The façade itself will mesmerize you, the very welcoming atmosphere and an interior adorned with elegant designs and bright crystals will entice you to sit and relax. As you enter the restaurant, you will be greeted on your right side a wall of aquariums where fresh live seafood waits to delight the gastronomic desire of guests. First impressions last – and my first impression of this place is astonishing.
A well renowned restaurant in Taiwan, Ding Xian aims to bring the same quality, sophistication, and ultimate dining experience to the Philippines. Every piece of cutlery is by Wedgwood, a world-renowned brand for fine china and luxurious tableware. The name of the restaurant alone is a testament to its goal of providing nothing but the freshest and choicest ingredients to its guests. “Ding” in Taiwan means “top” and “Xian” means “freshness.”
Ding Xian is a Taiwanese-themed restaurant in its most stylish conception with all the crystal and decors imported from Europe. Four warmly alluring VIP rooms frequented by prominent members of the business and political circles gather here to experience a one-of-a-kind treatment focused on respect, warmth, and elegance.
Taiwanese cuisine is characterized by light and subtle tastes and flavors, but in adherence to its Filipino audience, any guest can request the chef to adjust the flavors to their preference – a humble demonstration of its mission to gratify each and every guest.
Our food adventure began with a glass of refreshing milk tea. What made this truly amazing was the tapioca pearl; it was exquisitely soft and was so pleasing to chew. We were treated to a full course meal starting with the appetizer –Pickled Tomato in Plum, an ideal starter. Baby tomatoes bathe in plum sauce that is charmingly sweet and luscious.
The Pumpkin Soup with Foie Gras was a rich charming soup oozing with authentic flavors.
The kitchen is headed by Taiwanese master chef Eddie Lin who showcased his expertise in preparing the Tainan Dan-Zai Noodles – delectable noodles immersed in flavorful broth made of pork bones that is simmered for 26 hours. Every sip was heavenly.
We were presented with Prawn Gratin with fruits, an east meets west dish, the presentation alone will make you water. King Prawn lying in a bed of melted cheese and wait till you cut your fork through. The aroma of the fruits and seafood permeates the air taking you to euphoria.
Our entrée was the Grilled Lamb Shoulder. You eat with your eyes - with the creative arrangement of the lamb, mint sauce, rosemary, and yam; this is a truly marvelous sight. As you cut through the meat, the aroma explodes with indescribably pleasant scents. The tip of the lamb is covered with foil so you can use your hands to enjoy the perfectly sealed flavor of the lamb complimented by delicate seasonings.
A truly asian delicacy, the Glutinous Rice Dumpling will truly surprise and delight your senses as you unwrap it. A mixture of scallops, chestnuts, peanuts, chicken, and egg yolk masterfully sheathed in fragrant glutinous rice.
Two kinds of sausages were dished up, the Cuttlefish and Sorghum Wine Sausages. Both served with fresh cut garlic perfectly complimenting the bold chunky flavors of the dish.
We had the opportunity to be treated by Taiwan’s most prominent and world-class chef – Chef John Lin. And if you are curious, Chefs John and Eddie are not related; both however are true masters of the kitchen. Chef John is based in Taiwan but is in the country to briefly oversee the kitchen operations.
He prepared a one of a kind dessert – French Roast Apple with Vanilla Ice Cream; caramelized apple oozing with all the refreshing wonderful zests of vanilla ice cream and mascarpone cheese drizzled with a special sauce made of white and French orange wines. We were graced to see this master in action as he prepares this dish. His every stroke and movement as he scoops, drizzle, and plates each dish with grace and mastery is a sight to behold. As I sank my teeth into this masterpiece, the first thought that came to my mind is: “Don’t forget your name.”
Enjoy exceptional first-rate dining and visit Ding Xian at Unit 212A, Upper Ground Floor, City of Dreams Manila. Aseana Avenue corner Roxas Boulevard, Baranggay Tambo, Paranaque City 1701.
For reservations, you may call +63-917-322-3101.