Ice Monster is a Taiwanese kakigori (shaved ice) chain. This shop is famous for its mango shaved ice. Although mango and other flavored shaved ice can be found almost anywhere, Ice Monster has become a must visit for travelers and locals alike that there’s a crowd and a line at the front of the shop to order.
All of the bowls of shaved ice — they are called “sensations” that are like shaved ice sundaes — are huge but it’s mostly just fluffy ice. They are great shared and perfect on a hot day (which seems to be nearly year round; even in early November temperatures are mostly in the low 80s Fahrenheit!).
We did order its famous mango shaved ice but we were informed that since mangoes are no longer in season, the shop opted not to include it. They don’t believe in using canned or frozen mangoes either and I respect that. Despite the fact the mentioned is missing, the mango flavored shaved ice was still delicious and it’s not saccharine sweet. I can imagine if the famous ripe Taiwanese mangoes did grace this bowl, it would be amazing. Another summer inspired bowl was the Jasmine tea and lime Sensation, which has the refreshing flavors of lime and a bit of pleasant bitterness from the lime zest with the floral, lightness of the jasmine tea. The pools of cool lime jelly that’s part of this bowl added an appealing silky element to the whole.
For something more autumnal or year round, the Pearl Milk Tea Sensation really did taste like bubble tea in shaved ice form. Thick, creamy ribbons of sweet shaved milk tea flavored snow with a side of sweet tapioca pearls (I’ve added the tapioca onto the sundae for plating/photo purposes). The custard-like douhua (豆花) added the creamy effect to this concoction. The Taro and Red Bean Milk Avalanche takes inspiration of other traditional Taiwanese dessert ingredients of sweet red bean and taro. Fluffy, red bean shaved ice topped with soft and chewy, sweetened taro and red beans. The slight temperature contrasts of frozen and cool makes it intriguing.
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No. 297, Section 4, Zhongxiao E Rd
Taipei City, Taiwan 106