Have you guys been to Swee Choon? I only just found out about this place a few weeks back and I'm beating myself up for being such a latecomer to the scene. I mean, this place has been serving dim sum for almost 50 years! It's no frills dining, but some of the dishes they serve are surprisingly satisfying. Also, their opening hours are from 6pm to 10am on weekdays and 6pm to 12pm on weekends, which makes it the perfect spot for supper. I'll bet Wan Dou Sek just flashed across your mind. Yeah, that's where I've been going for budget dim sum supper until now and they are pretty similar. But I've always felt that heading to Wan Dou Sek was a sort of compromise between quality and budget. Of course, the quality of dim sum at Swee Choon can never be compared to that of a restaurant like Royal China (currently my favourite restaurant for dim sum), but the quality of their main dim sum dishes are definitely a notch higher than Wan Dou Sek's.
Siew Mai (Bottom Left of Top Photo), Har Gow (Bottom Photo), $2
I also love the fact that they sell many of their dim sum in pairs - makes it that much easier for us to try more without stuffing ourselves silly. Check out their Har Gow (shrimp dumpling). It's at least twice the size of the ones at Wan Dou Sek and stuffed with real shrimp! Their Siew Mai (pork dumpling), while tasty, is mostly filled with pork, as you'd expect at a place like this. You can still see a shrimp peeking out though. Well, I guess if you're looking for Siew Mais with more prawns than pork, you'd definitely have to head to more well-established (read: more expensive) restaurants.
Century Egg and Pork Congee
Nothing like a steaming bowl of good 'ol congee to warm up the stomach at night. They were really generous with the ingredients here.
Banana and Shrimp Fritters, $2.60
Banana and shrimp fritters were next - I liked these a lot. Since it's a pretty unique combination, I'm guessing this dish probably isn't universally adored. I thought it tasted great though - the sweetness of the banana made for such a pleasant contrast with the shrimps!
Beancurd Chicken Roll, $2.80
The beancurd chicken roll was strangely satisfying as well. Again, if you were dining at a proper restaurant, the proportion of shrimp and chicken would be reversed and it would be named beancurd shrimp roll instead. Actually, it's pretty unique that they used chicken since this dish is normally made with pork.
Steamed Chicken Feet, $2.20
Does this scare you? Granted, it may not be the most appealing looking dim sum around, but there is something really addictive about the gelatinous quality of the skin and tendons soaked in a delicious black bean sauce. I love it. In fact, it's one of those dishes that I seem to enjoy irrespective of quality. Unless you serve this to me cold or rubbery, that is. Over here, it's served warm with the feet sufficiently braised in a rather peppery sauce.
And eggtarts to round up the meal! These were okay, I suppose. I mean, I just raved about world class egg tarts one post ago, so this isn't quite enough to win me over. The custard's actually pretty tasty and not too sweet, but the flaky crust wasn't crispy at all. Overall, there were some hits and misses, but I found myself liking this place more than Wan Dou Sek. Still, I might go back to Wan Dou Sek just for their fried oyster fritters!
A caveat here: On my second visit, some of the dim sum dishes were served barely warm, so they probably steam their dim sum ahead of time when the place gets crowded. If it's looking too packed, don't bother!
Swee Choon Tim Sum Restaurant
185/ 187/ 189/ 191 Jalan Besar
Opening Hours :
Mondays to Saturdays: 6pm - 10am
Sundays and Public Holidays: 6pm - 12pm
Closed on Tuesday Nights
No service charge
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