Visiting the Original Din Tai Fung in Taipei, Taiwan

by Janis on December 16, 2016

Have you ever tried one of these Xiao Long Bao?

XiaoLongBao (Soup dumplings) Din Tai Fung in Taipei, TaiwanWe 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.

the original Din Tai Fung in Taipei, TaiwanOriginally 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.”

mascot at the original Din Tai Fung in Taipei, TaiwanWhile 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. 

instructions on how to enjoy a soup dumpling at Din Tai Fung in Taipei, TaiwanThe tables at Din Tai Fung include an illustrated card with detailed directions on how to best enjoy a soup dumpling.

Mr. Jones devouring soup dumpling at Din Tai Fung in Taipei, TaiwanMr. Jones doesn’t need the instruction card; he enjoys devouring the soup dumplings.

The menu at Din Tai Fung isn’t limited to dumplings.

cucumber salad, Din Tai Fung in Taipei, TaiwanI like the crunchy cucumber salad.

shrimp fried rice, Din Tai Fung in Taipei, TaiwanMr. Jones’ thinks this is some of the world’s best shrimp fried rice.

empty plates, Din Tai Fung in Taipei, TaiwanRegardless of whatever we’ve ordered, we always end with empty plates.

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.

workers making dumplings, Din Tai Fung in Taipei, TaiwanAt 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? 

Please share your thoughts in comments below, or by interacting with us on TwitterFacebookPinterest or Instagram.

Other posts on our visit to Taipei:

 

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