Xiaonanmen (小南门传统豆花) @ Eslite (大福誠品), Taipei

Xiaonanmen (小南门传统豆花) was founded by a street vendor operating at the south gate of Soo Chow University City Centre. Its founder hand made the beancurd or soy pudding using traditional methods. He believed in using fresh ingredients, which is still the guiding principle of Xiaonanmen today, to make the soft and delicate texture that melts in your mouth. Because of this principle, the name grew and became an established brand name that people flocked to have them.

Xiannanmen branches are almost every where in Taipei. For one, it is located at the basement of Eslite (大福誠品) in Xinyi District. We ordered three different kinds of desserts - the original, the red bean dessert and its special combination.

The original flavour (豆花+花生 - 傳統) comprised soft beancurd and peanuts. The peanuts were boiled for long hours that it became soft yet fragrant. The sweet syrup was just nice. The beancurd, though soft, was not as soft as the ones back home - Mr Bean or Jollibean. The beancurd was soft yet a little coarse (powdery). Nevertheless, it still tasted nice with the peanut and sweet syrup combination. (TWD40) (Food rating: 3/5)

Red bean with Glutinous Balls (紅豆湯圓) was one of my favourites. The crunchy red beans in sweet soup and chewy glutinous balls were a great combination. The glutinous balls, which looked like pearls, were soft and chewy. It was the texture that made us fell in love immensely with it. We have tried other glutinous balls, both in Singapore and Taipei, and Xiaonanmen's balls were the best so far.  (TWD50)(Food rating: 4/5)

The specials (綜合豆花) comprising beancurd, peanuts, noodles, and mini glutinous balls. The combination allowed us to try all the ingredients at once. Compared to the first two desserts, I loved this best. The chewiness from the mini black glutinous balls and noodles were great! The beancurd was soft and melted in our mouths and the peanuts were fragrant. I felt as if I was alone in the world, enjoying the dessert. Texturally, the items in this simple bowl of dessert  was soft, chewy, and crunchy. (TWD50) (Food rating: 4/5)

Xiaonanmen (小南门传统豆花)   ijustwantfood Critics’ Pick ★★★
110, Taiwan, Taipei City, Xinyi District, Songgao Rd, 11號 B2層
Atmosphere Situated in a busy food court at the basement of Eslite, the place was free seating. Servers were fast and efficient when taking orders.
Sound Bruising when the entire floor is full
Recommended Dishes Specials; Red Bean with Glutinous Balls;
Price $ (affordable)
Open Daily from 10am to 10pm
Reservations Free seating
What the Stars Mean Ratings range from zero to four stars. Zero is poor, fair or satisfactory. One star, good. Two stars, very good. Three stars, excellent. Four stars, extraordinary.