Found in the wild throughout Southeast Asia, milkfish is popular in Taiwanese cuisine. The silvery fish is often served pan-fried with a bit of white pepper, or gently sliced into pieces and served in a gingery porridge. It’s so beloved in Taiwan in fact, that there’s an entire museum dedicated to the fish.
The Saba Milkfish Museum is located on a small island in Tainan, a city in southern Taiwan with a robust milkfish aquaculture industry. It was established by Lu Ching-ying, a woman who is known affectionately as the “Queen of Milkfish.” The museum was intended as a way to promote local milkfish businesses, but what started out as a marketing endeavor has become a quirky landmark. Inside, the walls are adorned with large hanging displays of milkfish and tongue-in-cheek cat decor on the side.
The space gives a broad overview to the culture and history of milkfish in Taiwan, but also has a whole section where visitors can sample unconventional products like milkfish ice cream and milkfish sausage. Attendees can also participate in hands-on workshops, and learn how to craft hand soap with the fish or make edible fish meatballs.
Know Before You Go
Admission is free, though reservations are required beforehand for the workshops.