Food and Ah-Gei Along the Danshui River

Lovers’ Bridge (情人桥) at Fishermen Wharf in Danshui

Headed up to Danshui (or Tamsui, 淡水) for a day-trip. Accessible by MRT, it takes about 45 minutes to get there from the Taipei Main Station. Started off the afternoon with some small eats from the famous Danshui market just along the river and next to the Tamsui MRT stop.

Wasabi takoyaki. Alright, not the most Taiwanese of dishes I could have chosen along the street. But I wasn’t feeling particularly investigative that day. This stuff was good. Fried squid balls drenched in mayo and wasabi (not that overwhelming I assure you) sauce, seasoned with corn and seaweed slices.

After some good amount of sightseeing  — Fishermen’s Wharf, Fort San Domingo, Jay Chou’s elementary school (heh) — we settled down at this particular ah-gei, 阿給 store that’s located a couple of blocks from the main Danshui food market. It’s called Danshui’s Three Sisters, 淡水三姐妹. Address for those interested: 新北市淡水區真理街2巷1號 . According to the Danshui native who took us there, the store is opened by the daughters of the original guy who invented ah-gei. Was unable to confirm this online, but according to most sources, the store is one of the oldest ah-gei shops in Danshui. Good enough for me.

The ah-gei (fried tofu stuffed with vermicelli, fish paste and spicy sauce) goes for 35 NT each (the equivalent of $1.16). Definitely worth it every bite. In fact, I was so engrossed in eating I forgot to take a picture of the inside of the ah-gei. Here’s a beautiful photograph courtesy of bajenny.

And here are my less than spectacular ones:

The amazing thing about this dish is that it can only be found in Danshui. One bite into it and I’m in love. Ah-gei combines all my favorite things in one delicious compact tofu ball. We also ordered the tempura — drenched in the same spicy sauce — as a side.

Headed back to the main Danshui market for some more eats: sugar cane juice (freshly grinded from sugar canes), plum juice (a Danshui specialty), taiyaki with red bean stuffing (located near the MRT), and roasted squid drenched in this wonderful soy sauce,

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