Sherman's Food Adventures: Dai Tung

Dai Tung

Alright, who turned on the furnace in the GVRD? When the mercury rises above 34 degrees Celsius, it becomes really uncomfortable. There was no way that I would even consider turning on the stove in heat like this. Sure, I could go out and use the BBQ; but really, standing over a hot grill in the blazing sun was not an option as well. We really needed to find a place with A/C. For some strange reason, Dai Tung came to mind. Yes, the very same Dai Tung that has some pretty good Dim Sum at reasonable prices which I never get to eat. I've only been successful a handful of times getting a table for Dim Sum since the place is pure nuts. This is further complicated by the fact I hate lineups. Seeing the lineup at Dai Tung is the equivalent of me following a full-faced visor wearing driver going 30 km/h down a one-lane street. I avoid at all costs!

Fortunately, dinner is never even close to being that busy. However, for the price, the dinner menu is actually quite good here. Ever since they renovated the place, they have maintained a level of cleanliness that includes the washrooms. But, for some strange reason, there is a part of the faucet that is missing which makes it quite difficult to use. Well, at least the washroom is relatively clean which is a serious bonus at a Chinese restaurant. Since the A/C was freakishly cold, we actually decided to have the Daily Soup which was Watercress with Pork. Despite there being a good selection of other soups, I usually go for the daily soup because it's slow cooked and that results in a flavourful broth. The watercress soup was served boiling hot and it was not salty. We also got the Live Crab with Cream Sauce on top of a bed of noodles. Although the crab was cooked perfectly, the cream sauce was not really all that creamy. Instead, it was more of a starchy milk sauce. Mind you, it still tasted quite good. The server recommended the next dish - Fried Whole Talapia Hot Pot. Turns out it was a great choice. The whole fish was fried perfectly with crispy skin and soft flesh. Plenty of onions, green onions, ginger and whole garlic cloves provided a aromatic flavour to the dish.

We couldn't go to Dai Tung and not have their signature dish - 5-Cup Spiced Duck. The meaning behind the name is that there are exactly 5 cups of ingredients used to make the duck. The result is an extremely tender duck bathed in a sweet vinegary sauce. Trying to satisfy the veggie quota, we ordered the Pea Shoots in Broth with Beancurd Stick, Gingko Nuts and Wolfberries. This is a very delicate dish that is only lightly seasoned. The natural flavour of the pea shoots are not masked by the usual garlic stir-fry. The dish was cooked perfectly and was a refreshing contrast to the flavourful duck. As always, we were presented with the complimentary Sweet Red Bean Dessert Soup. This version had small tapioca pearls and was only slightly sweet.

For those who only go for the Dim Sum, I encourage you to try the dinner at Dai Tung. It's pretty good and the prices won't break the bank. Service was friendly and attentive. Our plates were changed consistently and our tea was refill promptly. Add into the fact that the restaurant is kept clean, you have a solid choice for Chinese food.

The Good:
- Food is quite good, dinner and Dim Sum
- Prices are reasonable
- Relatively clean restaurant

The Bad:
- Dim Sum lineup is pure chaos
- Very few parking spaces available

Dai Tung on Urbanspoon


holly said...

This is one of my family's regular haunts for dim sum. We try to avoid the crowds by going early and on weekdays only. Weekends are pure chaos. There aren't many affordable and edible dim sum places in Vancouver unless you make the trip to Richmond which is just too much hassle in the morning.

You can find parking downstairs in their parking lot if you don't mind the "haunted" feeling. There's a radio playing loudly but no one's sitting at the security desk. Don't arrive too late, after 1:30 pm, as the selection of food slows down a lot.

We've also had dinner here, which is much less crowded as you say. Food is dependably good and reasonably priced. I would recommend it for casual dining.

Sherman Chan said...

Haunted parking lot? Sure, I'll give it a go. Thanks! Yah, I will try to go early one day for Dim Sum. It's just so early! LOL!

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