A party of 12 uncovered a “superlative” brunch at Taiwanese Chung Shin Yuan, according to lipoff, who admonishes other brunchers to arrive by 11 a.m. or face a 45-minute wait. What to have there:

• Dou jiang or sweet soybean milk, “best I’ve had,” says lipoff. Order it sweet or savory, with scallions and fried dough slices. “Umami central,” notes lipoff.
• Pi dan tofu, cubes of silken tofu in a soy sauce, topped with chopped pickled vegetables and a thousand-year-old egg.
• Jiu cai he zi, chive pie, with a crispy shell and flavorful filling.
• Shao bing are “a little dry” but “the texture of the beef is terrific” and the bing “has this unusually crispy character without the sesame layer peeling off,” says lipoff.
• Zha jiang mian, wheat noodles with ground pork stir-fried with soybean paste, was “the biggest hit of the meal,” with very fresh vegetables and toothsome noodles.

Chung Shin Yuan [MetroWest]
183 California Street, Newtonville

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