After 4 months of rigorous selection process, which included online voting, booth sales at Citizen Athletic Meet, and Intercontinental Baseball Game, and judging from food experts, the finalists for the “ Taichung’s Famous Food/Vendor Contest” were finally chosen.
Economic Affairs Bureau, the organizer of this event, held a press conference on the 20th to announce the finalists. It invited Wan-wen Food Processing Co., Mao-chuan Meatballs (deep fried meatball coated with rice flour), Wan-he Fishballs, Brother & Sister Beverages, A-lan Ptisan, San-guang Famous Product Shop, Sugar & Spice Bakery Cafe, and Mr. Lin’s Bakery to share the spotlight. After tasting food at each booth, Deputy Mayor Chia-chi Hsiao, gave his “thumbs-up” and awarded each with the “Excellent Famous Food Seal of Approval”.
Deputy Mayor Hsiao said that many of Taiwan’s famous food originated in and around Taichung. Chunghua Night Market used to be the must-visit spot for tourists and people from out of town. With the decline of the Chunghua Night Market, many once-popular vendors of famous food are now dispersed across the city. Unless you are in the know, you can easily pass them on the streets. The main purpose for the contest is the City wants to bring these famous foods that stood the test of time out of hiding in obscure places together, and satisfy the taste buds of gormandizers.
Economic Affairs Bureau’s Director, Liao, Te-tao indicated that after the contest is over, the City will be actively searching for a suitable location where tourists, people from out of town, and even people of Taichung can taste and buy these delicious foods all at once, in one place. Everything is still in planning stages at the moment so he is not at liberty to divulge the possible locations, but said that the operating costs have been incorporated into next year’s City budget. They hope to recapture the popularity once seen in Chunghua Night Market, and to satisfy the appetites of tourists in one time, at one location.
The final scores came from 3 different sources: internet voting, voting at food booths during October’s Citizen Athletic Meet, and November’s Intercontinental Baseball Game, and voting from students and faculty from Central Taiwan University of Science and Technology’s Graduate Institute of Food Science and Technology. Only vendors who set up booths at the events received scores for live voting.
After the final tally of scores from the 3 sources above, voted most famous vendor is Yang’s Dongshan Ducks (Cnr Chunghua Road and Gongyuan Road). Voted number one specialty food is Sanguang Famous Product Shop on Taichung Road. The top 5 famous vendors are Yang’s Dongshan Duck, Wan-he Fishballs Store (Taichung Road), Duck Palace (Liaoning Road), Chiayi Earthen Pot Fishhead (Jinhua North Road) and Jie-di Beverages (Minyi Street). Voted top 2nd and 3rd famous food are Wan-yi Foods and Wan-wei-shiang Food Store (Taichung Road).