On August 5th, the news that the map could show every street in Taiwan Province spread, and many netizens went to find out. When they found Chinese food and snack bars such as “Liuzhou Luosifen” and “Shanxi Knife Noodles”, everyone felt very friendly.
A Mengxia shop on Guangzhou Road in Taipei City is very popular locally, and there are often long queues in front of the shop.
On the gourmet app, some diners commented on this store, saying that this Luosifen made him miss the mainland endlessly. He and his roommate often came to Taipei, more than 100 kilometers away from Taichung, just to eat a bowl of Luosifen.
The owner of this store is Wei Qingwen, from Liuzhou, Guangxi, who came to Taiwan in 1999 for marriage. Because I miss my hometown food so much, I opened this noodle shop in Taiwan in 2010.
She said that she was very proud to bring the delicious food from her hometown to Taiwan, and many people from her hometown in Taiwan made a special trip and shed tears for the first time.
The following is the conversation between Jimu News reporter and Wei Qingwen.
- Make a special trip back to Liuzhou to find a master to learn how to make soup
Jimu News: When did you come to Taiwan?
Wei Qingwen: I came to Taiwan in 1999 because of my marriage.
Jimu News: Did you get used to living there at first?
Wei Qingwen: I was not used to it at first, especially since the food here is too sweet and I am not used to it. I often miss the taste of my hometown, but I can’t find any hometown food such as Luosifen.
Jimu News: How to solve these problems?
Wei Qingwen: I can’t stay for too long. Basically, I return to Liuzhou once in less than two months. The first time I put down my luggage, I went to eat Luosifen.
Jimu News: When did you start the snail powder business?
Wei Qingwen: The preparations started in 2008. At the beginning, it was not sold. I just made my own and shared some for others to eat. Some colleagues from my husband’s unit thought it was delicious and asked me, “Why don’t you sell such delicious food?” In 2010, with everyone’s support, I opened a store, first near my husband’s unit, and later moved to Guangzhou Road due to demolition.
Jimu News: How to ensure that the Luosifen are authentic?
Wei Qingwen: Before opening the store, I went back to Liuzhou a few times to find a master to learn techniques such as soup and ingredients. At present, the rice noodles, peppers, and sour bamboo shoots in the store are all airlifted from Liuzhou.
- Many hometown people will cry when they come to eat for the first time
Jimu News: Do you need to make some improvements to bring snail noodles to Taiwan?
Wei Qingwen: Because Taiwan’s diet is relatively light, I have been improving snail noodles since the beginning. For example, the local soup pot in Liuzhou is very spicy, with a layer of red oil floating. The soup pot here is not spicy, not so greasy, not so salty, and not so “smelly”. They will also combine the tastes of the locals with the tastes of Liuzhou. For example, they like to eat beef, braised large intestines, etc., and they will prepare these braised vegetables and add them to the noodles.
Jimu News: Many people say that the “stink” of snail powder is the soul.
Wei Qingwen: Yes. At first, the customers in Taiwan couldn’t accept the “stinky”, so they improved it. Now I find that young people here can accept it and like it more. A new store will be opened soon in September, and at that time I plan to add a little smell unique to the snail powder.
Jimu News: How is the business in your store?
Wei Qingwen: It sold well. We usually open at 11 am and close at 9 pm. Except when the pandemic was at its worst, diners in the general store began to line up at 12:00.
Jimu News: Has anyone made a special trip to eat?
Wei Qingwen: Some people came specially from Taichung, Hualien, and Yunlin. Many hometown people will cry when they come to eat for the first time. There is a family of four who came to Taiwan from Guangxi almost every week. I have been here for more than ten years, and they have been here for more than ten years, at least once a week.
- A map of Guangxi is posted in the store
Jimu News: How do you feel when you see so many people like your Luosifen?
Wei Qingwen: I have a great sense of accomplishment. I feel that I have helped many people from my hometown and spread the deliciousness of my hometown. In the beginning, I was the only family selling Luosifen in Taiwan. Suddenly being able to taste the taste of their hometown, many villagers were very moved.
Jimu News: I see you posted a map of Guangxi in the store.
Wei Qingwen: I didn’t post a map of Guangxi at first, and many Taiwanese asked me where Guangxi was. I think I should post a map to let Taiwanese people see where Guangxi is and which side of China it is on. After they asked me, I introduced Liuzhou, Nanning, Guilin, etc. to them, so that they could know my hometown better.
Jimu News: How long has it been since you returned to Liuzhou?
Wei Qingwen: Because of the pandemic, it has been a long time since I returned to Liuzhou. I returned to Liuzhou during the Spring Festival of 2020 when the pandemic started to get serious, and I returned to Taiwan after two days. Now I miss my hometown very much. Because I can’t leave for too long in business, as long as I don’t need to be quarantined, I will definitely buy a ticket overnight and go back. I have never been back to my hometown for so long, I used to go back at least once or twice a year.
Jimu News: Are there any mainland tourists who come here to eat noodles?
Wei Qingwen: A lot. Many tourists from the mainland have made a special trip to come here to eat. Before that, some civil servants from their hometowns came to eat noodles, especially during their inspections. Because my Luosifen shop has also been reported in the United States, Australia, and other countries, there are also tourists from these countries who come to me specifically.
Jimu News: Will there be discounts for guests from the mainland?
Wei Qingwen: Yes! I’m glad they’re here, and I’ll treat them to a dessert and a drink. If everyone is familiar, I will invite them to dinner when they come to play. A few years ago, there was the eldest sister from Liujiang, Liuzhou. We both spoke Zhuang words. We felt very cordial and we could chat well. We also invited her to dinner at that time. After chatting a lot, we felt very, very close.