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Aug 8, 2007 09:51 PM

Takeout or "Fast Casual" Dim Sum in the SGV?

Sometimes I have a craving for dim sum (mostly bao, egg custards, siu mai, har gow, etc.) but don't want to go to a restaurant (especially if I'm by myself.) And I don't always want the quantity of items that comes in a typical serving. Is there a place in the central SGV (say, between the 60 and the 210, five miles or so east or west of the 605 where I could get either takeout dim sum, or order from a counter then eat in a "no table service" atmosphere? I'm hesitant about some of the bakeries that carry dim sum, because they don't seem to keep items that might spoil easily (e.g., things with meat or seafood fillings) at a proper temperature (either warm or cold.) I did try a self-serve Chinese bakery in Toronto once and lived to tell about it, but I'm less adventuresome these days.

I've gotten carryout dim sum at Grandview Palace in Pasadena and at some little shack on Atlantic in Monterey Park, but I'd prefer something a little closer to home. Another type of place I've seen elsewhere (specifically the Ronald Reagan Bldg. food court in DC) is a fast food dim sum "buffet" where you choose your own items and pay by the weight of the plate. I've never seen anything like that around here.

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  1. Nothing really close to your parameters, e.g. between 60 and 210 bisected by the 605.

    But here are some options in San Gabriel/Monterey Park/Alhambra:

    Dim Sum Express
    Yum Cha Cafe
    MPV Express

    Yum Cha Cafe
    1635 S San Gabriel Blvd, San Gabriel, CA 91776

    Dim Sum Express
    326 N Garfield Ave, Monterey Park, CA 91754

    MPV Express
    1420 S Garfield Ave, Alhambra, CA 91801

    1. Recent review and post on Yum Cha Cafe. Can't get any faster or casual than that.

      1. I Third Yum Cha..really good stuff.

        2 Replies
        1. re: Diana

          I Fourth Yum Cha there so often...they already know my name.. :D

          1. re: smak34

            Did you get the "Buy 10 get 1 Free card" yet?

        2. Well, since Atlantic is too far... definitely Yum Cha, on the corner of Valley and San Gabriel, actually inside the San Gabriel Superstore... and it's almost exactly five miles west of the 605.

          MHK, which is a little further just east of the corner of Garvey and Garfield, sells dim sum by the piece to go... items like har gau and shu mai and steamed bao are in a steamer cabinet, kept hot -- pretty much everything else (footballs, turnip cakes, etc.) are kept in a cabinet that's warm, but not hot. It evidently satisfies the gubmint, as they have a B (which is about as good as it gets in Chinese restaurants in the SGV).

          Also, there's a takeout section of 888 Seafood on Valley and Delta, between San Gabriel and Walnut Grove. Just walk to the back left as you go in (or enter from the "mall" door). And as a bonus you can go to Banh Mi Che Cali, which is right next door in the same plaza, and get Viet sandwiches for incredibly cheap.