The new "Taiwan Street" opened a couple of months ago close to Babaoshan station, and promising a night market for lovers of Baodao snacks in the near future. That's now happened, so we headed west to see if it's worth its chops.
|The new "Taiwan Street" opened a couple of months ago close to Babaoshan station,|
and promising a night market for lovers of Baodao snacks in the near future.
First-time visitors to Baodao Night Market might be confused, even if they're just yards from the entrance. I was close to giving up when I finally located the still-unfinished Beijing Taiwan Street; for the record, the entrance to the food market is on the other side of Beijing International Sculpturing Park West Gate.
The red neon signs were lit as we passed through the entrance around 7 pm - and straight into a wall of heat. Who turned off the air-con? The large crowds inside, together with pots busily heat-ing food, created a hot, muggy environment, hardly alleviated by the sight of long queues and very little in the way of seating.
Putting our best foot forward, we'd say coming in a large group might enable you to try more different foods in a comparatively short time. The cleaner told us as she collected our dirty plates that the place has gotten busier and busier since they opened, but that things would get better later on in the evening.
As far as choice goes, there's an embarrassment of riches, each alluring. For us, it was about luck and chance, grabbing what we could when an opening emerged among the stalls. We tried the famous Taiwan dish luroufan (stewed minced pork with rice, 15 yuan), shengguanfacai (a loaf of toasted bread hollowed out, known as a 'coffin' and filled with meat and vegetable soup, 8-12 yuan), some unremarkable steamed buns, rougeng (a meaty potage) and stewed eggs with dried beancurd (all 10 yuan) and a kezaijian (oyster omelet) with youyugeng, a thick squid soup, both 10 yuan.
|Putting our best foot forward, we'd say coming in a large|
group might enable you to try more different foods in a
comparatively short time.
With every grain of rice flavorsome, thanks to the technique of stirring it all up before eating, the luroufan lived up to its reputation and we were also impressed with the shengguanfacai, which is similar, style-wise, to Polish zurek and makes for a tasty break from the norm, soup-wise.
Sadly, we didn't get to sample more of the Taiwanese snacks available; the queues and atmosphere made that next to impossible, not to mention the fact we'd had quite a bit already. So we grabbed a wheel-shaped cake known as a chelunbing to compensate and headed back. The night market's a fun place, but its relative remoteness (at the end of Line One), not to mention the queues, don't do it any favors.
Address: Beijing International Sculpture Park, No.2 Shijingshan Lu, Shijingshan district石景山区2 号国际雕塑公园西园东南侧
Hours: 10 am to 10 pm
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