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Dim Sum w/ Carts at Clement and 2nd-7th?

Dear ChowHounders,

I've read through a couple of threads for suggestions for dim sum in this area:
Wing Lee at 503 Clement and Good Luck Dim Sum (address unknown) have been recommended.

But most of the posts say that the atmosphere of these places leaves much to be desired. While I know and love the dingier (word?) dim sum joints, I'm hoping someone might recommend a good dim sum place in this area where one can sit down and the carts roll around. If nothing comes to mind, any opinions about the two places I mentioned or something better would be grately appreciated.

Thanks in advance, the lunch is scheduled for tomorrow, Feb 1st.

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  1. Good Luck Dim Sum is a take out place on Clement and 8th or so, so not conducive to sit down. I think Wing Lee is also take-out. Lee Hou also serves dim sum, but if atmosphere is what you're looking for, that probably wouldn't be recommended either. There's another dim sum restaurant further down on Clement next to Pizza Orgasmica that is sit-down with carts rolling around, but I haven't been there in years, so other CH's could give you better advice. The only thing I can really think of (but it's been a few years since I lived in SF) is Ton Kiang on Geary and 22nd. It has a "better" atmosphere, though I wasn't overly impressed by their dim sum - seemed pretty standard and expensive, but I know a lot of people like the place. You can search for reviews on Ton Kiang.

    3 Replies
    1. re: kcchan

      ton kiang came to mind for me as well. there is also one or two a block or so away (toward 21st and 20th) that i don't recall the names.

      1. re: kcchan

        I had dim sum at Lee Hou this weekend and won't be returning. At least not for overall dim sum. The wrappers were too thick and the various dumplings seemed over steamed. The chive shrimp dumpling tasted good, but the thick wrappers really took away, in my opinion.

        Tried the chive mushroom crepe, and that was very bland. I hadn't been in a long time, but I remember it to be better in the past.

        1. re: rln

          It's been about 3 years since I've had dim sum at Lee Hou. Didn't like it then as the wrappers were so thicky and doughy. But I guess some like it that way and will recommend it. Should also mention that it doesn't have the carts the OP was asking for.

      2. Tong Palace has cart service throughout the week -- it's on Clement around 10th, middle of block...

        1 Reply
        1. re: Sarah

          Yes, I think Tong Palace is what you're looking for. It's pretty good and has been around for 20 years counting the predecessor Ming Palace. Address is 933 Clement.

        2. How about on Clement and 21/22? before the 4 star theater on the corner, or balboa and 5th, bay fung tong? though bft does not offer push carts...

          3 Replies
          1. re: badbatzmaru

            Yet Wah, on the corner of Clement and 23rd. Yes, they have cart dim sum. I've only been there once (as an adult) and I thought the dim sum was pretty decent. Hard to tell, since I was starving at the time. Maybe a little on the greasy side, but they had a very extensive selection, including jook.

            1. re: Sebby

              I only recall ordering from a sheet - but that was on weekdays. Their dimsum is more than decent.

              1. re: Sarah

                MuI think I was there on a Sturday, since they had carts.There is also validated parking at that tiny lot across the street from Bills Place. A rare find in the richmond...parking, not dim sum :-)

          2. My husband and I really liked Ton Kiang when we went there. Its gotten mixed reviews on CH, but for what you're looking for (ie. atmosphere, rolling cart dim sum), I think this is the place. We were seated upstairs and it was nice, although maybe a little on the pricey side, but then places with atmosphere usually are.

            1. Thanks for the replies! I'm walking from California and Presidio, so I'll have to stick to one of the closer ones. I'll report back on Tong Palace.

              1. Ocean Restaurant (726 Clement) is a block or so out of your range, and doesn't have cart service, but is a sit-down place with decent dim sum at prices that make it a destination restaurant for penny pinching Seniors (like me).

                2 Replies
                1. re: Gary Soup

                  I had excellent prawns with mushrooms and ok pea shoots last week. I would definitely give it a whirl again. And it seems you can order dim sum even at night.

                  1. re: Gary Soup

                    We have a friend who worked for Alice Waters and she introduced me to Ocean. Love that place. I took my sister there, and she said it was the highlight of her visit to see me! And she eats quite a bit of dim sum. As the name implies, seafood is the specialty.

                  2. i grew up in the richmond district and was very used to just going to restaurants nearby (the 20's)....

                    occationally, i would just pop into some of those places in the lower avenues on clement not knowing the names.

                    i remember ocean being good.... yet wah is as described... good, a little greasy, good selection, a little pricey.

                    1. Reporting back:

                      Just finished a delicious dim sum lunch at Wing Lee at 6th and Clement. No carts but we were ready to stop walking so we tried it. It lacked atmosphere that's for sure, but the dim sum was good. Ordered shrimp gow, shrimp and leek gow, pork siew mai, bbq pork bao, and a huge steamed bun with pork, shitake mushroom, sausage, and hard boiled egg inside! Can anyone tell me what that last bun was called? It was one of my impromptu point and choose dishes.

                      And for desert, we walked down 2 doors to Schubert's Bakery for coffee and opera cake!

                      Thanks for the suggestions and tips.

                      3 Replies
                      1. re: sarvey

                        Are you sure it was pork and not chicken? That sounds like a large-sized Gai Bow.

                        1. re: Gary Soup

                          No, I'm not sure. It was pretty and pink and I just assumed. I loved it--pork or chicken or some other meat. Gai Bow. Will have it again now that I know the name. Thanks Gary Soup!

                          1. re: sarvey

                            I can be sure that there's not a pork version out there, buy it certainly sounds like Gai (chicken) Bao. Note that often the same place will often make two versions, a small and a large. The small ones are typically just chicken and some condiments; the large ones are the ones that they put everything but the kitchen sink in.