su stall
吳記排骨酥 small for NT$50 (~SGD2.50)

As we walked around the night market, here are some of the sighted stalls. Many many stalls selling fried chicken, plenty of stalls selling seafood and clams seemed to be in-trend at this area! Was also excited to spot a Malay food restaurant in the vicinity.

seafood stall
Malay food!
Drunken Chicken stall
German Pork Knuckles stall
Our Taiwanese friend, Sam, shared that the one of the must-eat at Fengjia is the Da Chang Bao Xiao Chang (sausage wrapped glutinous rice). With that information, I needed to sample one. As there wasn't any queue, quickly ordered one and indicated mild spicy (小辣).

stall front
tattoo'ed guy preparing my order
Got my sausage pack in less than 10 minutes. It was piping hot! It was tightly wrapped and walked around with it before tucking in. To eat, just open the top and squeeze its bottom out. Twist, turn and bite. There's bamboo shoots in it, and that added extra flavours to the package. Pretty good and it filled up the tummy real-well. Mild spice was not spicy actually.

大肠包小肠 (sausage wrapped glutinous rice) - NT$50
Was feeling pretty full from that one sausage (must be due to the glutinous rice!) as no one wants to share with me.

Let's take a look at the other snacks we've tried:

suckling pig stall
suckling pig skin and meat - NT$200 (~SGD9+)
It was unfortunate that the suckling pig skin tasted like it was chao tar (burnt). Crackling yes, and even biscuit-like texture. Meat was a tad dry and the sauce did not help. Let's leave suckling pig to the restaurants.

Next up, we rested our feet at a dine-in stall with seats. Oden on a hot and humid night? Why not! The way they write oden in Chinese, literally translated to mean "black wheel".

Oden stall 黑轮店
Simple modus operandi. Observe what you want to order, pick up a bowl and start putting things on it. Much like how we do with our yong tau foo (酿豆腐).

oden 黑轮 - take your pick

The price of the ingredients are all displayed on the boards. Some of the pricing is meant for x3 of the item. That was how our bowls ballooned up with even more ingredients!

Guess what went into our bowls.

fried beancurd skin, crystal dumlings, taupok, blood sausage with glutinous rice, meat balls
showing more of the pig's blood curd

Since we don't get to eat pig's blood in Singapore anymore, that would be one of our must-order when in Taiwan. The soup of the oden from this stall was much less flavourful than expected as the 7-Eleven version had tastier soup. Nevertheless, we enjoyed the abundance of the ingredients and two bowls came up to about NT$250 in total. Loved the beancurd skin soaked in soup. The pig's blood curd (猪血) doesn't have any funky taste, so that was good. Much like an iron-laden tofu. Warm soup did wonders to comfort the tummy. The crystal dumplings were unusual as this version not only did not contain any meat, it was like-sweet? Meaning, it had the mung bean fillings so it tasted like ang ku kueh but less sweet and placed in soup. Hmmm.

We walked and documented our trip with a picture of the Fengjia University landmark. How come we don't have night markets like this near our Singapore universities? Hmmm.

Fengjia University landmark
stalls everywhere

There are many other non-food stalls selling clothes, shoes, bags etc. Stopped by a t-shirt stall and bought 3 t-shirts for NT$500. That's about less than SGD8 per piece.

Claw machines are all the craze in Taiwan and no exception at Fengjia with large brightly lit shops housing claw machines. Co-existing with these shops are also shops selling toys that you could find as prizes of the claw machines. Usually, the toys retails for between NT$100 to NT$290 each, depending on size and material.

claw machines shop
toys, toys, toys!

If you're thirsty, don't forget to stop by the tea shops. Sam brought us to one of his favourite ones in Fengjia and has tea from the tap! Pretty cool concept.

Sam (in grey polo) getting our tea

This tea shop uses fresh milk and added to about a quarter of the cup. Next, you'd have to pull the tap to get your favourite tea. There are 4 flavours, but I could only remember the original retro flavour (古早味), or winter-melon tea. One could also mix and match from all four taps. The boss said we can. Hahaha, but we didn't. I tried the original flavour red tea and the sweetness level was just nice. The tea mixed with the fresh milk has a pleasingly smooth taste. Not too overpowering and refreshing on a hot and humid night. Taichung's weather that night was about 30 degrees Celcius.

DIY - Pull the tap like beer
press the green button to seal the cup
enjoy a tall cup of 自己来红茶鲜乳 (Do it yourself red tea fresh milk)

We had walked from one end of the night market to the other. Overall, Fengjia Night Market is not too crowded, even on a weekend. Maybe because we were there a bit later. The crowds are pretty much younger crowds and seemed not too touristy yet.

the other end of the night market

We asked Sam, what is the best fried chicken in Taichung and he recommended Ji Guang. This brand is also available in Ximending. Tried it, and it was more of the popcorn chicken variant. I still prefer my favourite Monga fried chicken.

1973 Ji Guang Fried Chicken
that blue tako mascot looked so cute!
what the devil is this?!

That's our adventure for the first night of our Taiwan trip, where we made a pit-stop at Taichung. Thank you Sam Hong, our chauffeur and local guide for two days. Do stay tuned for the next post on our trip to Sun, Moon Lake! Of course, special thanks to Tracy, Hence and Ivan for making this trip possible.

Here's a list of shops in Fengjia that we visited:


No. 236, Fuxing Road, Xitun District, Taichung City, Taiwan 407


 No. 55, Wenhua Road, Xitun District, Taichung City, Taiwan 407

自己來紅茶鮮乳 台中逢甲店

No. 21, Fengjia Road, Xitun District, Taichung City, Taiwan 407


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