Cheap Eats 2012: Hong Kong Pearl

Sunday Dim Sum. Photograph by Scott Suchman

Cheap Eats 2012

Maybe it’s not the greatest idea to stand by the gorgeous display of hanging meats as you wait for a table on a weekend morning at this teeming dim sum parlor. Maybe that only makes the waiting worse. But consider it reconnaissance—you’re scoping out possibilities for the coming feast. That dangling side of pig, for instance, may not be on the carts—ask for it by name. And you should: The skin crunches like peanut brittle, while the meat is juicier and more tender than anything produced by pedigreed chefs employing the sous-vide method. The rolling carts, meanwhile, carry an array of gems—delicate dumplings, lightly rendered noodle dishes, and gorgeous steamed greens.

Also good: Rice-noodle crepe with shrimp; shu mai dumplings; pork ribs.

Ann Limpert
Executive Food Editor/Critic

Ann Limpert joined Washingtonian in late 2003. She was previously an editorial assistant at Entertainment Weekly and a cook in New York restaurant kitchens, and she is a graduate of the Institute of Culinary Education. She lives in Logan Circle.