$10-15 a person
It’s a little late, and I have a lot of homework left, but I have to write this now because the overwhelming amount of dim sum pictures on my dashboard, waiting to be uploaded in this post is making me really hungry. And I already ate dinner. Here, a good image of how my brain is functioning right now is the fact that my dad just said to me, “Please don’t make tea in the gravy boat.” I swear, I’m not making that up. Anybody who’s written a second term paper (in the same term!) understands my agony here. So foodies, take a break from homework and just imagine that you are walking through China Town right now. It’s about eleven AM, and you’re looking for a good place to go get some dim sum. You turn the corner and there it is!
Now, I’m not quite positive what exactly this place is called. Grand Harmony? Harmony Palace? Grand Palace? I’ve heard them all, but it doesn’t really matter, because Grand Harmony Palace has delicious dim sum, and dim sum equals yum. (That rhyme is embarrassing, but it’s kind of just true…………)
My daily Instagram news feed is a dumping ground of beautifully selected and filtered photos of cupcakes, pies, and other cute little desserts, or pictures of Cara Delevigne. I think everybody’s news feed is. I must confess I am a serial cupcake photoshoot-er myself. So when one of my friends posted a picture of some dumplings from dim sum one weekend, I sent myself into a craze and just had to go to Harmony Palace, my family’s go-to dim sum restaurant. Actually, I went there three times in a month. Our friends were visiting the city, so we decided to take them to Harmony Palace as a “New York Experience,” which it really is.
The restaurant serves dim sum at brunch time and it is always bustling with families from all over, and friends who are out together. After waiting on a confusing, fast paced line, you enter a large, gold and red room, with a high ceiling and plenty of big, round tables where the waiters seat you either by yourselves or with another party, depending how many people are there. Having dim sum at Grand Harmony is a really exciting thing, especially if you’re visiting, or looking for something really festive to do. It is energetic, and the restaurant itself is a conversation starter, so you can’t really have a lull while you’re there.
Carts come around with delicious dumplings, rice bundles, steamed buns, noodles, soup, anything you can dream of. You can point at what you want, choose randomly (which I always say I’m going to do and then end up getting the same things that I already know I like) or you can ask what’s in the dumplings…
Some of my favorites, which I’ve included pictures of below are the green scallion and shrimp dumplings, which are cased in a thick, pan fried, doughy wrapper, that makes me feel like I could eat 20 plates of them, pork bao, fluffy steamed buns with a burst of barbecue pork on the inside (they also come in chicken, which embarrassingly, I’ve never tried), and these long, doughy, noodle-dumplings with a soy-ish sauce on them. They come plain, with scallions, filled with shrimp or with beef inside. My brother actually just calls them “dim sum” because when we go to get dim sum, it’s the only thing he eats. Then there’s sticky rice, in leaf bundles, with the most delicious mix of meat and spices and sauces inside; it’s like unwrapping happiness. There are big shrimp dumplings, rolled in rice, instead of a wrapper, and they are really good. It’s an interesting texture, but I love it. And there are so many other things to try! The amazing thing is you can just choose by looking at what people are eating around you, or what’s on the carts as they come by. I think this is a really fun way to eat, and it makes dim sum so exciting.
My family always orders something green from the kitchen, preferably sautéed pea shoots, which are really delicious with the right balance of garlic and oil. I’ve also seen people order a big plate of noodles for the table after their dumplings. I personally could sit there all day and try every thing that comes out of the kitchen. Except maybe chicken feet, but I know my grandma likes them, so there.
I hope you get to go have dim sum at Grand Harmony Palace, and I hope you have as much fun as I do!