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Sunday morning Dim Sum in Philadelphia?

Does anyone have any suggestions?

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  1. Sure, plenty -- do a search for "dim sum" on the board and a lot will come up. I happen to prefer Lakeside for quality and Ocean City for rolling cart-ness, but YMMV. There's no place that compares to the palaces in San Francisco like Yank Sing, sadly.

    1. ergh, i always forget the name of this place even though it is right around the corner from my house (to be fair, the name has changed three times). it was once called saigon matrix, but i don't think that is the current name. they have very good dim sum and it is located on washington avenue between 5th and 6th. it has a parking lot out front and is a bit like a strip mall, but the place is huge and impossible to miss. dernit, city search doesn't list it, but it is awesome.

      1. I prefer Lakeside, simply because I love that you can order off the menu for more choices- But don't be thrown off by the atmosphere. However, if you prefer the typical cart style, go for Ocean City.

        1. My recent fave is Ocean Harbor , particularly if you like vegetarian dim sum. But go early because they attract a mob of local Chinese.

          3 Replies
          1. re: Susan H

            Can you provide any insight regarding how easy it is to distinguish the vegetarian dim sum options from the non-vegetarian ones at Ocean Harbor? Part of the reason I've avoided dim sum is because I know that a lot of what one is served is both containing meat and not necessarily clearly "labeled." I'd love to explore dim sum as it seems great on paper, but have avoided it because I like to be sure of what specifically I am eating. I checked menu pages to see if perhaps they listed the dim sum options of Ocean Harbor, but unfortunately that doesn't appear to be included on the site.

            Also, is this an order-off-the-menu place or a place with carts? Thanks for your suggestions.

            1. re: Laura D.

              It's a cart place, but if you tell a waiter (one who speaks English) you are looking for vegetarian options, they will make sure you get them. The best are:
              slippery noodles with mixed veg inside (you can see the vegs hanging out the ends of the crepes, so you know what it is). Chive dumplings. tofu rolls (like spring rolls) with veg inside. You can also get a plate of chinese broccoli sauteed in garlic.

              1. re: Susan H

                Sounds wonderful....thanks so much for the follow-up!

          2. I always enjoy Imperial Inn on 10th for dim sum brunches.

            1. Having had dim-sum recently at all 4 places mentioned, here are my choices (in descending order of preference): Yank Sing (on 2/11), Lakeside Deli (2/25), Ocean Harbor (2/20) and Ocean City (2/18).

              1. Two years ago, a year before my mother died, I was able to travel West with my folks and take them to both Ton Kiang and Koi Palace, the two other world class dim sum restaurants in San Francisco. We arrived at Koi Palace for lunch at maybe 10:30 in the morning so we could make our flight home, and couldn't believe the hundred or more people in line! But the place was so huge, the line moved unbelievably fast. The unusual offerings, and being able to order sharks fin and abalone from the huge dim sum menu were quite something. It is a wonderful memory that will thankfully stay with me forever.

                One of my favorite dishes at both Ton Kiang and Koi Palace was each's version of eggplant stuffed with shrimp, and I will say that Lakeside's is in the ballpark. The large resaturant in the strip mall on Washington had some of the feel of the larger SF banquet restaurants near the SFO airport, and did have some unusual dishes when it first opened, but I fear it's no longer the same. I also thought Ocean Harbor was great when it first opened, but suffered from the competition when HK Golden Phoenix opened.

                We're luck to have as many dim sum places in Philadelphia as we do, and we've come a long long way in recent years, but we've still got some catching up to do to match San Francisco or Vancouver.