Tim Ho Wan, Hong Kong's famous hole-in-the-wall dim sum restaurant, has opened its first outlet in Malaysia at The Boulevard, Midvalley
Well-known for attracting long queues of people to its restaurants, the dim sum specialist has won numerous praises and recognition from food critics and epicureans around the world. Tim Ho Wan translates to 'additional good luck' in English.
Address: Tim Ho Wan, Unit 27-G, The Boulevard, Mid Valley City, Lingkaran Syed Putra, Kuala Lumpur.
Business hours: Monday – Friday: 11am – 9pm (Last order @ 8:30pm)
Saturday – Sunday: 10am – 9pm (Last order @ 8:30pm)
Why use an un-glamourous idiom like 'hole-in-the-wall' on a Michelin-star awarded restaurant? These photos of the first Tim Ho Wan in Mong Kok, Hong Kong will help you visualise:
People are happy to queue up for an hour or two to chow on fresh dim sum here but don't be surprised, there are only 25 items in their humble menu
Is there anything special or different about their dim sum? Well for starters, they're not pre-steamed so dishes are freshly made to order. They observe a no-reservations policy so it's first-come, first-served basis, BUT...
For the restaurant's first time, the upper floor at Tim Ho Wan Malaysia accommodates private dining in a more intimate setting, where you are allowed to make a reservation and even given a 'private menu'.
Okay, let's cut down on small talk and get to the mains... Here are Tim Ho Wan's 'Big 4 Heavenly Kings' and four more dishes we tried at our first visit:
1. Tim Ho Wan's famous for a really good reason baked bun with BBQ pork: RM10.80 for three
If there's ONE thing you must try as a newbie at Tim Ho Wan, it's their baked bun with BBQ pork or more commonly known here as char siew pau or 'polo pau'. The bun is coated with an exceptionally light, crumbly shell that opens up into a generously filled helping of yummy caramelised pork. When you're enjoying the bun fresh from the kitchen, your plate littered with crumbs shouldn't bother you too much.
2. The staple of dim sum - pork dumpling with shrimp (siew mai): RM10.80
3. Steamed spinach dumpling with shrimp: RM7.80
4. Pan fried carrot cake: RM9.80
If you're a fan of carrot cake and have tried many variations in Malaysia, the texture of Tim Ho Wan's carrot cake will surprise you. It's really soft, perhaps too soft?
5. Vermicelli roll with pig's liver: RM10.80
6. Wasabi salad prawn dumpling: RM10.80
It may look like you have to be a wasabi fan or someone with a tongue of steel to withstand that much wasabi paste, but don't be fooled - it's not spicy and there is no sting that shoots up your nose.
9. Steamed egg cake (must try!): RM7.80
Hands down, the best steamed egg cake we've ever tried!
10. Tonic medlar and osmanthus cake: RM6.80
Did you know: Tim Ho Wan is the world's cheapest Michelin-starred restaurant. It was founded by Mak Kwai Pui, a former chef at Four Seasons Hong Kong.
From the outside, Tim Ho Wan looks like any other nondescript dim sum canteen in the city's traffic-choked Mong Kok district. But there is one marked difference: Michelin reviewers have awarded it a coveted one-star rating, netting it the auspicious title of cheapest Michelin-starred restaurant in the world.telegraph.co.uk
Owner Mak Kwai Pui, ex head dim sum chef at the Four Seasons hotel’s Lung King Heen restaurant, launched a mini-revolution when he opened his first Tim Ho Wan in 2009 – offering high-quality food at reasonable prices. Awarded a Michelin star in 2010, the queues at Mak’s first restaurant were notorious, with people waiting a couple of hours or more for a table. Since then, things have settled down, though you should still expect to wait at peak hours. He now runs four Tim Ho Wans (spiralling rent forced another, in Mong Kok – also with one Michelin star – to close in early 2013) – in Central, North Point and Tai Kok Tsui’s Olympian City, as well as the original restaurant – still going strong – in Sham Shui Po.hongkongyamcha.com
While the Midvalley branch is the first in Malaysia, we heard that the grand plan is to launch 10 more outlets in the next three years!
Think you'll be paying a visit to Tim Ho Wan soon? Hashtag #saysmakan on your Insta pics if you are!