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LATE NIGHT CHINESE DUMPLINGS IN LA--NEED SUGGESTIONS

Does anyone know where I can get great Dim Sum or Dumplings after 11pm in LA? I know they're typically a "brunch" dish, however, I figure in the city anything goes.

Also...is it in a safe area?

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  1. I doubt you can get dim sum that late. Dim sum chefs pretty much all work in the morning and noon. Thus, any dim sum dishes purchased late are remnants from lunch, and the restaurant is trying to get rid of them (that's why Capital Seafood sells them at a discount after 4 PM). Dim sum dishes usually don't taste too good if they've been kept warm too long.

    I can't think of any dumpling places opened that late. An alternative would be to purchase frozen dumplings from your favorite restaurant and cook it yourself.

    1 Reply
    1. re: raytamsgv

      I've pretty much lived in the SGV all my life and I don't know of any place where you can get dim sum late at night. However, you can get dumplings (like xiao long bao or even noodle soup) at Dragon Mark. It's located in a mini-mall on Valley Blvd. between Del Mar and New Ave (I think it's a Lollicup that is located at the outer edge of this mini mall) It's not the best place for dumplings, but if you have a craving at 11pm or even a little later, you can get it there.

    2. Maybe Won Kok in Chinatown if they have leftovers from earlier in the day.

      1 Reply
      1. re: Chandavkl

        Won Kok has the basics, sui mai, har gow, char shui boa and maybe 3 or 4 more. Some will be hot, the sui mai and char sui boa, others cool or room temp, sometimes they will warm them if you ask.

      2. Maybe Famima! if you're really desperate.

        They have buns and boas, most of which are inedible in my opinion. But they're there and open late.

        6 Replies
        1. re: ipsedixit

          if you get the pre-made in the refrigerated case at Famima and reheat your self, it will do in a pinch. But the ones that come out of the steam machines are just so over saturated with water, they are almost inedible.

          1. re: Mattapoisett in LA

            I've had exactly the same experience. The flavor of the meat filling in the baozi is actually quite good, but the staff clearly has no idea that they're chronically oversteaming them.

            Mr Taster
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            1. re: Mattapoisett in LA

              Yeah, but if you opt for refrigerated ones and then reheat, you might as well go to some place like Ranch 99 (or any other Chinese supermarket) and get their pre-made, refrigerated dim sum type items.

              1. re: ipsedixit

                Not from Culver City or any other Westside enclave.

                1. re: ipsedixit

                  But the thing that irks me is that there's no reason why steam case baozi need to be so overcooked. Every one of the dozens of 7-11 stores I've been to in Taiwan has a baozi case and not a single one I've eaten has ever been overcooked. I don't know how they do it (fuzzy logic?) but I just wanted to put it out there that steam case baozi does not necessarily = mushy blob.

                  Mr Taster
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                  1. re: Mr Taster

                    But Taiwan does not have the LA County Health Department over it's shoulder.

            2. These Taiwanese Food Courts serve dumplings and are also open late. I don't recall if they serve dumplings late, but I seem to recall a mental note to myself to seek Kang Kang out for late night snacks including dumplings. I think they are owned by the same people.

              Kang Kang Food Court (open to midnight on weekends)
              27 E Valley Blvd
              Alhambra, CA 91801
              (626) 308-3898

              Shau May Restaurant
              104 N. Garfield (@Garvey)
              Monterey Park, CA 91754
              (626) 571-2727

              1 Reply
              1. re: altstarr

                Yes they have baozi here as well as a few other regular dim sum items. Always order off the menu if you want it fresh (as opposed to the stuff sitting in the case). These are probably your best bet for a late night snack.

              2. You can buy dim sum items at Empress Pavilion's take-out counter a few doors down from the resto in the same mall. They freeze beautifully and keep well.

                1. You will not find fresh dim sum after lunch time as the other posts mentioned. You can buy pre-made baos and shumai in the refrigerated and frozen sections at 99 Ranch Markets or at Marukai. Not the best but it can be reheated in the microwave just like frozen burritos.
                  If you're looking for late night dumplings, most Chinese restaurants do serve pot stickers and siu gow as appetizers. My favorite is the won ton noodle soup topped with either beef stew (tendons and brisket), roast duck, and/or char siu (BBQ roast pork).

                  1. Okay, okay,... I know you're all going to cringe, but how about PF Changs? Their shrimp dumplings are out-of-this world! And, I believe they serve them late at the bar.

                    5 Replies
                    1. re: kealoha

                      I didn't cringe. I nearly passed out. I will never go back to PF Changs. And I've been there once, only because the coworkers wanted to go. I think growing up in a chinese family, surrounded by chinese food, and eating at a bunch of different chinese restaurants have biased my opinion. But still...for the amount of money we paid, we could have had a 10-12 course banquet style meal at a real chinese restaurant.

                      Won Kok is one of the latest places I've seen selling cantonese dimsum. As for mandarin dimsum (xiaolong bao, pan-fried dumplings, and the like), those are pretty much all day thing. Although I don't know of any of those restaurants that stay open THAT late. You can always by the canto dimsum to go and raid the fridge at night.

                      1. re: nickorp

                        I grew up in a British Family, and I find PF Chang's awful as well.

                        1. re: nickorp

                          Won Kok has been selling sui mai, har gow, char sui boa and all the others for many many years, 10-15 that I know of.

                          1. re: Burger Boy

                            Won kok is not half bad and it's fun to say

                            1. re: echoparkdirt

                              actually i take that back. won kok is horrific -- i went there last nite, the place was dirty, the dim sum was stale and bad to begin with, and the hot sour soup was an insult. never again. go to sam woo for late nite chinatown