Minquan MRT Station
Minquan MRT station is abundant with things to see and do and should certainly be high up on your visit list in Taipei.
It may not seem like a popular Taipei MRT stop, but it has some hidden gems to try, especially if you are a foodie and want to try some amazing, traditional Taiwanese foods. This is just one of many amazing neighbourhoods in Taipei to explore.
This is a restaurant that specializes in cooking lamb dishes, soups, and hot pots. The menu is in mandarin but I have not had a bad dish from this restaurant. I usually either pointed and guessed at the menu or knew one or two other characters and hoped for the best.
I ended up with a hot pot with strips of lamb and different Chinese herbs, lamb and ginger, and grilled lamb on skewers the few times I visited.
The lamb was always very tender and dishes were mouth-wateringly seasoned and spiced. This restaurant is especially nice after a long hike on Yangmingshan or a cold winters day.
2. Pearl and Barley
This small, pristinely white restaurant houses classic red bean, tofu, and barley desserts. There are a ton of varieties of tofu pudding, beans, and barley combinations they can make for you and pictures of the dishes in the menu.
The desserts are slightly sweet, served chilled, and goes seamlessly well after a hot pot dinner. Word to the wise, however, both these dishes and restaurants can be quite filling on their own—bring a friend to share your food with!
3. Mango Shaved Ice
If Pearl and Barley isn’t your cup of tea, (so to speak), or you are looking for a more traditional Taiwanese treat, there is a small mango shaved ice restaurant peaking from around the corner of Pearl and Barley.
The interior is green and the place was so small I didn’t notice a name. They have the usual shaved ice desserts, (including beans and different fruits), but people come here specifically, of course, for the mango shaved ice.
It’s truly magnificent at this stop, it has a bit of syrup that is delectable with the fluffy ice and fresh tart mango.
4. Sabrina House
If you walk the opposite direction, you’ll come to an intersection housing a charming café within the confines of a house, aptly named, ‘Sabrina House’.
They serve a more western style café menu with specialty coffee drinks. The food was outstanding, the service was great, but the atmosphere was the best part of the trip.
We sat in on a sort of couch by a window, after finishing our delicious meal, we chatted over our coffee just like we were at home. So comforting!
And, a bonus find: down the road is a dessert shop specializing in serving large portion s’mores. Talk about nostalgia!
This might be cheating a bit, and there are a lot of things to see and do near Minquan station, but if you have the time be sure to check out the Yuanshan Expo park just up the road a bit, (one station stop away).
It has a farmer’s market on Saturday mornings, usually an expo of some sort going on in the building, and festivals near the market on the outer rings of the park.
The Lantern Festival is held in the park, music festivals, rent a bike and go for a ride along the river, have a picnic, go to the art museum, you name it, Yaunshan has it!
If you get hungry there is a food court on the inside ring of the park with a variety of different cultural cuisines. Definitely worth checking out!
Be sure to stop by these fantastic MRT stops when you are exploring Taipei! Every stop is a new adventure with a number of hidden gems. Be sure to check them all out!