Richmond is famously known for it’s fantastic Asian cuisine, including its many dim sum restaurants. One of the top dim sum places is Kirin, offering traditional items with a twist. This particular dim sum was organized by ChineseBites, so we were able to sample items that I normally never order.
I know I say this often, but its something to be said when dining with fellow food bloggers – the level of understanding that we just got to take that photo and then eat it all. It definitely is a better mind set to be in when dining!
Now let’s get to the food!
Pan Fried Pork Belly and Preserved Vegetable Bun – These pan fried buns are filled delicious pork belly and vegetable and still very ‘bun like’ despite it’s crisp top and bottom. Overall one of my favourite dishes.
Steamed Abalone and Chicken Bun – This was very deceiving because I thought it was going to be a BBQ pork bun, but it turned out to be chicken and abalone.
Siu Mai (Pork and Shrimp Dumpling) – Kirin’s version is made with Sakura Farm Premium Pork, which makes for a more tender, less saltier version than the siu mai you’ll find else where.
Hau Gau (Steamed Prawn Dumpling) – Kirin has a delicious hau gau. The best kind of dim sum restaurants serve their hau gau with mostly (if not all) prawn that is still springy but not rubbery. Kirin does this well.
Deep Fried Tofu with Minced Pork – This crispy deep fried tofu is not too overly breaded, so the crunch really comes from the tofu skin and gets it’s weight from the minced pork.
Deep Fried Prawn Dumpling served with Consomme – A staple at many dim sum restaurants, loved that this dumpling wasn’t too greasy and had a good amount of filling inside.
Steamed Tofu Puff Stuffed with Minced Fish and Dried Shrimp – These fish balls were good, I dont see them often at other dim sum places, but its also something I wouldn’t really order for dim sum.
Xiao Long Bao – Steamed Pine Mushroom and Pork Dumpling Filled with Consomme. I’m guessing this is XLB, but Kirin’s version. It was surprisingly delicious, with just the right amount of filling and consomme. The broth is lighter and not too salty.
Steamed Pork Liver Rice Roll – Although this might put some people off, this isn’t something you’ll see anywhere (correct me if I’m wrong). I love that Kirin elevates very standard dim sum items, giving their customers a unique experience from the run of the mill dim sum places.
Deep Fried Minced Fish and Chinese Mushroom Bean Curd Roll in Steamed Rice Roll – I love my Chinese donut roll in rice rolls but this is beyond that! This delicious version has spoiled me and now I can’t have it any other way. The minced fish just gives it a savoury taste and the crunch from the chinese donut just tops it off for me.
The regular version, ie. Steamed Green Onion and Chinese Donut Rice Roll Topped with Bread Crumb also came with our meal – which was pretty good and standard.
Spareribs on Steamed Plain Rice Roll – Pretty standard fare at a dim sum restaurant – however at Kirin, they serve it with plain rice roll which I enjoy more than rice.
Braised Assorted Cow Offal in Chef’s Special Sauce – This may be a little off putting to some people, but this is actually quite delicious if you can get over what “offal” is. Which if you were wondering in this particular dish was lung, spleen, tripe and intestines. I think nowadays more people are becoming open to eating more innards, as we’re becoming more conscious of waste. Asians have been conscious about waste since the dawn of time 🙂 I’d invite you to try these items – pro tip: try it with lots of sauce when it’s your first go at it.
Thousand Tier Cake – I’m curious to see if there is a particular story behind thousand tier cake. I tried looking it up online but there are so many variations from all different walks of life. The Chinese version and the one available at Kirin consists of steam bun layers and duck egg yolk custard. If you’re looking for a sweet ending to your meal without being overly sweet, this might be the answer. To me, it wasn’t sweet enough to satisfy my terrible sweet tooth but I can see this being a nice ending for most people.
Overall, I really enjoy having dim sum at Kirin. I’ve had dim sum a couple times at Kirin and I’ve never had a bad meal here. If you’re looking for more interesting and adventurous dishes than your typical dim sum restaurant, it would definitely be worth the money to check out Kirin.
Disclosure: I was invited by Chinese Bites and my meal was paid for, however, as always all opinions are my own.