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Dim Sum Recommendations in DC/NoVA

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baconjen Mar 9, 2007 10:08 AM

I would greatly appreciate some Hound recommendations for weekend Dim Sum in Northern Viriginia or DC. We have always gone to Fortune in Seven Corners, but I was not that impressed last time I went. It would have to be somewhere loud/not fancy because I would have my 2 kids with me (and where you don't have to wait too long for a seat). Just wondering if there is somewhere better we could be going. Thanks!

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  1. w
    wayne keyser Mar 9, 2007 10:19 AM

    Lucky 3 always pleases me.

    I have heard some dissatisfaction with Mark's Duck House lately (and also quite a wait).

    1. d
      dpan Mar 9, 2007 10:35 AM

      Best choices in NoVA, IMHO, are China Garden in Rosslyn and Mark's Duck House in Falls Church.

      1. c
        Chownut Mar 9, 2007 10:38 AM

        Do Lucky 3, which is big enough to not have wait problems, or China Garden, which does have long lines if you don't get there early enough. China Garden has nicer decor. Based on your requirements, Lucky 3 sounds like the winner. Get there before 11:30 to get the freshest stuff and best selection, and get a table by the kitchen (left rear side of dining room).

        1 Reply
        1. re: Chownut
          Gonzocook Mar 9, 2007 11:21 AM

          Great tips. I'll add one more: be patient. Just when you think you've seen everything the carts have to offer, and you've asked for the check, something new and appealing will show up. It's a law of the universe. Also, if you don't see something you want, ask the waitstaff. They often can get it for you, straight from the kitchen.

        2. b
          baconjen Apr 1, 2007 12:36 PM

          Hey everyone - just wanted to say thanks for the terrific advice! Took the family to Lucky 3 today and it was exactly what I was looking for (and SO much better than Fortune). My favorites were the chive dumplings, the duck, the sticky rice in lotus leaves, and the pan-fried shrimp dumplings. I was particularly surpised by the pan-fried shrimp dumplings because they have been soggy and overly doughy when I have had them before, but here they were pleasantly light and crisy on the outside. The duck was great too (yummy sauce, crispy skin, and nice fatty flavor). Even the kids were happy - sticky buns and pineapple buns - whooee. Definite winner for us - can't wait to try the others on the list too.

          5 Replies
          1. re: baconjen
            c
            Chownut Apr 2, 2007 04:22 AM

            I'm glad you had a good meal at Lucky 3 b/c I ended up at Mark's Duck House and it wasn't all that good. The shrimp dumplings were a bit sour (ie. premade and sat in their fridge too long), the shiao mai was too fluffy with too much corn starch, and the crepes were too hard. Pan fried noodle dish was small, but tasted okay.

            The joint was crowded as expected. I really didn't want to go to Mark's but had to b/c my first option was closed, and I didnt' want to drive any further. Plus, I was going to get some of their roast options anyway as carryout, as they're generally pretty good. Overall, wait was about 25 minutes at 1pm, and they dont' have an airlock for their front door, so there was constant cold air rushing in whenever someone opened the door. At least i didn't have shirts/shorts on like some of the people there.

            The dim sum cart ladies were responsive though, and were selling their items hard on you. Steamed stuff was hot, but fried stuff was cold. Once the bill came, the waiter (Fred) asked if I was going to pay with cash after he tallied the bill up. I told him yes, and thought he was going to refund me the tax as he offered to bring it up to the counter, but he ended it pocketing it himself. Oh well.........overall the dim sum was mediocre but the dim sum experience was bad because of the crowds, the small dining area, the lack of a waiting area, and the cold blast of wind.

            Baconjen, Lucky 3 offers dim sum buffet on weekdays, so you can have most of what you had yesterday, but all you can eat on weekdays for $9.95. Generally free for small kids.

            1. re: Chownut
              b
              baconjen Apr 2, 2007 06:41 AM

              Thanks for the update Chownut. I'm thinking the 25 minute wait at 1pm would probably rule out Mark's Duck when I'm with my family anyway. We had no wait at all at Lucky 3.

              $9.95 is a great deal. We only spent $30 for four yesterday and we ate a lot - I thought that was not too bad. The only real goof I made is that I ordered the tempting looking crabs. The crabs were completely mushy, and I couldn't figure out how to eat them without make a mess and eating a lot of shell (and I am very good at eating MD crabs normally). I don't fault the restaurant though - it's my fault I forgot what time of year it was and ordered obviously non-fresh crabs. I always seem to make one bad choice when the carts first start rolling by. Patience is definitely the key.

            2. re: baconjen
              k
              kabrown Apr 2, 2007 06:52 AM

              where is lucky 3 located?
              thanks!

              1. re: kabrown
                c
                Chownut Apr 2, 2007 07:13 AM

                On Leesburg Pike, a stone's throw from Bailey's X Roads. Heading west from Bailey's on Leesburg, it'll be on your immediate right after passing Duangrat's.

                1. re: Chownut
                  k
                  kabrown Apr 2, 2007 07:24 AM

                  gracias!

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