Din Tai Fung or “DTF” as it is known by many, is a non-descript yet wildly popular Chinese restaurant chain that spans the globe (i.e. Asia, Washington and California). In Arcadia, where there are now two locations essentially right next to each other, the waits have been known to be hours long… and people actually do it. LNH Fiesta had spent all day skiing and snowboarding up in Big Bear, so knowing we would be passing by Arcadia on the way home, we decided to stop by and grab dinner. As expected, there was still a long-a*& wait, but we were resolute. We stuck it out and considering there were 7 of us, we knew it was going to take awhile, but we finally ended up getting seated after about an hour or so.
Xiao Long Bao aka Soup Dumplings are what everyone comes to eat, and we were no exceptions. These pork and crab-filled dumplings are very delicious.
I really like these rice cakes. I find their chewy tapioca-like texture kind of interesting… kind of like mini rice pancakes. These starchy cakes go well with the stir-fried vegetables and pork.
The Shrimp Fried Noodles looked simple enough, but it still tasted pretty good.
Another simple-looking dish, but it still tasted pretty good.
Although everyone really likes the House Beef Noodle Soup, I just find it to be okay. It’s not particular to the one at DTF, because I actually think it is very well done here. The noodles are notably home made fresh, and the broth has a rich beef and spice-infused flavor (I think maybe it’s anise), and most of all, the juicy pieces of beef are tender and flavorful.
This was the first time I had tried these wontons, but I really liked them. I think it was the spicy chili and green onion sauce in which it was served that brought some very delicious depth of flavors to the wontons.
I’m constantly reminded of the importance of eating balanced meals particularly by numerous members of LNH Fiesta, so it’s to no surprise with the number of dishes that we ended up ordering two vegetables. Both were very good although nothing particularly out of the ordinary.
All in all, it was another delicious meal at DTF. It’s kind of interesting as I think back about the meal and look at the pictures. The food looks pretty simple and doesn’t taste that “out of this world” different, but I really like the food. It seems most people would agree considering the consistently long waits that characterize this place, but I guess when you have great solid food at very reasonable, almost bargain-basement prices, it’s the perfect combination for success.
Din Tai Fung
1108 South Baldwin Ave.
Arcadia, CA 91007
PAFO Ratings for Din Tai Fung:
Price 2 stars
Ambiance 2½ stars
Food 4 stars
Overall rating 4 stars