Dim Sum in Victoria is sub par at best so I whenever I get to Vancouver or Toronto I try to make it to at least one Dim Sum. If you’re not familiar with it Dim Sum is a series of sharable Chinese dishes such as dumplings, meat dishes, and desserts.
I suppose this is a bit of a follow up post to Felix’s Kirin review a few years ago. I’ve been to the Vancouver location twice now for Dim Sum. The Dim Sum at Kirin is a different calibre of Dim Sum though. Take regular Dim Sum and crank up the class and finesse just a little (yes, just a little). Kirin does a good job of paying attention to little details like putting your tea atop of a small candle to keep the tea pot warm and they put chair covers over your coat to protect from any possible spills. The service itself though is just okay, pretty standard Chinese restaurant service where a curt and hurried attitude is the norm.
Dim Sum is usually best enjoyed with a larger group of people so that you can have a chance to try a number of different dishes by sharing. This trip to Kirin was just my mom and I so we didn’t order too much. We got the halibut belly with special sauce, the pork and prawn dumplings, the prawn and crab dumplings, the tendon, and pork dumplings with consommé (Xiao Long Bao). The dishes arrived to the table one by one. The halibut was the first to arrive. Cubes of perfectly cooked and moist halibut with a slightly crispy coating in a peppery sweet and sour type sauce. The pork and prawn dumplings were delicious too, very juicy. The prawn and crab dumplings though were my favorite. They were meaty and quite a lot bigger compared to most other Chinese restaurants. The Xio Long Bao was just okay. I’ve had better at the airport in Hong Kong. The skin was a little too thick and tough and there was very little consommé in the dumplings.
Kirin is a good choice if looking for some good quality Dim Sum. Each location seems to have a slightly different menu though as I remember the New West location having a much more extensive menu. My only complaint would be that they seem to use a lot of MSG because I’m always left feeling uncomfortably thirsty for the rest of the day after eating here, otherwise food is good and I’ll be going back again and again.