Boise has been attracting an international population since its inception. In fact, local mining operations drew in so many Chinese laborers that Idaho Territory’s population was nearly 30% Chinese back in 1870. Subsequent immigration, including Idaho’s internationally recognized refugee resettlement program, has brought future Idahoans from Japan, Korea, Vietnam, Bhutan, Thailand, and a number of other countries. That’s good news for residents of the Treasure Valley who have access to a number of exciting cultural experiences from dance groups to places to eat in Meridian. Enjoy this list of fun Asian cultural experiences in the Treasure Valley.
Trade Viet Market
Have you heard of star apples? If not, you’re not alone. The orange-sized fruit (not an apple) is available in Boise at the Trade Viet Market. This Asian grocery store has a selection of goods and produce from all over Asia. If you decide to pick up a star apple, the key is to massage them, break them open, and drink the nectarous, milky juice inside.
The Boise Traditional Chinese Dance Group
This dance group began as an after-school program for students from the Boise Modern Chinese School. The program was so popular that the number of dance classes quickly quadrupled and the official, performing dance group was formed. When the founder of the group, Hua Yan, is not teaching students classical Chinese dancing, the Chopstick Dance, Fan Dance, or the Tibetan Dance (among others, and all in handmade, traditional costumes), she is a multiple award-winning PhD molecular scientist for the J.R. Simplot company. Watching a performance is sure to be a memorable experience.
Japanese Whisky and Sake Sampling
This isn’t your average happy hour in Meridian. If you’re looking for a particularly special experience, visit a restaurant with a wide range of unique Japanese whiskies as well as sake to try. Ling & Louie’s Asian Bar and Grill offers a variety of American and Asian drinks, including a selection of not-to-be-missed fine Japanese whiskies. Enjoy some sake, sip some Japanese whisky, and order something tasty off of their mouthwatering sushi menu.
Ah Fong Apothecary
Dr. C.K. Ah Fong was a mining doctor who’d commonly travel 50 miles one way to tend to an ill or injured miner. In 1892, after a fire destroyed his home, office, and apothecary, he relocated to booming Boise City, Idaho, in the center of Idaho Territory’s largest Chinatown. He was a civil rights pioneer, successfully challenging the local medical board for refusing him a license to practice medicine in 1901 (despite having a medical degree), taking it all the way to the Idaho Supreme Court. Not only that, his son and grandson continued to serve the Treasure Valley until 1971, when the building his apothecary was located in was flagged for demolition. However, the contents of his apothecary have been largely preserved and can be seen as it was on display at the Idaho State Historical Museum.
So whether it’s history preserved, traditional Chinese dance, or a glass of Japanese whisky you’re interested in, the Treasure Valley has all that to offer and more.
About Ling & Louie’s Asian Bar and Grill
Ling & Louie’s Asian Bar and Grill in Meridian offers the best Asian restaurant experience in the Treasure Valley. Their menu features delectable food, exotic drinks, and a sparkling ambiance—the perfect setting for a quick lunch, happy hour drink, family dinner, or a special celebration. Stop by for the best happy hour in Eagle ID area and the most flavorful sushi in Meridian.