Unlike most Chinese restaurants, Hong Bao serves its dim sum not only for lunch but in the evening, too. Further breaking with tradition, its bright white dining space is decorated with classic chandeliers and European paintings from the 18th century. Do order the famous salapao lava (golden salty egg bun, B85), which manages a wonderful balance between sweet creaminess and salty egg yolk.
Soi Promchit, Sukhumvit Soi 39, 02-662-3565
Excellent preparation, fresh ingredients and perfect timing make even the most basic shrimp dumplings here exciting. Located in the Eastin Grand Sathorn Hotel, the atmosphere is fairly vibrant thanks to a large open kitchen where a small and frenzied army of cooks prepare the Cantonese dishes. We really like the pao hima (fried pork buns, order them in advance, B120): they’re perfectly fried, resulting in a heavenly fluffy touch. Make your reservation early.
3/F, Eastin Grand Sathorn, Sathorn Rd., 02-212-3741. BTS Surasak
Hailing from Hat Yai, this well-known bao-maker does fresh buns in a blue Chinese-chic café. Along with the traditional steamed bao, they also have some creative recipes like mantou krapao gai kai dao (B30), a soft bun, topped with classic pad krapao gai (fried chicken with basil) and a runny fried egg.
68 Sukhumvit Soi 21, 02-664-3231. BTS Asok
If you’re looking for somewhere fit for a date rather than chowing down with grandma and grandpa, you’ll love the Wong Kar Wai-esque, smoking den feel of this place. The dim sum here is tasty and fresh, accompanied with some Hong Kong-style dishes. Get all you can eat from Tue-Sat for B988. Or simply try their honey-glazed roasted pork buns (B236) and deep-fried salty egg bun (B189).
Mandarin Oriental, 48 Oriental Ave., 02-659-9000.
The elegant establishment overlooking the Chao Phraya River offers one of the best dim sum experiences in town. While the service is knowledgeable and courteous, the kitchen whips up excellent authentic Cantonese cuisine, from soups to wok-fried dishes and seafood. They also excel on the dim sum front—well-prepared, fresh and wonderfully comforting. Try the pan-fried bamboo pith and mushroom buns (B100).
G/F, The Peninsula Bangkok, 333 Charoen Nakhon Rd., 02-861-2888.