tim ho wan, KL

5:09 AM sians 1 Comments

the unforgettable meal of my #siansEATShongkong 2014 series.

when that very same cheapest michelin guide restaurant from hong kong steamed its way into the local food scene and found its first home in mid valley, there was only one thing in my mind. 

-- a dining encore!

for the food, yes! 
for the queue -  negatory. 

the first few weeks months of kl's tim ho wan's opening last november, the lines were ridiculous!

perhaps it was novelty. some probably wanted a piece of hong kong's pride. others may have the same idea that i had - we needed to relive the moment when we sunk our teeth into our first siu mai and cheung fun. it was a love at first bite.

we reconnected with our ol' dim sum love only months later after its opening, when the line of pursuers had diminished. even so, we still had to wait for about 20 minutes in line before we were seated in the dining space where the ceilings were fringed tastefully by the mini bamboo steamers. in similar fashion to its original shop, the table arrangement optimized the space with perhaps a little more breathing space. 

to expedite the turnover rate at this restaurant, we placed our orders on the order sheet while waiting in line and immediately had our order placed as we took our seats. i was tempted to reorder what we had in hong kong to have a taste comparison but figured it would be awesome to try a few of tim ho wan's big four heavenly king dim sum. 

p.s. our visit was prior april so the prices may vary.

congee :: congee with lean pork, century egg & salted egg (rm 9.80)

with similar quality of porridge as the ones in hong kong with its smooth textures, it was filled with  dices of century egg and salted egg but small dices of the moist and tender lean pork. the congee was seasoned sufficiently. the century egg was good but not better than the one from wong chi kei while the salted egg had imparted most of the flavor into the congee. 

it was probably our favorite pick of our dim sum brunching, served not too hot nor too cold. it was just nice. ;)

steamed :: pork dumpling with shrimp (rm 10.80)

'twas the moment of truth. the siu mai dumplings. 
how would thee compare to its hong kong counterpart. the original.

succulent and moist pork and a piece of fresh shrimp encased in a yellow dumpling skin. the makings of these bite-sized morsels begin with the same ingredients but the end results does not seem to have the same wow factor as the one i had in hong kong. it was lacking something that i can't pinpoint exactly but it might have been missing that umami flavor. and the shrimp seemed to have overwhelmed the flavor profile. 

vermicelli roll :: vermicelli roll with shrimp (rm 12.80)

not as smooth as the its taste comparison counterpart, the roll was thicker than i'd like. once again the fresh shrimp flavor was prominent against the slightly sweetened soy sauce. 

however what stood out more that chinese chive garlicky flavor that left an aftertaste and overtook the taste senses and not quite in the good way. overall, a little bit of a letdown in terms of the overall flavor balance. 

the big 4 heavenly kings :: baked bun with bbq pork (rm 10.80)

the famed bbq pork buns that we missed previously had left me with crumb of rue not having to try it.      it was served still warm, freshly baked. it was slightly unconventional from the normal bbq pork bun; it was as if polo bau and bbq pork bun got together and gave birth to this famous favorite from tim ho wan. in fact it is the first item on their menu item. 

this baby had all the right genes from its parents - texturally it had the crispy sugary top that was reminiscent of the pineapple bun where it encased the chewy bun, a bit hollow and finally the steaming, sweetened bbq pork. i wished it had more of the meat to give a better meat to bread ratio. perhaps it is to alleviate the sweetness that eventually became too much for me. however, i liked the warm filling against the crispy bun.  the play of texture was really nice. 

dessert :: tonic medlar & osmanthus cake (rm 6.80)

a jelly dessert that my friend recommended as a must try.  osmanthus petals are suspended in cooled, golden colored jelly with mild sweetness and occasional hits of herbaceous fragrance. the goji berry lend some additional sweetness  to the cake and chewiness.  the osmanthus flowers are said to aid digestions while goji berry are packed with antioxidants and vitamin a. it was an acquired taste for some flavor wise; {mh} wasn't too fond of this dessert. 

kl's tim ho wan started off as a hunt for a satisfying encore but fell short of my expectations. i have to be honest here, the bar has been set really high and so were my expectations. don't get me wrong, the dim sums were fresh and cooked well but it didn't quite replicate my dining experience in hong kong. perhaps you may be able to find really nice local dim sum places for a cheaper price tag too. however, you should probably try it out on your own to form your own opinion about hong kong's most famous dim sum restaurant. 

update :: there is a new branch opened in one utama since april 2015. 

tim ho wan, kl | location
unit 27-g, the boulevard
mid valley city,
lingkaran syed putra,
59200 kuala lumpur
{opens weekdays : 10 am to 10 pm;
opens weekends : 9 am - 10 pm}

disclaimer this is written based on personal experience and opinion. experiences and taste buds may vary for others.


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