Went there for dim sum with a friend of mine.
We just missed the early bird special, so we ordered from the regular menu.
We got... deep-fried shrimp rolls, har gow, chiu chow dumplings with pork and veg, bbq pork buns x2, shrimp cheong fun, pan-fried pork and veg dumpling, and steamed lotus leaf glutinous rice. Pretty much what I get in a lot of places.
The shrimp rolls were made with mayo and a miscellaneous chunk of fruit inside. There was definitely excessive dough in mine, and one was particularly annoying to eat with a shrimp tail sticking out on each side. My friend liked it, but I didn't.
Shrimp cheong fun and har gow had fresh, pleasant shrimp. However, I found the skin on both to be excessively think. The har gow had the same wrapper as the chiu chow dumpling, which didn't seem quite right to me. The thicker wrapper seemed fine on the chiu chow dumpling, which came across as a tad underseasoned, and filled with a lot of peanut.
The bbq pork buns were good. But lots of places have good bbq pork buns, and some of them for less.
The lotus leaf glutinous rice was made with minced pork and salted egg. I am not a fan of salted egg, and neither was my friend. They came in 3 tiny individually wrapped portions, all of which were excessively mushy. Would have liked a bit more variety in what was inside - some chinese sausage or something, maybe.
The real WTF moment was the pan fried meat and vegetable dumplings. My friend and I ordered them expecting pot stickers. We instead got 3 little green buns, which looked a lot like the bbq pork buns with a tiny dollop of salted egg yolk on top. We were all convinced we were served the wrong order, and I even spoke to a waiter about it, who got a manager. When I picked up a bun, I saw that the bottom was slightly caramelized, which is why I guess they call them pan-fried. Also, the buns were filled with shrimp and vegetable. Now I don't know about you, but I don't consider shrimp a "meat." I should have snapped a picture of the menu so I could have asked someone what it actually said.
Service was mostly attentive. They kept our pot of tea topped up, and changed plates for us regularly. However, they still took forever to bring our bill, and never refilled my friend's water. Still need to work out a few details.
All told, it was pricey. Cost the two of us $52, with tax and tip. We could have eaten at Lai Wah Heen for that amount of money. And to top it off? When they brought us the bill, they told us the card machine was broken, and could we pay with cash, please? That's the kind of detail that it might be polite to mention at the BEGINNING of the meal.
Lai Wah Heen
108 Chestnut St, Toronto, ON M5G 1R3, CA
1033 Bay Street, Toronto, ON M5S 3A5, CA