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“It's a dive, but you MUST go!”
Review of Dim Sum Garden

Dim Sum Garden
Ranked #71 of 4,370 Restaurants in Philadelphia
Certificate of Excellence
Price range: $5 - $10
Cuisines: Chinese
More restaurant details
Restaurant details
Good for: Local cuisine
Dining options: Takeout
Neighborhood: Chinatown
Maryland
Level Contributor
234 reviews
169 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 225 helpful votes
“It's a dive, but you MUST go!”
Reviewed September 11, 2013

I was in Philadelphia on business, and looking for an Asian restaurant. My Trip Advisor app brought up Dim Sum Garden. I remembered seeing it on a previous trip, but not going in because it looked dicey from the outside.

I read the reviews, and everyone loved it, so I went. I have to say it IS a dive in appearance, but I'm glad I stayed. This Dim Sum served from rolling carts. You go up to the counter and order, then either sit at one of a dozen tables, or take your food with you. Most took their food carry out, and judging from the appearance of the restaurant area, I can't blame them. But to do that would likely diminish the freshness of the food, so I took a chance.

I ordered the scallion won-ton's, the scallion cakes, and since my meal was under $10, I figured I hadn't ordered enough food, so I asked for a recommendation. They suggested the soup dumpling's, I agreed, and my meal was still less than $15.

I sat and in a few minutes the soup appeared. The broth wasn't overly favorable, but the scallion won-tons were amazing. I figured there would be about 4 in the bowl. There were TWELVE. And I still had 2 more items coming??? Less than 5 Won Ton's later, my scallion cakes and Soup Dumplings arrived.

The Scallion Cakes were delicious. Crunch outside, soft inside, and a mouthful of flavor in each bite. I lifted a soup dumpling into my mouth and took a bite from the side. OOOPS - Hot soup squirted out the side and almost doused a man at the table next to me. I mentioned something about how juicy these were, and he just gave me a nod. Next ones I ate upside down so the soup would spill into my wonton soup, adding great flavor.

I couldn't finish my meal, and took it with me. I gave it to a homeless man down the street with a warming about how juice the soup dumplings were.

Next trip to Philadelphia, this will be my first stop

  • Visited September 2013
    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
Helpful?
Thank Statmans
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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307 reviews from our community

Visitor rating
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    106
    26
    17
    3
Rating summary
    Food
    Service
    Value
    Atmosphere
Date | Rating
  • Chinese (Traditional) first
  • Chinese (Simplified) first
  • Danish first
  • English first
  • French first
  • German first
  • Italian first
  • Japanese first
  • Korean first
  • Russian first
  • Spanish first
  • Any
English first
New York City, New York
Level Contributor
951 reviews
547 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 404 helpful votes
“Excellent”
Reviewed August 19, 2013

Maybe not the safest street, or the cleanest dining area for a tourist but if you gravitate towards "hole in the wall" places, I would add this to your itinerary. I was not very hungry but needed something for dinner on a Sunday night when the whole area seemed deserted. It was this or the convenience store. So I took a chance and ordered some vegetable buns to go. They were "hands down" the best I have ever had. And while I was waiting I watched the preparation. In very little space they did a good job. And it was not all frozen or premade- there was a guy in the corner just chopping and chopping and chopping. It was also not as fast as some places, but the food made up for the wait. Oh-and I will add-the prices are astoundingly low.

  • Visited August 2013
    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
Helpful?
Thank CSSnowshoer
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Little Rock, Arkansas
Level Contributor
85 reviews
49 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 21 helpful votes
“Great dumplings”
Reviewed August 13, 2013

This is definitely a hole in a wall, but sometimes those are the best places. Even though it is not much to look at, the food is very good. I enjoyed the dumplings and triple steamed buns. The noodles with minced pork are also good. The sauce is very flavorful. Service is very friendly and attentive.

  • Visited August 2013
    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
Helpful?
Thank PrincessPeach1114
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Sydney, Australia
Level Contributor
59 reviews
28 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 38 helpful votes
“Excellent food at low prices.”
Reviewed August 10, 2013

This is not by any estimate an upmarket restaurant, even though it's located across the road from a major hotel. It is a small, very basic establishment to look at, but it has great food at very low prices. Three of us ate a really nice dim sum lunch there for less than $20 - more than enough food for us and all it simply delicious.

  • Visited August 2013
    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
Helpful?
Thank Georgie0497
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Downingtown, Pennsylvania
Level Contributor
29 reviews
16 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 16 helpful votes
“Nothing fancy, just good food.”
Reviewed August 3, 2013

Just enjoyed Dim Sum for lunch. The Shanghai steamed pork juicy buns were delicious, and the server even have us a little tutorial how to eat them. My husband also enjoyed a mango bubble milk tea. Three of us ate well for $30. Very close to the convention center of you're in town for a convention. We're suburban locals and have heard good things about Dim Sum Garden for years and it didn't disappoint.

  • Visited August 2013
    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
Helpful?
Thank Susan V
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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