LITTLE SOUTH GATE
Food Court, B2, ESLITE Mall (XIN YI STORE)
11, SongGao Road
Hours:10 am-2 am Bookstore (2F/3F/4F) ;
10 am-10 pm /Shopping Mall (B2/ B1/ 1F/ 5F/ 6F)
review visit: 2/18/2006
The XinYi area is full of shopping and eating experiences- 101, the Warner Village and movie theaters, NY NY and Neo 19 buildings and the multi-collective Mitsukoshi shopping malls. When the new Eslite building opened up across the way, I figured it would be another one of the same, but actually it does offer a variety in experience- there is a multi-level bookstore, stationary section and a tasty looking food court.
This day I only had the chance to have a snack- so I opted for peanut do-hwa (or soy tofu) with mini boba and my friend had red bean with mochi balls. As with many food courts in Taipei, the signs are frequently not English friendly, but there are lots of bright pictures and plastic foods to point at. Lucky for me, my Chinese for foods I like is improving, and they had a picture of what I wanted nontheless.
You can opt to have the dessert hot or cold and we had ours hot that day.
The peanut do-hwa was a pleasant warm, with the right amount of sweetness in the soup, and the soy tofu was a silky melt in your mouth that didn't taste artificial as some mall do-hwa soy tofus can (like from the dessert shop at the food court at Warner Village). The peanuts and mini-boba tasted fresh and combined to give my mouth a variety of consistencies to enjoy.
The red bean soup was much hotter (in temperature) and sweeter as well. The thickness and sweetness combined would be good on a rainy day, but I preferred the lighter textures of the soy tofu.
The service was fast, despite the mini-line, and you can choose a variety of combinations in your soy tofu and other desserts like ai-yu lemon jelly. And you can't beat the price from NT$40-NT$55, which is like $1.30-$1.90. Cheaper than most lattes and more filling. Also, a good alternative to shaved ice for a local dessert to try, especially when it's chilly outside.