Continuing where I left off yesterday, Taiwan has an incredibly hot and humid climate. To beat the heat, Taiwanese people have devised different kinds of delicacies for that purpose
Yesterday, I touched on shaved ice, but today, I’m gonna showcase the “ice cream bars”, or whatever the heck you call them. The variations have pretty much stayed the same since 10 years ago, but then again, they have never needed a revision.
As you can see above, the ice cream bar is incredibly cute… It’s based on the design of the Pon De Lion from Mister Donuts (a donut chain in Japan/Taiwan). Like I said, it’s too cute to eat…except I didn’t eat it. I just let it melt by accident in the wrong compartment of the refrigerator…
On the other hand (literally for Cryska), I did eat the other bar. It was simply amazing. With a wafer shell, vanilla filling, chocolate lining, and a chocolate slice at the center, this bar was like the king of all bars. While it didn’t have any “special ingredients”, the combined texture and taste of the bar made it worth the price…
Which I’m getting to now. The price is incredibly high for a “dessert”. At NTD 50+ per bar, the bar’s price is quite steep. To put things in comparison, an average lunch in Taiwan peaks out at about NTD 100, so that’s quite a tough decision to make. So, do you want an incredibly awesome ice cream bar or a semi-filling lunch? Chances are, most people take the lunch and thus the bar is considered a “treat”. Mind you, this particular one is imported for Japan, which can help explain the price point.
To wrap up my day, I went to Yoshinoya to sate my appetite. While Yoshinoya is not that big of a commodity in Asia, it’s still quite a famous. By offering cheap, fast, Asian food, Yoshinoya provides busy salary-men with a 24 hr solution to their hunger.
In comparison, Yoshinoya in the US is actually quite expensive and has a “heavier” taste. Because of that taste, Asians actually find Yoshinoya slightly off-putting in the US, but nostalgia coerces them to buy it. Thus, if you were an American and just tried the Asian Yoshinoya, you’ll notice how the seasoning is MUCH lighter, not to mention the portions are slightly smaller.
On the topic of portions, the US Yoshinoya’s don’t offer “combo meals” or “sides”. As you can guess, the Asian Yoshinoya has combo meals that offer selections in drinks (teas) and small sides (such as kimchi).
Though Yoshinoya is not held in particularly high regard (similar to McDonalds in the US) by the public as “real” food, it is still undoubtedly a good solution to seek if you’re hungry and nothing else is open. In addition, I actually think it’s not too bad…especially for the price (US perspective).
So if you’re traveling in either Japan or Taiwan and it’s late, but you’re still craving a gyu-don, head over to Yoshinoya and be wow’d.
Till next time!