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Apr 8, 2008 08:45 PM

Looking for great dim sum this weekend in Chinatown

Me and a friend are looking to try some dim-sum this weekend (Sat or Sun), ideally in Chinatown. She’s never been and I’ve only been once, so I’m looking for somewhere somewhat traditional, not picky about the ambiance, inexpensive, but most importantly... which serves great dim-sum!! Any suggestions?

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    1. Pings on Mott!!! not overly crowded and very pleasant waitstaff

      1 Reply
      1. Thanks for the links & the reccomendations. I think I've narrowed it down to Chatham Square, Pings and (maybe) Jing Fong - since I need to stay in Chinatown. I'm planning to go this Sat/Sun for lunch around 11:30am-1pm and I'm hoping to find the whole traditional cart-experience with a variety of choices. Tasty dim-sum, not oily, nothing touristy, fancy or expensive.

        6 Replies
        1. re: viniferaNYC

          Ping's used to be quite good, but the last few times I went there (the most recent visit being 2 weeks ago), the food was utterly disappointing. The shrimp dumplings had shrimps that were not fresh, dumpling skins were steamed too long and melted apart. Fried food had thick coating, and stir-fried vegetables were sloppily put together. The only saving grace was the sweet tofu pudding dessert, which was silky and perfectly satisfying once you requested extra syrup to add to the otherwise bland concoction.

          Among the three choices you pick, I think Chatham Square has the best food and service.

          1. re: kobetobiko

            Thanks so much kobetobiko. Since I can't seem to find them anywhere online, would you happen to know if they do have the full cart service? is it a casual spot? Although I know it varies per piece, approx. how is it priced? Is it best to go earlier or later in te afternoon? And last question, if you will, do you have any reccomendations (I'm not big on oily or fried, love seafood and beef, and will also do pork)?

            Sorry for so many questions, it's my friends first experience, so I just want to make sure it's the right choice. Thanks.

            1. re: viniferaNYC

              If your friend has never had dim sum before, you might consider Jing Fong because of the ambience factor. Carts, crowds, an impressive escalator ride, and the food is pretty good.

              1. re: Chandavkl

                Hi Chandavkl,

                I normally agree with all your suggestions but this time I may have to disagree. The decor of Jing Fong, while somewhat impressive (in an old-school Chinese banquet hall kind of way), wasn't enough to make up for the mediocre food there. In particular, viniferaNYC asked for food not too oily, and in my experiences Jing Fong goes against this rule 90% of the time. It is easy to tell that the dim sum there were mass produced with no care at all, and the food, both flavor-wise and presentation-wise, reflects that.

              2. re: viniferaNYC

                Hi viniferaNYC,

                Chatham Square does have cart service though you can also order from their dim sum menu (on a sheet of paper). It is a definitely causal, and relatively clean and spacious (note I said relatively, as most of the places in Chinatown are just painfully crowded). Definitely go earlier as you can get the first batch of the dim sum meaning fresh just out of the kitchen, and is much better to go early to avoid the crowded after noon time. The carts begin to disappear after 1:30, so earlier (say 11 or 11:30am) is the best time to go.

                Their steamed dumplings, like shrimp har kow, snow pea leaf dumplings, and steamed rice roll, are quite fresh and good. Their pork puff, turnip cake, and turnip dumplings are also delicious. As for dessert, they have a baked paste bun (in Chinese it means the filling is like fluid and will ooze out of the buns) is a great option. If you are more adventurous, go for the Durian puff pastry (not always on the menu).

                You can also order stir fry or regular dishes for lunch. Just ask the staff for the lunch menu.

                1. re: kobetobiko

                  kobetobiko, thank you so much. I appreciate the detailed response and suggestions... everything sounds great and I'm definitely looking forward to trying CS this weekend. Thanks again!

          2. 103 Mott St. AKA Oriental Pearl, not to be confused with Oriental Garden.