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South Coast Plaza Din Tai Fung Rates With International Counterparts

Went tonight. The space is about 1.5x the size of the newer Arcadia branch. There is a full bar. The food is pretty much identical to the Arcadia branch. The exception being the pork XLB here was a bit more flavorful than the ones I had at the Arcadia branch about 1-2 months ago. Got the black truffle XLB at $22.5 for 5. My least favorite item. Finished 3 out of 5. Just overkill.

Everything else was excellent:

-spinach with bean curd and wine
-house steamed chicken soup
-pork XLB
-truffle XLB *
-pork and shrimp dumplings
-shrimp fried rice
-fried pork chop

There are chicken, vegetarian, and fish dumplings for the bovine adverse.

Whether it's worth the wait. Probably not but you're gonna have to do it if you want to try it within the next 6 months. I grabbed a number after the gym, went home and showered, ran some errands, and came back just in time to be seared promptly after 2 hours (quoted 2.5 hours at 5:45).

A welcome addition.

about 4 hours ago
Porthos in Los Angeles Area
1

South Coast Plaza Din Tai Fung Rates With International Counterparts

Current wait time for the bar is 1.5 hours for a party of 1.

1 day ago
Porthos in Los Angeles Area

Best lunch in Costa Mesa/Irvine/Santa Ana for under $10

It was a reply to someone who liked the Italian Hoagie at Philly's Best in Irvine. An alternative to Philly's Best because I too have had and enjoyed the hoagie at Philly's Best and thought JM was better.

One could tell you to put the pipe down every time you champion Carnegie Deli over Katz but that would be d*ck wouldn't it?

1 day ago
Porthos in Los Angeles Area

Best lunch in Costa Mesa/Irvine/Santa Ana for under $10

Exactly. It's about good eats from the high end to the low end. From chains to the mom and pop joints. Not all hole in the wall mom and pop joints serve great food. Just because you make something fancier doesn't mean it's "better" than the original version. These new small plates/asian influenced restaurants have shown that in spades.

1 day ago
Porthos in Los Angeles Area

Rabbit meat in Orange County?

Usually available at Bristol Farms.

1 day ago
Porthos in Los Angeles Area

Best lunch in Costa Mesa/Irvine/Santa Ana for under $10

There is a great cold cut sandwich at Pizzeria Ortica also. But since OP (ArtS) didn't want a sit-down restaurant lunch, I didn't mention it. Scarpetta is hardly a lunch rec for the OC.

"Chow-worthy" is so loaded. It's just your opinion.

Have a great day yourself.

1 day ago
Porthos in Los Angeles Area

Best lunch in Costa Mesa/Irvine/Santa Ana for under $10

What that some lame joke about how I had to be drinking to make that rec? As you can see, you're the odd man out on this one. Keep yukking JJ.

1 day ago
Porthos in Los Angeles Area

Best lunch in Costa Mesa/Irvine/Santa Ana for under $10

You should give Jersey Mike's a try. About 2x more cold cuts. Get it Mike's Way. Good stuff.

Aug 18, 2014
Porthos in Los Angeles Area
1

South Coast Plaza Din Tai Fung Rates With International Counterparts

Assuming no one else wants a spot at the bar to also skip the wait and eat the same food ;)

Aug 18, 2014
Porthos in Los Angeles Area

South Coast Plaza Din Tai Fung Rates With International Counterparts

I've never waited more than 45 minutes at any location, even during peak weekend hours.
==========================
Arcadia used to be at least 1 hour wait before opening of the second location. I made the mistake of going on New Years Day to the Arcadia branch. That was a 2 hour wait on BOTH sides

Arcadia isn't that far from OC...if people wanted DTF that bad, they would have made the drive already.
====================================
It's about a 2+ hour drive round trip so essentially a wash or worse.

Aug 18, 2014
Porthos in Los Angeles Area

South Coast Plaza Din Tai Fung Rates With International Counterparts

A couple of hours wait for lunch is the definition of madhouse for me.

Window shopping can be dangerous and that lunch can get expensive really quickly all of the sudden...

Aug 18, 2014
Porthos in Los Angeles Area
1

South Coast Plaza Din Tai Fung Rates With International Counterparts

Even before this I was counting on not being able to set foot in the place for the first 6 months. Unless we are talking very odd hours like 3-4pm or 9pm.

Aug 18, 2014
Porthos in Los Angeles Area

SOUP - LA Dish of the Month (November 2013)

Tried What's Up Men today. Gyoza is very good. The chicken shoyu ramen was okay. The tsukemen was excellent. Rich with a distinct bonito seaweed component. I'm a big fan. Be sure to request thick noodles and extra chewy. The egg is runny and perfect here.

Aug 16, 2014
Porthos in Los Angeles Area
1

L.A. Dish of the Month, August 2014: COCKTAILS and Bar Food

Cocktails at Providence.

Dark and stormy amuse bouche.

Gratuitous shot of ugly bunch

Aug 16, 2014
Porthos in Los Angeles Area
2

Fresh Soba Noodles in OC- Tanakaya

Ten Zaru soba and hot udon.

Tempura here is excellent. I prefer my soba and udon a bit chewier. Worth a try.

Aug 15, 2014
Porthos in Los Angeles Area

XLB in OC?

No clue. Looked like a decent space but counting on it being not enough for the first 6 months.

Aug 15, 2014
Porthos in Los Angeles Area

XLB in OC?

Soft opening events going on now and the weekend. Official open confirmed 8/18.

Nice looking space. They are going to crush it.

Aug 15, 2014
Porthos in Los Angeles Area

LA "Musts" Tailored to a Strategic New Yorker

EMC is a great call! You can get some popular Asian preps of lobster and crab all under 1 roof. The steamed crab with spicy lemon pepper sauce and lobster lightly batter fried or charbroiled. I like to drizzle the sauce from the steamed crab into the abalone congee. Excellent eats.

I pass on the oysters personally which are okay but not great.

Aug 15, 2014
Porthos in Los Angeles Area
1

WSJ on Niki Nakayama of n/naka

Yeah, that's a pretty sad way of rationalizing sexism and racism.

About as silly as assuming a sushi chef makes good sushi just because he is a Japanese male. The sushi at n/naka is better than many sushi restaurants out there with male itames and you know it.

Aug 09, 2014
Porthos in Los Angeles Area
3

Maude reservation

$85 pp is $110pp after tax and 18-20% automatic gratuity. That's if you don't drink anything but tap.

Morels was $115.

Like I said, good, but not worth redial 30 min to 2 hours good. Morels was constant redial from 10-noon.

Aug 07, 2014
Porthos in Los Angeles Area
1

Maude reservation

They have a decent wine by the glass selection. In fact, they offer a regular wine pairing and a premium wine pairing.

Didn't pay attention to the non alcoholic beverage selection ;)

I'll dissent. It was good. I went for morels theme dinner, ordered a bottle of 1990 Cali Sparkling (very good, and priced nicely about $100). I brought 2 bottles and it ended up $225+ pp after tax, tip, and corkage with a sauternes and a madeira at the end. It was fun and everything was very good but not necessarily a *must*. Haven't felt compelled to go through the brutal dialing process again. Worth going to. Not worth dialing 30 minutes non stop to go.

The place is tiny. That's why reservations are so tough.

Aug 07, 2014
Porthos in Los Angeles Area

Birrieria De Don Boni

Thanks for venturing out to try something new and reporting back! Looks great!

My go to for birriera is El Cabrito in Santa Ana. They have a combo that comes with a side of consomme. It's so good.

Did you happen to try the consomme here?

Aug 07, 2014
Porthos in Los Angeles Area
1

Guidance needed for week-long LA visit

I've been to AOC multiple times, Lucques 3 times, Tavern twice, and Gjelina around 6-8 times. I too would take Gjelina over AOC and Lucques easily. And I happen to like AOC and Tavern.

Aug 06, 2014
Porthos in Los Angeles Area

Guidance needed for week-long LA visit

Bos is an excellent suggestion. Fried tripe is delicious. If you have a large enough party you can order the whole oxtail in advance.

http://chowhound.chow.com/topics/923070

Aug 06, 2014
Porthos in Los Angeles Area

Szechuan Impression: Strategically positioned to take Chengdu Taste's business?

Great photos and report!

Aug 06, 2014
Porthos in Los Angeles Area

Guidance needed for week-long LA visit

Great post. I second big time adding Night + Market.

Also agree with adding Korean food somewhere.

Also agree with Gjelina over AOC even though AOC will be temptingly close.

Also consider adding Shunji or Mori for a sushi experience and Tsujita (original branch during lunch) for their tsukemen. Make sure you get it with their egg.

Aug 05, 2014
Porthos in Los Angeles Area

Best Dim Sum in the Bay

I live in SoCal. Dungeness crab isn't unique. Dungeness crab XLB is.

If you're out in Rowland Heights get the Dungeness crab rice cake at Shanghailander Palace. Superb.

Aug 02, 2014
Porthos in San Francisco Bay Area

XLB in OC?

Lao Dong update. XLB are now soggy, frozen, and broken apart. Sad and quick decline.

Beef noodles aren't bad, especially the clear broth. This place will be rendered moot when DTF opens. I can't imagine this place lasting much longer.

Aug 02, 2014
Porthos in Los Angeles Area

ISO Sheng Jian Bao

Here is the yelp photo from the las tunas branch.

http://m.yelp.com/biz_photos/tasty-no...

You're right, menu looks totally different from Irvine and Hacienda branches. Looks better.

Aug 02, 2014
Porthos in Los Angeles Area

ISO Sheng Jian Bao

Ones at Irvine branch are pretty average. Same as most versions around town.

Aug 02, 2014
Porthos in Los Angeles Area