By Shu Min Xu
What do Taiwan and Manhattan both have in common? Both are islands, and both have Taiwan Beer available in bars around the island. Thanks to Paleewong Trading, New York now has access to one of Taiwan’s beer of choice. After spending summers in Taiwan, one gets nostalgic for the frosty taste Taiwan Beer and seafood. With fall rolling in, it is time for autumn crabs, and what better to go with those crabs than Taiwan beer.
Taiwan Beer, yes, that is its official name, is a crisp golden lager brewed since 1919 with barley malt, hops, and local ponlai rice. A slightly maltier version is the Gold Medal label. I remember having grilled squid by the seaside and enjoying a glass of Gold Medal Taiwan Beer. The malty sweetness of the beer complimenting the saltiness of the sea you would taste in every bite.
Crabs were once a poor man’s delicacy. Now, everyone can enjoy the flaky sweetness of crabs. Growing up in Virginia, I had the opportunity of going crabbing on the Chesapeake Bay at the end of summer. Every autumn, there would be a crab festival to celebrate the eminent close of the crabbing season. Lemons, butter, and Old Bay seasoning would perfume the air. The crunching of shells, the cracking of claws, and all of the work that goes into enjoying crab in the fall is always more fun friends. Try out these restaurants Clemente’s Maryland Crabhouse or East Harbor Seafood Palace in Brooklyn, Fatty Crab in the West Village, Joe’s Shanghai in Manhattan Chinatown, or Imperial Palace in Flushing.
If you don’t feel like putting that much work into your food, Taiwan Beer goes well with a variety of typical Taiwanese street foods like anything on a stick, soup dumplings, or even fried stinky tofu. If you are ever in Taiwan, stop by the Taiwan Beer Festival held every summer or try the Taiwan Beer Bar and Beer Garden brewpub year round.
For more information about where to find Taiwan Beer here in New York,