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When I started working for “Good Food” last year, I began to eat and drink at as many restaurants, kitchens and food trucks as my stomach could handle. Chefs, food writers and bartenders in L.A. recommended a taco and soft tofu soup here, a French 75 and cortado there. They had ideas for cities I should visit specifically for the food, like Tokyo, Copenhagen, Mexico City and New York.

Taipei didn’t make the initial list of food destinations. But on a recent trip to Taiwan, I discovered fantastic fare everywhere I cast my eye, at night markets, 24-hour stalls, coffee shops and bakeries. The food I ate was simply done, not too sweet, sometimes pickled and usually made on the spot.

If you can’t hop a flight to Taipei — though I recommend you put it at the top of your list! — here are some of the restaurants in the Los Angeles area that are serving up my No. 1 Taiwanese snacks. 

XLB glam shot by Stan Lee.

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