An 80-year-old Taiwanese street food vendor selling steamed pork buns for less than US$2 has been awarded a Bib Gourmand in the inaugural edition of the Michelin Guide Taipei & Taichung.
Wu Huang-yi's popular family-run street food stall, Yuan Fang Guabao, at Taipei’s Huaxi Street Night Market has been serving up its famous steamed buns (guabao) stuffed with marinated pork belly, pickles, ground peanuts and coriander for six decades.
The self-taught octogenarian still arrives at the market at 5am to handpick the pork belly, which he then stews for hours in his special blend of ingredients (which he perfected 20 years ago) ready to serve the lunchtime rush. He is helped out by his whole family, including his wife, three adult children and grandson.
Speaking to the South China Morning Post, Wu said; “My buns are different from others, it’s all handmade. It’s tasty because it’s so soft and yet chewy. Everything is done according to tradition, and that’s the reason why it tastes good.”
Take a look at the video below by AFP showing a family dedicated to deliciousness, hard at work:
The Michelin Guide Taipei & Taichung 2020 also highlights 54 Bib Gourmand restaurants in Taipei where diners can enjoy a high-quality three-course meal for less than 1,000 Taiwan dollars (excluding drinks).
Wu Huang-yi is not the first street food seller to be recognised by the guide. Back in 2016, the Singapore guide included Hong Kong Soya Sauce Chicken Rice and Noodle, which was the first hawker stall to be awarded one Michelin star. 70-year-old Raan Jay Fai had the only street food spot in to get a star in the 2018 Michelin guide for Bangkok.