Sunday, September 17, 2006
new concept: dim sum, everything you've heard, read, and more.
everything you've read or heard about new concept is true: it can take forever to get in on weekends, the waitstaff is either in their own world or rude, the dim sum is totally overhyped, the napkins are terrible. sure. but they've got the best char siu bao buns i've have ever had--soft, delicate, fluffy, glossy, a nice balance of tender pork, salty sauce, sweet dough--and generally their dim sum is pretty good. i'll go back.
here's a random survey of menu items:
what i loved: the fried taro cake, which came in smaller chunks than what you'd find in one of those rolling cart palaces, and was lighter, fluffier and less greasy too; the shark fin and scallop dumpling was filled with a plump, barely cooked scallop and generous portion of shark fin, wrapped in a jade green wrapper and topped with delicate roe. the roasted pork rocked the house down--shards of crispy, fatty skin atop tender, well-marbled pork loin meat, and served with a tiny bit of hoisin and sugar to bring out its flavour. droolworthy.
chicken feet=pretty great. flavoured mildly with jalapeño, and totally fatty without being greasy.
pretty good, okay: chicken wings, braised in soda, although i don't know what kind of soda. probably a bad thing that i can't tell if it was cooked in a lemon-lime soda or a cola, but really, i just got it for novelty's sake. chicken good well, sauce not that interesting.
also just okay: mushroom caps stuffed with a minced prawn mixture. quite generous in portion, and cooked well. however, the fungal shellfish combination just doesn't work for me. tasted great separating the two main elements, but then what's the point of that.
disappointing: shanghai dumplings. i thought the wrapper was a little too thick, and they stuck to the bottom of the steaming dish, so they broke easily and let the broth run out. however, i didn't think there was enough soup in them anyway. the flavour was good enough though.
the odd: i don't know what this is called, because it was written in chinese characters on the menu. the very abrupt host really didn't feel the need to explain what it was to me: "do you want it or what?" uh, what, but yeah, bring it over. turned out to be a glutinous rice roll, flavoured with a sort of medicinal herb and sprinkled with sesame seeds. sweet, sticky, odd. couldn't finish the portion.
okay. there you go. proceed at your own risk, make your own mind up. want to come with me next time i go?
700 s. atlantic (x-street: harding)
monterey park 91754.