Din Tai Fung has been in Los Angeles since 2002 but we only discovered its existence in LA Weekly recently. Today Kelly suggested we go there for dinner.

I got a surprise when we reached. The exterior can pass off as Starbucks!

Inside, it is very different from what we get in Singapore. It's very no frills with all tables cramped tightly together. Since the next table is only one finger away, you feel like you are sharing dinner with them.

One BIG difference is that your food is cooked by Mexicans! I can see them folding the xiao long baos. Most restaurants here employ Mexicans, even the Asian restaurants. So when you go to a Japanese restaurant, it's Mexicans who cut your sashimi. I was hoping that since Din Tai Fung is such a brand name, I would get authentic Chinese chefs but. The servers were all Chinese though.

The one constant thing with Singapore is the long line. We arrived starving at 8pm, way past dinner time so we were not expecting a line. But the queue was at No.66 and we were No. 78. :(

Half an hour later, we were finally seated and our food made their way to us promptly. We were too hungry to take pictures so I kapo these off their website to show (and tempt you) what we had.

xiao long bao

steamed pork and shrimp dumplings

stir-fry spinach

pork fried rice. We also order tan tan noodles but no picture of that online.

My fav: steamed mashed red bean buns! Yummy!

There are some items here that I don't see in the Singapore restaurant's menu like:

Steamed red bean rice cake.

steamed glutinous rice dessert. Looks like lor mai fun to me.

steamed pork glutinous rice dumpling wrapped in bamboo leaf. Eh, this is bak zhang lor but in a long form.

We were damn full after dinner and went for a short walk. A few shops down, we saw a spanking new Din Tai Fung! It looks like Singapore's and best thing it had no lines! Hee, I guess the same mentality applies to people here.

Got a lot of people line up = food must be good.

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