Tokyo’s an amazing food paradise, but good dim sum places are a little hard to come by (Le Parc in Ebisu is pretty ok, but lacks a little of that oomph). However, at the current base in Singapore, dim sum joints are plentiful and I said yes yes yes!!! to Molly’s suggestion to dim sum at East Ocean along the Orchard belt this weekend!
The queue at East Ocean gets pretty insane on weekends, and even those with a reservation have to wait a good amount of time for their table upon arrival! Service is horrendous here (worse than the usual mediocre service you get in Singapore restaurants), and we literally had to grab hold of someone to hand over our order sheet :(
But all was forgiven, when these bundle of steaming hot dim sum joys started to fill up the table!
Char siu sou (bbq pork pastry): The buttery pastry was baked to a crisp, golden perfection. However, the bbq pork flavours were a little too subtle and ended up being overwhelmed by the rich pastry…
Dan tat (egg tarts): Darn these tarts were freakin’ legit. Each bite of the golden layers of flaky pastry was complemented by not-too sweet egg custard done to wobbly perfection.
Ham sui kok (fried crescent dumplings): So the party trick at East Ocean – their creative spin on dumplings in the shape of cute animals! The ham sui kok we ordered came in the shape of elephants, with bean sprouts for tusks and an almond sliver poking out of its mouth :) It wasn’t love at first bite however, as the dumpling’s skin was too thick and gooey and the meat filling was meh…
Lau sha bao (salted custard buns): I judge how good a lau sha bao is, depending on how the salted custard filling oozes out when the bun is bitten into..and this lau sha bao passed the test beautifully! Golden rivers of savoury custard flowed silkily out of the fluffy bun, and it was totes delicious!
Siu mai (pork dumplings): The siu mai was fresh, and chunks of succulent prawns were mixed into this for added juicy sweetness
Steamed radish cake: THIS was my personal favourite! The radish cake was steamed to delicate firmness, and the strips of radish within provided a nice light crunch with each mouthful of the sweet soy sauce and chopped spring onions mmm-mmm
Yam spring rolls: Nice crunchy addition (not too greasy) to the spread with julienned veggies and yam tucked into it.
Zhar leong (dough fritters wrapped in rice paper): Super stoked to see this on the menu, as not many dim sum joints serve this! This was unfortunately so-so, as the dough fritters weren’t quite crisp and left a slightly greasy aftertaste, and the rice paper wrap was a tad too thick *sadness*
Bumble bee custard dumpling: Part 2 of the animal series we ordered!. This bumble bee came with strips of seaweed for stripes, almond slivers for wings, and radish bits for eyes :) The custard was a little clumpy and gooey, but ok as a sweet ending palate cleanser.
We were pretty stuffed from this dim sum feast (this was all I had for the entire day, and I’m still full!) and paid a pretty reasonable SGD 27 per person for the meal. Prices start from ~$5 for a basket of dumplings, and gets steeper for fancier morsels like dumplings in superior soup.
Next time I swing by here, I’m going to check out their Teochew dishes (cold crabs, supreme combination platter a.k.a. “Poon Choy” anybody??). Judging by the sights and smells from nearby tables devouring their dishes, they look real promising!
Wherefore art thou? 5th Floor of Takashimaya department store along Orchard Road
East Ocean Teochew Restaurant
391 Orchard Road
#05-08/09 Ngee Ann City