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“I will be back for more Dim sum” 5 of 5 stars
Review of Top Island Seafood Restaurant

Top Island Seafood Restaurant
740 E Valley Blvd, Alhambra, CA 91801-5216
626-300-9898
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Ranked #84 of 173 Restaurants in Alhambra
Price range: $7 - $15
Cuisines: Chinese, Seafood
Restaurant details
Level Contributor
101 reviews
90 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 37 helpful votes
“I will be back for more Dim sum”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed May 23, 2013 via mobile

Great restaurant! The Dim Sum was very good and fresh. Value is just fine. Treat yourself with a dim sum dinner. By the way weekends is too crowded but I think it is park of the package. A great experience!

I will be back!

  • Visited April 2013
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Atmosphere
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
    • 5 of 5 stars Food
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12 reviews from our community

Visitor rating
    2
    5
    3
    0
    2
Rating summary
    Food
    Service
    Value
    Atmosphere
Date | Rating
  • English first
  • Any
English first
Pasadena, California
Level Contributor
251 reviews
143 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 114 helpful votes
“Good for a quick snack”
3 of 5 stars Reviewed January 2, 2013 via mobile

The place has your basic chicken feet, shrimp bun, BBQ pork bun, and Shou Mai. All of them were decent. The service is fast and efficient. The prices are a bargain. The place is usually packed, so the food is freshly rotated. Not the best dim sum you will find, but a good place for a snack if you are in the area.

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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Los Angeles California
Level Contributor
29 reviews
21 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 23 helpful votes
“Cheap and good too !”
4 of 5 stars Reviewed September 19, 2012

Dim Sum anyone ?
How about this. From 8 to 3 p.m. 7 days a week ! Very afordable and flavor is distinct and delicious. Lots of carts , lots of choices.Beer .wine to.

  • Visited August 2012
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 3 of 5 stars Atmosphere
    • 3 of 5 stars Service
    • 4 of 5 stars Food
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
San Luis Obispo, CA
Level Contributor
97 reviews
24 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 53 helpful votes
“Best Dim Sum I've Eaten in North America!”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed June 16, 2012

I got my husband hooked on dim sum, after nearly 10 years of eating the real deal in Canton China as a single gal. His first taste of dim sum happened in the States.

Top Island was recommended by a Chinese-American woman we met at a conference in Pasadena in 2009. We are so glad we met her! It's worth the 7+ hour round-trip drive to get our dim sum fix here.

Top Island serves real dim sum, not fancy foo-foo pretentious dim sum served on prissy little plates. They do it old-school: carts pushed around the restaurant, steamed and placed on your table. Now in China it's nearly impossible to find dim sum pushed around the room, but we can still get our dim sum from carts at Top Island!

The staff will speak English with you, but the room rumbles with Cantonese mostly and some Mandarin. This is one time I don't mind breaking out my rusty Cantonese.

Up in the San Fran Bay area, we pay $60-70 for the amount of dim sum we can eat here - and it's not nearly as good. At Top Island we eat a lot and take away our favorites, and with a tip rarely pay over $30. It's one set price for dim sum. No different prices for "small", "medium" and "large" categories.

Our favorites:
Cha Siu Baau: fluffy white bread and sweet pork - big!
Siu Maai - plump and flavorful (not necessarily so pretty, but so good!)
Loh Maai Gaai (sticky rice wrapped in lotus leaves) - take them home, freeze and eat weeks later
Dau Fu Fa - tofu custard! - sweeten to your liking with sugar water
Paai Gwut - steamed chunks of little pork ribs - tender with a little kick from peppers, wonderful bits of taro in the bottom
Laai Wong Baau - steamed buns with sweet custard inside - best eaten fresh and hot
Loh Baat Goh - radish cake pan-fried on a moving skillet cart - add some chili sauce for a kick
Wu Tau Goh - taro cake (great flavor, but can be dry at times)
Ma Tai Goh - water chestnut cake - think clear jello with water chestnut chunks grilled

Grab a take-out list of dim sum at the front desk when you get there. It lists the menu in Chinese and English. But the staff will help you as they circle the room.

WARNING: It gets busy on weekends, especially 10AM to 1PM. Some patrons of Chinese background can be a bit aggressive about getting a number from the front desk, so be prepared to gently push your body through the crowds to get your number. They call it out in Cantonese, Mandarin and English over a microphone that sounds like bad karaoke.

If you want delicious dim sum at a great price, Top Island is where you want to go.

  • Visited May 2012
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Atmosphere
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
    • 5 of 5 stars Food
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
A TripAdvisor reviewer on Facebook
“Decent dim sum. The pineapple pork bun is the best!”
3 of 5 stars Reviewed October 27, 2008

Decent dim sum. The pineapple pork bun is the best!

Was this review helpful? Yes
This review is the subjective opinion of an individual contributor and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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