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Oct 6, 2007 02:57 PM

seeking china pearl/dim sum boston advice


I'm looking for advice on what time it starts to get crowded at China Pearl in Chinatown. I have out of town guests, and we can't afford to wait too long.

I'm also open for other suggestions for Dim Sum, but as my Chinese buddies took me there preferentially, it would be my first choice.

Thanks so much


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  1. Many on this board would recommend Hei La Moon at 88 Beach Street (across from the Chinatown Gate). If you are planning on going on Sunday to any popular Dim Sum House, I would say it starts to get really busy by 11 AM; I would call the restaurant where you intend to go to check their hours and I suggest getting there by 10 AM.

    5 Replies
    1. re: bakerboyz

      If you go too early you miss many items. I think 10 is a good time to get there. Hei La Moon seems to have less wait then China Pearl now, since they opened up the basement level. Last few times i have gone they have seated us in the lower level immediatly even though the place was packed.

      1. re: hargau

        What's it like in the basement level? If you're at China Pearl, there's no windows anyways, but a basement is a little different.

        1. re: FeedMeMore

          Im talking about Hei La Moon, Not China Pearl.

          1. re: hargau

            No. I understand that. I guess I'm just wondering about basement seating. Even though there are no windows at China Pearl, I know I'm above ground. Was the basement seating at Hei La Moon good? Bright? Clean? Or did you constantly feel like you were underground there? I know. Weird question, but I'm curious.

            1. re: FeedMeMore

              Its a nice room. Obviously no windows. It used to be used for banquets only. It has its own set of bathrooms and kitchen down there. Plenty of large bright light fixtures and a massive stair case leading down. Certainly as clean as upstairs. Food is the same

    2. If you get to China Pearl by 10:30, you'll be fine, although you may have to pace yourself a bit, because as Hargau says, they may not be fully up to speed on all items early.

      HOWEVER, and this is important: large groups get seated much faster at China Pearl than groups of four or smaller. We have a regular crew of dim sum friends, and our normal seating is from six to as many as ten. Even on super-busy days when we get there at 11 a.m. or after, we almost always get seated more or less immediately, because they have a number of large tables that they reserve for bigger groups. So if you can make up the numbers, you'll likely have no trouble at all getting seated.

      1 Reply
      1. re: BarmyFotheringayPhipps

        Or just tell the hostess you'll be OK with sharing a big table. It won't get you in as fast as a group of 7, but it's faster than waiting for one of the very few small tables.

      2. I agree with everyone. Better to show up early since chinese dont consider dim sum "lunch" like we westerners do. I will try Hei La Moon, since I am getting bored of China Pearl. hehe :)