That is Cantonese for “drink tea” – yum cha!
And The China Club is the place to go if you want to yum cha Chinese style in the UAE.
This is how it works in this tantalizing cuisine from the south of China: The dishes are mostly bamboo steamers, containing bite-sized snacklets, and they are pushed around to your table in a cart.
No need for a menu, no need to order, you just sit at your table enjoying conversation and drinking tea, and then select from the cart. You can also order à la carte from the menu, if you prefer.
The China Club is a beautiful restaurant – the decor is first class, and the ambience is both pleasant and elegantly refined. If you have been to yum cha before, perhaps in the Far East, or the Chinatowns of North America, you will expect a noisy and almost peasant-market atmosphere, even in the up-market dim sum restaurants – not so at The China Club.
Service is smooth, and the diner is treated as a respected guest.
If you prefer privacy, there are also two exquisite private rooms available. Their tables are also round, but they sport the central rotating tray so that the appetizing dim sum can be within chopstick reach of all diners!
By the way, “dim sum” is the food itself – an art form almost, but of humble origins.
Mostly the tasty morsels are wrapped and steamed, although there are also crunchy deep-fried varieties, as well as rice and noodle dishes.
Look how appetizing they seem! But what’s inside? That’s what people always want to know!
Well, let’s see:
At The China Club, naturally, the selection of dim sum food is halal, in accordance with Islamic Sharia law.
Two other aspects of our experience at The China Club should be highlighted.
We had vegetarians at our table, and so there was a moment of trepidation as the maître d’hôtel was informed – would they be corralled into a minimal selection of a few lukewarm salads and soppy white rice?
Quite the opposite, actually! The China Club not only serves an equal selection of items for vegetarians, but they are made specially to order! And they tasted great!!
For vegetarians, and diners who appreciate healthy eating, The China Club is tops – impressive.
The second note to highlight is the tea – but not, surprisingly, the hot jasmine tea that is normally served with dim sum – The China Club offers magnificent freshly-made iced teas, in several flavors. Go for the peach: best iced tea I’ve tasted for ages!
I asked Chef Fu De Jun for his secret – but he wouldn’t tell me. “It’s a secret!”
Originating from the city of Nanking in China, he did humbly explain that the real secret to a wonderful dim sum meal is in the company at the table – bring your friends, bring your family; drink tea, have fun, and enjoy. A man of few words, but those words are worth millions.
And if you think Dim Sum is easy – see renowned chef Gordon Ramsey’s attempt:
The China Club restaurant is easy to find, here is an interactive map:
The China Club restaurant is part of the Radisson Blu Hotel, located on the banks of the Dubai Creek, in Deira.
Bani Yas Road
United Arab Emirates
Tel: +971 4 222 7171