Dim Sum, known in Mandarin Chinese as 点心 [Dian Xin], is a common Chinese brunch dining experience usually for large gatherings of friends and family on the weekend. It might be the time to unwind and relax, but don’t go expecting a quiet Sunday vibe. Part of the fun is the moving parts and flowing conversations.
The dim sum tradition has been around in Guangdong province for centuries. Though the ambiance and offerings can vary greatly today, you can almost always count on delicious food. The atmosphere at the local family “mom-and-pop” shops is usually loud and rowdy. Flagging down a server can also prove to be quite difficult due to the limited space and quick turnaround. The food usually comes out hot and fresh either in small bamboo steamers or small white plates of 3 items each, though it changes based on the dish.
However, the dim sum restaurant 点心荟 [Dian Xin Hui], offers a modern-style dim sum experience without the hustle and bustle. Those more familiar with the cuisine can expect fresh and creative twists to common dim sum dishes. I was pleasantly surprised by the small nuisances that made each dish unique.
The first standout was the红米脆皮一品肠 [Hong Mi Cui Pi Yi Pin Chang]. It has a crunchy Chinese donut inside pink rice noodles. This dish comes with a sweet soy sauce to dip with. The turnip cake 萝卜糕 [Luo Bo Gao] was the most memorable! Like usual it was made with slices of radish and pieces of sausage, mushrooms, and dried shrimp and scallops. Only in this case, the radish cake was cut into smaller cubes which increased the surface area of the thinly pan-fried crispy skin. I highly recommend these two dishes.
And what is dim sum without satisfying your palette with some sweet delicacies! Their egg tart 蛋挞 [Dan Ta] was fresh hot out of the oven, soft and creamy on the inside and crispy on the outside. After biting into the flaky tart, you will be flagging down the waiter to bring a second plate. You never want to settle on just one sweet thing. We went for the Salty Custard Buns沙皇包 [Sha Huang Bao]. These buns are always delicious because of the salty-sweet and buttery custard inside. However, be cautious when biting into this particular dessert, as 点心荟 makes the filling much more runny than usual. My friends and I had a good laugh watching each other struggle to prevent the mess from getting worse.
点心荟 recently opened and is already getting very high reviews from locals on 大众点评 [Da Zhong Dian Ping], the number one app for restaurant reviews in China. The restaurant is located within Nanshan District and only 4 km away from the PKU Shenzhen campus in方大城 [Fang Da Cheng], a new development quickly gaining popularity for its interesting selection of restaurants, cafes, shops, and entertainment. Go check it out soon— this could easily become the new hang out spot for PKU students! It is sure to be able to satisfy even the heaviest dim sum craving: in addition to点心荟 [Dian Xin Hui], there are many other dim sum choices in the area. So go all out and make a dim-sum hopping adventure out of a beautiful Shenzhen weekend day.
Address: 方大城2楼 Fang Da City Building 2, Nanshan District, Shenzhen
By Ann Tseng