Looking at the varied opinions on the board, I decided to try this place myself.
Was very pleased that they asked what kind of tea I wanted as I sat down. It's the moral equivalent of being able to order more than the house wine at a French restaurant, perhaps more important. After all, the vernacular term for the dim sum experience in Cantonese is "yum cha" or literally to drink tea. China Pearl's the only other place I've been to in the area that has the practice of asking about tea choices beyond the standard jasmine. More importantly, the iron goddess of mercy (tie guan yin) I got was of fairly good quality, even if it's not the best of kind I've had.
The dim sum experience I had on Sunday is on the whole, better than the what I've had at CCC. A little behind my previous experiences at the old Pacific Garden, probably because the items came on carts, and weren't as fresh as the made-to-order ones at PG. I had no problems getting stuff, even though I had a corner table in the front room. Waitstaff came by once or twice to check on me, and hot water was quickly replenished as my tea ran out.
Highlight was the warm, freshly made small egg tarts with an exceptionally yolky rich egg custard, denser than most versions. Definitely one of the best I've had in this country. Keep asking and be patient. They're worth the wait.
Fried chive dumplings with shrimp had delicate crispy skin. Good chivey flavour in the filling. The "fresh"/xian flavour of MSG is quite evident in many of the dumplings. Gratifying textural complement from well spaced bits of bamboo shoots. The steamed version of this is also good.
Har gau had pleasantly thin and chewy skin, not mushy or pasty, an issue I've had with a few dim sum places in the area. Shrimp's fairly fresh but a tiny bit overcooked, probably from spending too much time on the steam cart.
Bean curd skin stuffed with meat and bamboo shoots are par.
Lotus roots stuffed with minced shrimp was somewhat ordinary. The shrimp is well textured and delicious, but the lotus root a little too soft, their distinctive sharp crunch muted, again probably by too much time o n the cart. Got it because I decided that the little morsel of fa cai/black moss was appropriate for the new year, but it doesn't add a whole lot to the experience.
My only major regret is that I was too full to sample their sesame shrimp rolls, my favourite at the late PG. Perhaps next time.
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