My family love the dumplings at Din Tai Fung all year round. I came to Din Tai Fung with my uni friends a decade ago, in search of somewhere tasty to hole up and crib up each other's study notes. I had dates with my now-husband at Din Tai Fung where we shyly tried to eat saucy dishes without splashing food over each other. And now I come to Din Tai Fung with my kids to slurp noodle soup and argue over who gets the last dumpling in the steamer.
So Din Tai Fung is like my comfort restaurant - the place I can rely on for consistently delicious, beautifully plated food to share with friends and family and to celebrate all life's occasions - big or small, momentary or everlasting. How could this place get any better?
I have two words for you. Festive Fare.
If you are excited for Christmas, or looking to kick start your Christmas groove, then look no further than Din Tai Fung's seasonal menu, available for a limited only!
Headlined by these adorable liquid chocolate-filled mochi xiao long bao dumplings in bright red and green, not only do they look the part for Christmas fare, but they also taste like heaven.
These are not stunt xiao long bao either. Made to Din Tai Fung's exacting standards, each dumpling is handmade and the fragile pastry folded with 18 folds, to form an exquisite edible work of art.
My kids eyes turned round like saucers as they popped a mochi dumpling into their mouths and it exploded in a froth of chocolate lava. "Oooooh. That's good!" They murmured in unison.
While I think it is perfectly legitimate to visit purely for the pleasure of sampling these festive delights, it would be a shame not to sample some of the other new items on the menu - and indeed, any of the excellent regular items on the menu.
The new wagyu beef bao slathered with truffled mayonnaise had a wonderfully bouncy texture that paired beautifully with the strips of tender, marbled beef strips. These puffy flavour bombs were a taste sensation.
The sweet and sour pork is always a favourite too, with plenty of sweet flavours heightened by the piquant bite of pieces of pineapple throughout.
The water spinach with garlic quickly disappeared, mostly because our girls love this dish.
"Why don't some people like vegetables, mummy?" My 10 year old daughter mumbled through a mouthful of water spinach. No idea - when vegetables taste this good and are also great for your health, it makes not a bit of sense.
This may not be the case at every location, but in the Chatswood branch, the robot waiters bustle around delivering food to tables, whilst playing Christmas tunes. Seeing these futuristic bots trundling around with their digital smiling faces humming Christmas tunes while delivering hot steaming platters of delicious food is sure to kick start your Christmas vibe. I defy you to bring your kids here and not be enchanted by these faithful robot servers.
The great thing about Din Tai Fung is that its menu is very accessible to all flavour preferences and palates. My husband and I love strong, spicy, bold flavours (General Tso's chicken!), while the kids prefer much more subtle, plain flavours (noodle soup with crumbed chicken anyone?)
So if you want good food with a hint of Christmas novelty that your whole family will enjoy, you can't go wrong with Din Tai Fung. How can anyone eat here and not get into the Christmas spirit?