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Flushing - I can't decide on dim sum?

  • l

So some of my family is in town from LA, they want to get dim sum in Flushing on tuesday (I think they're mainly interested in seeing Flushing b/c they've heard of it). I've eaten at pretty much all the dim sum places, but I can't decide which one I should take them to? I was thinking one of these places:
- Ocean Jewel
- Jade Asian
- Tung Yi Fung
- Gala Manor

Normally, I hit Gala Manor the most and I've been to Ocean Jewel alot, but I've heard good things about Jade Asian and Tung Yi Fung. Where do you think I should take them? We're chinese and language is not an issue

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  1. i tried them all and am still loyal to jade/gumfung reborn hehe

    1 Reply
    1. re: chefjellynow

      yeah im leaning towards jade, i used to like gum fung...havent been there yet, but chinese restaurants tend to be best when they first open, so jade seems like a good bet

    2. I don't do dim sum but after you eat, you should take them to see the food stalls at 41-28 Main St. (I guess you thought of that already...)

      2 Replies
      1. re: Brian S

        yeah i was thinking about that (as i haven't been there myself)...although surprisingly this set of relatives is much more tame than me when it comes to street food, i feel like they always think its dirty...in that respect im not sure how we're related haha j/k

        1. re: Brian S

          i stopped in to the 41-28 mall after i was done eating just to check it out...oh man! that place is so cool and the food looked amazing, i wish i was hungry...definitely need to go eat there another day

          its smaller and more cramped than i expected and it was hot as hell in there...but it smelled so damn good

        2. I haven't been to Tung Yi Fung. But from the three you mentioned, my favorite is Jade Asian. Has the widest variety and turnover is very good -- so everything is fresh. The dim sum ladies there were super nice as well. I took my in-laws (who are Chinese) to Flushing and they absolutley loved the area. They were so surprised how it surpassed Manhattan's C-town but told me that they've been reading in the Chinese papers how Flushing is the place to be.

          1. Obviously you can't go wrong with either one as they are all SGV quality and in case of a tie I'd go with the places I'm most used to. One thing about Gala Manor is that they have scallop cheung fun, which is something I've never seen in L.A., so if that is something everyone would appreciate that could be a factor in your choice.

            1. so i ended up going to Jade Asian and it was good, its definitely one of the top dim sum places in Flushing. The renovation has made it pretty nice and its definitely nicer than its predecessor (Gum Fung). All of the standards (ha gow, siu mai etc) were done well and tasted fresh. They also had some variations on ha gow that I haven't seen before, one had tiny dried fried fish on it and another had mayo and fish roe on it (i hate mayo though). They also had an interesting siu mai that was covered in sticky rice, it was pretty decent. I liked the mango cake they had, it was nice and light and not too sweet, pretty good.

              Overall, it's a good place and we were all happy with the food there

              11 Replies
              1. re: Lau

                Glad you and your family enjoyed it. Those mayo dim sum (hate mayo as well) are part of the nouveau dim sum menu -- generally pricier than the other types. I had something similar to a hau gau but with sharksfin on top which ended up being 3-4 times the price of regular hau gau. The siu mai covered in sticky rice -- are you talking about pearl balls?

                1. re: Miss Needle

                  yeah i had the hau gau with the sharksfin on it as well, it was good albeit expensive for dim sum

                  im not sure what they were called in english or chinese as my aunt ordered them and i turned around and they were on the table, but i found a pic on yelp, check it out:
                  http://www.yelp.com/biz_photos/aT4MQU...

                  1. re: Lau

                    The photo looks like Pear Balls to me. It's called "珍珠丸子" (Pin Yin= Zhen Zhu Wan Zi) in Chinese :) Its origin traces back to Hubei Province (where the city of Wuhan is located) in China.

                    Here is a pic I found on a Chinese website for Pear Balls:

                    http://www.chinasbz.com/tool/menu/men...

                    I think Sticky Rice Siu Mai is called 糯米燒賣 (Pin Yin = Nuo Mi Shao Mai) in Chinese. It's not a Cantonese dish (and I rarely see it at Dim Sum restaurants). I believe it is from Shanghai/Lower Yantze River Valley/Jiangsu and Zhejiang region? Dintaifung Restaurant in LA serves it (not my favorite because it's kind of greasy and bland). It looks very similar to a Cantonese siu mai except the filling is sticky rice and pork. Here is a pic of Sticky Rice Siu Mai (糯米燒賣) from Dintaifung's website:

                    http://dintaifungusa.com/en/en_cuisin...

                    1. re: bearmi

                      no i think u got me confused, there was only 1 sticky rice shao mai and it is indeed that pic of the zhen zhu wan zi that u put up in the 1st link

                      i didnt have or see anything like second pic u put from din tai fung

                      1. re: Lau

                        Sorry if I had confused you :(

                        I am very "Asian" in my way of communicating so it can be non-direct and "implied" at times (thus making things confusing). I constantly struggle with that, although I have been living here for a long time. Let me be more "American" and "assertive" this time in articulating what I was trying to say (and please don't be offended if it sounds too "direct" as I am still learning to gauge the fine line between passive/aggressive and assertive.. ha):

                        I think you got the names backward.

                        What I was trying to say is that "Pearl Balls" or "Zhen Zhu Wan Zi" should be the dish you saw at Jade Asian. "Sticky Rice Siu Mai" should be the pic on the 2nd link from Dintaifung, not the food you saw at Jade Asian. If Jade Asian (or the person who posted that picture on Yelps.com) was calling those round meat balls "Sticky Rice Siu Mai", they have gotten the names wrong! It's a misnomer.

                        If you do a web search on "Sticky Rice Siu Mai" or "Glutinous Rice Siu Mai" in either Chinese or English, you should see those Dintaifung dumplings from the 2nd pic, not the dish you saw at Jade Asian. It's possible that Jade Asian's owners/chefs might be Cantonese and, to make things easier for the mostly Cantonese customers, they are calling little meatballs with sticky rice on the outside "Siu Mai" instead of "Pearl Balls" so the name "Siu Mai" blends in better with the rest of the Cantonese dimsum menu.

                        Sticky Rice Siu Mai usually has 2 parts - 1)flour wrapper and 2)sticky rice filling. If the "balls" you saw at Jade Asian has no wrapper on the outside, it should be called "Pear Balls" or Zhen Zhu Wan Zi, not "Sticky Rice Dumpling" because it refers to something else.

                        Hope this helps :)

                        1. re: bearmi

                          oh ok...i had no idea what they were called in chinese or in english b/c i didnt order them, i just turned around and they were there, so i just called them sticky rice siu mai to give them a name

                          1. re: Lau

                            Glad we got the mystery solved! I guess the confusion came from the fact that we were using different names to refer to the dish you had at Jade Asian :)

                          2. re: bearmi

                            I ate a dish when I was in Beijing that looked like the dim sum pictured in the yelp link, but it was actually spare ribs covered in sticky rice, then steamed. It was one of the best dishes I've eaten in my life, and can't for the life of me find it in NYC. Since, bearmi, you seem to be an expert on food covered with sticky rice, do you have any idea what such a dish might be called? I'd love to have a name to go with it so that I can try and find it here in the US. TIA.

                            1. re: Greg

                              OMG.. I am no expert in Chinese food covered with sticky rice! I just happened to be a Chinese speaker who happens to know about the dish Lau was asking about. I think a lot of these sticky rice dishes are quite common in China and Taiwan (maybe not in HK or Singapore) so a lot of people would know about them.

                              The dish you have mentioned sounds like it could be a Szechuan Dish called 粉蒸排骨 (Pin Yin= "Fen Zheng Pai Gu" or "Rice Flour-Steamed Pork Ribs" ). It's usually kind of spicy and the rice kernels on top are chopped/ground up slightly so they are not "whole" rice kernels. I have ordered it from Wu Liang Ye's "Special Menu" listed on the front, inside cover of their menu book (48th street location). I think the "special menu" might have been handwritten in Chinese only but I can't remember 100%. Their rice flour steamed pork ribs were ok, a little on the salty side and a little dry. Restaurants usually put the coated pork ribs on top of a bed of sweet potatoes, regular potato or taro. Here is a photo of that dish:

                              http://iamnotafoodie.com/?p=99

                              If the "rice" on the pork ribs you had in Beijing were whole kernels of sticky rice grains, then it's possible that the dish you had was "糯米排骨" ("Nuo Mi Pai Gu" or "Sticky Rice Pork Ribs" in Mandarin)... I don't know of any Chinese restaurant in NY that serves it because it seems more like a family/homecooking-style dish. Basically, pork ribs are marinaded then coated with sticky rice and steamed. I assume it will be cooked in a similar way to Peal Balls except that you use whole pieces of pork rib pieces instead of ground pork meatballs. .Here is a picture of it:

                              http://www.chilema.cn/news/View.aspx?...

                              1. re: bearmi

                                Thank you! You nailed it. Like you suggest, I've found the first dish you refer to in NYC. I had it at Spicy & Tasty, and it is not the one I'm looking for. In fact, I didn't really care for it. The texture of the ground rice was a bit unpleasant and the pork wasn't ribs, or rib pieces, but more like pork belly. The second dish you refer to is the one i'm looking for. Now that I have the name, and the spelling, I'll take it to one or two of the restaurants where they know me and see if maybe they can make the dish as a special order. I'll let you know if I have any luck. If all else fails, i'll try making it at home with the recipe you've linked to. Thanks again.

                                1. re: Greg

                                  Glad I can help. I was trying to find English recipes for you (but couldn't find any) but I suppose you can read Chinese so it worked out well. If you got time, you can google for more recipes for that dish on-line to get more references if you are interested in making it at home. You can also check out some "Pearl Meatball" recipes on-line as references too since they maybe somewhat similar in ingredients (i.e. pork and sticky rice) and flavor profile (probably marinated with soy, rice wine, ginger, scallion etc). Wish you good luck!