Posted in Restaurant Adventures

Review: Chu Shing Restaurant, Ottawa

691 Somerset Street West, Ottawa, ON, (613) 233-8818

Date of Visit: February 4, 2011

Ambience and Service

Chu Shing is a very spacious and high-ceilinged room on the second floor of the building it occupies. The décor is fairly plain and unremarkable. I arrived alone at 11am or so and the there were about 10 tables of various sizes that were occupied while the majority were empty. The place was beginning to fill as I was leaving and one could see that it was going to be a fairly hectic and noisy place when the lunchtime service really got going.

Although there is an a la Carte menu, lunch at this place seems to be mainly cart service dim sum. The cart servers were of average of friendliness and help for this type of restaurant and there were a number other individuals who escorted me to my table, brought me beverages and cleared away clutter as it accumulated. On the whole, the service was quick and efficient and I was never left unduly waiting for anything. It was a bit hard tell whether he service would remain as good during busier periods  but I certainly had no complaints through my meal.

The range of dim sum being brought around when I was there was not all that great but that was almost certainly because I was there so early; Indeed, it did seem to me that the variety began to pick up closer to noon. The only condiments provided on the table were a fairly generic Sriracha type sauce and an unidentified soy sauce. I didn’t discover the brand of either but they were both acceptable if unremarkable.

The Dishes

Shrimp Shu Mai – Best I have ever had. In most dim sum places, wrappers for shao mai are often too tough and usually of the wrong thickness for the size of the filling. Here, the dumpling size was about a half-mouthful – about perfect in my personal opinion – and the nicely, formed wrapper was almost (but not quite) thin enough to see the filling through the side. The filling was good and full of fresh, plump shrimp. Unfortunately, in my enjoyment of the dish , I forgot to record any other ingredients I may have detected. Rating 5 out of 5.

Har Gau – Good size and nicely formed but the filling was very mediocre and there was a slight raw floury taste to the wrappers. Rating 2 out of 5

Beef Balls – These came three to a small dish, served over a few greens with the steaming juices . I personally found the texture of the beef too overworked. It had obviously been beaten to a very smooth paste (as is often popular with Chines ground meat recipes) but there was little else in the mix to offset the rather spongy texture that resulted. The seasoning didn’t seem to be much more than salt and a little white pepper and was ultimately a bit bland. Although I personally didn’t care for these much, they did seem to be fairly well executed and in line with what has seemed popular in other places. Rating 3 out of 5

Pot-stickers – Good size. The ones that came around while I was there contained ground pork, cabbage and a bit of carrot. The pork was not skimped on in favor of the cabbage but the overall taste was pretty unremarkable. The wrapper was a tad too thick. Rating 2.5 out of 5

Overall Review

I certainly had no complaints to speak of and, while there was nothing to rave about exactly, I thought that the place is well worth another try. If for no other reason, I would like to go again and try the Cháng fěn I saw on one of the carts as I was leaving. They looked very good indeed.

Chu Shing Restaurant on Urbanspoon

4 thoughts on “Review: Chu Shing Restaurant, Ottawa

  1. The problem with Chu Shing is that I don’t feel this is a clean place for dining. The place looks the same since opening.

    1. I didn’t have any specific cleanliness concerns… although the downstairs entrance was a bit grubby for sure. I take it you are a long time resident of Ottawa?

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