Posts tagged noodle

Din Tai Fung, Chatswood

Rainbow Dumplings, Din Tai Fung, Chatswood: Sydney Food Blog Review

Hello Chatswood, how you doin’?

I swear, I turn my back for one second, and Chatswood suddenly becomes a massive foodie hub, with specialty gelato, dessert cafes, Michelin Star restaurant, and Chinese hotpot, just to name a few. I mean, I knew that there was more to it than night markets and Daiso, but it really didn’t hit me till we were looking for a satisfying dinner after treating ourselves to a movie.

Enter Din Tai Fung.

I already have a bias to loving Din Tai Fung. I mean, it’s really hard to fault a restaurant chain that not only has Anthony Bourdain’s stamp of approval, but that also takes the time and effort to make sure that their signature dish – their soup dumplings – tastes and feels exactly the same, every. single. place. in. the .world.

That, my friend, is some serious brand commitment.

Rainbow Dumplings , Din Tai Fung, Chatswood: Sydney Food Blog Review

The Rainbow Dumplings are every ADD foodie’s wet dream, in that every single one has a different flavour. Is it in-your-face-obvious different? No, but it’s just different enough to keep you on your toes. At its core, these dumplings use the same signature recipe that words for them, and it’s like betting on the safe horse:

It just never disappoints.

Tofu with Century Egg and Pork Floss , Din Tai Fung, Chatswood: Sydney Food Blog ReviewTofu with Century Egg and Pork Floss

To fill my craving, I also ordered the Tofu with Century Egg and Pork Floss. It must be me getting older, but I’m really acquiring a taste for the black jelly-like century egg. Coupled with silky tofu and sweet/savoury pork floss (which is pork cooked in a soy based sauce till it’s dried out completely and pulled into floss), it’s an absolute heaven in both taste and texture.

Well, if you’ve acquired the taste, of course.

Pork Cutlet, Din Tai Fung, Chatswood: Sydney Food Blog ReviewPork Cutlet

There was also the pork cutlet that I got because the Taiwanese are somewhat famous for fusion street food, like pork cutlet, and Din Tai Fung is founded in Taiwan. This one, however, um.

No. Just no.

Nothing really going for it, and we really could’ve ordered something way more worthwhile.

But other than that, going to one of Din Tai Fung’s many outlets has started to feel like coming home. You know exactly what to expect, and you know that that they’re not going to suddenly turn the tables on you. Sure, it’s nothing particularly new and exciting, but hey, not everyone has to be a Heston.

The Chatswood outlet is somewhat more worn than say, the one in The Living Mall, or the one at World Square, but the locals don’t seem to mind at all. I’m not so sure that they would keep up with Chatswood’s burgeoning food scene – even the service has that old-world quality of ignoring you, slightly 😉 – but I’m sure such a large brand like that has no problems holding their own.

If you can, though, go to the ones in the city. The ambience is much MUCH better.

This meal was independently paid for.
Din Tai Fung
1 Anderson St
Chatswood NSW 2067
Phone:+61 2 9415 3155

Din Tai Fung Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato

More than just dumplings: Din Tai Fung, Chippendale

Sydney Food Blog Review of Din Tai Fung, Central Park

Din Tai Fung. Soup dumplings. I swear there is no other association. It’s always been the place where families go to celebrate special occasions, and order steaming baskets upon steaming baskets full of juicy, soupy signature xiao long baos.

And other stuff. There’s always other stuff.

Sydney Food Blog Review of Din Tai Fung, Central Park: Silken Tofu with Pork Floss and Century EggSilken Tofu with Pork Floss and Century Egg, $8.80

Other stuff, like the Silken Tofu with Pork Floss and Century Egg, $8.80. Century egg is fermented to create that black jelly-like texture, which provides rich notes to the light tofu and sweet pork floss. I only eat century eggs in very specific circumstances, and this is one of them. There’s just something so light and refreshing about it, and yet it whets my appetite for more.

Sydney Food Blog Review of Din Tai Fung, Central Park: Spicy Shrimp and Pork Wonton with Dry NoodleSpicy Shrimp and Pork Wonton with Dry Noodle, $13.80

The Spicy Shrimp and Pork Wonton with Dry Noodle, $13.80,also hit all the right notes, with silky wonton skin, savoury chilli oil, and tender, springy noodles. There’s just something about this that reminds me of wonton noodles of my childhood, except executed with so much more finesse, and biased as I am, that chilli oil just makes it.

Sydney Food Blog Review of Din Tai Fung, Central Park: Crispy Fried Chicken with ChilliCrispy Fried Chicken with Chilli, $16.80

Sydney Food Blog Review of Din Tai Fung, Central Park: Green Bean with Minced PorkGreen Bean with Minced Pork, $15.80

Sydney Food Blog Review of Din Tai Fung, Central Park: Steamed Pork DumplingSteamed Pork Dumpling,$10.80

But of course, dumplings. Must have dumplings. The Steamed Pork Dumpling, $10.80, never disappoints, with its paper thin skin filled with a juicy pork filling, bursting with soup the moment you bite into it. And the most impressive thing isn’t that each dumpling portion is weighed and steamed to an exact science. No, it’s really that the experience at Din Tai Fung is the same ALL OVER THE WORLD.

And that’s so hard to do when it’s a global brand.

Sydney Food Blog Review of Din Tai Fung, Central Park: Black truffle pork dumplingBlack truffle pork dumpling, $4.80 per pc

Speaking of which, I was so glad to see that they also brought their Black Truffle Pork Dumpling, $4.80 each, to Sydney! After stalking it through Instagram for aggeeess, I finally get to try these lightly truffle perfumed mouthfuls that leave a lingering sense of both luxuriousness and poverty.

Sydney Food Blog Review of Din Tai Fung, Central Park: Signature DrinksSignature Drinks

Maybe we could wash it all down with a Yuzu Peach drink? Refreshing, citrusy, and utterly delicious.

Sydney Food Blog Review of Din Tai Fung, Central Park: Golden Taro BreadGolden Taro Bread, $6.80

Now, on to desserts!

Sydney Food Blog Review of Din Tai Fung, Central Park: Golden Lava BunGolden Lava Bun, $7 for 3pc

The Golden Lava Bun, $7 for 3 pcs, is the wet dream of all salted egg yolk fans out there. The rich custard is made from the salted yolks of duck eggs, which give it a slightly grainy texture, oozing out of a sweet fluffy bun. YAAAASSSSSS.

I’m really quite impressed by the consistency across countries, and by their professional looking earpieces. I mean, any service staff walking around looking like the secret service has to know what they’re doing right?

And added to all of that, Din Tai Fung at The Living Mall is located near massive windows, letting in beautiful afternoon light, adding to a beautiful mood while enjoying your meal. Ticks all of my boxes, for sure.

Insatiable Munchies dined as guests of The Living Mall.
Din Tai Fung
2nd Floor, Central Park
28 Broadway, Chippendale NSW
Phone: 02 8072 9427

Click to add a blog post for Din Tai Fung on Zomato

More chatting: Assamm, QVB

Restaurant Review of Assamm, Sydney CBD. Sukhothai Noodle Soup

When I was a kid, I decided that I didn’t like noodle soups. After all, they were milder in flavour than their ‘dry’ counterparts (usually tossed in a myriad of sauces and condiments), and you had to wait so darn long for the bowl to cool off. That just stood in my way of inhaling my noodles, and you never want to stand in my way when I’m hangry.

But like I always say, there’s nothing like a good offer to change someone’s mind, and when it’s a $6 lunch in the city, you know that the cheapskate in me just can’t resist.

A child of the omnipresent Chat Thai group of restaurants, Assamm offers authentic Thai food in the heart of Sydney CBD. Located in the basement of QVB, this little hole-in-the-wall restaurant plays host to snaking queues of hungry officeworkers over the peak lunch periods. But if you’re just willing to wait a little longer, they offer $6 mini-portions between 2-5pm, and let me just say? the portions are actually not so mini.

Restaurant Review of Assamm, Sydney CBD. Sukhothai Noodle SoupSukhothai Noodle Soup, lunch special

Well, unless you eat like a linebaker in the middle of training season, that is. This ‘mini’ portion more than fed me when I was in a my-stomach-is-trying-to-eat-itself state, and I would actually compare it to a regular serving size in Asia.

Restaurant Review of Assamm, Sydney CBD. Grilled Chicken on rice, lunch specialGrilled Chicken on rice, lunch special

The food always adheres to a certain basic standard and authenticity, to me, Assamm really brings it on their broth. There waa none of the watered down cost cutting crap that you usually find in the city. No, this is legit. The Sukhothai Noodles were my favourite, with bold flavours augmented by dried shrimp, tamarind, and a good lashing of chilli. The thin rice noodles were the perfect conduit to slurp up the broth with, and I would have been happy with just the noodles and broth, sans toppings.

Restaurant Review of Assamm, Sydney CBD. Boat Noodles

In fact, I enjoyed myself so much so that I went back again the next day, and decided to brave the queues during the peak lunch hours. This, unfortunately was the downfall of the whole Assamm experience for me.

My dining partner was in the bathroom, so they wouldn’t give me a table until she got back. Fair enough, it’s a busy time. Then she came by and I thought we’d be off to our tables, but we were forced to place our order at the counter first, even though my dining partner hadn’t had a chance to look at the menu. Then we sat down, and her order came first, and mine only arrived pretty much as she was finishing her lunch. I can understand a bit of staggering when its busy, but I do think that it’s bad form that two noodle soups arrive so far apart.

Needless to say, that kinda put a damper on my Assamm dining streak. Great for the off peak dining, but maybe not quite worth the peak hour lunch. Good broth though. Good broth.

This meal was independently paid for.
Lower Ground QVB
455 George St
Sydney, NSW 2000
Phone: 02 9261 0204

Assámm on Urbanspoon

Thai Glass Noodle Salad

Thai Glass Noodle Salad on a white plate, with yellow chopsticks and a glass of Thai Iced Tea on the side

For quite a few years when I was a kid, one of my aunts – the cool one, in case you’re wondering – moved abroad and lived in England and Vietnam, and came back with all sorts of amazing dishes, like a kickass potato salad, shrimp fried chicken, as well as this glass noodle salad, full of amazing Thai flavours.

This salad became a fridge favourite when my aunt dropped off a batch – I would sneak a bowl between meals when my parents weren’t looking, and at one point I just ended up eating straight out of the tub during those midnight trips into the kitchen.

What? Sleep eating is a thing right?

Over the years, the recipe has evolved a touch. I’ve added loads of fresh veggies – because my mind lays on the guilt like an Asian mother – and taken out the chicken, just for preference. It’s not quite the same as what my aunt makes, but it’s become my own version of the fridge favourite of my childhood, ready on hand for lunch boxes…

…and of course, midnight trips to the fridge.

It just so happens that the theme for this month’s #LetsLunch is noodles, so I’m sharing my recipe for this Glass Noodle Salad, for the last weeks of summer!

Thai Glass Noodle Salad on a white plate, with yellow chopsticks and a glass of Thai Iced Tea on the side


[yumprint-recipe id=’2′]

This post is also part of the Let’s Lunch linkup! If you’d like to read some of the other noodle themed Let’s Lunch posts, check out these blogs below:

Satang Thai, Haymarket

With our busy schedules, it’s hard to get the girls together for a girly catchup. So when the schedules of Shan and Alice finally lined up, I was really excited to finally get a girls’ night out!

Well, a very tame womens’ night out anyway.
Read More