Tuesday, January 11, 2011

Din Tai Fung - Taipei

Din Tai Fung (with DTF baby)

"DTF tonight?" That's what my partner and his friends regularly ask. Din Tai Fung in Sydney is pretty good. My partner heard that DTF in Taipei is even better. So I guess if we were to go to DTF in Taipei, we might as well go to the original store where this giant dumpling chain all started.

Being away from major MRT stations, the original DTF location is slightly hard to find. My friend decided to just cab us there. When we got there, there was quite a crowd. Keep in mind that we were having a super early 5pm dinner, I was amazed that we still needed to take a ticket.

We were able to put our order in before we were seated so the food came pretty efficiently. We had ticked several appetisers. The bean curd black fungi appetiser was yummy - subtly sweet, the flavoursomely oily juices just oozes out of the deep fried bean curd pieces.


There was also a hard tofu, mushroom, fungi, bean sprout, cold noodle mix which was refreshing and easy to eat. Chinese vegetarian-like goodness.


Another appetiser we picked was the fried green pea shoots. I think that green veges does us well in preparing us for the night street food sweep we had planned for later that evening.

fried green pea shoots

Dumplings-wise, we ordered these steamed wontons in chilli oil. The straight translation from the Chinese characters would be "hit hand". These were slippery smooth and extremely tasty. I tried to avoid as much chili oil as I could whereas my partner doused his in chili oil.

chili wontons

We couldn't come to DTF and not order the steamed pork dumplings. These were amazingly good. Small and bite-sized, it was super super thin skinned and filled with hot soup and subtle pork mince. It gave off the illusion of healthiness (but ofcourse we all know otherwise).

mini pork buns

These next four dumplings are truffle pork dumplings (We don't have these in Sydney). This was pretty amazingly truffled flavoured. So the dumpling is as tiny as the normal ones but it was soooooo full of flavour it was mind-blowing. But yes, it is like many times the price of the normal ones, so just one each - treat it like a delicacy and you will appreciate it more.

truffle mini pork buns

Then there was the pork and prawn shao mai. In Sydney, I think you get much less than 10 of these and they are more than the price of the steamed mini pork buns? I didn't like these in Sydney, but here, they taste much better. Soup and pork package with a tiny shrimp on top. Not bad.

pork and prawn shaomai

We also ordered this chilli noodle thing. This wasn't bad. A touch too chili for me when you eat a lot of it. But the noodles were silky soft and smooth, yet elasticy enough so it doesn't break.

Chili noodles

Last but not least, dessert time! We ordered 2 mini sesame buns and 2 mini taro buns. The buns were cute and hot and tasty. I had the taro one and the taro paste inside was just the right consistency, not too sweet and not too plain.

mini sesame and taro buns

All up, Din Tai Fung in Taipei keeps it's standard. I wouldn't say that it's that much better than the Sydney one. It's a little bit better. And the prices are way way way better. The most expensive thing ordered was the truffle mini pork buns (and yes, they were pricey). But still, feeding four of us, the bill came to approx AU$50 ish . Probably should give it a go if you're in town :)

Food - 8.5/10
Service - 6.5/10
Ambiance - 6.5/10
Value for money - 8/10
Overall - 29.5/40

Din Tai Fung
194 Xinyi Rd. , Section 2
Taipei , Taiwan
Tel: 886-2-2321-8928

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