Despite being brought up on a diet of southern Chinese cooking, I do not naturally gravitate towards the cuisine. Back in Auckland, both my Asian and especially, non Asian friends ALWAYS love to catch up over dim sum. Why???!! The clattering of plates, trolleys whizzing up and down, noise levels so high that we often ended up shouting at each other. Seriously, how is this relaxing? Give me a cafe any day.
Lil L has been haranguing me for months to take her to dim sum and I finally capitulated to her pleas. Despite having never lived in Asia, this young foodie is addicted to all Asian food (yes, durian, tripe, dragon fruit, frog etc etc... all those yucky stuff I don't eat. EVER). I've heard about Pearl Liang for years now but never attempted to visit the place as it's out of my way. I had to book days beforehand as it's always chock-full. If you're taking the tube, make sure you get off at the Paddington national rail exit or else it's an unnecessary long walk especially if you're rushing to get there on time.
Now let's talk about the food. It. Was. DIVINE. Yes, this is a verdict from a girl who avoids dim sum like the plague. The Xiao Long Bao was succulent and we slurped the tasty soup that seeped out of the dumpling. The You Tiao (dough stick) inside the cheong fun (rice noodle roll) was crunchy and tasty without being overly oily. It didn't taste as if they'd re-used the oil. The egg tart was piping hot and crunchy but the pastry.... oh my word the pastry....it was buttery and melt in your mouth goodness. Every dumpling was beautifully made but the taste was just out of this world. Our bill came in just under £40 for 9 dishes, tea and service charge. Oh, and most importantly, I love their quirky toilets and they're unbelievably clean (if you've been to enough Chinese restaurants, you'll know that their toilets are....... a sight to behold. And I don't mean that in a positive way).
8 Sheldon Square
London W2 6EZ
Phone: 0207 289 7000