to celebrate the addition of one new employee to our little office, the boss treated us to lunch. when we were talking about it last week, i blurted out "can we go to din tai fung? that sounds SO good."
i'm awesome. but hey, we're talking about soup dumplings here, folks.
and that's where we ended up going, despite my super tacky ways. whee! and although i've been a few times before, i'd never been to the "new" DTF. bigger, better, nicer. one look at the crowd in front of the "old" one and we hightailed it around the corner.
apparently, a shitton of other folks also decided that soup dumplings were the perfect way to beat the monday blues. we ended up waiting about 15 minutes for a table.
while we waited, we perused the menu and made our selections.
when a bench opened up, we went inside and sat down to wait.
and within moments, it was our turn and we were shuffled along to a table near the back.
the boss knows that i blog, so she pointed to the window into the kitchen, where the dumplings are made by hand by a slew of dudes. "go take some pictures," she said. i happily complied.
the guys nudged each other, flashed grins my way, and proceeded to make themselves look busy as hell. this dude decided he wanted to look good in my photo and looked right at the camera.
as soon as i sat down, the first item arrived - spicy and sour soup. yum.
i turned my chopsticks over and took a refresher course on how to enjoy my soup dumplings.
as my friend venn says, these green beans are laced with crack or some shit. they are so damn tasty.
and then they arrived - the first order of soup dumplings. mmmmm.
i poured some vinegar into my dish of ginger:
gingerly picked up a dumpling, trying not to rip it open and lose all the savory, soupy goodness:
and nibbled on the skin, letting the soup run out into the spoon.
my mouth is watering just thinking about these. oh, they were so good.
we also got some shrimp and pork shiaomai. these were quite different from the shu mai i'm used to at dim sum restaurants - they were like bigger versions of the soup dumplings, with a little twist at the top that made them look like crowns, and topped with a whole shrimp. oh. mah. gah.
more soup dumplings - this time, with crabmeat. this sounds awesome, but i uncharacteristically found myself preferring the original pork versions.
soup dumplings are definitely pricier than dim sum, but worth every penny. and, um, i wasn't buying.
i'd taken my own car so i could run some errands after work, and after we parted ways, i decided to wander into the asian market next door. i had to muffle my squeal of laughter when i saw this:
in the frozen section, i picked this up:
and then made a spectacle of myself when i turned it over and snorted really loudly at the ingredients.
i didn't buy this:
but i did end up with all of this:
quite a productive afternoon, i'd say.