Wednesday, 12 August 2015

A Dim Sum Experience


You know, when I was a kid I hated dim sum. I grew up in Kuala Terengganu (a place not known for dim sum obviously) and I used to spend the weekends (Friday) with my cousins. We had art class in the morning and after that my uncle and my late aunt would ferry us to a restaurant somewhere for lunch. Then we proceed to my uncle's house where we kids would settle down and play. Come dinner time, I would pray that it was NOT dim sum.


There was this place called "Chui Guek Lau" (not too sure of the spelling) where my late aunt loved to go for dim sum. So sometimes we ended up there for dinner. Not my favorite place. What I remember is the fried fish balls and the red chilli yong tau foo. The rest I forget. 

Thank goodness, in my adult life, I have come to appreciate dim sum. Though I can't say that I am crazy over it. Last Saturday, I decided to go to Tim Ho Wan to check out what the hoo hah is all about. I read that there are long queues at this place.

I was there with my auntie and my brother. We arrived at 1-Utama at 10:00am sharp hah..hah.. because we wanted to avoid the crowd. I understand that the restaurant now opens at 8:00am. We got a seat very quickly as the restaurant was not fully occupied as yet. 


At the table, there was the menu and an order chit. Ah! I love order chits! I prefer to tick what I want instead to having to tell the server. This time, my brother took charge.

Before coming here, I did some research just to get an idea what to expect. Well, the reviews were rather lukewarm (the ones I read lah) with mention of hits and misses and how certain items were "not the best I have eaten". But there was however, one item on the menu that got good reviews and comes highly recommended - the Baked Bun with BBQ Pork.

This one leh, everyone says must eat!

I am no dim sum connoisseur and I trust that I would be easy to please as long as the food is decent. My brother and I agreed that we should try Tim Ho Wan at least once to find out for ourselves if it was any good.

This was what we had :


This Braised Chicken Feet was my brother's choice. It was alright to me. I think I enjoyed the strips of beancurd skin (?) more. I only like chicken feet kerabu hah...hah...


Oh ya, they have condiments on the table and this one I believe is chilli bean sauce. I like it a lot.


This Wasabi Salad Prawn Dumpling was rather good. Crispy with fresh crunchy prawn and well complemented by the wasabi mayo. Next time, I want two servings.


Ah, this Baked Bun with BBQ Pork was a much anticipated item. I couldn't wait to dig in. It came piping hot and I almost burnt my tongue. The bun has a nice crispy exterior. Though I enjoyed it very much, I find the filling too sweet. I think I can eat 3 buns in one sitting. Next time.


The Steamed Spinach Dumpling was quite nice. I like it. My auntie however complained that there was too much chives. I don't know if there were any chives in there. I just walloped.


Being a beef lover, of course I had to order this Beef Ball with Bean Curd Skin. It was nice. And I shan't be hoity toity and say that it's not the best I have had because this is my first time eating it.


Generally speaking, I love chee cheong fan. This Vermicelli Roll with Sweet and Sesame Sauce was rather good except that I don't like the peanut butter thingy. I mean, I love peanut butter but not with chee cheong fun. 


Pork Dumpling with Shrimp aka Siew Mai. To me, this is synonymous with dim sum. Siew Mai = Dim Sum = Siew Mai. See I told you I am a simpleton when it comes to dim sum. My brother placed 2 orders for this. It must be his favorite. This was alright for me.


The Prawn Dumplings (Har Kow?) were good. But I find the skin too thick. Ahah! Becoming a fussy pot liao, huh? But I enjoyed the fresh crunchy prawns. Again, two servings of this next time.

And that's it! We could have eaten more that's for sure hah..hah... But this is just a test drive. Besides, we were heading to another auntie's house and she was treating us to lunch. So we should save some stomach space.

The damage for our late breakfast came to RM110.20. That's the price range to expect for a place like Tim Ho Wan. This sort of outing will be reserved for special occasions or the once-in-a -blue moon-treat.


Will I come back? Yes. But I will only stick to two or three items with 2 servings each. I think my brother agrees :)

I think these looked rather pretty. Maybe it's because I love green.

34 comments:

  1. Dim Sum is one of my favourite foods, but i don't eat chicken feet, no thank you to it...

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    1. Sharon, you can eat the other items...

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  2. PH, wow dim sum, my favourite!

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    1. Jess, you would enjoy the dim sum here!

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  3. Huh, they opened another outlet in 1U? Then maybe it is time to pay them a visit, hopefully the queue is halved... Regardless of how hit and miss they are, still must go and verify for myself hahaha!

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    1. Yup! I waited a while before venturing there. So when you are back in KL, go try the dim sum and let me know what you think.

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  4. I could not believe my ears that you didn;t like Dim Sum when you were a kid. That's absoultely funny as most kids all love to eat the easy-bites Dim Sum. When I was a kid, I always voted for Dim Sum for any celebrations and we had very few restaurants in Penang that served full scale Dim Sum. I recall eating at the posh Hotel Mandarin and Halomon Restaurant as the only 2 places in those days. Sweet memories!
    Now you are luring me to eat at THW as the photos could show its delicious textures. Yums! The last one looks like a unique Teochew Chai Kueh! The bill is expected to be that range, so can eat there sometimes.

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    1. TM, the dim sum in KT was not good then, that's why. I don't know about now. I must go to a more affordable place and eat more dim sum.

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  5. Hah, can't believe you said you hated dimsum.. Rich man's food wei.. Even til now, dimsum is not cheap.. Two persons, can go up to RM60+.. I myself buy dimsum for myself also RM28+ already.. Really not cheap.. I love your salad prawn dumplings with wasabi mayo.. Sekali pandang, I thought avocado sauce.. I must have my siew mai, fried fish balls, hamtan peitan sauyok porridge, prawn dumplings with LOTS of mayo, woo-kok (yam balls) and lastly, my favourite chau lobak koh (kueh kak).. Yummzz, as I type, I'm craving for dimsum already..I have to say your beef balls look so so good, I can have 10 baskets! Really..

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    1. Louiz, the dim sum at that time did not taste good to me. The price depends on where you go. There is one dim sum restaurant near my office and the prices are a lot cheaper. I must go there and try.

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  6. I like dim sum but cant take a lot. Quite filling leh

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  7. You're very funny, PH...you say filling too sweet, skin too thick....but next time you want two servings! :D :D Why order two when you can have more options? I thought the spinach dumpling looked the greatest too with its ultra translucent skin. I have yet to try this place.

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    1. hah..hah... I suppose I can overlook the too sweet taste and thick skin because overall they were good. There are not many items on the menu and I only like just a few. I'm looking forwards to your review if you do ever go there :)

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  8. You hated dim sum? Aiyor!!!!!! How could you? I love dim sum - the good ones. Some are very coarse, even the meat in the siew mai would feel so kasar...and some, I just cannot stand the msg overload - like FOC one, just simply put!

    This one is expensive but yes, I would not mind going to try...ONCE. Don't say I have never had before, so jakun like that. But that would have to wait till I go to KL again lah, none here.

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    1. The dim sum in KT at that time was not so good. If not, you know I would have been happily walloping away hah..hah... Don't know about now. Yes, should try at least once and see if the price is justified. Service was good, efficient and fast.

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  9. haha, praying for dinner is not dimsum?? actually I have not had dimsum for dinner before at all, it's either in the morning or lunch or supper.. you were already eating dimsum when you were a kid!! I am suagoo lah, I think the first proper dimsum I had was when I was in college.. the only dimsum I had before that was probably those siew mai sold together with bao in the steamer..

    i'm surprised you didn't like dimsum, haha!! maybe the dimsum you had, and praying not to have again, was not actually that nice that you would like them?? being more and more common now, I guess many had improved and also change to suit the taste of the majority, not to mention some very creative ideas for new types of dimsum.. and like you, dimsum is har gao and siew mai to me, two very signature and must have when we go for dimsum..

    yeah THW was like the topic amongst gastronome, but I am more curious if there is still long queue outside today?? you know, this scene is very common, people flocked to new eateries but a couple of weeks or months later, there is no more queue but the connoisseur flock to another new eateries instead..

    I have not been to THW before, and I wonder if I would, haha!! thanks for giving such a detailed review of the dimsum, this is very useful piece of info.. the presentation looks good generally, and yeah, peanut sauce is made of peanut butter, not any type close to our satay sauce.. I would actually prefer soya sauce for the CCF instead if the sauce there.. :)

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    1. The dim sum in KT at that time not nice lah. If not I will sure love it and can wallop a lot. I think you can try THW and go during off peak hours to avoid having to queue. That morning it was very peaceful, no queue at all. Maybe the novelty has died down. Having peanut butter in CCF was so weird. Next time I will try the other types of CCF.

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  10. Eh you didn't eat the malaiko? I like that very much at thw.

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    1. I actually forgot about the malaiko! Only remembered as we were eating half way hah..hah... There'll be another visit but not so soon. I will be sure to order the malaiko :)

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  11. I WANNA TRY NEXT TIME!! Ok, what I desire to try is the BBQ pork buns, the chives dumplings and the salad prawn dumpling with green mayo.. or whatever.. the rest, I can skip them.. hahaha.. prices are quite high ma.. so choose only those worth trying.. yeah ha, why they put peanut butter on the chee cheong fun wor? Nice moe? Very hard to imagine the taste of peanut butter on CCF.. hahahaa...

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    1. Wah, already placing your order, huh? hah..hah... yes, one day you go try and see if you like it and also see if the dim sum is better than the one in Ipoh hee..hee... I did not like the peanut butter in CCF. To me it is weird.

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  12. Hi Phong Hong,
    Pretty surprise that you don't like dim sum when you were young.
    My girl asked me to try dim sum at Tim Ho Wan ... but I don't want to waste my time in Q. Hope to try it when the Q is not that long.
    Wasabi Salad Prawn Dumpling & BBQ pork buns look delish. Oh I love the chee cheong fun with peanut butter sauce. First time when I had this and 'za liang' wrapped with yu za kuay many years ago in Hong Kong. Since then it's a must for me whenever I visit Hong Kong cos not common here.
    Oh no yam puff wu kok ? Lo mai kai? Char siu bao for you ?! ... hee .. hee... surely very full and tend to eat more for dim sum brunch.

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    1. Hi Karen! Well, the ones I had during childhood were not tasty. THW is famous in HK so there is tendency for people to get excited over it and come by the droves. I remember you wrote about the CCF you had with peanut sauce. Yup, there was no wu kok :( I think they have lo mai kai but they don't have the regular steamed char siew bao.

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  13. As a kid I never know what is dim sum. Its only as an adult that I came to know what is dim sum...so jakun ha ha....I would definitely order the baked bun with bbq port because it really looks good. When eating dim sum, I always like to try something new or a bit of this and that. I enjoy dim sum very much but can't eat often because very expensive.

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    1. Nancy, now I quite enjoy dim sum. It depends which restaurant you go to - some are quite reasonably priced. I must hunt for those hah..hah...

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  14. Wah ....so many nice dim sum! I was spoilt for dim sum when I was kid since I grow up in Ipoh. We always go for dim sum at night or morning. :)

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    1. So lucky for you! When I was small, the dim sum in KT was not nice.

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  15. I love dim sum!! Where I live, there is always a LOT of traffic on one road on Sunday morning/afternon because everyone is going out for dim sum brunch.

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  16. Chee Cheong Fun with peanut butter? I don't think I like that too..I prefer it to be savoury. Never tried the spinach dumpling before, something new in the dim sum spread.

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    1. Agnes, I won't order that CCF again for sure hah...hah...

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  17. i hv only been to the tim ho wan in hong kong , also crowded but i guess mostly all dim sum restaurants in hkg are always packed! My friend told me that THW opened their outlet in sydney some months back or a year, cant remember...also very very crowded! eh , their BBq pork bun in the pic here looks like polo bun..hehe..

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    1. Wah, you got to try the one in HK! That bun is really good. Yes, I saw photo of polo bun and it does look similar.

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