Dim sum culture has been around for centuries. The act of ‘yum cha’ or drinking tea has always been complemented by tucking into these bite-sized dishes. The word ‘dim sum’ (Cantonese origins) refers to small dishes that are served in bamboo steamer baskets or on small plates. When directly translated, dim sum simply means to “touch the heart” – basically food that satisfies the palate and warms the soul.
A type of comfort food by nature, these small portions of dishes can be both savoury and sweet, and prepared steamed, baked or fried. And because they come in small servings, diners would usually order a great variety – sampling a banquet of delicious ingredients and flavours packed in pretty pocket-sized parcels.
Originating from Hong Kong and the Guangdong province, dim sum culture has over the decades ventured into all nooks and corners of the world. Today, dim sum is enjoyed all-day, for every occasion – especially for family gatherings.
From succulent pork and shrimp dumplings to meat-filled yam puff, fluffy steamed buns and cracking egg tarts (and the list goes on), dim sum dining is a one-menu-fits-all gastronomic feast. And if you’ve not started salivating yet, scroll down to our list of favourite places for the most scrumptious weekend dim sum buffets in town.
Recently renovated, the newly re-opened Red Chinese Cuisine at Pullman KLCC is a great place to spend your weekends with family and loved ones. The interiors are stunning in red accents, complementing its crockery and serving plates in similar hues. Enjoy their special weekend dim sum brunch where you can pick from over 40 freshly prepared dim sum dishes and other small bites including steam rice rolls, egg tarts, yam puffs and Chinese pancakes.
Red Chinese Cuisine, Level 2 Pullman KLCC, Jalan Conlay 50450 Kuala Lumpur, +603 2170 8888.
Dine in the luxurious setting of the award-winning Tao Chinese Cuisine – the perfect place to bring your parents for a weekend dim sum treat. The all-you-can-eat dim sum menu features unlimited servings of all-time favourites specially made by their skilful dim sum chefs. Tao Chinese Cuisine boasts a fine selection of signature creations such as deep-fried taro dumplings with smoked black pepper duck, baked bamboo charcoal egg tarts and homemade fish ball with crabmeat sauce. Don’t miss out on their Tao special XO sauce!
Tao Chinese Cuisine, Level 1, InterContinental Kuala Lumpur, 165, Jalan Ampang, 50450 Kuala Lumpur, +603 2782 6128
Dim sum master chef Thye Yoon Kong knows how to tantalise patrons of Lai Ching Yuen Chinese Restaurant at Grand Millennium KL with fantastic Cantonese delights. His mélange of dim sum treats include steamed buns with a variety of fillings, flavoursome deep-fried morsels, fried radish cake as well as prawn and scallop rolls; harnessing the freshness of the ingredients. To finish off, try their signature Chilled Durian Pancake.
Lai Ching Yuen Chinese Restaurant, Level 1 Grand Millennium Hotel, 160, Jalan Bukit Bintang, 55100 Kuala Lumpur, +603 2117 4180.
Savour in the endless delight of delectable pork-free dim sums at the sophisticated ambience of Five Sen5es at The Westin KL. The all-you-can-eat menu offers a wide range of popular dishes including steamed buns, prawn dumplings in crab roe bisque and flaky yam puff with fresh scallop filling. Don’t forget to order their signature Shanghainese Xiao Long Bao bathed in a ‘chick kut teh’ broth.
Five Sen5es, Level 1 The Westin Kuala Lumpur, 199, Jalan Bukit Bintang, Bukit Bintang, 55100 Kuala Lumpur, +603 2773 8338.
Stately and elegant, the atmosphere in Celestial Court is where you want to immerse in on a relaxing weekend; enjoying tea and chomping on dainty dim sums. Choose from over 70 varieties of dim sum, including complementing dishes like Peking duck rolls and wok-fried chilli crabs. Currently under renovation, the restaurant promises an even better atmosphere with great tasting dishes when it’s back this August 2018.
Celestial Court, Level 3, Sheraton Imperial KL Hotel, Jalan Sultan Ismail, 50250 Kuala Lumpur, +603 2717 9988
If you want to venture out of the city centre for a weekend brunch, try Le Mei at Le Meridien Putrajaya. Headed by award-winning Chef Michael Wong, the culinary team recreates traditional flavours in modern interpretations using only fresh produce sourced locally and overseas. Sink your teeth into a distinct selection of innovative dim sums including squid ink dumplings with sea urchin, fresh shrimp with spinach dumplings, almond-coated prawn balls with parmesan cheese and black sesame cigar rolls.
Le Mei, Lobby Level, Le Meridien Putrajaya, Lebuh IRC, IOI Resort City, 62502 Putrajaya, Sepang, Selangor
Tucked in one of the most premier enclaves in Petaling Jaya, Toh Yuen Chinese Restaurant in Hilton PJ is one of the most sought-after places for authentic Cantonese cuisine. Great for brunch as the restaurant’s special Sunday-only dim sum buffet starts at 11.30am to 2.00pm. Enjoy a wide variety of steamed, deep-fried, pan-fried and baked dim sum as well as delicious staples like congee, rice rolls, and sweet treats.
Toh Yuen, Level 1 West Wing, Hilton Petaling Jaya, 2 Jalan Barat, 46200 Petaling Jaya, Selangor, +603 7955 9122