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Old-fashion Taiwanese-style ice treats

East District--216 King

3, Alley 40, Lane 216, ZhongXiao E Rd, Sec 4, 1F; (02) 2711-8002
Hours: 11 am-11 pm
Credit cards not accepted.
Delivery available for orders of 10 or more.

The Signature 4 allows customers pick one to four ice toppings (NT$40).
The Super creamy Peanut Bean Jelly is a delicious treat.

For over two decades, 216 King owner Mr. Zhan has been selling traditional Taiwanese-style ice treats to more than willing customers. Zhan learned old-fashioned techniques for making the treats, including pearl sago (jelly balls) and sugar water, from a retired chef. 216 King started out as a roadside stand selling six flavors that included peanuts, red bean, and taro. But, as their popularity spread, so did their selection. Lacking a visible sign, the stand was dubbed "The Pearl Sago King" by regulars. Today, it is no longer a stand. The King now operates in a rather simple store space, selling old favorites as well as items like sweet, stuffed dumplings and taro jelly balls—all handmade by Zhan. Visitors should be sure to try the Brown Sugar Yellow Jelly flavor ice. --By Josie Wu, translated by Ann Lee

South District--Lin Yuan

(02) 2362-5569
4, Lane 49, ShiDa Rd
Hours: 11 am-11:30 pm
Credit cards not accepted.
Delivery service available.
Parking nearby.

Red Bean & Milk Ice ($45)
Four Treasures Ice

In business for over 35 years, Lin Yuan has a reputation for selling generous helpings at affordable prices, which is always popular with students. This steady business, located in the Shi Da night market, provides a choose-your-own- ingredients style of eating. The cooks at Lin Yuan still follow old recipes to make their signature dishes. Instead of using black sugar, like many other shops, Lin Yuan follows traditional preparation methods and lets the sweetness of the ingredients—like peanut, red bean, and pearl sago (sweet jelly balls)—stand alone. Lin Yuan is best known for their Red Bean & Milk Ice, made of creamy, condensed milk mixed with red beans, which come from Pingtung and need to be simmered four to five hours to make them soft. Another popular choice is the Four Treasures Ice—customers choose four ingredients to top their ice. Many choose honey yam, mung beans, yellow jelly and taro. --Words and photos by Eden Lin, translated by Ann Lee

West District--Yang Ji

38/40, HanKou Rd, Sec 2
(02) 2375-2223
Hours: 11 am-10:30 pm
Credit cards not accepted.
Delivery service available.
Parking nearby.

Lodoicea Maldivica & Fruit flavored Ice (NT$150)
Peanut & Corn Ice with Three Jelly Balls (NT$75)

The innovator of sweet, icy corn treats, Yang Ji has been in business for 46 years and is now run by the Yang family's second generation. When a canned corn company wanted to promote their product, Yang Ji suggested adding the corn to a bowl of their icy treat, thereby creating the signature dessert at Yang Ji. One reason Yang Ji has existed for almost 50 years is because of the quality ingredients to make their products. Their main treat, Peanut & Corn Ice, uses only Green Giant corn and specially selected peanuts from I-lan, known as Li-Ze peanuts. With a combined sweet and salty flavor, this dish's flavor can't be found anywhere else. A great summer choice includes the Lodoicea Maldivica & Fruit Ice. Don't let this fancy name confuse you; it is simply grass jelly and some seasonal fruits like mango, watermelon, kiwi and pineapple. The main ingredient in this colorful combination, the imported Lodoicea Maldivica, is transparent and has a bit of honey added to it. --Words and photos by Eden Lin, translated by Ann Lee

North District--Yiilih

Head Branch: 4, HuaRong St (close to Guang Hua Movie Theater in Shilin);
(02) 2836-1826 , Hours: 8 am-12 am
Credit cards not accepted.
Delivery service available.
Shilin Branch: 537, Shilin Night Market (Gong You Temporary Market);
(02) 2880-3389
Sanchong Branch: 21, DaTong N Rd, Sanchong City;
(02) 2989-0248 www.yiilih.com

As Mr. Chang of Yiilih Ice Shop offers a cooling treat, he recalls, "I started out selling these ice shaving treats next to the train tracks in I-lan. A lot of students came after school for one of my 'snacks'. They saw the stuff I was selling and called it 'bubble ice'."
One popular choice of "bubble ice" is the Sweet Soybean & Peanut flavored Ice (NT$35). Made with fresh peanuts and sauce using Mr. Chang's own special recipe, it not only melts in your mouth but also has a great smell and taste. If you like fruit, try Yiilih's Mango Ice (NT$40), which is made with both Ai Wen and Taiwanese mangos. Another recommendation is their signature Sticky Glutinous Rice Cake with Ice (NT$15). This soft, tangy treat is made with pure glutinous rice dough prepared by Mr. Chang, who picked up his skills while working in Japan. Sticky Glutinous Rice Cake comes in six flavors: Red Bean, Green Bean, Peanut, Mocha (Japanese-style green tea), Sesame, and Taro. The ice won't harden and will taste even better after refrigeration or freezing. --By Elaine Shui, translated by Ann Lee

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