Your Go-To Guide for Any Dim Sum Spot

Dim Sum is a Cantonese specialty traditionally enjoyed for brunch and served on rolling trollies that make their way around what is often a massive banquet hall. If you’re new to the dim sum game, navigating the menu and understanding the difference between things like a Shrimp Siu Mai and Shrimp Har Gao can be difficult. To help ensure you are full, happy and don’t end up with a table of chicken feet (literally), here’s a guide to your must-order dishes at any dim sum spot. You can thank us later.

 

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Shrimp rice roll.

Shrimp rice rolls

These rolls aren’t like sushi rolls, they’re made from chopped shrimp wrapped in a thin, wide rice noodle. It’s best served seasoned with soy sauce, because then you get sweet shrimp with salty soy and it’s a perfect combination. This dish is a personal favorite done exceptionally well at Nom Wah Tea Parlor where they also fill them with pork or serve them plain.

 

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XLXLB at Drunken Dumpling.

Soup dumplings

Soup dumplings are a special kind of steamed dumpling; they originated in Shanghai and unlike traditional dumplings, they’re filled with rich broth plus a little bit of meat. To eat them like a pro, take a little bite of the skin from the tip, pour in some dumpling sauce, slurp the broth, then eat the rest of the dumpling. Indulge in traditional soup dumplings at Joe’s Shanghai or get a bit funky with the XLXLB at Drunken Dumpling (see 5 Soup Dumplings You Must Try for more).

 

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Shu mai at Hao Noodle and Tea. 

Shu mai

Shu mai (siu mai) are a special kind of dumpling because they’re served with an open top. Usually, shu mai is made with pork or shrimp filling and those are great, but one of our favorite shu mai is from Hao Noodle and Tea where they’re made with bacon and sticky rice, and wrapped in a super thin wrapper.

 

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Egg custards at Joy Luck Palace. PC: @foodojournal

Egg custards

Imagine mini pies with super flakey crusts, filled with delicious custard served fresh out of the oven. Egg custards are so good it’s no wonder they’re a mainstay in Portugal, Brazil, Britain, and Cantonese dim sum. They’re the perfect dessert to end a dim sum feast with, especially at a place like Joy Luck Palace where they’re baked to perfection.

 

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Pork buns.

Pork buns

Pork buns, aka char siu, aka steamed buns come steamed, baked, or in a flaky pastry, and they’re filled with sweet-and-savory barbecue pork that’s often dangerously addictive. The size of a pork bun varies, but you’re definitely going to want at least one for yourself. Tim Ho Wan does these buns right, so brave the line and get yourself some.

 

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Turnip cakes at The Tang. PC: @iiamjelly

Turnip cakes

Turnip cakes are a hidden treasure at the dim sum parlour. The dish is actually made from shredded radish, rice flour, and some savory ingredient all packed into a patty, is steamed, then finished in a frying pan so it gets a nice crispy outside, kind of like a hashbrown. Try them at Buddha Bodai, it’s a vegetarian dim sum place so you know they’ll nail their veggies.

 

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Har gao at Jing Fong. PC: @jingfongny

Har gao

We love all kind of dumplings, but shrimp har gao is hands down one of our favorite menu items at any dim sum spot. You’ll be able to recognize these shrimp dumps by their signature pleated crescent moon shape and their transparent, smooth dumpling skin.

Really Good BEC Sandwiches in NYC

A BEC (see: Bacon, Egg, and Cheese) sandwich is easily NYC’s most beloved breakfast sandwich, so much so that there’s even a restaurant that specializes in them (B.E.C). With the recent transport of LA egg giant, Eggslut, in NYC, it seems like people might have forgotten that this city is home to so many incredible bacon, egg and cheese sandwiches. To refresh your memory, here are some of our favorites:

 

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BEC at Estela. PC: @type1none

Estela

Estela’s BEC is served on a flakey, buttery, poppy croissant toasted with warm lardo and persimmon jam and stuffed with pancetta, a fried egg and fresh avocado to top it all off. It’s the perfect balance of sweet and salty, and after you bite into the sandwich and that egg yolk bursts, you’ll realize it might be the best BEC you’ve ever had.

 

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BEC at Maman Tribeca.

Maman Tribeca

Yes, we all love the chocolate chip cookies at Maman but have you tried their breakfast sandwich? It’s made with a homemade bourbon bacon jam, avocado, a fried egg and incredibly good oven-roasted tomatoes. You do not want to miss this.

 

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BEC at The Commons. PC: @brunchboys

The Commons Chelsea

When you’re on the west side and need a solid egg sandwich breakfast, head to The Commons Chelsea. The eggs are fluffy, the bacon is crispy, and the tomato and avocado add an element of freshness that just balances the whole sandwich perfectly. If you just can’t make it out of bed, that’s nbd, they do delivery too.

 

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Waffle sandwich at Buvette. PC: @viejomoeb

Buvette

At Buvette, you’ve got some serious BEC options like the buttermilk waffle egg sandwich and the Croque Madame. The Croque Madame is a classic ham and gruyere sandwich, much like a Croque Monsieur, but then they slap a fried egg on top and it instantly becomes 10 times better.

 

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BEC at Saltie. PC: @fwscout

Saltie

Go to Saltie, get the Ship’s Biscuit, and that’s an order. This sandwich is a game changing combo of fresh, salty focaccia, with lightly scrambled eggs, and a dollop of creamy ricotta in between. When you swing by Saltie’s and be sure to bring some cold hard cash; the staff’s super friendly but the place is cash only.

 

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BEC at E.A.T.

E.A.T.

If you’re in need of a BEC on the UES, look no further than E.A.T., where everything is made fresh in house, including their fluffy, perfectly toasted brioche bun.  After one bite of this classic breakfast sandwich, you’ll wonder how something so simple can taste so good.

 

 

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The Bodega at High Street on Hudson. PC: @wingsnyc

High Street on Hudson

You haven’t had a BEC until you’ve had the Bodega Sandwich at High Street on Hudson. This sandwich comes complete with tender sausage, an egg melted together with oozy cheese, all held together on a peppery biscuit.

6 Last Minute Mother’s Day Reservations

We all love our moms, but sometimes things just get away from us and we forget to make a reservation to celebrate her on her special day. Brunch reservations for the whole family are filling up fast, but there’s still a few good ones you can snag, and Mom will never have to know you only booked a week in advance. Here are some great restaurants with availability for Mother’s Day brunch this coming Sunday. You can thank us later!

 

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Bar at Gardënia. PC: @craftycookienewyork

Gardënia

For some fresh, Spanish-influenced brunch vibes, check out Gardënia. The simple white-and-pastel décor is lit by a massive skylight, giving the whole restaurant a bright, springy feel. Brunch at Gardënia wouldn’t be complete without their famous Maple-Lavender Duck Bacon, and you should totally try one of their brunch cocktails – we recommend the Mediterranean Sangria and Lavender Margarita.

 

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Rosé at Miss Paradis. PC: @missymove

Miss Paradis

If your mom’s a woman of the world, take her to Miss Paradis where they fuse Asian, Mediterranean, and classic New York flavors to make the ideal brunch menu. Try one of their scrumptious brunch dishes like their eggs benny with pastrami salmom, Adir’s shaksuka, or one of their brunch bowls if you’re feeling something a bit lighter. And of course, don’t skip out on the Rosé!

 

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Brunch spread at La Pecora Bianca. PC: @carissa_burton

La Pecora Bianca

Your mom will swoon when she hears your actually-Italian waiter read the brunch specials too her at La Pecora Bianca. They’ve even got a special Mother’s Day brunch prix-fixe which includes an app, an entrée and a dessert for $50. Start with one of their light salads or an avocado toast to prepare yourself for a hearty pasta or their lamb burger. Then, finish up with one of their classic Italian desserts.

 

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Panino at Tarallucci E Vino. PC: @leahcpell

Tarallucci E Vino

If you find yourself near Union Square this Mother’s Day, make your way over to Tarallucci E Vino for great service and a great brunch. At Tarallucci, they make everything in house – all the breads, pastas, and sauces included – and you can tell when you bite into your cornetti, panino, or gnocchi. Their brunch special is also insane: an entrée, a pastry, coffee or espresso, and unlimited mimosas for an hour, all for just $29, yes please!

 

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Bagel at High Street on Hudson. PC: @kriistenlederer

High Street on Hudson

For one of the best brunches in the West Village, head to High Street on Hudson. They source only the best ingredients and you can tell by how rich the flavors are. For the vegetarian, try the Forager sandwich with mushrooms, eggs, and veggies with a slice of Swiss, or order the pastrami hash sandwich if your usual go-to brunch is at your local deli. For dessert, go for the chocolate chai sammy, it’s basically an Oreo’s older, hotter brother.

 

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Strip Loin at Ai Fiori. PC: @frenchrestaurantweek

Ai Fiori

Treat your Mom to something truly special this Mother’s Day by taking her to Ai Fiori for their Mother’s Day brunch. Everything at this Michelin-starred restaurant is elevated and executed to perfection – don’t be surprised to find a dollop of caviar on your scrambled eggs.

Best Brunch Pizzas in NYC

Food trends come and go, but everybody in New York knows pizza is king. Traditionally, people think pizza’s just for lunch, dinner, or late night, but why not have pizza at brunch? Honestly, we can’t think of a better dish to pair with our mimosas, so say cheers to the weekend and try one of our favorite brunch pizzas.

 

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Smoked salmon pizza at Riburosa.

Rubirosa

Imagine if your favorite bagel with lox and the best pizza ever had a baby and you’ll have Rubirosa’s smoked salmon pizza topped with Acme smoked fish, creamy mascarpone, and onions. If you’re feeling bacon, you’ll be happy to know they also have a brunch pie covered with bacon, eggs and pickled onions.

 

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Breakfast pizza at Motorino.

Motorino

If we could make the perfect pizza, it would probably be Motorino’s brunch pizza, topped with ultra-creamy mozzarella di bufala, fried eggs, pancetta, basil, and parm. The eggs are cracked over the pizza a few minutes before it’s ready for the perfectly oozy yolks. Warning: eating this pizza can get a little messy, but the combo of savory egg yolk, salty pancetta and juicy mozzarella is worth a stain or two.

 

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Pizza at Marta. PC: @wilber_eats_bacon

Marta

Marta is another masterpiece from Danny Meyer (Union Square Café, Gramercy Tavern, and Shake Shack, etc.) and their Patate Alla Carbonara pizza, with potatoes, guanciale, black pepper, egg, and pecorino, is just to die for – it’s got all the carby, meaty, cheesey, and spicy flavor you want when you roll up to brunch.

 

 

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Pizza at Leuca. PC: @foodloversdiary

Leuca

Everybody’s been freaking out over Leuca’s mafaldini, but have you heard about their fabulous pizzas? Go big for brunch and make sure you order their Graham Avenue pie topped with duck egg, bacon, tomato and grana for the perfect finish.

 

 

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Smoked salmon pizza at Speedy Romeo. PC: @pizza

Speedy Romeo

At Speedy Romeo, you can make any pizza a brunch pizza by tossing an egg on top for $2, because everybody knows that it’s not a *true* brunch pizza without an egg! But, what we really go crazy for here is The Gravlax pizza: mescal-fennel cured salmon, ricotta, red onion, capers and lemon all on their perfect crisped and fluffy grilled dough.

 

 

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Breakfast pizza at Massoni. PC: @dwmassoni

Massoni

We love these creative brunch pizzas. At Massoni, they’ve got four pies to chooses from: a sweet and spicy one with pepperoni and honey, a complex one with charred ‘sprouts and pistachio pesto, a breakfast one with bacon, egg, and cheese (and spicy sriracha ketchup!), and a super classic one with just cheese, sauce, and oregano. It’s so hard to pick just one of these pizzas, so make sure to bring friends so you can try them all.

 

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Pizza at Barano.

Barano

At Barano in Brooklyn, brunch is serious business. It’s not just breakfast and lunch on the same menu, they carefully fused the two so you get your favorite breakfast and lunch foods as one perfectly blended brunch mix. Our favorite here is the Purgatorio Pizza with farm eggs, charred onions, tomato, prosciutto and fresh parmigiana reggiano.

5 Faves: Super Trendy Grain Bowls To Try

With summer right around the corner, it’s time we actually start eating a little more healthy so we can be beach-ready by June. What better way to kickstart your new #fitfam #healthy lifestyle than with a delicious grain bowl, which is basically the brain child of a salad and a burrito bowl. Here is a list of 5 of our favorites in NYC.

Continue reading “5 Faves: Super Trendy Grain Bowls To Try”

6 Approachable Restaurants for a Gluten-Free Dinner

If you’ve got a gluten allergy, then you know how hard it can be to find a great restaurant with more than one semi-edible gluten-free menu option. Before you consider Google search for your gluten-free finds, consider some of our favorite very gluten-free friendly restaurants in NYC:

Continue reading “6 Approachable Restaurants for a Gluten-Free Dinner”

Where to Power Breakfast Like a Pro

Breakfast is the most important meal of the day so you definitely want to do it right. Breakfast like a pro means that bagel on-the-go or your yogurt parfait don’t cut it. Why wait for weekend to have your perfectly poached eggs benny or a stack of pancakes? We’ve rounded up a few of the best places in the city to power-breakfast like a pro.

Continue reading “Where to Power Breakfast Like a Pro”