I still remember returning from my latest backpacking trip to Taiwan and not being able to stop finding enough good things to say about my experience there. So it’s no surprise when everyone started asking me exactly why I love this place so much. Well people always say that the way to the heart is through the stomach, no doubt, my stomach definitely loved Taiwan. Although it’s pretty obvious that a majority of my love goes towards the country’s food, don’t get me wrong, Taiwan has endless things to offer, their beautiful natural landscapes and city skylines absolutely leaves one speechless.



             But that’s not the only thing that leaves one speechless, take a stroll through their many night markets and I promise you’ll find a million things that will leave your taste buds at a loss for words. Who has time to talk when your mouth is too busy trying delicious local treats at every corner?



Night markets, also known as “夜市” in Chinese, literally translates to exactly what its name entitles, open air markets that only open their doors in the evening. Filled with multiple shops and street vendors, it’s literally heaven for foodies who don’t sleep. Known to be a night owl, it’s no surprise that night markets has made my list of Taiwan favorites. That’s why I was ecstatic when stumbling upon 527 Café, a sleek and cozy spot that serves authentic Taiwanese classics in Evanston, just in the outskirts of Chicago.

Thanks to my Taiwanese friend, we ordered everything on the menu that reminded us of night markets. You can imagine how quickly our table soon filled up.



First off the menu, fried fish balls, the classic must have necessity of street food. This steamy chewy treat goes perfectly with sweet ketchup and mayonnaise, and although nobody knows why, they taste especially good on a stick as eaten at the night markets.



Another crispy fried local favorite are Taiwanese Chive Pockets, fried flour wraps stuffed with savory eggs and noodles.


One word to describe this Beef Noodle Soup is spicy! With a savory soup base and tender beef soaked in hot chili peppers, this classic is sure to stimulate your senses.


Presenting the Taiwanese version of popcorn chicken, crispy, savory, and smothered with tasty spices.


Last but not least, my all-time favorite, Taiwanese Pork with Rice. Chewy stir-fried rice mixed in with tender beef and smooth egg sauce, simple but delicious.bubble-tea

Of course, it wouldn’t be Taiwanese food without bubble tea, 527 Café offers all the tasty classic flavors such as peach and rose milk tea. A bonus is their honey tapioca, chewy starch balls typically added into bubble tea.red-bean-shaved-ice

The Red Bean Shaved Ice is what you must try if you still have room for dessert. Even if you don’t, after seeing this humongous sugary treat, I’m sure you’ll make room anyway. Known for their shaved ice deserts, Taiwanese shaved ice typically comes in various flavors mixed with fruit and condensed milk.

After a satisfying meal, a big thank you to 527 Café for bringing back memories of Taiwan, night markets, and the flavor of late night explorations, a flavor and experience that I have missed dearly.  


527 Café
527 Davis Street
Evanston, IL.

The following two tabs change content below.
A writer and photographer who's in love with new experiences, visual art, and the written word. Born and raised in Chicago, I've also spent time living in New York City, Hong Kong, and traveled throughout various places. A travel enthusiast by heart, I love roaming new places and exploring the people & food that comes with it. As an avid story teller, I love sharing my discoveries, whether it be my latest travel experience or newest food adventure. I truly believe that food is the universal factor that connects all of us, no matter how different we may be in other ways, we cannot deny that there’s at least one thing that we love to eat and that one favorite food magically and unconditionally gives us comfort and pleasure. That feeling is one of the purest forms of happiness and I’d love to share that feeling through my work

Latest posts by Wenna Pang (see all)

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.