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Much hype has surrounded the recent opening of Din Tai Fung in Manila’s SM Megamall. The Taiwanese chain has several outlets in Malaysia, where they serve excellent soup dumplings (xiao loong bao), so I was excited to see if the quality was up to par here. I found it somehow… lacking.  It wasn’t that they weren’t good. Tender minced pork and melted gelatin forming a savoury broth was encased within thin and translucent wrappers, each with 18 perfect folds. What I can say it, it wasn’t the best Din Tai Fung I’ve had.. and they lose out to the unconventional (but deliciously addictive) versions at Paradise Dynasty (which I heard has also newly opened in Manila!)

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For something more substantial, there’s Braised Beef Noodle Soup. Opted for half meat/half tendon. The meat was tender and juicy, but tendon wasn’t so great coz it felt extremely fatty (as was the soup, although it was packed with flavour). The noodles were good though, with an al-dente bite to them.

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Shrimp and pork wanton soup was bland; had to dip everything in soy sauce. I’m not sure is it because being from Malaysia, I’m used to very strong flavours. But then I feel like Filipinos like pungent stuff too so idk what the reasoning is for this lack of flavour.  ._.

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Say what I will, the place was full of patrons. Expect higher end prices. Service was excellent and attentive.

DIN TAI FUNG

SM Megamall Building B, St Francis, Ortigas Center, Mandaluyong, Metro Manila, Philippines

Opening hours: 10am-10pm