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Han Dynasty


philadining
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Made another stop at the Exton Han Dynasty for my deep-fried shredded beef fix. As I was picking it up they were nice enough to give me a sample of their new duck preparation. It's kind of a variation on the tea-smoked duck that they used to do, in that it's a complex, multistage process of smoking, roasting, resting, frying, a few other secret manipulations, I'm sure!

This new twist is that they incorporate oyster sauce somewhere in the chain, and it lends a really nice sweet-salty twist to the crispy skin. I really can't figure out how they get the skin so nicely crunchy, and render-out so much of the fat, while the meat remains so tender and moist. I've gotten two of those things in a lot of places, but all three is pretty amazing.

I might still prefer the tea-smoked duck up at Han Dynasty Royersford by a small margin, but this Crispy Duck with Oyster Sauce is a pretty close second...

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"Philadelphia’s premier soup dumpling blogger" - Foobooz

philadining.com

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Made another stop at the Exton Han Dynasty for my deep-fried shredded beef fix.

<snip>

We made our monthly pilgrimage to HD2 last night and also had the deep-fried shredded beef. We think it should be renamed, deep-fried meat candy, so tasty!

<a href='http://retroroadmap.com' target='_blank'>Retro Roadmap - All the Retro, Vintage and Cool Old places worth visiting!</a>

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We made our monthly pilgrimage to HD2 last night and also had the deep-fried shredded beef. We think it should be renamed, deep-fried meat candy, so tasty!

I like that, but just for truth-in-labeling, how about "deep-fried meat candy that will burn your face off but you won't care" ?

"Philadelphia’s premier soup dumpling blogger" - Foobooz

philadining.com

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  • 2 months later...

we went to han dynasty tonight for dinner (the exton one). the food was better than it has been in a long time. not sure if they brought in a new chef or the old one was on his game, but we had a super meal. taiwanese sausage & garlic, wontons in chili oil, chicken with hot dry peppers and shredded pork with pickled chilies. we usually have enough to take home for lunch, but the hub and i scarfed down everything. my lips are still tingling and my tummy's happy.

"The perfect lover is one who turns into pizza at 4am."

Charles Pierce

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we went to han dynasty tonight for dinner (the exton one).  the food was better than it has been in a long time.  not sure if they brought in a new chef or the old one was on his game, but we had a super meal.  taiwanese sausage & garlic, wontons in chili oil, chicken with hot dry peppers and shredded pork with pickled chilies.  we usually have enough to take home for lunch, but the hub and i scarfed down everything.  my lips are still tingling and my tummy's happy.

Were the wontons in chili oil the same as in Royersford? I ask b/c when we were in Exton a few weeks back we wanted the dumplings in chili oil and did not see them on the menu. They made up some for us but it was more like "peking ravioli in oil with a bunch of spices that should've made it hot but didn't really" - I found it a bit disconcerting that 2 locations of the same resto would not have the same stuff on the menu. Love the chicken with hot dry peppers at both though!

Another Q about the Exton menu now that I think of it- I think I saw someone eating a dish that looked to me like a shredded cucumber, does this ring a bell with anyone? I was thinking if there was something cool and tangy like that, it would make a great accompaniment to the fiery chicken we love so much.

Damn, now I'm hungry! :-)

<a href='http://retroroadmap.com' target='_blank'>Retro Roadmap - All the Retro, Vintage and Cool Old places worth visiting!</a>

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Another Q about the Exton menu now that I think of it- I think I saw someone eating a dish that looked to me like a shredded cucumber, does this ring a bell with anyone? I was thinking if there was something cool and tangy like that, it would make a great accompaniment to the fiery chicken we love so much.

Damn, now I'm hungry! :-)

Did the cucumber dish look like the pickled cucumber I posted upthread? If it was, that indeed would be a good counterbalance for a spicy dish.

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we went to han dynasty tonight for dinner (the exton one).  the food was better than it has been in a long time.  not sure if they brought in a new chef or the old one was on his game, but we had a super meal.  taiwanese sausage & garlic, wontons in chili oil, chicken with hot dry peppers and shredded pork with pickled chilies.  we usually have enough to take home for lunch, but the hub and i scarfed down everything.  my lips are still tingling and my tummy's happy.

Were the wontons in chili oil the same as in Royersford? I ask b/c when we were in Exton a few weeks back we wanted the dumplings in chili oil and did not see them on the menu. They made up some for us but it was more like "peking ravioli in oil with a bunch of spices that should've made it hot but didn't really" - I found it a bit disconcerting that 2 locations of the same resto would not have the same stuff on the menu. Love the chicken with hot dry peppers at both though!

Another Q about the Exton menu now that I think of it- I think I saw someone eating a dish that looked to me like a shredded cucumber, does this ring a bell with anyone? I was thinking if there was something cool and tangy like that, it would make a great accompaniment to the fiery chicken we love so much.

Damn, now I'm hungry! :-)

looks like the royersford restaurant offers wontons OR dumplings in chili oil. i like the wontons. they're lighter and they have more folds, therefore more places for the chili oil to hide. the exton restaurant offers a "quick fried cucumber". i was really close to ordering it, but we already had a lot of food for just the two of us. next time ...

"The perfect lover is one who turns into pizza at 4am."

Charles Pierce

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thanks both! The cukes I saw didn't look like the upthread ones, but those look like something that would fit the bill. We'll have to order the wontons next time we're in Exton, but it seemed like the chili oil sauce was different from Rofo as well. All good stuff though!

<a href='http://retroroadmap.com' target='_blank'>Retro Roadmap - All the Retro, Vintage and Cool Old places worth visiting!</a>

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  • 1 year later...

We finally got around to checking out the authentic menu at Han Dynasty. It turns out, we had been to this place once before, around two years ago, when we first moved to Exton. Being far less adventurous at the time, my husband naturally opted for the Americanized menu. We remembered it being very tasty, but expensive compared to the usual takeout Chinese places, which this clearly is not, so we foolishly never went back.

Until a couple of days ago, that is. We did take out: Taiwanese sausage, deep fried shredded beef, three cup chicken, and what was supposed to be seafood and pineapple fried rice, but wound up being fine noodles with egg, shrimp and sesame oil. I loved everything. My husband found the shredded beef far too spicy, but after plucking out the chili pods, I dug right in. Everything was extremely flavorful and, with the exception of the noodles, very different from anything we had ever eaten in a Chinese restaurant. I can't wait to go back. I can't believe I missed out on two years of eating such great food. And it's very nearly within walking distance of our home. Wow. :cool:

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You picked a good time for your re-visit, I think they shifted the chef from Royersford down to Exton recently. I've been getting a lot of take-out from there recently, and I feel like it's gotten better. I'd actually never been unhappy with the food I'd been getting at Exton, but I did feel like it took an up-tick a few weeks ago.

Now, I don't know what that means for Royersford... I guess I'll just have to go and find out!

That chef, who HAD been at Royersford, and I think is at Exton now, has a particularly great way with the "hot sauce" dishes, so try the beef or lamb or pork in hot sauce.

His version of the deep fried shredded beef is indeed particularly incendiary, and I love it. I find it almost painful to eat, yet I can't stop. The chefs at the downtown location don't tend to make it any where near as hot, at least not by default, and it can be kind of disappointing, unless you urge them to crank up the spice.

But yes, it's not really the ideal place to get the Americanized stuff (although I've had some of that when entertaining guests, and you could do worse... ) but for the traditional dishes, it's really solid, and right now might be a particularly strong moment!

"Philadelphia’s premier soup dumpling blogger" - Foobooz

philadining.com

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  • 4 weeks later...

I had takeout Saturday night. Double Cooked Pork, Mapo Tofu,Lamb in Hot Sauce and Dumplings in Chili Oil.

While I heard the Sad news that Han does not come round much anymore, I was told that Philly was treating him well.

Back to the food. It was out of this world good! Screaming hot spicy and delicious. Whatever quailty bumps I experienced in the past this was what drew me here in the first place. Great food.

**************************************************

Ah, it's been way too long since I did a butt. - Susan Fahning aka "snowangel"

--------------------

One summers evening drunk to hell, I sat there nearly lifeless…Warren

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We had take-out on Friday and it was the best it's been in a while. We saw Han in Philly mid-February. He said he may come out to Exton for the banquet they do every 3rd Wednesday. We'll see if that happens.

"The perfect lover is one who turns into pizza at 4am."

Charles Pierce

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WHERE HAVE ALL THE SZECHUAN PEPPERCORNS GONE!!! We ate at Royersford tonight, and while it was delicious it was TOTALLY LACKING IN THE PEPPERCORNS!!! WTF!!! Also, not nearly hot enough. get it together, please. We loved that place, and downtown sounds like at headache!

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Went about two weeks ago. I made sure to ask for them and to say I really like them so don't hold back on the lamb with hot sauce and they put a whole bunch on. It was the best version of the dish I have ever had.

**************************************************

Ah, it's been way too long since I did a butt. - Susan Fahning aka "snowangel"

--------------------

One summers evening drunk to hell, I sat there nearly lifeless…Warren

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