Dim Sum Go Go!

June 5, 2008 § Leave a comment

“Lunch. Dim sum. Find a place. 11:45.”

Basically the message I got from my friend Ameya as I was rounding up a project at work. Dim sum!? To my knowledge, all the good dimsum places were in Chinatown, and I didn’t feel like trekking that uptown since lunch is only an hour. My search on NYMag for decent dimsum places in the Lower East Side gave only a couple names, but Dim Sum Go Go was a critic’s pick and only one stop away on the 4.

We were joined by fellow JP student Andrew Hsu who was in town for an interview and luckily managed to snag the last table in a tiny, barely decorated establishment on the outskirts of Chinatown. Go Go has regular sized entrees as well, but it’s rare to find dim sum on a weekday and they have a surprisingly extensive menu, so we helped ourselves to 9 small dishes, all in the $3 range.

Sesame balls are hard to mess up, and Go Go did a well enough job. These were petite but the outer crust of glutinous rice was thick (I like) and contrasted nicely with the crunch of the sesame-covered outside, and the filling was plentiful and perfectly sweet without being cloying.

Sesame balls

Out of the dumplings, the shrimp and chive steamed ones were my favorite since neither ingredient overpowered the other (a mistake of most dim sum places) and they were encased so perfectly in the rice wrappers. Yet the bites were so small that we barely got to enjoy the dumplings when they already disappeared in our mouths. The snow pea leaf dumplings (the longer ones with green filling) were mediocre to me, but that might also be because they reminded me of jiu tsai (Chinese leeks), which I don’t really like in the first place. Go Go’s pork dumplings were the familiar fried potstickers that everyone loves, and I loved that the juices from the pork spilled out once I bit the crispy exterior.

Other dim sum staples like the shrimp rice rolls, the spare pork ribs, and the shumai dumplings, were satisfactory. Comforting and most times piping hot, they all lived up to the expectations of decent dimsum with the added plus of better presentation than usual. One gripe though: the shrimp rice rolls had too much rice roll, not enough shrimp (which weren’t dry and shrunken, another mistake of dim sum eateries). I like a lot of filling! The spare pork ribs, which are usually drenched in the black bean sauce and then cooked until dry, were tender and wonderfully light and vibrant due to a modest sprinkling of chives and a stayed hand with the salt.

Line of condiments

Dumplings!

Shu-mai dumplings

Black bean spare ribs

Overall, the food was well executed and well made, but service was horribly slow since Go Go, being such a small restaurant, can’t abide by the usual dim sum set up of circulating steam carts. They brought out items one by one, teasing us,  and the sesame balls came first. And they’re supposed to be for dessert! However, if you have a decent stretch of time and wish for well-priced anddeliciously light Cantonese food, this is the place to go.

Dim Sum Go Go
5 E. Broadway,
New York, NY 10038
at Chatham Sq.

212-732-0797

 

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