Today is 初一 (First day of the Lunar month), and our parents wanted to have vegetarian food and visit a temple in the morning.
The famous 龍山寺 Longshan Temple is one of largest and oldest temples in Taiwan, and quite near our hotel, so this was our top choice. Also, there were other places of interests in this Mengjia (Monga) 艋舺 area, so we figured that we would spend the morning here.
We reached 龍山寺 Longshan Temple around 8.30am, and it was already pretty crowded, with prayers on-going, and the whole temple engulfing in incense smell and chantings of prayers.
Once our parents were done, we went to the 祥光健康美食 Xiang Guang Health Delicious Food across the street, which was highly recommended by the hotel staff when we researched for vegetarian food.
We ordered the following to share:
- 米粉 Beehoon (NT$40 per portion): If I didn’t remember wrongly, the friendly staff mentioned that the beehoon was only available on 初一十五 (first and fifteenth of the lunar month), and we loved it!
- 飬生當歸麵 Noodles in Herbal Soup (Angelica Sinensis) (NT$70): The herbal taste was quite strong, but the soup was definitely more on the sweet side. It was a very welcome warmth on this relatively cool morning. The noodles were quite Q-Q.
- 小菜 Side Dish (NT$50): The side dish consisted of mainly beancurd and mock meat, and the flavour was pretty good too.
- 黑豆浆 Black Soy Drink (NT$40): We were also wondering how different the black soy drink would taste, as compared to the normal soy drink that we usually have… The conclusion was… We could not tell any difference, haha 😛 It tasted pretty fresh though.
- 黑糖仙草蜜 Grass Jelly Drink (NT$35): This was pretty normal.
Overall, it was a delightful local find!
After we had rested enough, we took a stroll along 華西街觀光夜市 Huaxi Alley. Despite being supposedly open all day, most shops were closed when we were there just before 10am.
We also passed by the nearby 青草巷 Cing Cao Alley aka Herb Market (Alley 224, Xichang Street, Wanhua district 臺北市萬華區西昌街224號巷口, Taipei). This might be a very short alley, but each store was filled with dried and fresh herbs both inside and outside the shop, and it was really quite fragrant to walk through. We could not recognise most of the herbs though, haha. There were also ready-to-use natural remedies sold in packs available.
We also chanced upon 艋舺地藏王廟 so mum went in for some praying while we waited.
After prayers, we took a break at 青山咖啡 Qingshan Cafe:
- 拿鐵 Latte (NT$65): This was a mild latte, not at all acidic. Easy to drink.
- 抹茶拿鐵 Matcha Latte (NT$60): With 0% sugar, we could taste the slightly bitter matcha flavour in this milky drink.
- 蘋果蜜红茶 Apple Tea (NT$50): We chose 20% sugar, and this was a pleasant mildly sweet drink with sourish notes. The staff gave us a stick to fish out the apple bits to eat.
The staff also gave us a rewards card worth NT$50 (after the 5th cup of drink, we can get the 6th cup free). But not very useful for us… Haha…
Since it was along the way, we also went to 剝皮寮歷史街區 Bo Pi Liao Historical Street District. Unfortunately, it is closed on Mondays. We did notice some filming going on, but did not manage to spot any artist that we knew, oh well! So we just peeped around the area before strolling over towards Ximending.
Lunch was at 花嘴廚房 What Day Kitchen, a very popular restaurant serving American food at very reasonable prices.
Since we weren’t too hungry, we shared a 炸雞肉美式鬆餠早餐 Fried Chicken Breakfast Set with Pancakes (NT$105 + NT$15 for drinks), 蝴蝶麵早餐 Farfalle Pasta Breakfast Set (NT$80 + NT$15 for drinks), plus an additional order for eggs (NT$15).
For this price, we gotta say it was quite value-for-money decent Western food. No wonder the queue was so long!
From here, it was a quick walk back to our hotel to rest after lunch.
|祥光健康美食 Xiang Guang Health Delicious Food:
|青山咖啡 Qingshan Cafe:
|花嘴廚房 What Day Kitchen: