clock menu more-arrow no yes
Six fluffy white dumplings in a white styrofoam pack.
Char siu bao from Bamboo Garden in Sunset Park
Robert Sietsema/Eater NY

13 Premier Dim Sum Parlors in NYC

Where to find rolling carts and menus packed with the best Chinese small plates around

View as Map
Char siu bao from Bamboo Garden in Sunset Park
| Robert Sietsema/Eater NY

In some ways, dim sum is Chinatown’s most distinctive product. After all, there’s often something for everyone. It consists of delicate dumplings, braised chicken feet, sweet fresh tofu, rice noodle rolls, fluffy steamed bao, tiny custard pies, and other small dishes, many requiring extraordinary skill to make. Here in New York City, dumplings often display a fine level of expertise with thin skins and opulent fillings. Competition between dim sum parlors has resulted in innovation, so that every time you visit Bamboo Garden or Royal Seafood, you’re likely to find something new on the menu (or a roving cart).

Dim sum is also conducive for group dining, and at the big round tables of Golden Unicorn, you’ll often see three or even four generations of families seated together, enjoying the little heartwarming morsels at prices even the humblest budget can afford. But that may be changing as dim sum is often offered all day long in smaller fast-casual establishments, and some of the behemoth older Chinese banquet halls such as Jing Fong have shut down, many as a result of COVID-19 (note that the Upper West Side location still operates, and a smaller version of the original is in the works). The good news is that in some of the older establishments, like Bamboo Garden, tables are more well-spaced out and precautions such as vaccine-card checking are in place.

Here are Eater critic Robert Sietsema’s favorite dim sum spots.

Health experts consider dining out to be a high-risk activity for the unvaccinated; the latest data about the delta variant indicates that it may pose a low-to-moderate risk for the vaccinated, especially in areas with substantial transmission. The latest CDC guidance is here; find a COVID-19 vaccination site here.

Read More
Note: Restaurants on this map are listed geographically.

1. Jing Fong

Copy Link
380 Amsterdam Ave
New York, NY 10013
(646) 678-5511
Visit Website

Opened in 2017, this elegant Upper West Side location of Jing Fong is the only one we have left at the moment. All the usual dim sum is available late into the evening, some of it innovative but most of it standard. Platings are lush for a dim sum joint, and there are mixed drinks, too, making dim sum popular for a quick bite or group brunches in this neighborhood.

Four shrimp glazed with white sauce and a sugary walnut on top of each.
Honey walnut prawns at the uptown Jing Fong.
Robert Sietsema/Eater NY

2. Dim Sum Garden Express

Copy Link
136 - 55 Roosevelt Ave
Queens, NY 11354
(718) 799-0092
Visit Website

This narrow storefront in the midst of Flushing’s transportation hub is not what many New Yorkers may think of as a spot for stellar dim sum. Though a broad range of dim sum is available, the specialties are congee and steamed rice noodle rolls, the latter bigger and lusher than usual, with the fillings — which run to pork ribs with black bean sauce, curried fish balls, and stewed beef brisket, among a dozen others — dumped on top rather than rolled inside. Chiles stuffed with shrimp paste was another delight.

A plastic tray with white noodles underneath tiny pork ribs.
Pork rib rice noodle rolls at Dim Sum Garden Express.
Robert Sietsema/Eater NY

3. Asian Jewels

Copy Link
13330 39th Ave
Flushing, NY 11354
(718) 359-8600
Visit Website

Though somewhat obscurely located on the edge of an industrial district down by the Flushing River, Asian Jewels (formerly Ocean Jewels) is the neighborhood’s pre-eminent dim sum palace, offering a bit of luxury at surprisingly low prices. Though its dumplings lack the delicacy of, say, Bamboo Garden’s, the dim sum choices are solid and even innovative. Recommendations include the vegetarian rice rolls, minced beef balls, salt and pepper fried anchovies, and “baked sweet Mexican bun.”

Buddhist rice noodle rolls and minced beef balls
Buddhist rice noodle rolls and minced beef balls
Robert Sietsema/Eater NY

4. Tim Ho Wan

Copy Link
85 4th Ave
New York, NY 10003
(212) 228-2800
Visit Website

A visit to this imported Hong Kong dim sum parlor should swell you with pride, realizing that New York’s dim sum is more competitive than ever before with some of the largest Asian cities around. Here, har gow are thinner skinned and have more shrimp crammed inside, while the baked char siu bao are tastier than many versions found in NYC. Tim Ho Wan has done away with communal tables, too, making dim sum feel like a private experience. Still, much of its dim sum is very good, including eggplant stuffed with shrimp paste and shrimp rice noodle rolls. Another location lies west of Times Square at 610 Ninth Avenue.

<span data-author="-1">Buns seen from above. </span>
Baked char siu bao at Tim Ho Wan.
Ryan Sutton/Eater NY

5. Dim Sum Palace

Copy Link
59 2nd Ave
New York, NY 10003
(646) 476-8846
Visit Website

Along with the fast casual cafes popping up all over town, this homegrown chain that broadcasts its Hong Kong roots may also be the future of dim sum. Offering a soupcon of elegance, it fabricates a broad range of congees and dumplings, including relatively thin-skinned xiaolongbao, and diaphanous siu mai bursting with shrimp, served with multiple dipping sauces and all at slightly elevated prices. Tea is another specialty.

A basket steamer with six puckered dumplings.
Shanghai soup dumplings at Dim Sum Palace.
Robert Sietsema/Eater NY

6. One East Ocean Palace

Copy Link
113-09 Queens Blvd
Forest Hills, NY 11375
(718) 268-1668

This sprawling Chinese restaurant in Forest Hills, a neighborhood with a growing number of Chinese restaurants, serves favorite dim sum plates like outsize watercress-and-fish dumplings, beef rice noodles flavored with cilantro, shrimp har gow and humongous siu mai, and fatty pork riblets in a steamer dotted with black beans. Later in the day, the place turns into a very good Cantonese seafood restaurant.

Crunchy shrimp dumplings
Crunchy shrimp dumplings
Robert Sietsema/Eater NY

7. Royal Seafood

Copy Link
103 Mott St
New York, NY 10013
(212) 219-2338

With Joy Luck Palace now closed to the public, Royal Seafood reasserts itself as one Chinatown’s best dim sum parlors, and former devotees of Joy Luck are streaming in the banquet hall. In spite of the pandemic, carts still speed back and forth dispensing some of the best braised tripe in town, and the miniature custard pies, fresh tofu, shrimp rice noodle rolls, and pea-shoot dumplings are also top notch.

Pea shoot dumplings
Pea shoot dumplings
Robert Sietsema/Eater NY

8. Yin Ji Chang Fen

Copy Link
91 Bayard St
New York, NY 10013
(212) 227-4888
Visit Website

The last couple of years have seen the demise of some of the larger banquet halls, which were the primary destinations for dim sum, while new places have specialized in much narrower selections, as Yin Ji Chang Fen demonstrates. This Chinese import form Guangzhou — where the delicacy originated — specializes in steamed rice rolls more fully stuffed than the city had seen before, proffered as a main course; two or three make a full meal.

Two black plastic containers of translucent rice noodle rolls.
Yin Ji Chang Fen’s rice noodle rolls.
Robert Sietsema/Eater NY

9. Mee Sum Cafe

Copy Link
26 Pell St
New York, NY 10013
(212) 349-5260

This antique lunch counter offers great dim sum of the coffee-shop sort, not delicate or expensive, eaten mainly by older locals who linger by the hour over a plate or two. Dim sum, mostly pulled from a steam cabinet, falls in three categories: dumplings, baked buns, and congee. Taking Chinatown back to the 1950s, this is a place not to be missed.

Two met sit at a metal table in front of a very old looking storefront.
The action spills into Pell Street at Mee Sum.
Robert Sietsema/Eater NY

10. Nom Wah Tea Parlor

Copy Link
13 Doyers St
New York, NY 10013
(212) 962-6047
Visit Website

The oldest continuously operating restaurant in Chinatown, this relic of a bygone era near Doyers Street’s historic Bloody Angle (the site of 19th century tong murders) has been lovingly restored to something like its 1920s era. With no carts, customers check off their dim sum orders on a pad of paper, and a server delivers the order. The dim sum, too, has an antique quality, as seen in the well-braised chicken feet, tasty and funky turnip cakes, and fluffy steamed char siu bao. And the outdoor seating on the Doyers Street is some of the best in the city.

Who doesn’t like a turnip cake?
Who doesn’t like a turnip cake?
Robert Sietsema/Eater NY

11. Golden Unicorn

Copy Link
18 E Broadway
New York, NY 10002
(212) 941-0911
Visit Website

Since 1989, this restaurant has offered Cantonese dining at its glitziest. The two levels are reachable by an elevator at the direction of a walkie-talkie-wielding wrangler, and the place used to get wild on the weekends — now not so much. Nevertheless, you’ll be able to enjoy a broad range of dim sum rolling by on carts. The braised chicken feet are impossibly tender, the turnip cake earthy and wiggly, the shrimp siu mai sprinkled with crunchy roe, and the vegetarian crystal dumplings possess a green translucence. 

The bacon wrapped shrimp come with mayo and two Pringles potato chips
The bacon-wrapped shrimp come with mayo and two Pringles potato chips.
Robert Sietsema/Eater NY

12. East Harbor Seafood Palace

Copy Link
714 65th St
Brooklyn, NY 11220
(718) 765-0098
Visit Website

On the border of Sunset Park and Bay Ridge, East Harbor is the largest dim sum parlor in Brooklyn, with rolling carts, private rooms, big round tables with lazy susans, and one of the longest dim sum menus in the city. Oversized fish balls, soy-braised chicken feet scattered with fresh green chiles, open-ended rice rolls cut like tekkamaki, and goji berry gelatin are highlights. Saturday and Sunday around noon remain peak times, so go early or on a weekday.

Shrimp har gow dumplings in a bamboo steamer.
Shrimp har gow
Robert Sietsema/Eater NY

13. Bamboo Garden

Copy Link
6409 8th Ave
Brooklyn, NY 11220
(718) 238-1122

Bamboo Garden closed and reopened in 2017, refurbishing a pair of luxurious dining rooms in gold and powder blue, and a charcuterie carryout in the front vestibule. Many now-popular forms of dim sum appeared here for the first time, including pig custard buns (aimed at children), giant soup dumplings that floated in bowls of soup, and a chicken-and-mushroom hot dish that circulates on small saucers. Closed nearly a year for the pandemic (though the carryout in front was still in operation), the dining room has now reopened with well-spaced tables.

Shrimp rice noodle rolls on a white plate inundated with dark soy sauce.
Shrimp rice noodle rolls
Robert Sietsema/Eater NY

Loading comments...

1. Jing Fong

380 Amsterdam Ave, New York, NY 10013
Four shrimp glazed with white sauce and a sugary walnut on top of each.
Honey walnut prawns at the uptown Jing Fong.
Robert Sietsema/Eater NY

Opened in 2017, this elegant Upper West Side location of Jing Fong is the only one we have left at the moment. All the usual dim sum is available late into the evening, some of it innovative but most of it standard. Platings are lush for a dim sum joint, and there are mixed drinks, too, making dim sum popular for a quick bite or group brunches in this neighborhood.

380 Amsterdam Ave
New York, NY 10013

2. Dim Sum Garden Express

136 - 55 Roosevelt Ave, Queens, NY 11354
A plastic tray with white noodles underneath tiny pork ribs.
Pork rib rice noodle rolls at Dim Sum Garden Express.
Robert Sietsema/Eater NY

This narrow storefront in the midst of Flushing’s transportation hub is not what many New Yorkers may think of as a spot for stellar dim sum. Though a broad range of dim sum is available, the specialties are congee and steamed rice noodle rolls, the latter bigger and lusher than usual, with the fillings — which run to pork ribs with black bean sauce, curried fish balls, and stewed beef brisket, among a dozen others — dumped on top rather than rolled inside. Chiles stuffed with shrimp paste was another delight.

136 - 55 Roosevelt Ave
Queens, NY 11354

3. Asian Jewels

13330 39th Ave, Flushing, NY 11354
Buddhist rice noodle rolls and minced beef balls
Buddhist rice noodle rolls and minced beef balls
Robert Sietsema/Eater NY

Though somewhat obscurely located on the edge of an industrial district down by the Flushing River, Asian Jewels (formerly Ocean Jewels) is the neighborhood’s pre-eminent dim sum palace, offering a bit of luxury at surprisingly low prices. Though its dumplings lack the delicacy of, say, Bamboo Garden’s, the dim sum choices are solid and even innovative. Recommendations include the vegetarian rice rolls, minced beef balls, salt and pepper fried anchovies, and “baked sweet Mexican bun.”

13330 39th Ave
Flushing, NY 11354

4. Tim Ho Wan

85 4th Ave, New York, NY 10003
<span data-author="-1">Buns seen from above. </span>
Baked char siu bao at Tim Ho Wan.
Ryan Sutton/Eater NY

A visit to this imported Hong Kong dim sum parlor should swell you with pride, realizing that New York’s dim sum is more competitive than ever before with some of the largest Asian cities around. Here, har gow are thinner skinned and have more shrimp crammed inside, while the baked char siu bao are tastier than many versions found in NYC. Tim Ho Wan has done away with communal tables, too, making dim sum feel like a private experience. Still, much of its dim sum is very good, including eggplant stuffed with shrimp paste and shrimp rice noodle rolls. Another location lies west of Times Square at 610 Ninth Avenue.

85 4th Ave
New York, NY 10003

5. Dim Sum Palace

59 2nd Ave, New York, NY 10003
A basket steamer with six puckered dumplings.
Shanghai soup dumplings at Dim Sum Palace.
Robert Sietsema/Eater NY

Along with the fast casual cafes popping up all over town, this homegrown chain that broadcasts its Hong Kong roots may also be the future of dim sum. Offering a soupcon of elegance, it fabricates a broad range of congees and dumplings, including relatively thin-skinned xiaolongbao, and diaphanous siu mai bursting with shrimp, served with multiple dipping sauces and all at slightly elevated prices. Tea is another specialty.

59 2nd Ave
New York, NY 10003

6. One East Ocean Palace

113-09 Queens Blvd, Forest Hills, NY 11375
Crunchy shrimp dumplings
Crunchy shrimp dumplings
Robert Sietsema/Eater NY

This sprawling Chinese restaurant in Forest Hills, a neighborhood with a growing number of Chinese restaurants, serves favorite dim sum plates like outsize watercress-and-fish dumplings, beef rice noodles flavored with cilantro, shrimp har gow and humongous siu mai, and fatty pork riblets in a steamer dotted with black beans. Later in the day, the place turns into a very good Cantonese seafood restaurant.

113-09 Queens Blvd
Forest Hills, NY 11375

7. Royal Seafood

103 Mott St, New York, NY 10013
Pea shoot dumplings
Pea shoot dumplings
Robert Sietsema/Eater NY

With Joy Luck Palace now closed to the public, Royal Seafood reasserts itself as one Chinatown’s best dim sum parlors, and former devotees of Joy Luck are streaming in the banquet hall. In spite of the pandemic, carts still speed back and forth dispensing some of the best braised tripe in town, and the miniature custard pies, fresh tofu, shrimp rice noodle rolls, and pea-shoot dumplings are also top notch.

103 Mott St
New York, NY 10013

8. Yin Ji Chang Fen

91 Bayard St, New York, NY 10013
Two black plastic containers of translucent rice noodle rolls.
Yin Ji Chang Fen’s rice noodle rolls.
Robert Sietsema/Eater NY

The last couple of years have seen the demise of some of the larger banquet halls, which were the primary destinations for dim sum, while new places have specialized in much narrower selections, as Yin Ji Chang Fen demonstrates. This Chinese import form Guangzhou — where the delicacy originated — specializes in steamed rice rolls more fully stuffed than the city had seen before, proffered as a main course; two or three make a full meal.

91 Bayard St
New York, NY 10013

9. Mee Sum Cafe

26 Pell St, New York, NY 10013
Two met sit at a metal table in front of a very old looking storefront.
The action spills into Pell Street at Mee Sum.
Robert Sietsema/Eater NY

This antique lunch counter offers great dim sum of the coffee-shop sort, not delicate or expensive, eaten mainly by older locals who linger by the hour over a plate or two. Dim sum, mostly pulled from a steam cabinet, falls in three categories: dumplings, baked buns, and congee. Taking Chinatown back to the 1950s, this is a place not to be missed.

26 Pell St
New York, NY 10013

10. Nom Wah Tea Parlor

13 Doyers St, New York, NY 10013
Who doesn’t like a turnip cake?
Who doesn’t like a turnip cake?
Robert Sietsema/Eater NY

The oldest continuously operating restaurant in Chinatown, this relic of a bygone era near Doyers Street’s historic Bloody Angle (the site of 19th century tong murders) has been lovingly restored to something like its 1920s era. With no carts, customers check off their dim sum orders on a pad of paper, and a server delivers the order. The dim sum, too, has an antique quality, as seen in the well-braised chicken feet, tasty and funky turnip cakes, and fluffy steamed char siu bao. And the outdoor seating on the Doyers Street is some of the best in the city.

13 Doyers St
New York, NY 10013

11. Golden Unicorn

18 E Broadway, New York, NY 10002
The bacon wrapped shrimp come with mayo and two Pringles potato chips
The bacon-wrapped shrimp come with mayo and two Pringles potato chips.
Robert Sietsema/Eater NY

Since 1989, this restaurant has offered Cantonese dining at its glitziest. The two levels are reachable by an elevator at the direction of a walkie-talkie-wielding wrangler, and the place used to get wild on the weekends — now not so much. Nevertheless, you’ll be able to enjoy a broad range of dim sum rolling by on carts. The braised chicken feet are impossibly tender, the turnip cake earthy and wiggly, the shrimp siu mai sprinkled with crunchy roe, and the vegetarian crystal dumplings possess a green translucence. 

18 E Broadway
New York, NY 10002

12. East Harbor Seafood Palace

714 65th St, Brooklyn, NY 11220
Shrimp har gow dumplings in a bamboo steamer.
Shrimp har gow
Robert Sietsema/Eater NY

On the border of Sunset Park and Bay Ridge, East Harbor is the largest dim sum parlor in Brooklyn, with rolling carts, private rooms, big round tables with lazy susans, and one of the longest dim sum menus in the city. Oversized fish balls, soy-braised chicken feet scattered with fresh green chiles, open-ended rice rolls cut like tekkamaki, and goji berry gelatin are highlights. Saturday and Sunday around noon remain peak times, so go early or on a weekday.

714 65th St
Brooklyn, NY 11220

13. Bamboo Garden

6409 8th Ave, Brooklyn, NY 11220
Shrimp rice noodle rolls on a white plate inundated with dark soy sauce.
Shrimp rice noodle rolls
Robert Sietsema/Eater NY

Bamboo Garden closed and reopened in 2017, refurbishing a pair of luxurious dining rooms in gold and powder blue, and a charcuterie carryout in the front vestibule. Many now-popular forms of dim sum appeared here for the first time, including pig custard buns (aimed at children), giant soup dumplings that floated in bowls of soup, and a chicken-and-mushroom hot dish that circulates on small saucers. Closed nearly a year for the pandemic (though the carryout in front was still in operation), the dining room has now reopened with well-spaced tables.

6409 8th Ave
Brooklyn, NY 11220

Related Maps