Have you ever tried one of these Xiao Long Bao?
We discovered the culinary delight of the xiao long bao (also known as a soup dumpling) in a shopping mall food court during our first trip to Singapore in 2010. These dumplings are the signature dish at Din Tai Fung, a Taiwanese-based restaurant chain with 21 locations in Singapore, along with numerous locations in 11 other countries.
Whenever we return to Singapore, Din Tai Fung is always on our “must visit” list. So of course when we traveled to Taipei, Taiwan earlier this year, we had to make a trip to the original Xinyi Store location where Din Tai Fung was founded.
Originally started as a retail shop for cooking oil in 1958, Din Tai Fung began selling xiao long bao in 1972 to diversify and reinvent its business during a downturn. In 1993, the New York Times named Din Tai Fung as one of the “ten restaurants around the world to inspire a pilgrimage.”
While we’d been warned to expect up to a two-hour wait at the original Din Tai Fung location at No. 194, Sec. 2, Xinyi Rd. in Taipei City, we were seated for both visits within about 30 minutes of adding our names to the waiting list. We did time our arrivals to avoid the height of the lunch hour rush (around 11:15 am or later around 2 pm.) We found the check-in process efficient, and enjoyed the “mascot” outside the original store.
The menu at Din Tai Fung isn’t limited to dumplings.
While in Taipei, we also dined at the Din Tai Fung located at Taipei 101. It’s the perfect stop after an early-morning visit to the top of the 101-story skyscraper.
At the Taipei 101 location, you can watch armies of workers making dumplings behind glass walls. This location also gets crowded with group tours, but we found the line moved quickly for tables for two.
We used this guidebook to help plan our trip to Taiwan:
Lonely Planet Taiwan (Travel Guide)
Have you visited a Din Tai Fung location? What is your favorite menu item?
Other posts on our visit to Taipei:
- A Ferris Wheel on Top of a Shopping Center in Taipei, Taiwan
- Exploring Local Foods of Taiwan With Taipei Eats
- Visiting the Raohe Street Night Market in Taipei, Taiwan
- Riding the Maokong Gondola in Taipei, Taiwan
- A Cheers Bar in Taipei, Taiwan
- 18 Fun Facts About Taipei 101
- A Peek Inside Suite 829 at the Taipei Marriott Hotel