Think dim sum and the usual associations are a cacophony of clattering chopsticks and a constant stream of dishes delivered on rattling trolleys. Dining at the Dim Sum Library is a completely different experience.
This Aqua Group venue in Pacific Place oozes a quiet sophistication, from the cool, dark interior of its Art Deco fit-out to the way classic dishes have been changed up. Two of my dim sum faves – har gau and siu mai (HK$48 each for several pieces) – have been given the high-end treatment with the addition of black truffle in the har gau casing and a slab of black garlic buried in the siu mai dumpling parcel.
Beef puffs are elevated with the use of wagyu and served in an expertly executed mille-feuille pastry shell, while spring rolls feature Hokkaido king crab and sea urchin. The unexpected use of foie gras on a dim sum menu, which was seared and served with osmanthus-smoked coddled eggs ($78), was impressive. Black truffle was also used to great effect in a Yunnan crisp-skin chicken ($195 for a half). For those who have a sweet tooth, desserts have also been pimped, with the humble mango pancake now a lava mango roll coated with roasted almond and tofu panna cotta ($48 for three pieces).
While traditionalists will enjoy the copious supply of tea, another twist is added to the whole experience with an array of tea-infused cocktails on offer. Make sure you try the elegantly named One Thousand Years of Song ($85) – Tanqueray gin with a chilled white peach puree and served with fresh egg white. The Dim Sum Library has taken a Cantonese classic experience and elevated it to cool and contemporary dining.
Must-try: A game of mah-jong in the back room!
Dim Sum Library
Shop 124, 1/F, Pacific Place, Admiralty
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This article first appeared in the June/July edition of Expat Living magazine. Subscribe now so you never miss an issue!