I’m curious if you enjoy and do much cooking. That could make a difference. Making and eating one’s own food or mostly eating other’s.
Yup. I love cooking and I cook for myself nightly.
Dim sum has ruined Chinese food.
ipse, talk to me/us about this. I have a gut feeling about what you said.
Thanks for the report back @moonboy403! They definitely seem to have lost a step in their Dim Sum game (some of the non-steamed items). We recently tried them again and found them still very good (like the Scallop Dumplings, Shu Mai, Rice Rolls and the French Style Baked BBQ Pork Buns (same ones you liked).
But surprisingly, our last visit to Elite was much worse than Sea Harbour (they definitely feel like they’ve lost a step for Dim Sum), and Lunasia was worse as well.
Ultimately, though, I’ve joined @PorkyBelly in just saving calories for Dragon Beaux whenever we’re up north. It really has ruined Dim Sum for me and nothing in So Cal comes close.
Talking about Dragon Beaux…I went this past March and I loved their roasted pork! Succulent meat with super crispy skin! On that occasion, even though their dim sum were more creative than the SGV ones, I didn’t feel their traditional dim sum were any better. =/
I certainly wouldn’t mind going back though!
Was that the pork belly? We loved that also, if so.
Agreed. Dumpling wrappers were too delicate, too. Better than dry edges but these consistently leaned too soft.
Agree to an extent…but the stronger consequence is dim sum has hijacked Hong Kong Cantonese food from a global standpoint (maybe more so for LA) and the flooding of dim sum availability compensates for the lack of variety and quality of other things.
Interesting point. I didn’t understand ipse’s comments initially.
Yeah we need some of that 7thson and Chairman action to make its way stateside
Just a note for you folks. Reno has NO dim sum. None.
IMO, it’s partly because high end Cantonese cuisine isn’t easily distinguishable from the regular stuff for the average guy. The most striking difference to most people primarily lies in more rare ingredients used such as bird’s nest, shark fin, and dried abalone. Presentation doesn’t look much different either.
Throw in the apprehension that many have toward live seafood (not to mention the price).
Okay, I’m confused. Is this discussion about “high end”?
As far as bird’s nest and shark fin, do any US places still serve it? The real thing? I have no knowledge about abalone.
It’s certainly related because prestige is what drives many people from other cultures to spend more money on certain cuisine. The extra dough then attracts talent. In essence, Chinese & Cantonese cuisine in the US is stuck with the “cheap and generous portion” label so nobody is willing to splurge on them. How else can one explain that a huge plate of dumpling is expected to cost no more than $10 while a few ravioli with brown butter cost $30 when they’re both similarly structured and handmade?
So IMO, unless high end Cantonese can somehow break the mold and gain popularity which means $$, it’ll be difficult to attract talent to run a high quality restaurant in the US. After all, why aspire to be a Cantonese chef when you can’t charge more than $20 for a huge plate of whatevers that can feed 3 when you can learn from Joel Robuchon and potentially charge $450+ per person?
Shark fin is banned in the US so no. As far as bird’s nest, fish maw, dried abalone, etc. go, definitely. However nobody seeks them out since they can get very expensive quickly. So adding to this conundrum is the fact that we need more affluent Chinese/Cantonese immigrants or descendants that are actually looking to to eat these stuff to create demand that should kick start this revolution.
Fun fact: The Fook Lam Moon restaurant in Hong Kong stocks more than $1.3 million USD worth of dried abalone on any given day (according to WSJ in 2010), so it goes to show why “high end” is a good money maker and relevant to the discussion.
In the U.S. …
I believe they’re allowed to sell what’s “left” of their stock but there are always somebody with unlimited “stock”. However, it’s not like many people are seeking them out anyway.
You’d be surprised. Very surprised.