You’re killing me.
Thanks @TheCookie. Welcome back. Seriously this place is totally worth going to, the next time you find yourself up in SF.
I wonder if they do goose?
And Sweet and Sour Pork (made with Hawthorne).
Ultimate Canto food test:
-Sweet and Sour Pork
After experiencing the best Dim Sum we’ve ever had last time, there was no way we were going to miss out on revisiting Dragon Beaux on this trip.
Once again, it is nothing short of stunning to see Dragon Beaux offer 21(!) different types of Tea you can choose from for Dim Sum. We decided to try:
Wuyi Da Hong Pao Tea:
This was earthy and fragrant, tasting like a new varietal we had never tried before. Wonderful with the meal.
Crispy Shrimp Paste Donut Rice Crepe Roll:
We wanted to try some more of the Dim Sum classics on this trip, so we decided on their Crispy Shrimp Paste Donut Rice Crepe Roll. Normally it’s just the Fried Crueller / “Donut” wrapped by Rice Roll exterior and steamed, but Dragon Beaux shows off their finesse once again, with adding in a bit of Shrimp Paste to give it that briny umami flavor.
This was outstanding! The Rice Roll exterior was slippery, tender, and steamed just right (not over steamed, nor mushy, with a nice texture to it). These are the best Rice Rolls for Dim Sum I’ve ever had!
Classic Shrimp Dumpling (Har Gow):
On our first visit, this was the one misstep of the meal, when they overcooked the Dumpling Skin. We wanted to give it another try and see if it was better: Perfectly cooked Shrimp Dumpling Skin this time and perfect Shrimp inside.
Fantastic Har Gow!
Five Guys Xiao Long Bao:
Yes, initially this seems more like a gimmick than anything, but it looked too irresistible not to try! This proves some of Dragon Beaux’s prowess: Unlike the food-coloring / gimmicky based stuff at a few of LA’s Dim Sum houses, each one of these Xiao Long Bao (XLB)'s actually tasted like the flavor the menu listed them as:
Spinach Skin / Kale Xiao Long Bao actually tasted vegetal in the skin itself, Turmeric XLB tasted like Turmeric (and was an interesting diversion), The Beets XLB actually tasted like a subtle Beet infusion in the Xiao Long Bao skin, and the Squid Ink XLB and Natural Skin XLB were tasty as well.
They won’t dethrone the best XLB specialists, but for alternate flavor dishes, these were successful.
Crispy Garlic Chicken Knee Cartilage:
These were awesome! A very nice version of Fried Chicken Cartilage, for all of you Nankotsu fans out there (@bulavinaka). The Garlic was fragrant and really elevated this version above the usual Fried Cartilage dishes out there.
Crab Roe Shiu Mai:
We loved the Scallop version of their classic Shu Mai, so we wanted to see how the Crab Roe version fared. This was OK, the only misstep of the entire meal. They weren’t as tender, fluffy and nice as the Scallop version, it might’ve been an off day?
We loved Dragon Beaux so much, we decided to come back again on the same trip to try more items!
Eastern Beauty Tea:
Another interesting Tea we had never tried before. This was really enjoyable as well, less earthy and lighter than the Wuyi Da Hong Pao Tea on the last visit.
XO Spinach Dumplings:
And then you get innovation like this: Dragon Beaux decided to do a Spinach-infused Dumpling Skin (which tasted really nice), with Shrimp and their Housemade XO Sauce! The result was just this intense, wonderfully briny (in a good way) burst of Dried Scallops, Dried Shrimp in a lightly spicy sauce (their XO), and the Fresh Shrimp was perfectly cooked and tender. Fantastic!
Pan Seared Daikon Cake:
A Dim Sum classic, Dragon Beaux’s version hits it out of the park. Nice caramelization from the sear, nice tender interior, with not a lot of filler (like many Dim Sum houses these days).
Fish Chip Rose Red Rice Crepe Roll:
First off, yes, this looks shockingly Red-Pink, and seems like a “fusion” dish of some sort. But once again, Dragon Beaux proves the initial fears wrong: They use a Red Rice Grain for the Rice Roll wrapper, and it’s perfectly steamed once again, silky, tender, and it gives way to Fried Fish on the inside!
So it’s like the Crispy Crueller Rice Roll (traditional) but elevated and different once again. This was one of our friend’s favorite dish of the meal.
Gold and Silver Egg Fried Rice:
After @ipsedixit waxed poetic about their Fried Rice, we knew this was a must order.
Taking a bite…
COME ON! Seriously?! Perfect Wok Hei, gorgeous wok skills to yield THE best Fried Rice I’ve ever had (not joking)!
It’s got that great Wok Hei that you want in a Fried Rice (that my SGV friends taught me about years ago ), it’s not oily tasting, and just delivers this light, savory, mouthful of awesome! @JeetKuneBao @Ns1 @chandavkl @secretasianman and all Fried Rice lovers out there, do not miss this!
Roasted Pork Belly:
Crunchy, crispy skin - like the best Roasted Pork - with tender, fresh-tasting, lean Pork meat beneath it. SO GOOD! Thank you again @PorkyBelly.
This is better than most Cantonese / Hong Kong Roaster restaurants.
Sadly their Roasted Duck was nowhere near as good as the Roasted Pork Belly. It was fine, but lacked the crisped Duck Skin on the outside, being a bit soggy. But it tasted very fresh.
Wild Mushroom & Chicken Bao:
Now we know where the imposter Xiang Yuan Dim Sum restaurant in the SGV got the idea from: Dragon Beaux delivers the OG version, with a Steamed Bun (Bao) made to look like a Mushroom. Unlike Xiang Yuan’s version this one is fluffy and yields a real, homemade taste, with actual Marinated Chicken and Sauteed Mushrooms inside. Tasty.
Jumbo Scallop Shiu Mai:
And to finish things off, the Jumbo Scallop Shiu Mai from our first visit: If you ever want to look for what a paradigm shifting taste of Siu Mai might be like, give Dragon Beaux’s Scallop Shiu Mai a try. Perfect marinated Ground Pork & Shrimp balance, just cooked through, the outer skin is tender and still holds it together. The Jumbo Scallop? Wonderful, fresh, silky, awesome!
After 3 visits, I still think about going back to Dragon Beaux, and can only say that it is the best Dim Sum I’ve ever had in the U.S. On some levels, it might seem like a standard Hong Kong / Cantonese Dim Sum House, but from the moment you open the menu, to ordering from 21 different types of legit Chinese Teas, to the flawless perfection of their Jumbo Scallop Shiu Mai, to the Rice Crepe Rolls, to the crispy, mouth-watering Roast Pork Belly, to the creative, new creations (Spinach & XO Dumpling! Red Rose (Rice) Crepe Roll with Fried Fish, and of course to the stunning Fried Rice that @ipsedixit loves so much, there is nothing like Dragon Beaux and it remains one of great bastions for culinary excellence for Dim Sum. I am forever indebted to @PorkyBelly @beefnoguy for the recommendation! Thank you!
5700 Geary Blvd.
San Francisco, CA 94121
Tel: (415) 333-8899
December 2017 Weekend Rundown
We’ll be up there in the next couple of months, thanks! Usually have gone to Hong Kong Lounge
Wow twice in one trip, nice. I have to try that fish chip roll and abalone fried rice. Thanks for the rec and great report.
Holy moly, this place was awesome when I was there last, but it seems like they are branching out with the innovation like crazy!
Cool! seen pics of this at HK dim sum joints.
Oh my wow @Chowseeker1999! Delicious report.
There’s a lot of talk about L.A.’s Chinese spots surpassing N.Y.C. and gaining on S.F. I’m pretty sure I haven’t seen anything posted about L.A. places like the love you’re giving Dragon Beaux. Since you’ve been dining in both cities I’m curious about your thoughts on this subject?
I’m totally ignorant on this subject, having had SGV dim sum once, but are there LA places as expensive as DB. I’m getting really tempted by this place although we usually pay around $20 for two for dim sum!
From my observations SF Bay Area probably has better Cantonese/Regional Cantonese than LA.
But pretty much everything else though SGV>>SFBA for Chinese.
Thanks @JeetKuneBao. You read my mind. I was also wondering if certain cities did better with a particular region.
Thanks @TheCookie. I can only speak for Dim Sum (for SF), but I’d agree with @JeetKuneBao from what I’ve seen. SF’s Dragon Beaux has been so far superior to any Dim Sum restaurant we’ve tried in LA that based on that alone, it’s the one that all others will be compared to. I hope you get a chance to try it.
You’re talkin’ Dim Sum. But when our @Chowseeker1999 proclaims something to be the best s/he has ever had antennas go up.
I love Fried Rice, so this is of particular interest, plus all the chix & shrimp Dim Sum options are so up my alley. The good Dim Sum in L.A. is mostly porky.
Oh and I learned a new food term “Wok Hei”