SGV: Dim Sum at Monterey Palace
I’m always game to try a new dim sum place. I feel it’s my duty to keep up with all the dim sum houses in LA as I get asked all the time which one is my favorite. While I don’t have an ultimate favorite, I do recommend Sea Harbour, Elite and as an old standby, 888 in the San Gabriel Valley. I recently re-discovered Ocean Seafood and think it’s pretty great for Chinatown. Though lately, I’ve become disenchanted with long waits and hurried eating. At Monterey Palace, I found there was no wait (it was however, a Wednesday during the holidays) and it was so leisurely. I left 2 hours later without feeling like I had just inhaled 15 dishes in 30 minutes like I normally do.
The standard dumplings; siu mai (pork and shrimp) and har gow (aka crystal shrimp) were large and tasty. Later, we got the roast pork which was a deal at around $7. The skin wasn’t spectacularly beautiful like NBC’s but it was still very crunchy and good snacking.
You can always tell who’s driving the dim sum train when you see me ordering shrimp rice noodle rolls (cheung fun). For a different treat, Monterey Palace has stuffed rolls that also have the “Chinese doughnut.” My dining companion loved this dish but I think I’m old fashioned when it comes to dim sum. Just give me more shrimp and pork.
Monterey Palace is the sort of place you order from the menu and there were a couple of options where I thought it was the stuffed bean curd roll I like. Good thing I picked the right one. This is filled with crunchy veggies wrapped with a rehydrated bean curd sheet.
I also ordered the shrimp and scallop dumplings expecting something to look like the crystal shrimp dumplings but these were wrapped with a hardier wrapper. Quite different.
I’m more of a radish cake girl myself but the dining companion wanted the taro cake. This one was topped with minced Chinese ham lending a savory component to the dish.
At this point we thought we had 5 more things coming. Thank goodness we didn’t because the three of us were stuffed! At $2.09 for most of the dim sum, this was one of the cheapest dim sum places around. The Chinese know a good value though so parking is a bit strained. I would recommend parking in the neighborhood if you can.
Monterey Palace1001 E Garvey Ave., Monterey Park, CA 91755 – (626) 571-0888