Phnom Penh’s appetite for dim sum appears insatiable, with bite-sized Cantonese goodies popping up at establishments ranging from the humblest hole-in-the-walls to the poshest hotels. Earlier this year, y Meng, executive chef at Malis and co-owner of Topaz restaurant, opened the fourth installment of his Yi Sang dim sum restaurant chain on the ground floor of Feeling Home Hotel and Apartments in BKK1. With a well-established brand backed by one of Cambodia’s most renowned chefs, the new Yi Sang has a lot to live up to.
While the restaurant has a chic, minimalist vibe that would be suitable for an East-West fusion restaurant, the menu sticks to traditional dim sum dishes, as well as other Chinese classics, including Peking duck ($15.80 for half, $30 for the whole bird) and various noodle soups (from $2.90 to $3.80).
We stuck mostly with the dim sum, with deep-fried sticky rice wraps with minced pork ($2.90), crispy seafood spring rolls ($3), steamed spinach and fresh black pepper wrapped in lettuce ($2.80), steamed rice rolls with BBQ pork, steamed chicken dumpling ($2.80), steamed pork dumpling with vegetables ($2.80), and pan-fried chive cakes with finely minced pork ($3). Most of them were what you would expect from quality dim sum: tightly packed morsels of meat and vegetables wrapped in dough.
They were served in wooden bowls, and we washed down the food with green tea.
The deep-fried sticky rice wrap took on a sort of Chinese burrito form with its meat and rice interior, while the steamed rice roll with BBQ pork was large and slippery. All of the dishes tasted great, except for the crispy seafood spring rolls, which we couldn’t finish; its sweet banana-flavoured cream juxtaposed oddly with the prawns mixed within, and it didn’t suit my Western taste buds.
In addition to the dim sum, we also ordered a plate of the pan-fried flat noodles with beef ($3.80). The beef was some of the most tender I have had in Cambodia. It had all the good flavours of cheap Chinese noodle restaurants along Monivong Boulevard, but without the excessiveness greasiness.
It should not come as a surprise that Yi Sang delivers on quality, but it is somewhat unexpected that the prices are as low as they are given Luu Meng’s affiliation. The food is excellent and the setting unpretentiously sophisticated. As usual, Yi Sang is highly recommended.
Located on the corner of Streets 278 and 63, Yi Sang is open from 6am to 9pm daily.