Hong Kong strikes back at Tim Ho Wan Chatswood.
Food from China is taking Sydney by storm, one Hong Kong chain is bucking the trend. Move over dumplings, handmade noodles from China, here comes Hong Kong dim sum. Noodlies, Sydney food blog takes a look.
In a city obsessed with awards, Tim Ho Wan (THW) takes the cake for being Hong Kong’s cheapest Michelin starred restaurant. How could a tiny 30 seater, hole-in-the-wall in buzzy Mongkok walk away with one star where others, fancier restaurants have repeatedly failed?
That question has helped THW spread to 20 restaurants spread across 9 countries; Hong Kong, Indonesia, Malaysia, Philippines, Singapore, Philippines, Taiwan, Thailand, with Australia added to the list on 8 May, 2015, thanks to the Chatswood opening. The brand founded by Chef Mak Kwai Pui, who’s been perfecting the art of dim sum (yum cha) since the tender age of 15, and Chef Leung Fai Keung have gone global. Significantly, Chatswood is the first outlet outside Asia, with Westfield Sydney to come. Melbourne dim sum lovers won’t have to wait long either, the 206 Bourke street location is also due to open soon.
Noodlies was lucky enough to visit the original Mongkok branch back in January 2011 (see video below).
THW has been an instant hit in Sydney, in the first few months the queue stretched all the way down to the street level. These days the commotion is less, but it’s still a very busy place.
On a recent visit, noodlies sampled just about everything on the menu and it’s obvious why THW is so loved. Sure, it’s hard to compare it to the magical first time in Mongkok, but this is still very classy, classic dim sum.
THW’s menu features the Big 4 Heavenly Kings. I’m sure it’s much more poetic in Cantonese, but I guess it’s the equivalent of their signature dim sum dishes; baked bun with BBQ pork has a delicately soft shell housing melting pork, pan-fired turnip cake might seem plain at first, but allow time for the flavours to develop, vermicelli roll with pig’s liver might sound challenging, but the liver texture works really well with slinky noodles and steamed egg cake is all spongy goodness.
Pan-fried turnip cake
Classic har gow and beef balls have an extra edge, the prawns a punchy seafood flavour while the beef balls taste less powdery. That edge is reflected in all the dishes at THW; highly recommended braised chicken feet gets it from abalone sauce, pork rib from black bean sauce, rice with chicken, sausage mushroom from earthly Chinese mushroom and distinctive Chinese sausages.
It’s almost a year and the crowds are coming back. Everything is looking lucky for the Tim Ho Wan, the name translates as “add good luck”.
Tim Ho Wan Chatswood
75A & 76A Chatswood Interchange, 436 Victoria Ave, Chatswood NSW
(02) 9898 9888