So why do the best Chinese restaurants have the cheesiest names? Case in point, J and I went to dim sum Sunday at Hollywood East. How are we supposed to know that that is some of the best dim sum in the greater Washington, DC area? We normally go to China Garden in Rosslyn but Tom Sietsema and the Chowhound boards were aglow with the yumminess of the steamed buns at Hollywood East. And doesn't China Garden just sound like a divey take out place? Come on people, we need Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon Names. How about Bamboo Phoenix Peony Jade Palace? Or Golden Dragon Orchid Lotus House?
Anyway, name aside, that's some good dim sum. And grew up eating dim sum every weekend of my youth. Located in Wheaton, it's a trek from the metro. While we were expecting a hellish China Garden wait, getting there at around 12:30 on Sunday, we were promptly seated. However, it took a little coaxing to get our water, tea and chili sauce (a must for my heat loving palette). We asked like THREE diferent people. The carts came before the water, tea and chili sauce. But the food rocks. We had the usual har gow and shu mai and they were excellent. The shrimp rice crepe and turnip cake were also wonderful although Holly East used oyster sauce as opposed to the usual hoisin as the dipping sauce. But then there were all of these other dumplings that had so much flavor in them without being just salty. It's hard for me to tell people what to get because I just look at what's there and point but needless to say it's all well made. I will opine a bit about th steam chicken buns which were divine. Flavorful and not greasy, it's everything I would want in a steamed bun. So much that I forgoed having my usual char sui bao.
But next time, I'd like to have good dim sum at the Golden Dragon Jade Phoenix House of Peony Blossoms.