Dim Sum Shop
Not the usual eLuna restaurant, Dim Sum Shop is a street stand with a kitchen, and Tel Aviv-style sidewalk seating. What Dim Sum Shop lacks in atmosphere it more than makes up in out-of-this-world delicious food.
We visited this restaurant on a week day afternoon. We found street parking on Masaryk Street, just two blocks from the restaurant. There were several parking spots there, and I hope that I am not giving away the last place to find street parking in Tel Aviv.
On the sidewalk you can sit at either a standard height table and chairs, or on bar stools at high tables. You know where we sat. Though there was steady traffic at the counter, owner Tal came over to our table and explained the choices.
About The Dim Sum Shop Menu
Dim Sum are the Chinese answer to what we know as Kreplach. These are dumplings of different shapes and colors, stuffed with either vegetables or meat. Dim Sum was originally meant to go with tea. Today we eat them as a meal or as a snack, with or without the tea.
Dim Sum Shop dumplings are all made at a central factory. They are then delivered, frozen, to the various Dim Sum Shops in different parts of the country. At the shops they are steamed in wooden steamers. The Dim Sum are served in the wooden steamers with sauces of various types.
The Dim Sum Shop dumplings are pure natural products. They contain no oil, no food coloring and no preservatives. Steaming is a nice healthy way to prepare foods, and these Dim Sum are considered low calorie health foods. Dim Sum Shop offers vegan products as well as veggie and meat.
In addition to Dim Sum, the restaurant offers salads and noodle dishes. The menu is on one colorful cardboard with pictures of the items so that you know what you are ordering.
We were new to this food, so we started with an assortment of 5 veggie Dim Sum and 5 meat Dim Sum, just to test the waters (so to speak).
I've been to restaurants before, so I expected a serious wait from the time we ordered till the time we got the food. But,
Tal explained, the dim sum comes already prepared from the factory so he has nothing to prepare at the shop. All he does is steam items of your choice for 10 minutes over boiling water. So the foods that we ordered came to the table within minutes of our order. How unusual.
The Dim Sum were served with several unidentified sauces, some sweet and some spicy. The foods were to be eaten with chop sticks, but I guess the look on my face prompted Tal to ask if I wanted a fork.
Two plastic forks for the uninitiated couple at the low table, and two plastic cups with their diet drinks.
We were enchanted at the first bite of the Dim Sum. The fillings are pates of ground meat or vegetables with herbs. Tthe dough takes on the color and the sublte flavor of the herbs that they contain. The vegetable fillings were fresh and tasty. The meaty Dim Sum were even tastier than the veggies, said my companion. The dough was melt-in-your-mouth soft. It was all a very nice culinary experience.
So nice, that we decided to try some of the other menu items. We shared a portion of noodles that were spiked with vegetables, chives, and a tangy sauce. This too was a big success, and we were on a roll. But like sushi, a small amount can really fill you up. So we decided to call it a meal.
One of the nice things about Dim Sum Shops is that you can take home "souvenirs." All of the Dim Sum that you order at the restaurant, can be purchased frozen and ready to steam at home. You'll need a steamer for this, and that too can be purchased at the shop. This is a popular option and in the area of the restaurant you will see swarms of people carrying the blue Dim Sum Shop bags.
You'll want to order a variety of Dim Sum that are enough for a meal. This will not be a cheap dining experience, but it is a good culinary adventure.
A platter of
5 Dim Sum: NIS 30, Noodles NIS 15, Combinations: NIS 50.
Frozen take away: 5 Dim Sum NIS 23. Wooden steamer (small): NIS 29.