Once hailed as one of “The Ten Restaurants in The World” by the New York Times and a holder of countless culinary arts awards, Din Tai Fung, currently a one-Michelin
Star fast-food restaurant headquartered in Taipei, boasts a total of 72 branches dotting the vibrant Pacific Rim Region. People in the United States, Australia, Malaysia, Indonesia, Singapore, Thailand, China, Hong Kong, Korea and Japan are blessed with the much-praised Chinese cookery delights.
With a humble start as a cooking oil retailer, Din Tai Fung decided to make a change and tried to sell Xiaolongbao or steamed pork dumpling in the 1980s in light of the heated competition in its retailing business. The Xiaolongbao it launched went over with a bang, prompting the founder to bring his cooking oil business to a close and begin selling Xiaolongbao with all his heart.
(The flagship of the chain in Taipei is constantly thronged by foreign and local customers. A 30-minute wait is not uncommon.)
Although Din Tai Fung operates with huge success in 10 countries, the original Din Tai Fung in Taipei is tops in flavors and qualities, according to customers in the know.
Small wonder the grandpa Din Tai Fung in Taipei has become a must-go restaurant for tourists. Ask any local people and they will definitely recommend Din Tai Fung to you.
Don’t miss these delicious dishes once you’ve managed to set your foot in the store:
1. Xiaolongbao (steamed pork dumpling): It’s recommended to eat this classic dish with sliced young ginger and black vinegar. Watch out for the hot tasty juice that bursts all over upon first bite.
2. Appetizer: This is a gem of a savory dish of mixed sliced dried tofu, kelp, and green bean sprouts, a must-try hors d’oeuvre to kick off a joy ride for your palate. This small lovely delight is quickly sold out if you come in late.
3. Steamed greens and pork dumpling
4. Apprentices are hammering away nonstop at Xiaolongbao. There’s a precision scale on the working table that makes sure that every Xiaolongbao weighs the same. I learned that all Xiaolongbaos not only weigh in equally, but sport exactly the same number of creases, 18, that is.
5. Noodles mixed with minced pork and broad bean sauce.
6. Hot-and-sour soup
7. Fried rice with eggs and shrimps