Right Ice Cream is one of those places you will never, ever find if you don’t go looking for it. Tucked away in a back alley just off the Civic Boulevard highway, in a forgotten corner of Songhan district that seems to be mostly junk stores and auto shops, it’s not only nearly invisible – it seems absurdly out of place. One almost wonders if they’re hiding from customers! If it weren’t for their ice cream cart, which they occasionally wheel out to more visible areas, I’d never have heard of it at all. It was only by chance that I spotted the cart near Ningxia Night Market one night, just after they’d sold their last scoop and packed up for the day, and if it weren’t for this blog, I doubt I’d have bothered to follow up and come all the way out here to find the shop. But I’m glad I did. Right Ice Cream turned out to be a real gem – a grassroots, made-in-Taiwan family business. Exactly the kind of place this blog is dedicated to. You don’t just go to Right for an ice cream – you go there for ice cream and a story.
Meet Mr. Yang. A mechanical engineer by trade, he spent ten years developing ice cream recipes in his spare time before finally leaving his job to launch the ice cream shop and pursue his passion full-time in 2005. He now runs the business with his son. The entire business is his own creation, from his unique ice cream recipes to the DIY furniture and signs. He even made the giant ice cream cone himself!
As one would expect from its inaccessible location, Right Ice Cream depends mainly on wholesale orders for business. The shop is tiny and intimate, with only one table and four or five chairs. It’s no secret that I love creative furniture. I really like the table, which is an old door on cinderblocks – the mail slot is especially cute!
The ice creams are made fresh in small batches with exclusively local ingredients. Flavours are limited and seasonal – there were less than a dozen on the day I went. During the winter, when ice cream sales slow to a crawl, they sell hot items like homemade tangyuan (sweet glutinous rice dumplings), peanut soup and red bean soup, instead.
Today’s ice cream flavours include strawberry, honey, sour plum and Irwin mango. Mr. Yang is dedicated to local Taiwanese products. When I asked about the ingredients, he proceeded to tell me exactly where in Taiwan they were grown; he even named the farms. I can’t remember all of them, but I recall the strawberries are from Dahu and the longhan honey is from Miaoli.
Mulberry, taro, banana and passionfruit.
Besides ice cream, which they make with cream and eggs, they also sell sherbet, which is made with no eggs and a lower dairy-to-fruit ratio. Sorry, vegans – no dairy-free sorbet here (but they do have vegan shaved ice – scroll down to check them out). Today’s sherbet options were sour plum and Calpis, a yogurt-based beverage. Totally unique!
Ask for a sample and you’ll get a dish of tiny scoops of ice cream – very generous for a sample. I sampled the honey, banana and taro.
The rich, creamy banana ice cream is made using the whole banana, peel and all. This gives it a uniquely complex flavour, as well as boosting the fiber and nutrient content for a healthier ice cream!
After sampling most of the ice creams and sherbets, I decided to get Miaoli longan honey ice cream and sour plum sherbet. At NT$50 for a single scoop and NT$80 for two huge scoops, Right Ice Cream offers amazing value – less than half the price of most artisan ice cream in Taipei! You can also order the “tasting plate” – eight small scoops for NT$150. Too bad I didn’t see that option until I’d already filled up on two big scoops!
The sour plum sherbet is quintessentially Taiwanese – light, mild, and slightly icy. The sweet-sour plum is enhanced with a little salt – maybe a little weird to westerners who aren’t familiar with Taiwan’s complex flavour combinations, but it’s subtle and well-balanced and really addictive. Give it a try!苗栗龍眼蜂蜜冰淇淋組合了台式、美式與法式冰淇淋不同風味，以台灣食材做的，甜度依台灣口味調低了些，但奶油含量偏高，大概12趴，比較接近美式冰淇淋，還有雞蛋在裡面，像法國的傳統冰淇淋食譜。吃起來超濃郁，口感滑順綿密，蜂蜜的味道越吃越香。
The Miaoli longan honey ice cream is an interesting creation that fuses Taiwanese, American and French ice cream techniques. It’s made with Taiwanese ingredients and has the lower sugar content typical of Taiwanese ice creams, but it’s made with more cream than milk, so it’s around 12% fat, similar to American-style ice cream. It also includes eggs, like a French ice cream. It’s very rich and dense! The honey flavour is subtle at first, but the more you eat the more you can taste it.
The menu is really just a small selection of things the owner is good at making, including plain shaved ice (in black sugar or lemon flavour), house special iced tea (Assam black tea + cassia seed tea + a scoop of lemon shaved ice), milk pudding, and konjac jelly with cream.
我和朋友邊吃冰淇淋邊跟老闆聊聊天，他突然間走去櫃台後，然後拿著小碗檸檬清冰回來請我們吃。以上就是試吃份量，一般份量較大，價格為NT$40/碗。檸檬清冰基本上就是微甜的檸檬水，先冷凍再磨成細細的剉冰，不加糖水和配料來吃，就是超涼爽又健康的夏日小吃。還可以配冰淇淋一起吃 —- 我把一口酸梅雪泥配檸檬清冰一起吃覺得很讚。好像可以直接點冰淇淋清冰，但我看菜單沒看到。
My friend and I continued chatting with the owner as we enjoyed our ice cream. Suddenly he ducked behind the counter and came back with a small bowl of his lemon shaved ice for us to try. This is just a sample-sized bowl; a proper bowl is much bigger and sells for NT$40. It’s super simple and refreshing – pretty much just frozen lemon water, ever-so-slightly sweetened, shaved to a fine powder and served plain. Served without sugar water or sticky-sweet toppings, it’s a healthy and refreshing summer treat. I tried it with a spoonful of my sour plum sherbet and it was fantastic – I think you can order them together, although ice cream + shaved ice doesn’t seem to be listed on the menu.
When my friend and I couldn’t stop raving about the lemon shaved ice, the owner couldn’t help himself and brought out another bowl, this time with black sugar shaved ice.
This one was a little sweeter than the lemon, but still very light. It tasted great with the honey ice cream! 吃了那麼多冰淇淋讓我們有點口渴，來杯 「來特冰茶」吧! 香濃紅茶加決明子的味道喝起來很深沉但還是很溫和，不會苦也不會太甜。裡面的檸檬清冰融化的速度比一般冰塊還快，讓冰茶更冰，很爽口!
All that ice cream made us thirsty, so we also tried the house iced tea. The taste is rich but mild – not too bitter and not heavily sweetened. The shaved ice melts quickly inside and makes it much colder than regular ice cubes. Very refreshing!
What’s better than a cosy shop with nice people and delicious homemade ice cream? A cosy shop with nice people, delicious ice cream, and a cute dog. The dog was a stray until the Yang family rescued her and kept her as their own.
So what started out as a regular ice cream mission ended up turning into a full-on meal and a long chat with this lovely family. Mr. Yang’s entrepreneurial journey is an inspiring story – here’s an article about it in Chinese (which I will translate into English soon)!
Right Ice Cream | 來特冰淇淋
電話: (02) 2762-2008
Address: No. 54, Alley 36, Section 4, BaDe Road, Songshan District, Taipei City
Phone: (02) 2762-2008
MRT: Sun Yat-Sen Memorial Hall Station (about a ten-minute walk)
Hours: Daily 12:00~22:30 (hours are approximate)
Price: NT$40 and up