CNN names Din Tai Fung world's second best chain for travelers
CNALOS ANGELES -- Taiwan's Din Tai Fung (鼎泰豐) restaurant chain, known for its steamed dumplings called xiaolongbao (小籠包), beat out U.S.-based McDonald's and Starbucks to place second on a list of “best franchises for travelers” compiled by CNN Travel.
September 28, 2013, 12:05 am TWN
The Sept. 26 article indexes restaurants, retailers and service providers that offer a familiar name for travelers in unfamiliar parts of the globe.
CNN Travel cites the Din Tai Fung's “transparent dumpling skin” as a reason to love the upscale chain, as it gives diners peace of mind to know the contents of their dumplings before digging in.
The article also notes, with a touch of humor, that “customers complaining about hour-long waits” at most of the 70-some Din Tai Fung restaurants across 11 countries are an indication of how popular the “sublime” cuisine has proven worldwide.
Din Tai Fung restaurants in Taiwan and elsewhere do not take reservations, instead requiring customers to line up on a first-come, first-served basis.
The restaurant started as a cooking oils store but did not find success until it shifted its focus to xiaolongbao production in 1972, CNN Travel noted.
Din Tai Fung's two Hong Kong stores have each received one Michelin star for their high quality.
Unsurprisingly, U.S. chains dominated the list of “golden chains.” Convenience store 7-Eleven came in at number one for its 15,831 locations in Japan — significantly more than the 7,700 stores it operates in the United States.
Rounding out the list, in order, were McDonald's, Starbucks, Four Seasons Hotels and Resorts, MOS Burger, Muji, KFC, IKEA, KidZania, DFS Galleria, Hilton Hotel & Resorts, Subway, Tim Hortons, Europcar, Marks & Spencer, Panda Express, Wagamama, Outback Steakhouse and Cinnabon.