Wednesday, March 19, 2014

Vancouver's Very Own Version of "Ding Tai Feng" (Dynasty Robson Review)

As you walk by this place, you would think to yourself that Dynasty is just another Chinese place. However, when you step in, you will realize it is something abit different. Compared to many Chinese restaurants, where there are round tables and people share food surrounded by interior designs that seem to be dollar store inspired, I must say Dynasty has a more boutique feel/twist to Chinese cuisine.
When I entered Dynasty, the first thing that comes to mind is Din Tai Feng. I remember the last time I was in Taiwan, I ate at a Din Tai Feng, where they had the kitchen all visible behind a glass wall. My friend and I were quickly seated by the hostess once we came in. They are very busy and I can tell that every seat was full, but we came in at the time when one group just left so luckily, we got a spot.
After we were seated, the waitress came over with the menu. It's interesting because there are many items on the menu that are Taiwanese. It's strange in the sense that in the Chinese restaurants I've been to, there never seem to be Taiwanese selections on their menu. I found out from a conversation that Dynasty is actually a Taiwanese owned restaurant.
I noticed that the menu prices seem abit on the expensive side. But because we haven't seen what the portions are like, it's hard to determine if the price was fair or not. After a few moments of mental brainstorming, we ordered the Taiwanese Omelette, red bean buns, seafood-pork buns, and the crispy rice.

The seafood-pork buns came first. It arrived in a relatively big bamboo steamer. The smell was really good, and once we opened the lid however, I was slightly shocked at how small the portions are. For $6.95, it was 6 pieces of bite sized dumpling buns (Xiao Long Bao). Despite the small portions, the taste was pretty good. You can tell that the meat was higher quality (it was relatively lean). So for the quality, I would say the price is alright, but on the higher side.
The next item that came was the crispy rice. Personally, I've never tried crispy rice and by the sounds of it, it seemed like it was something fried. When it arrived, it came in two separate dishes. One was a dish of something that seemed like Rice Krispie bars while the other was a soup like thing that had vegetables and sea food in it. The waitress set the dish with Krispie Bars on our table first followed by the soup like thing. Afterward, we stirred it and it became something that had the consistency of congee but with the crispiness of the rice. Overall, the dish was pretty good and I would say fairly priced.
Finally, the Taiwanese Omelette and the red bean buns came. I must say, it reminded me of my grandma when I took a bite into the Omelette. The Omelette has dried up radishes inside of them (it's a Taiwanese specialty), which gives the thing that the radish is in a slightly bittersweet taste.
The red bean buns are pretty special. I never seen red bean buns made using the same wrappers as the ones that they make dumplings/ (Xiaolongbao) with. Usually, the red bean buns have thicker pastries covering the red bean instead of the thin ones. Overall, I enjoyed the buns but I have to say that the price for them isn't cheap. For 6 bite sized pieces, it cost about $6.95.
In general, the location of Dynasty is pretty convenient as it is in Downtown Vancouver. The quality of food is pretty high too. However, when it comes to pricing, it is abit on the expensive side. That said, the service was decent and I would definitely come back again

Dinesty Chinese Restaurant 聚 (on Robson) on Urbanspoon

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