Witlof. Dim Sum Bar stands in place of the late, A-OK vegetarian spot Bliss Grand, and offers a Cantonese alternative (with some Hong Kongese flair) to nearby Asian small-bite places like Snacky down the street. “It’s a little more like what you’d find in Chinatown,” explained Gigi So, whose family owns and runs the restaurant. “My father’s cooking and my grandpa’s doing dishes.”We happened on a new restaurant at the corner of Grand and Bedford, directly across from Radegast’s new “Flemish brasserie,”
Gigi was born in Hong Kong, where her family is from, and says that many of Dim Sum Bar’s dishes were pulled straight from her grandmother’s recipe repertoire. Bone broth soups that rotate as daily specials at the restaurants, for example, are something her grandmother used to simmer overnight. “The smell reminds a lot of people of home,” Gigi said. “We like to give people that homey feeling.”
The menu consists of old standbys like cold egg noodles and shrimp in garlic sauce, but things like the scallion pancake have some elements you might not find everywhere, including slices of apple and “pork floss,” tiny shreds of salty pig Gigi described as having a “fluffy, cotton-candy texture.”
The most popular item so far is the “Lava Bao,” a house-made Chinese bun with a gooey egg inside. If this sounds like perfect food to pair beer with, don’t get too excited. Dim Sum Bar is still awaiting their liquor license for beer and wine. Ugh. This reality became particularly painful when Gigi revealed the restaurant plans to stock some hard-to-find beers from Hong Kong.
In the meantime, the most exciting thing to drink here is probably your own creation from the all-organic tea menu. “We do made-to-order teas,” Gigi explained. Customers choose from one of four bases (oolong, green, rooibos, and pu-erh) and a variety of add-ons including rose petal, chrysanthemum, and ginger. Dim Sum Bar also has a selection of “remedy teas” such as the hangover cure, pu-erh tea with ginseng and longan. And if you’re really feeling like you need some fresh air, there’s a backyard the Sos are revamping with plants and greenery. It’s set to open this weekend.
Below, check out the full Dim Sum and tea menus as well as appetizers and entrees.
Dim Sum Bar, 167 Grand St., nr. Bedford Ave., Williamsburg.