★★ 鼎泰豐 Din Tai Fung - Shanghai
Din Tai Fung is famous for its Chinese pork dumplings called ShiaoLongBao, during my last visit to Shanghai my co-workers and I ate about 100 of these dumplings. Even with all those dumplings I was still able to find some room to try their noodle dish 原汁紅焼牛肉麺 (Beef noodle soup).
The Soup - is a soy sauce flavored beef broth that is very pure and simple. A can taste a trace of some ginger, garlic and star anise, but otherwise contrary to its appearance, this is a very light soup.
The Noodles - are thin, straight noodles cooked firm, very similar to the Kyushu style tonkotsu ramen noodles. The firm noodles have a strong presence, maybe a bit too much for the light delicate soup.
The Toppings - are some pieces of cooked beef, beef tendon and green onions. The tendons are cooked vey tender, almost melting in your mouth. The pieces of beef are not as tendor and a little dissapointing.
Overall - a sophisticated beef noodle soup that is light and delicious, though I think this dish might be catered more to the preference of foreigners rather than the locals. Beef noodle soup should filled with intense flavors of Chinese herbs and other spices, Ding Tai Fung's version is just a little too reserved for my taste. But then, not a lot of people would go to Ding Tai Fung to order beef noodle soup, I would recommend you try the pork dumplings along with the dozens of different types of dumplings they have before trying the noodles here.