Din Tai Fung

Restaurants, Taiwanese Glendale
Recommended
4 out of 5 stars
5 out of 5 stars
(7user reviews)
 (Photograph: Jakob N. Layman)
1/11
Photograph: Jakob N. LaymanShrimp and pork shao mai at Din Tai Fung at The Americana at Brand
 (Photograph: Jakob N. Layman)
2/11
Photograph: Jakob N. LaymanSpicy wontons at Din Tai Fung at The Americana at Brand
 (Photograph: Jakob N. Layman)
3/11
Photograph: Jakob N. LaymanSpinach sautéed in garlic at Din Tai Fung at The Americana at Brand
 (Photograph: Jakob N. Layman)
4/11
Photograph: Jakob N. LaymanXiao long bao with truffle at Din Tai Fung at The Americana at Brand
 (Photograph: Jakob N. Layman)
5/11
Photograph: Jakob N. LaymanPear and lychee martini at Din Tai Fung at The Americana at Brand
 (Photograph: Jakob N. Layman)
6/11
Photograph: Jakob N. LaymanShrimp fried rice at Din Tai Fung at The Americana at Brand
 (Photograph: Jakob N. Layman)
7/11
Photograph: Jakob N. LaymanDry noodles with pork and tart pickled vegetables at Din Tai Fung at The Americana at Brand
 (Photograph: Jakob N. Layman)
8/11
Photograph: Jakob N. LaymanDin Tai Fung at The Americana at Brand
 (Photograph: Jakob N. Layman)
9/11
Photograph: Jakob N. LaymanDin Tai Fung at The Americana at Brand
 (Photograph: Jakob N. Layman)
10/11
Photograph: Jakob N. LaymanDin Tai Fung at The Americana at Brand
 (Photograph: Jakob N. Layman)
11/11
Photograph: Jakob N. LaymanDin Tai Fung at The Americana at Brand

If the San Gabriel Valley is, mentally or geographically, far from you, but xiao long bao—Chinese soup dumplings filled with hot broth and usually, but not always, pork—are more your speed than, say, tasting menus and escargot, then maybe the restaurant opening you were most excited about this year was not Trois Mec or Republique, but Din Tai Fung in Glendale. For the uninitiated, Din Tai Fung is arguably one of the best XLB specialists stateside. There are two locations in Arcadia alone, practically next door to each another, yet both are perpetually packed, and now one in Glendale, next to Nordstrom in The Americana at Brand, a huge outdoor mall outfitted with a trolley that can transport your tired shopping legs from Anthropologie to the restaurant, bags and all.

The Glendale location is stylish, sleek and modern; it looks like it belongs in the sort of mall that offers valet parking. Unlike the Arcadia spot, this outpost includes a full bar and a special menu item: Soup dumplings with a slice of truffle layered on top of minced pork. It’s pricey—$22.50 for 5 dumplings—and not particularly good, as the earthy truffle doesn’t mesh well with the hot, gingery soup and meat.

Much better are the restaurant’s signature juicy pork dumplings ($8.50). These are lovely, thin-skinned pouches filled with savory pork and hot broth and eaten with a dab of soy sauce, vinegar and ginger. Significantly, these taste largely the same here as they do in Arcadia. The quality, too, is similar. You can order several steamer basketfuls of XLB here and not one dumpling will have sprung a leak. These are worth the wait in line, but whether they’re worth the trip to the Americana? Well, that depends entirely on how much you love to shop.

What to eat: The xiao long bao are Din Tai Fung’s specialty. Every steamer basket includes ten soup dumplings but folks have been known to order just one basket for themselves, so plan accordingly. As good as those are, don't overlook other dishes on the menu: Din Tai Fung does an excellent job with its vegetables. Try, for instance, the spinach perfectly sautéed with garlic ($8.50). The spicy wontons, tossed in a fiery red chili sauce, are excellent ($8-$9), as are the sticky Shanghai rice cakes tossed with tender bits of pork ($9.50) and the tasty, slightly nutty dry noodles with minced pork and tart pickled vegetables ($8.50). Finish your meal with a bun stuffed with red bean paste ($2.50).

What to drink: Hot tea is probably the best complement to your meal, but also consider taking advantage of the full bar here. You can have sake, say, or a special cocktail like the Pear and Lychee Martini ($11) with Smirnoff Pear, St. Germain and fresh lemon, or a Ginger Mule ($11) with Tanqueray Gin, Stirrings Ginger and ginger beer. Red and white wines are available by the glass or the bottle, and there’s a variety of bottled beer (i.e., Asahi) and a few craft brews on tap.

Where to sit: If the line is too long, see if you can snag seats at the bar. Otherwise, put your name down for a table and feel free to wander around the mall: The restaurant will text you when your table is ready.

Conversation piece: Din Tai Fung originated in Taiwan and has some 80 locations worldwide. Next year, it will open an outpost at South Coast Plaza in Costa Mesa.

By: Tien Nguyen

Posted:

Venue name: Din Tai Fung
Contact:
Address: 177 Caruso Ave
Los Angeles
91210
Opening hours: Mon–Fri 11am–10pm; Sat 10am–10pm; Sun 10am–9pm
Do you own this business?
Static map showing venue location

Average User Rating

4.7 / 5

Rating Breakdown

  • 5 star:4
  • 4 star:2
  • 3 star:0
  • 2 star:0
  • 1 star:0
LiveReviews|7
1 person listening
tastemaker

I can't believe that it took me so long to try this place! Din Tai Fung is a wonderful experience and really fun date spot. The dumplings are delicious and so is the boba tea. I also love that they do free valet parking validation (3 hours). We went early (4pm-ish) and didn't have much of a wait but when we came back later to get our car the place was packed. Eat at off-times or plan to do some shopping while you wait. 

tastemaker

The first time I tasted one of these luscious soup dumplings, it was a party in my mouth. The flavor, texture and experience are game changers. This is why every branch of this restaurant has a long wait. It truly is the gold standard for these types of XLB dumplings.


The wrappers are so delicate and the broth so warm and perfect, I had to research how they are made. They are served and eaten with black vinegar and finely chopped ginger. You can see the chefs expertly hand making them in the glass walled kitchen and marvel at this delicacy.


If you arrive right around opening on weekends, you can get an actual soup with the mini dumplings inside. Some of their other dumplings with chives, the green beans and the black sesame filled buns for desert are lovely.

tastemaker

A little bit or miss to be honest. I've gone when it's been amazing and when it's been a bit of a let down. Soup dumplings are all the rage and certainly tasty enough but it's the mustard greens that keep me coming back. So simple and so flavorful! For a guaranteed awesome meal come during off hours. Not only will you not have a multi-hour wait, but you'll get extra delicious eats!

moderator

With the original Arcadia location gone in favor of a massive mall restaurant, I actually prefer this location now (which ironically is attached to a mall). If there's a wait—there will be—it's really not a big deal to leave your number and just wander around the Americana until you get that much-awaited text. As for food, the soup dumplings are as delicious as always, and the sautéed string beans with garlic are still a must-order.

tastemaker

The gold standard for soup dumplings (xiao long bao) (at least in Glendale/LA), you'll have to wait a lonngggg time for your table at peak hours (and they frustratingly don't have a reservation system), but you will be rewarded with delicious, filling food.  All dumpling options are amazing, all vegetable options are delectable--you really can't go wrong.  Park in the neighboring Galleria parking lot for free unlimited parking.  Fill up before or after hitting up the plethora of shops at the Americana and Galleria.  Or just go for the dumplings.  Dumplings are all important.

moderator

This place is pretty stuffy compared to its original location in Arcadia—though what can you expect from a restaurant that's essentially inside a mall? Luckily the quality of food is the same (perhaps even better, if you're into truffle oil, as the truffle dumplings are only available here). There's also a fun little window through which you can watch soup dumplings being made, which is a great way to spend your loooong wait time.

moderator

Soup dumplings were an entirely new concept for me before my first life-changing meal at Din Tai Fung. I'm exciting to take friends and family for the opportunity to experience these fantastic restaurants for the first time. The reaction is always positive and the dishes are always delicious.