With Dim Sum usually a middle-of-the-day thing for Greedy Girl, she fully expected the Michelin-starred Tim Ho Wan to be closed as she sought out a dumpling fix one rainy Hong Kong Friday night. Of course, it was absolutely jumping but we picked our moment well – glory of glories, there was no queue.

She’s pretty certain it was night time, although after 20 hours since leaving the hotel in London to throwing the bags down in HK (via the very glamorous Charles De Gaulle Paris airport – NOT), she couldn’t be sure even what day it was. Jet lag – sadly there’s no remedy for that.

Tim Ho Wan is very proud of being the only dumpling place in the world to have a Michelin star. There’s a rather large light box at one end of this incarnation of the restaurant (in the Hong Kong Airport Express train station – the original is on Kowloon side) with pictures of the many and no doubt glowing reviews of the place, including a shot of a very studious-looking fellow posing with a mile high stack of steamers alongside the jolly-looking Michelin man. Greedy Girl wondered whether it could live up to the hype.

Settling in with gluttonous husband and marking our list for the dishes we wanted to fall upon, Greedy Girl glanced at her fellow diners. We were the only westerners in the place. Good sign, she thought; Michelin (and the subsequent rave by celebrity chef Anthony Bourdain) hadn’t turned Tim Ho Wan into the culinary equivalent of Disneyland. The menu is also evidence of that – in delightful Chinglish it tells the diner the food is: ‘make it ourselves do it at once’ and you can also order ‘chicked feet’. And if you’re looking for a neon sign out the front saying ‘Tim Ho Wan’, forget about it. The only signage is in characters. Get it pointed out to you by a local.
Anyway, back to the food, pouring ourselves some tea from the pot that lives on the table, we watched the chefs busying themselves in the open kitchen and waited.

And, of course, it didn’t take long. We ordered six dishes. The fried dumplings arrived first. This was ‘deep fried dumpling filled with meat’. This is always a risky proposition when the, er, type of meat is not defined. It was absolutely delicious and was just dear old beef.

Tim Ho Wan

Deep fried beef dumplings

Next up was another fried dumpling, delectable-looking golden orbs. This was beef with golden mushroom and satay sauce. Not sure the sauce was terribly authentic but it was again, yummy.

Tim Ho Wan

Beef with golden mushroom and satay sauce

Next up was the pan-fried turnip cake. We’d had this in Singapore many times but here the flavour was just a bit too strong and a little greasy for our post-flight stomachs.

Tim Ho Wan

Pan-fried turnip cake

Greedy Girl had a craving for some rice. We ordered steamed rice with beef and pan-fried egg. The rice was a lovely firm texture, topped with braised beef and the fried egg. Greedy Girl chopped up the egg and got to work. It was a nice foil for the another dishes.

Tim Ho Wan

Braised beef, rice and fried egg

We finished with steamed dumplings. First up was siu mai – pork and shrimp, pictured at the top of this blog. These were absolutely delightful, slightly sweet to the taste, soft and perfect little morsels.
Then an oldie and a goodie. Steamed fresh shrimp dumpling. Again, they were absolutely perfect. Four little translucent parcels quickly dipped into some sauce and down the hatch.

Tim Ho Wan

Steamed shrimp dumpling

It was time to go, lest Greedy Girl from sheer weariness do a face plant into the remnants of the rice. The cost for this delightful little Michelin-starred snack? Less than A$20 – try getting six plates at dim sum in Melbourne for that! The queue was back to being significantly long. A Western family at its head looked nervous. As Greedy Girl moved past he asked: ‘is it good?’. There’s only one response.

Oh yeah. It’s good.

Tim Ho Wan

Michelin starred dim sum

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