Jun 06 2011
Some people wake up on a lazy Sunday and require coffee and newspapers to collect the shattered pieces of their weekend selves. Other people want bottomless bloody marys and eggs benedict with hollandaise sauce to ward off Monday’s coming. I am the person who requires steamed pork buns and shrimp wrapped in lovely wonton wrappers, dipped in soy sauce mixed with oily chilli paste. It’s the only way to make you whole again.
Dim sum is the Cantonese style of serving small steamer baskets full of dumplings, plates of buns, both steamed and roasted, and small plates of all descriptions of pork, seafood, duck, and loveliness (beginners’ guides here and here). Also known as nam cha, it’s the perfect hung over brunch; wait staff will bring tray after tray of steamed deliciousness, and you simply eat until you are full, pointing at which basket of amazing you want next.
I can see the question forming on your lips: Why would I be eating dim sum in Bangkok? Because you can, dear reader. With around 12% of the population made up of immigrant southern Chinese, most of whom reside in Bangkok, there is a critical mass of people who know a good steamed bun when they see one. Also, as eating dim sum is fun, and Thailand is a land where if it isn’t fun, it won’t get done, so the dim sum experience appeals to everyone no matter your family origin.
Finding a good dim sum place, however, is not an activity for a tender and delicate time like Sunday morning. Let us help. Like in much of Asia, good food can come from surprising places — my suggestion, for starters, is not in Chinatown.
Hong Min has great dim sum and enthusiastic service. There are two locations on the first and third floors in the MBK shopping centre in the Siam Square area (don’t let the fact that it is located in a shopping mall throw you — the food is excellent). The staff is great and while they don’t speak a lot of English, they will try to get you what you require (namely, basket after basket of life giving dumplings). The shu mai (pork dumplings) are excellent, as are the translucent chive-filled shrimp dumplings, and the roast duck slices come perfectly done with crackling skin.
Hong Min Restaurant
MBK shopping centre, intersection Rama I and Phaya Thai Rds
1st floor/3rd floor
T: (02) 620 9492 / (02) 611 5643
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