If there is one treat everyone should try in Taiwan, it is the pineapple cakes (鳳梨酥). Taiwanese pineapples are juicy and sweet, well-balanced with tanginess. No wonder why pineapple cakes become one of the most popular souvenirs to bring back home from Taiwan.
With the high demand, there is an overwhelming number of pineapple cake brands. Some are good, others are not so good. Sometimes, your palate doesn’t really agree with someone else’s. Therefore, it is advised to do your research and taste it yourself before purchasing boxes of pineapple cakes.
SunnyHills (微熱山丘): This is one of the most famous pineapple cake shops in Taiwan. The Kaohsiung store is conveniently located in Sizihwan’s Pier 2 Art District, making it an excellent stop to rest your feet during your visit to the area. The pineapple cakes here are buttery and have a good balance of sweet and tangy flavors. During the weekdays, this cafe offers a free sampling. You can sit down in the cafe, enjoy a free sample of an individually-wrapped, full-size pineapple cake with a cup of green tea. SunnyHills pineapple cakes come in a box, packaged in a burlap bag decorated with an ornate orange ribbon.
📍Location: Google Map ⏰ Hours: 11 a.m. – 7 p.m. ☎ Tel: 07-551-0558
Bu Er Jia (不二家): Zhong Zheng 4th St. near MRT Formosa Station is a home to Kaohsiung’s confectionary gift shops. Although some of them are more catered to wedding favors, anyone with a sweet tooth will have a good time here sampling the variety of cakes. While on this street, be sure to stop by one of Kaohsiung’s oldest establishments, Bu Er Jia. The pineapple cakes here are crusty and more tangy. Two flavors are offered — the original and tart.
📍Location: Google Map ⏰ Hours: 8:30 a.m. – 9:30 p.m. ☎ Tel: 07-231-9666
Pineapple Brownies By Tokyo Banana: For non-traditional flavor seekers, Kaohsiung Airport Duty-Free Shop offers pineapple brownies. Created by Tokyo Banana, this pastry is a hybrid of pineapple cake and brownie. Apparently, this is a hot item! Exclusively offered at the airport, these new delicacies sell out quickly.
📍Location: Everrich Duty-Free Shop at the Kaohsiung International Airport ⏰ Hours: 5:30 a.m. – 9 p.m. (departure); 11 a.m. – 12 a.m. (arrival) ☎ Tel: 07-805-7527
Jin Ge (金格食品): If the pineapple cake is not for you, I’d recommend checking out Jin Ge, which is also located on Zhong Zheng 4th St. This cute shop is famous for its Nagasaki Castella, a Japanese sponge cake. It is honey-sweet, airy and buttery! Buy a box to bring back home or get an individually-wrapped slice to eat on the spot.
📍Location: Google Map ⏰ Hours: 8:30 a.m. – 9:30 p.m. ☎ Tel: 07-285-8956
Mary’s Food (瑪莉食品): While Mary’s Food offers pineapple cakes, this shop’s specialty is the chestnut cake. The chestnut core in a chocolaty shell is well-balanced and not overly sweet. Each chestnut cake is individually wrapped and boxed with a mini plastic knife. You can assemble a gift box of 5 or 10 pastries, or buy individually. Either way, it makes for a great gift. The owner is very friendly and generous with sampling. Mary’s Food is located between Yan Cheng Pu and Love River.
📍Location: Google Map ⏰ Hours: 10 a.m. – 8 p.m. ☎ Tel: 07-561-4475
Deer Grassland (鹿仔草冰店): What is better than a bowl of shaved ice under the Kaohsiung’s blazing sun? Deer Grassland’s ice comes in many different flavors, made freshly with seasonal fruits that other stores do not offer: cantaloupe, watermelon, mango, peach, tomato, banana, pineapple, passion fruit, you name it! Just eating the ice itself without any toppings is a treat. This little shop is a bit out of the way, hidden in the residential neighborhood. But that’s why coming here makes such a great treat.
📍Location: Google Map ⏰ Hours: 11 a.m. – 9:30 p.m. Closed on Wednesdays. ☎ Tel: 07-322-9576
San Xing Yuan (三星園): Craving for delicious matcha desserts? San Xing Yuan offers everything matcha – matcha Frappe, matcha smoothie, matcha ice cream, matcha roll cake, matcha etc…What makes it extra special is the ambiance. The little cafe has a Japan-inspired quite and zen environment. It is a great place to hang out with friends or stop by on a date.
📍Location: Three locations. One near MRT Xin Yi Elementary School station. ⏰ Hours: 10:30 a.m. – 10:30 p.m. ☎ Tel: 07-226-1616
A-Xian (阿線麻糬): The specialty at A-Xian is seasonal fruit mochi. During the mango season in summer, I get the mango mochi (80 NT) with a huge core chunk of fresh mango within the chewy mochi. It’s heavenly! Another favorite is strawberry matcha. When both are not in season, I usually get the peanut or black sesame mochi.
📍Location: Google Map ⏰ Hours: 10:30 a.m. – 6:30 p.m. ☎ Tel: 07-531-9177
What else would you like to see on this list?