Apparently Kao Chi is suppose to be Din Tai Fung’s number one rival, so I felt the need to experience what this rivalry was all about!
As we entered, we took a number and waited downstairs. To be honest, it wasn’t that long a waiting time. Probably shorter than Din Tai Fung. I really like places where you can see the chefs making the dumplings in front of you. Just like Din Tai Fung, Chef’s Gallery do as well.
After viewing the chefs through the window, this was making me excited to try the food.
At Din Tai Fung I quite like how you can order 5 pieces instead of the full 10 pieces of the dumpling dishes. At Din Tai Fung you write 0.5 on your order-card.
This meant that at Kao Chi, we couldn’t try as many dishes. So we ordered:
- steamed pork buns
- crab xiao long bao
- deep-fried prawn and pork in beancurd skin
- golden sands bao (egg yolk and cream sweet dessert bao)
I’d have to say I did like the steamed pork buns. Reminded me of New Shanghai in Ashfield, Sydney. This dish was competently done. Came to the table piping hot, and the soup flowed out, which is what you want to see! It goes really well with the finely chopped fresh ginger and vinegar. Yum!
Next for the xiao long bao. This was quite good too, good crab meat and crab flavour coming through. Though the xiao long bao skin is thicker than Din Tai Fung and for some reason the rest of the dishes came to the table warm, but not piping hot, which I think is how they serve it to patrons, so they don’t burn their tongues with the hot soup in the dumplings? That was my only guess?
The deep-fried pork and prawn in beancurd skin was again very competently done. The golden sands bao was also … o.k. but I think lacked a little more sweetness from the custard portion of the filling, and saltiness from the salted yolk proportion of the filling. Definitely lacked punch to it.
All in all though a very pleasant eating experience, but Din Tai Fung is the clear winner in this fight, no competition as far as I was concerned.
Value for money: 7.5/10
Overall Score: 30/40