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forestview chinese restaurant - new dim sum find

needed a fix of dim sum this morning and ended up climbing some stairs on the north side of dundas in chinatown up to the forestview chinese restaurant. noises of clanking dishes and rolling carts greeted us with lots of old smiling faces.

we sat down and picked off about 8 items from the incredibly nice and helpful cart pushers plus another 4 from a cook table in the back. they spoke an amazing amount of english for chinatown and didn't hestitate to try to explain or show you what they had. the food was never constantly pushed around on carts until they ran out but switched it up with new items every couple of turns. we got:

haw gow - HUGE, two mouthfuls per piece easily and with 4 pieces in each steamer basket this was great. the skin was a little thick but properly cooked through and decently translucent. the filling was pretty good but still not top notch. good amount of shrimp

fried taro pork football things - greasier than normal with ok filling, a little fatty in texture and flavour ok.

chicken feet - not your noxious looking red dyed skin but a good auburn with nice spice kick and a few black beans on top. not too fatty but enough tendon and skin to go around. each foot was cut up into pieces, much easier to eat.

pan fried wonton skin shrimp and garlic chive from cook table - really really really goooooooood. great amount of flavour and balance of veggie plus meaty shrimp.

steamed bean curd skin pork rolls - fantastic. fresh salty flavours with light sauce. the filling was a good even mixture of pork, bamboo and ear/oyster mushrooms.

dau fu fa - possibly the best sweet tofu dessert i've had in a long time. nice silken pieces of tofu with more than enough sweet slightly gingery syrup for flavour.

turnip cake - lightly fried on the outside there was a low amount of shrimp and onions but nice big chunks of turnip. good smooth texture.

pancreas, pig stomach and turnip stew - good meld of flavours and textures as per usual, nothing exceptional but not bad either.

curried baby octopus - a bit crunchy and ok soft texture with mild spice. not bad but not the best.

steamed shrimp chestnut and coriander, red pork with egg, and rice gluten football shaped pork filled thing.... all items were noticeably less sweeter than most other places for dimsum. very good in general with a great bustling atmosphere.

for happy hour all dishes are $2, don't know what regular pricing is like. personally... i think it's the best option out of all the other dim sum places in the spadina chinatown zone ie. rol san, yiu wah, sky dragon and bright pearl. happy eats.

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  1. I love this place! First time I went there was for a lunch with my (then) co-workers, back in the mid-90's. Nice to hear that their dim sum is still good. This is where I had my first taste of shrimp cheung fan, which I promptly fell in love with! :-)

    And my family just adores the "rice gluten football shaped pork filled thing"! A server at another dim sum location (Grand's on Gerrard) told us that it's called "ham su gok". Don't think that's the right spelling as I just did it phonetically, but it did make our lives easier when ordering since the servers have no idea what I'm talking about when I ask for "fried football's", LOL!

    4 Replies
    1. re: sierramum

      My friend calls them the "super stickies" (although technically the good ones aren't supposed to be sticky though he likes them that way :) ). And yeah, they're "ham sui gok". Btw, where on Dundas is it?

      1. re: Blueicus

        i really should know the names of these things, but i've definitely got the basics down pat!

        it's at 466 dundas st west, just west of huron.

          1. re: GeoNit

            Good to see that you're back, GeoNit. Seems like I hadn't seen you posting in a very long time!

    2. Thanks for the tip, pinstripeprincess! It sounds great.I'll be sure to try it out next time I'm in the neighbourhood.

      1. Thanks for the review, can't wait to try it.

        What times/days does the happy hour run?

        2 Replies
        1. re: xtal

          sorry it seems that i'm really bad with these details and didn't ask while i was there. but we went on a tuesday at about 10am or so and there was no sign of happy hour ending when we left probably an hour or more later. the next time i'm there i'll be sure to ask and post again. i'm going to assume their happy hour is similar timing than the rest of chinatown and say that being there before 11am should find you in good stead.

          1. re: pinstripeprincess

            just went for dimsum this sunday morning and wanted to update you on pricing/happy hour. apparently they only do happy hour during the week and on the weekends you should expect small $2, medium $3 and large is $3.50... a bit expensive but i still enjoy it more than the usuals.

            the siu mai were excellent btw.

        2. Mmm, sounds good. Thanks for the post - as the temperature starts to dip, I look forward to heart-warming, stomach-filling dim sum lunches.

          PS - I think the "fried taro pork football things", assuming they look kind of "hairy" on the outside, are called "wuu gok". I love those!

          2 Replies
          1. re: peppermint pate

            Yep, the hairy taro footballs are wu kwok. The sticky rice flour wrapper footballs with minced filling are ham sui kwok.

            1. re: peppermint pate

              Funny, I thought my girlfriend and I were the only ones to call them "furry balls with taro and pork."

            2. The original comment has been removed
              1. Thanks for the links Derek! They're so helpful. Maybe I'll be able to order dimsum with more confidence once I brush up on the various names. (I feel silly sometimes when I have to stand up and open the various steamers to see what's inside.)