Our group of three had mid-week dim sum cravings and headed to Dragon Palace in Northbridge for a lovely, oily lunch. Dim sum is best in a group of people because you can order heaps of dishes and try a bit of everything!
Black Bean Tripe
This is a dim sum favourite of mine. Most of my Aussie mates are grossed out by tripe because offal from the stomach has an unusual lacy texture. Dragon Palace does black bean tripe quite well, but I thought the sauce could have been richer.
No dim sum is complete without a few seafood-based dumplings. Dip your dumplings in chilli oil to jazz them up!
Sticky rice comes in a package of banana leaves, which you peel off before eating. There were yummy bits of pork mince, Chinese sausage, and mushroom inside. I prefer home-made sticky rice because dim sum restaurants (including Dragon Palace) always seem to have more rice than filling.
Prawn and Chive Dumplings
Dragon Palace is known as a slightly more expensive dim sum restaurant, but I think the prices can be justified by the quality of the food. These dumplings were plump and stuffed with chunks of prawn.
Pork and Prawn Dumplings
Another of my favourites is shu mai, which is often served with orange roe or a piece of carrot on top. These dumplings were juicy and meaty (that’s what he said).
I developed a real taste for xiaolongbao (often known as ‘little dragon buns’) when I was on holiday in Hong Kong. These dumplings vary from restaurant to restaurant, so I was a little disappointed to find that Dragon Palace serves them without an accompanying bowl of Chinese vinegar and grated ginger. Unfortunately, the dumplings also stuck together so the wrappers tore and the delicious soupy insides spilled out. I will need to find another dim sum place to satisfy my xiaolongbao cravings!
Black Bean Spare Ribs
Thankfully, Dragon Palace serves spare ribs that actually have meat on the bone. We left the pieces of yam sitting underneath the meat uneaten because they were quite bland.
Sesame Seed Balls
I can never decide whether sesame seed balls are a sweet or savoury snack. Toasted seeds cover the outside of the chewy hollow glutinous rice ball. Depending on the restaurant, the sweet centre of the pastry is usually lotus paste (as pictured above) or black bean paste. These were a lovely crispy golden brown on the outside, yum!
Egg Custard Tarts
My dining companions enjoyed some sweets at the end of our heavy meal. While I’m not a fan of custard, especially eggy custard, they both seemed very happy with the egg tarts.
Lunch for three people came to $60.70, including my favourite tea (bolay cha). The food was freshly prepared and high quality, so we left feeling happy and full. Service is usually okay, except once when we were stuck in a corner table and all the trolleys missed us.
Likes: good quality food, comfortable seating
Dislikes: a couple of less competent waiters
Value for money: reasonable
Overall: would return if I needed to impress my dining companions
66 Francis St
(08) 9228 2888