Toronto Star's Marion Kane wrote an interesting piece around Chinese New Year and specifically dumplings for Jan 29th's Shopping section. The article focussed on one restaurant as being highly recommended by an expert - Perfect Chinese food on Sheppard near Brimley.
We should have known when we saw the 'Conditional Pass' behind the cash (Inadequate refridgeration, failure to prevent food contamination) but the long line out the door convinced us we had the right place for those gorgeous, translucent steamed dumplings shown in the piece. After a 45 minute wait, we were shown to our table and found we really had to flag down the wait staff to get any food. The dim sum was cart - style, but unlike most other places we have been to the servers seemed reluctant to meet our eyes, or even slow down for our table.
All of the items we had were decent, but cold. One of the disadvantages to cart-style service I suppose. Nothing was horrible, nothing exceptional.
One thing that really turned us off was the fact that when they cleared our table they placed a stack of dirty plates from the other table they were clearing on ours. We were still eating. This happened twice during our meal. I guess our table was the closest to the bus station??
What was exceptional was the price, which came to only $11 for the two of us. THAT would explain the line out the door. The perfect, nicely garnished dumplings in the article were nowhere to be seen.
In the article this dim sum expert stated that she would recommend this restaurant very highly and that she took 20 US food writers there. What 20 food writers were these? Did they live in Boise?
So if you are in the mood for some exquisitely inexpensive dim sum and don't mind waiting 45 minutes in a crazy, pushing and shoving line... this is your restaurant.
Perfect it is not.