Eight of the finest Chinese restaurants serving up Singapore's best dim sum.
Sim Ee Waun
Not a dim sum restaurant strictly speaking, but the Fullerton Bay Hotel’s Clifford Pier offers a fabulously good value dim sum weekend brunch ($49) that must be listed here. Not only is the sizeable range of dim sum served in a gorgeously luxurious setting with historic significance, they also come to your tableside from traditional push trolleys. Complementing it is a fairly large buffet of local favourites, highlights of which are its laksa, popiah and radish cake.
80 Collyer Quay, 049326. Tel: 6597 5266
If you’re tasked to impress corporate clients or placate a fussy mother-in-law, head to the ever-reliable Jade Restaurant at The Fullerton Hotel, where Masterchef Leong Chee Yeng’s elegant, contemporary dim sum is bound to impress. It’s more about artistry here than quantity. The recently launched weekend dim sum set menus (from $68 per person) starts with eight pieces of dim sum, including steamed abalone siew mai, osmanthus char siew bun, with deep-fried taro with mushrooms and truffles, followed by more substantial complementary dishes like the excellent wok-fried rice flour rolls with scallop in XO sauce and double boiled fish maw. A six-course weekday dim sum set lunch ($58) is also available.
At the Intercontinental Singapore, Man Fu Yuan’s dim sum, along with its general Chinese fare, is always dependably good. After a long absence, its wok fried radish cake with XO sauce ($18) is back on the menu, along with other creative dim sum. Tuck into its delightfully green har gau ($7) topped with gold leaf, mushroom-shaped mushroom bun with cabbage and shrimp ($6) and rice roll with shredded chicken, egg and lao gan ma chilli sauce ($10) and deep fried purple sweet potato custard ball ($7).
80 Middle Rd, Singapore 188966. Tel: 6825 1008
Jiang Nan Chun
Luxurious Jiang Nan Chun at the Four Seasons Hotel Singapore is the ultimate tai-tai lunch venue, with a reputation for great dim sum even if it’s a bit of a splurge. With new Chinese Executive Chef Tim Lam at the helm, new dim sum dishes have been rolled out, like steamed pork dumpling topped with a baby abalone ($9 each) which has been braised for hours, crispy silky turnip with dried shrimp and ham ($3 each) wrapped in crisp pastry. Other must-have’s are its wok fried turnip cake with XO sauce ($12) and Cantonese sponge cake ($6). While you’re there, ask for a side dish of their XO sauce too – it’s excellent.
Similarly, this modern Chinese restaurant at Grand Park Orchard Singapore serves up beautifully presented dim sum, but with a playful touch. Home in on their three- or four-course weekday dim sum set lunches (from $28) featuring over 10 types of dim sum, along with soup of the day, noodles or porridge and dessert. Or do Ladies Night every Thursday where $75 per person gets you a parade of endless booze (think wine, cocktails, beers and spirits) to complement a selection of free flowing dim sum, such as black pepper shrimp pork roll, crispy duck roll and crystal prawn dumplings. Dim sum brunch features over 40 items including dim sum, gourmet seafood and wok dishes, and a free-flow option of cocktails, champagne, wines and beer for $60.
Level 4 Grand Park, 270 Orchard Rd, Singapore 238857. Tel: 6603 8855
A stalwart in the Chinese restaurant scene, Cherry Garden serves up some of the best and most creative dim sum in town, alongside traditional standards. Presented in modern steel baskets instead of the traditional bamboo, dim sum include steamed wagyu beef dumpling in sha cha sauce ($7), crispy snow crab dumpling, and steamed prawn dumpling with black garlic, and steamed walnut and dark chocolate bun ($7). Cherry Garden also serves up a good weekend dim sum brunch ($68) which also features a good selection of soups, hot dishes, noodles, congee, and dessert.
Chinese heritage meets luxe karaoke at VLV’s sprawling Chinese restaurant headed by Masterchef Martin Foo. Set in a heritage Chinese courtyard house, its décor is unabashedly extravagant. Ensconced amid fur and crystals, tuck into modern Chinese dim sum, like chilli crab bun, a house signature, comprising shelled chilli crab on an open face dumpling, fish dumpling wrapped in a squid ink skin, and baked crisp kurabuta pork dumpling. Weekend dim sum brunch ($58) is a lavish, Hong Kong-style spread. Apart from dim sum, there are plenty of other full-on dishes to complement, 10 live stations serving up treats like pan fried oyster with egg, Peking duck, congee a la minute, plus free flow wine and Champagne options from $38.
3A River Valley Road #01-02, Singapore 179020. Tel: 6661 0197
Dim sum is served the old fashioned way here from push trolleys, but minus the din of traditional Chinese restaurants. The dim sum are equally nostalgic, including pan-fried carrot cake, deep fried yam puff with scallop and steamed BBQ pork buns. More items come from the kitchen, such as fried Teochew chive pancake and items featuring a more contemporary twist, such as mini black charcoal egg custard buns.