Dim is the Sum of all Total
Trip Start Jul 10, 2007
32Trip End Ongoing
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If per chance there is a sole reader who does not know what Dim Sum is, it literally means "touch the heart" or "order to your heart's content" and it may be derived from yat dim sum yi , meaning "a little token", which entails a wide variety of small dishes , almost like tapas, usually served at lunch, and most often on Sundays but even consumed for breakfast.
During the 30 minute car ride, it was all we could do to contain ourselves, debating about which dim sum we would choose: would it be the steamed pork spareribs and char siu bao - steamed buns with roast pork or the har gao, those wonderful shrimp dumplings with their translucent skin, sesame seed balls with sweet potato or the beautiful eggplant stuffed with shrimp paste. Ahhh...so many choices and so little time.
Since most dim sum is served in steam baskets 3-4 pieces per order, this is the perfect venue to go to with friends, the more the merrier (dim sum that is)
Living in Miami, our once a month foray to Tropical Chinese on Bird Road was the norm and when my parents flew in from the Netherlands, lunch at Tropical was a given. During the 6 years we called New Hampshire home, it was a 2 1/2 hour drive to Boston's Chinatown that would get our blood flowing and worth the drive. China Pearl's come hither Dim Sum held us in its grasp, and being only a handful of non Asians at this immense 3 story restaurant only reinforced the idea that this was the "It" place outside of Canton to eat these morsels of delight.
We arrived at TC Choy's doorstep, starved and ready for the ballet of carts, choices and chopsticks. Greeted by the owner, Shannon, we initially did not see any carts and quizzing her, she confirmed that the carts were not used at night, although some dim sum could be ordered a la carte. Disapppointed, we plodded and pouted to our table and decided to make the best of it, while immediately planning for a near future Sunday Lunch. The restaurant, high ceilinged, was near empty when we arrived but started filling up by the time our dinner was over. We ordered the Dim Sum sampler that the owner had mentioned, which included Shiu mai (pork and shrimp dumplings), Steamed BBQ pork bun, Spring roll and pan fried dumpling, pretty basic fare, nothing too exotic, but at least a teaser for what we might expect during the real dim sum lunch, although chicken feet is the nucleus of many a dim sum table, and an acquired taste, one we both prefer to avoid.
We also decided to share the Malaysian Satay, lettuce wrap chicken and the Singapore Rice noodle (vermicelli stir fried with sprouts, onion, scallion, green and red bell peppers and curry paste), a light and fragrant dish.
Our young waitress, although just a bit overwhelmed as more tables were assigned to her, was overall on top of things. We are looking forward to our next trip to TCChoys and its much anticipated Sunday Dim Sum extravaganza, but we will have to take some friends along, in order to order as much as possible...Hey who wants to come along.
Let me immediately segue into our Dim Sum Sunday Lunch as we made our way to TC Choy's just a couple of weeks after our initial dinner.
Arriving as early and hungry as possible we were the second table to arrive and knew that the freshest of dim sum was ready to be pushed pushed our way. We started with the Pork shiu mai, which we had enjoyed so during the previous dinner, the char siu bao, the eggplant filled with shrimp, rice noodle overflowing with cilantro and shrimp and the lightly sauteed broccoli rabe drizzled with a plum sauce.
As sated as we were getting, when the crispy shrimp and the salt and pepper calamari passed by we just had to overindulge. Although most dim sum are an inexpensive $3-$4 per order of 3-4 pieces, it was a bit of a surprise to find out that the morsels, as delicious as they were, were a bit overpriced at $7-$9 per order, making for an expensive, albeit it mouthwatering lunch. The one dark spot during the meal was when we asked the waitress halfway through, whether they might be offering broccoli rabe, and her response "Chill out, the chef is still sauteeing it", threw us for a loop. To be honest, I am sure that if the owner even suspected this kind of a retort from one of her waitstaff to a customer, they would be reprimanded if not fired on the spot, as that would be our reaction to such a cheeky server. Other than that sour note the meal was flawless.