Seems like I have been eating dumplings of all sorts last week. My friend Kelly came to Taiwan, and I guess she hasn't gone to Ding Tai Fung yet.
We went to the Zhongxiao Branch (not the one in the Sogo) because it is always the least crowded and tucked away in a back alley. There was literally no wait, unlike the one in the Sogo which had a line wrapped around the corners of the food court.
Now I've gone to Ding Tai Fung many times and have not ever reviewed it. I guess this will be the time I will review it.
Ding Tai Fung (鼎泰豐)
Of course, the first thing we had to order was the pork soup dumplings. It is their signature dish, and being a logical person, I had to order their specialties.
Each spoonful (yes you use a spoon to eat these because the juices deliciously squirt out when you eat bite into it) was quite delicate. The skin was slightly chewy and the pork well just tasted like any ordinary pork dumpling. I have to say this was pretty good, and I owe it to the skill of the people standing behind the window. The other branch at the Sogo is not as good as this branch because I feel like they rush everything at the Sogo in order to serve a million mostly foreign customers who think this is the best thing in the world.
To eat a dumpling requires skill and precision like a robot and rocket science (haha jk). You just have to make sure you don't spill the juices. Also eat it with vinegar and ginger as pictured below.
The next item we ordered was quite unusual. It had rice on top of the dumpling, and it was filled with seafood filling.
This dumpling was just mediocre. I find the rice made the overall product really starchy and made the dumpling skin seem overwhelmingly thicker. The filling then became almost non existent with the rice overpowering it.
The last dish that came was their noodles with House Special Sauce.
The noodles were pretty QQ (as we would say in Chinese as chewy). I enjoyed the noodles, but I thought the special sauce was a bit too spicy. I choked on the spicy, and I eat spicy food too ><. I should have ordered the sesame sauce noodles.
I think that Ding Tai Fung has a cult following, like Apple. Super pricey for just ok stuff. I find the quality has gone down every since I've gone here when I was young, and before they started opening a million branches around the world. It has become Ding 太瘋 (too crazy).
I would rather go to the street stand shop by my work and get pork soup dumplings for 50NT instead of 180 NT. They taste about the same, and if not better.