If the New York slice is commonly associated with the Big Apple and a dish of fish and chips is considered native to London, then dim sum is considered to be representative of Asia’s World City - Hong Kong. The practice of yum cha drinking tea and consuming various dim sums for the morning or afternoon meal is a time-honored tradition in Hong Kong. Most Hong Kongers have their favorite yum cha restaurants and are quite passionate about their views of the quality of dim sum served at these spots.
It thus goes without saying that any visit to Hong Kong should include a yum cha meal or two if you wish. Listed below are some of the ‘best’ or most ‘well-regarded’ dim sum restaurants in Hong Kong.
Tim Ho Wan–Dim Sum Specialist
Renowned as the world’s cheapest Michelin star restaurant, the original outlet of Tim Ho Wan is a no-frills, cramped eatery located on Kwong Wah Street in Yau Ma Tei, Kowloon. Established by Pui Gor who once served as the sous chef at another famed Hong Kong dim sum restaurant (Lung King Heen at the Four Seasons hotel), Tim Ho Wan perennially has long lines outside its doors. Frequent visitors advise that the best time to visit is between 2 and 5 pm when the crowds are thinner. Signature dishes at Tim Ho Wan include baked barbecue pork buns, steamed rice flour rolls with shrimp, steamed prawn dumplings and fried turnip cake. Tim Ho Wan has now expanded into a territory-wide chain and operates from six locations around the city.
Lung King Heen
Lung King Heen located within the plush environs of the Four Seasons Hotel; Hong Kong has set the standard for Cantonese dim sum. It is no wonder that the restaurant is a recipient of three Michelin stars. Lung King Heen name translates as ‘The Dragon’s View’ and along with a breath-taking view of Hong Kong’s skyline and harbor; the restaurant offers exquisite seafood and dim sum preparations.
Fook Lam Moon
Fook Lam Moon is a long established, unobtrusive dim sum restaurant situated along Hong Kong’s busy Johnston Road in Wan Chai. The exterior of the restaurant is plain and commonplace, but its interior is set up like a Chinese banquet hall. The restaurant serves traditional dim sum fare featuring signature dishes like steamed char siu buns, steamed pork dumplings with crab roe, cured meat and radish cake, crispy spring rolls, egg tarts and mango pudding. The restaurant is a popular choice for weekend lunch and routinely attracts the rich and famous folk of Hong Kong.
Above and Beyond
Offering spectacular views from the 28th floor of Hotel Icon in Kowloon, Above and Beyond serves a magnificent dim sum feast every day. On offer are tasty if not exotic morsels like steamed pork dumplings with scallops, sliced beef congee with raw egg, steamed crab and sea urchin dumplings and stir fried rice rolls and more.
Maxim’s Palace City Hall
The flagship restaurant of Hong Kong’s popular Maxims chain is a large, waterfront property. The restaurant features old-world dim sum trolleys that are brought to your table, so you can choose what you wish to eat. The dishes bear signage in both English and Cantonese making it easy for non-Cantonese speaking patrons to navigate the menu. This facility along with a well-made dim sum fare, accounts for the restaurant’s enormous popularity. In fact, if you visit the restaurant on weekends at its peak time 11am waits for a table can extend over an hour.