A few weeks ago I joined a few local food bloggers (Tammy, Bryan and Stephanie) for lunch at Ping Pong. Ping Pong is an Asian restaurant in Chinatown/Gallery Place area in Washington DC that serves dim sum (and other Asian fair). How cool is it to be able to eat dim sum during the day and not just on a Sunday afternoon?
When I think about dim sum, I think barbeque rolls, sauteed broccoli rabe, spicy eggplant, and little packages of shrimp, pork, chicken and beef wrapped into light dough. I also think about ladies rolling around carts offering you different options to try. And one of the things I love about dim sum: it's super cheap.
Well, I got none of it in Ping Pong. Instead, I was greeted by a gorgeous space decorated with dark browns and blues. It looked more like a fancy lounge/restaurant than a low-key casual dim sum place. The menu was quite extensive, so each one of us chose a set menu for lunch to make things easier. I decided to try Seafood lunch and also ordered a kumquat mojito.
Let's start with the service: three times we were brought dishes that we did not order. At first, we thought maybe it was a little "welcome/surprise" from the kitchen: wrong. The dishes were taken away after we explained we did not order them.
When the right dishes were brought to our table, nothing was explained. We were left guessing what it was we were putting into our mouths and had to play a matching game between our dishes and the descriptions on the menu. Oh, and both Stephanie and Bryan received shrimp dishes when they never ordered them: imagine if they were 1) allergic to shellfish 2) kept Kosher! Disaster.
The kumquat mojito was amazing: highly recommend!
First to arrive were two baked vegetable puffs: they were enormous! The puff dough was flaky and the filling inside was flavorful.
Then I received fried crispy prawn ball, prawn toast, and fried vegetable spring roll. LOVE fried food, and it did not taste overly greasy.
And last, but not least, the steamed portion of my lunch: chives, coriander, scallop and shitake, seafood, seafood sticky rice and har gan dumplings.
At the end I decided to order dessert: Pineapple and mango puff (Pineapple and mango with cinnamon puff served with a scoop of coconut ice cream). Together with the kumquat mojito, this was my favorite part of the meal.
Overall thoughts: give this place a few more months to iron out the service issue, but in the meantime, check it out for drinks, dessert, and a very cool atmosphere.
What are your favorite places for dim sum? What's your favorite dish to order when you go out for dim sum?