Hsinchu dessert shop delights visitors with local persimmons and Hirami lemons

A dessert shop in Hsinchu has carved out its niche by basing the menu on local produce. Whether it’s Hsinchu’s famous fruit, like persimmons and Hirami lemons, or even the black sugar produced there for decades, all the dishes have that special Hsinchu twist. The owner hopes her shop will be a gateway to local culture for travelers.

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Hsinchu persimmons are cut in half, and filled with read bean paste, then smothered in cheese and almonds. “Persimmon mascarpone” is the shop’s special.

Member of the public: In other places persimmons are sold just on their own. But here they add cheese. Inside there’s red bean. It’s very special.

These persimmons ripen in Hsinchu’s famous Northeast monsoon winds. They’re soft, squidgy, and just the ripe amount of sweet. A spoonful with some almonds is Valentine’s in a bite.

Freshly-peeled hirami lemon rind with whipped cream and a little dried fruit. This tangerine tart is exquisite in presentation.

Member of the public: Hirami lemons have a very unique taste. I think like this the tart tastes more fresh, and different to how I’ve eaten before elsewhere.

If sweet and sour is your thing, don’t miss this cheesecake.

Member of the public: My favorite is this cheesecake.

It’s customers’ first time eating a cheesecake draped in tankan orange sauce. But there’s no clash - it goes down a treat, just like the shop’s caramel puddings.

The pudding is sprinkled with black sugar and cream to finish it off. A mouth-watering sight. All of these delectable treats have one thing in common. Persimmons, Hirami lemons, tankan oranges, black sugar – they’re all local specialties from Hsinchu.

Chiu Pei-jou, Dessert shop owner: We use Baoshan black sugar and Qionglin Hirami lemons. They’re very suitable ingredients for desserts. We wanted to put local produce into our desserts. As a restaurant, we use food to introduce our land and culture to visitors.

These delicacies are all you need for a relaxing afternoon tea with friends, that you won’t find anywhere else in Taiwan.

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