November 16, 2011

Dim sum @ Premiere Ballroom & Convention Centre

I woke up ridiculously early one day to try out a new dim sum restaurant in Richmond Hill. It turns out that this place has the same owner as Crown Prince Fine Dining & Banquet, one of my favourite spots for early bird dim sum. Incidentally, half of the menu was absolutely identical to Crown Prince, down to the very wording. Their early bird special is also similar: $2.90 fixed price for any S, M or L dishes.
We started off with an Angus beef and mushroom stuffed tart, which tasted like a Chinese version of chicken pot pie. I didn't enjoy the tart because I didn't get that rich, meaty flavour that I was expecting from the filling. There was also too much pastry. 
I generally love pan fried meat buns from Shanghainese restaurants. From here, not so much. Why is the bun green? Despite my affinity for green food, this just looked like food colouring and didn't appeal to me at all. The filling was unremarkable as well.
Premiere's sticky rice with meat and conpoy looked identical to the ones from Crown Prince. They were served in three individually wrapped morsels, which made it easy to pack home.
Luckily, this was a pretty satisfying follow-up to the first two disappointing dishes.
My mom is quite partial to this type of pan fried pancake with seafood and chives served in dim sum restaurants. Unfortunately, this one was, once again, disappionting despite the promising presentation. The texture should be slightly springy from the glutinous rice flour, and this was just mushy. The chives, while visible, were nonexistent in terms of flavour. This was a shame, as chives are usually my favourite part of this type of pancake.
Rice noodle stuffed with spring roll was another dish straight from Crown Prince's menu. While it still tasted pretty good, I would prefer the noodle roll to be presented in rows, like the way it is at Crown Prince. Maybe I'm just being too picky. 
Obligatory order of steamed shrimp dumplings (har gow), which was actually pretty good. The dumpling was large and filled with sweet, juicy shrimps.
Sweet egg yolk paste layer cake is my favourite dessert from Crown Prince, so I was excited that they also serve it here.
While the flavours were still delicious, this version was executed less successfully in terms of texture. The layers were somewhat blended into a mushy mess. Some may argue that all food turns into a mushy mess once it's in your mouth, but I like to savour the contrasting elements of different layers.
For comparison purposes, here is Crown Prince's version of the same dessert. You can see that the layers of this cake were much more defined.
Sweet yam and coconut tart was the only thing that I felt genuinely excited about. Loved the combination of sweet potato and coconut! Although it seemed as if the coconut was just a garnish, it was actually incorporated into the filling as well. I could definitely taste both the yam and the coconut. I prefer my tarts with more filling and less pastry, so the thin tart shell was perfect for me.
I don't think I will be coming back to this place for dim sum on my own accord. I prefer both the food and the décor of Crown Prince. The only standout item was the sweet yam and coconut tart. Everything else was unimpressive for the price, and I'd be much happier sticking to Crown Prince.
Premiere Ballroom & Convention Centre on Urbanspoon


  1. Maybe it's time I try high end dim sum cuz the desserts look awesome!

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