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Jan 8, 2007 05:19 PM

Dim Sum in San DIego

IS there anyplace that serves dimsum at night?

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  1. Very few places service dim sum at night, even in SGV. So none in SD. Aside from some take out place. Late in the day you are looking pretty much leftovers from earlier. Dim sum chefs need to have time off too you know.

    1. Call me out for this - because I really don't know the difference, but Dumpling Inn serves their dumplings all day.... it's not Dim sum, with the little push carts - but they are good dumplings.

      6 Replies
      1. re: SRosie

        Dumplings/potstickers/qua'tet/zhaotsz (excuse the bad Cantonese/Mandarin spellings) are NOT dim sum. These are Northern Chinese items.

        Dim sum is Cantonese food. I think the literal translation is something like "tea time," which is traditionally served mid-morning to early afternoon. Dim sum is a catch all term for all of the little dishes on the carts, so to speak. Think of it like the Chinese version of tapas.

        1. re: daantaat

          the reason I'm asking, is because I feel like some of the dumpling dishes served at Dumpling Inn, are the same served at mandarin china's dim sum brunch. Am I wrong? or are they just doing it to "Americanize" or dumb down the Dim Sum experience in some sense?

          1. re: SRosie

            Pardon me if I interject for a moment. Daantaat pretty much sums it up....but perhaps this might help a bit.

            Dim Sum or Yum Cha not only define "dumplings" but a specific style of food and eating, it is a Southern Chinese style of eating. So in short, the dumplings you described could be included as one of the many steamed, fried, stewed or other dishes you encounter during Dim Sum service. Jiaozhi is a staple of Northern China(the style of food Dumpling Inn serves), the taste and texture of Potstickers may be different when eaten at a Dim Sum least that's what I've encountered most of the time.

            When I read NormalHeightsFoodie's request, I took it to mean Dim Sum service as well, because in my mind there is a very big difference between Dim Sum service and Jiaozhi, Baozhi, Xiao Long Bao, and other regional Chinese dumplings.

            BTW, China Max used to serve Shao Mai, Har Gow, and other items during early dinner - 4-6pm, but I don't know if they still do. So maybe a phone call to China Max will be helpful?

            1. re: KirkK

              I went to China MAx on saturday for a craving of Har Gow, but it was not on the menu, I asked if they had any Dim Sum selections and they told me only during lunch.

              I went back on Monday and the HAr Gow was very good. I also had the rice cooked in the lotus leaf. I liked the Har Gow better.

              1. re: KirkK

                It completely makes sense. thank you for the explainations.

                1. re: KirkK

                  It completely makes sense. thank you for the explainations.

          2. Actually I found a place about a year ago that has dim sum at night. It was called Mandarin Gourmet, 4410 Bonita Road in Bonita. I saw their ad in the Chinese newspaper and was intrigued by the possibility of an authentic Chinese restaurant in that area. As I walked into the restaurant around 6 pm I saw a cart full of what appeared to be dim sum leftovers from the afternoon. I decided to try them out, but when I ordered some items they didn't give me the leftovers, but took the order to the kitchen, where they came out with newly prepared items about 10 minutes later. Not the greatest stuff, but not bad either. In addition, there might be a place in Oceanside that has dim sum at night. Again, I found this place in the Chinese newspaper, and the implication I had when I was there was that they served dim sum at all hours. That restaurant is J C Cuisine, 518 Oceanside Blvd. I didn't try the dim sum, but their Hong Kong style seafood dishes were very good.

            1 Reply
            1. Lucky Star Seafood on 54th and University (East San Diego, south of SDSU) serves Dim Sum at night. Not only do they serve Dim Sum at night, but I think their Dim Sum is the best I've had in San Diego (yes, I've been to Emerald several times, and I think this was better, but not by a huge margin).

              However, the Dim Sum is not served off of the carts at night, unless you go on Thursday or Friday when they have a cover charge for their bands. Yes, I know it sounds odd, but they have a mid-sized ballroom with live music on Thursdays (Big Band $8) and Fridays (Salsa/Latin $6). The food is pretty good in general and the Thursday night music features a _28_ piece band (yes, an actual big band). These nights can also get very crowded, we were told big parties (ours was 11) should try to reserve a week in advance to be sure.

              Try it out, it's interesting to say the least.