The much raved 小笼包 does live up to its name.
The skin is the key to its popularity. Unlike 小笼包s at other establishments, the skin does not break easily and thus, retains the precious soup inside well.
The meat inside is average but tasty enough. Paired with the hot soup is a delight.
The soup inside is a little too salty but the overall effect makes the dish a very nice end to a meal. Even after consuming 8 of them, its just at the edge of filling.
One of the more popular Chinese Restaurant chains around, Ding Tai Fang is ranked by the New York Time's as one of the World's Top Ten Best Restaurants. The question is whether its really good enough for such a prestigious title.
I guess the first question that comes to mind is: "Why give a contact number if they can't accept reservations?" Maybe for business purposes or general complaints but it certainly doesn't facilitate me in the least.
You can get to the restaurant very easily, simply go up the escalator and voila! The restaurant is right in front of you. The question is if you should go in or hold out for a different location for food. In this situation, i chose to enter with my gf for a meal since she's never tried it before.
The place was actually packed when we came and so we had to take a number and wait outside. Apparently, in my absence, this place has become a choice location for many heartlanders to have their meals. Is it really that good?
Makes you wonder what these people are doing doesn't it? Their actually making Xiao Long Baos for our consumption but i'd like to liken their particular sneaky looking gesture to a dissection on an operating table. Oooo...whets your appetite no?
Appetiser - The appetizer is not free just in case you thought otherwise. This little dish is about $5 if i remember correctly and its a mixed bag of tastes. Its sour, spicy, sweet and salty all at the same time but surprisingly gave me a bigger appetite. Still, its a little too oily and a little too expensive for a starter.
Fried Rice with Prawns - I ordered fried rice for myself as i remembered it being pretty good in this restaurant and indeed, its still nicely done. It comes with a generous amount of prawns as you can see and still has the concentrated egg taste in the rice. Fragrant and tasty but my gf found it a little too salty for her tastes and that is true as well. At $10 for this dish, it does come off as overpriced though.
Dan Dan Mian - We were actually asking the waitress for a recommendation and she recommended their famous Dan Dan Mian which i have never tried before. It came as quite of a shock when we tasted it though, it was salty and the paste tasted like a mixture of peanuts, sweet sauce and chilli. The noodles (la mian) were springy but lacked any taste on their own. In short, not something i would order again.
Xiao Long Bao - Their famous Xiao Long Bao tasted as it should be but i did find the the gravy in the buns to be insufficient and not hot enough. The meat was average but good enough and the skin of the buns can be stretched without bursting open which are all the makings of a good dish. Coupled with vinegar, this tastes much better but i honestly expected better.
Bill: Total bill came up to about $35 for 2 people which is a little too much for the average food we had.
I could not say the food here was very bad but i have to say i am not impressed nor satisfied with their current food standards because i remembered them as offering better food at a much lower price. Now, i do believe i won't be back for a second try and my gf certainly expressed her disappointment at their lackluster 'delicacies' as well.
It's fast to get our seats even on a crowded Sunday! Maybe we were lucky!
As usual, the Xiao Long Baos (SGD8.50 for 10) are a must-have followed by fried rice or noodles.
Their menu is quite limited though.
The yam buns are good too! But that's to be taken when you are almost full... The thick mixture is good and I thought it's unique to see yam buns in Xiao Long Bao's 'skin'. Thumbs up.
Finally got a chance to have a meal at TM's Din Tai Fung! Went there on a weekday evening with a friend. No long queue surprisingly, we got shown to our seat after about 5 minutes of waiting.
As we had late lunch, we ordered only 3 items to share! We ordered the Xiao Long Baos (a must at DTF!), a plate of Fried Rice with Pork Chop and their Dou Sha (Red Bean Paste) Bao.
The XLBs were reall tasty when eaten with vinegar and ginger. No wonder they are the signature dish of DTF all over the world!
The fried rice was nicely fried till every grain was oily and shiny. Really good. The pork chop was so-so, didn't had much taste and was abit tough.
The red bean paste bao was nice! The paste was genorously given and the bao was really soft.
Overall, this meal was a very pleasant experience. The furnish of the restaurant is very traditional chinese and the service crew were all very polite and friendly.
Paid a little less than $30 for the meal for 2 pax. A little on the expensive side but I wouldn't mind going back to try their other dishes again!
Din Tai Fung at Tampines Mall had the initial long queues... They still have them but Saturday dinnertimes only.
I've been here twice but I seriously don't know why I went the second time after the first experience.
After hearing so much about this place from my colleagues, my friends and I head down to the place. It was a weekday afternoon so it was quite empty. We had some fried rice, the widely acclaimed crystal buns and the crystal buns with crabmeat.
The fried rice was a little oily but tasted normal. The crystal buns are alright too, but a tad too flimsy so we couldn't drink that much soup cos it spilled. The highlight was the crabmeat ones. There were 10 and I ate 2.... both had crab shells. Well if you want to think positively, they are pretty fresh in that sense... but seriously when you only eat 2 out of 10 and both have your teeth crunching down on the shells? BLAH. And the waitress didn't do anything when we told her about it.
The second time I went it was with my family. We ordered some crystal buns and some noodles and rice. All went fine. One crystal bun was already broken when it arrived but they changed it immediately. So that was ok.
They don't have much variety. And the crystal buns are the only exceptional items. If the crab shell incident didn't happen I'll probably give it 4 stars.
Parking can be a headache at Tampines Mall though.
If you like Crystal Jade's 小笼包, I'm sure you'll like 鼎泰豐's too. Feels like heaven as the soup seeps out from within with every bite!
I tried their noodles too, which is really nice.
色 - The noodles looks really appetizing and they come nicely arranged.
香 - Smells great when the bowl was served!
味 - And the taste is of course nothing but great. The noodles are smooth and the soup just perfect.
You HAVE to drop by this branch to try out their 小笼包!
Username (Required for logging in to Yebber)
Email (Required for verification. We will never give out your email.)
Or use your Facebook account to create a new Yebber ID (no Registration form to fill)
Notify me of followup comments via e-mail