Eastern Promises 11: Awful Dim Sum at Dim Sum Cafe
King’s Dumplings, at 955 King’s Street, Quarry Bay, Hong Kong; call them at 2127 7068.
There are a lot of reasons to write about food.
Food often involves sharing an experience with others, be it at a turkey dinner at a family gathering, partaking in “stoner bowls” at the Gathering of the Juggalos, or nibbling on hot-pockets while playing Magic: The Gathering.
Wordplay aside, for me Eastern Promises is as much about sharing the experience of living abroad is it is about the food itself. And in some cases, all I want to share is a cautionary tale. And that’s really the purpose of this report: Dim Sum Cafe sucks; stay away.
A few weeks ago I was out in Quarry Bay, searching for dinner. By the time I had moved out of Q-Bay, I had eaten at most of the interesting places. This night was feeling a little down and wasn’t in the mood to be alone in a busy restaurant. There was a congee place I’d been meaning to try – and eventually did – but it was absolutely slammed that night.
A little joint called Dim Sum Cafe seemed like a nice compromise. I like dim sum food and it had it seemed fairly accessible to Westerners. I guess maybe that’s a bad sign.
It was very easy to order here with a clear English menu I could mark with my choices. I got steamed char-siu baos, har gao and fried radish cakes, the last of which has been a favorite of mine since my friend Des, nearly ten years ago, spent all day making them for our friends in Vancouver. His were good. These were miserable. Dripping with old oil, someone fell asleep at the fryer. The baos were hard and stale and the har gao unremarkable.
Sometimes you put a lot of thought into what you want and it blows up in your face.