Dim Sum is Cantonese for “a little bit of heart” or “touch the heart” and originated in China centuries ago. It’s more than just a meal — it’s an experience. Dim Sum is loud and bustling with small dishes that you choose from carts being wheeled around at lightening speed to your table.

With the Chinese New Year in full swing, there’s no better way to celebrate the “Year of the Monkey” than with a dim sum meal close by. Here are just a five of our favorites!

MANHATTAN AND FLUSHING

Nom Wah Tea Parlor

Photograph by Nom Wah Tea Parlor
Photograph by Nom Wah Tea Parlor

One of the best and most famous dim sum spots in the heart of Manhattan’s Chinatown, Nom Wah Tea Parlor has been serving delicious treats since the ’20s. It doesn’t boast the prettiest decor but the price is right (a large group will find the bill will most likely come to $20 a person, if that) and the wait can be long because treats like their crispy scallion pancakes and roast pork buns are just that delicious! 13 Doyers St, New York, NY 10013

RedFarm

Photograph by RedFarm
Photograph by RedFarm

If you’re looking for dim sum with an upscale, modern twist — this is the spot. Dim sum master chef Joe Ng and Chinese food expert Ed Schoenfeld opened RedFarm to “bring a greenmarket sensibility to modern and inventive Chinese food and super-charged dim sum.” Dishes include ‘Pac Man’ Shrimp Dumplings, Katz’s Pastrami Egg Roll and Five Flavor Chicken Dumplings.
529 Hudson St, New York, NY 10014 or 2170 Broadway, New York, NY 10024

Golden Unicorn

Photograph by Golden Unicorn
Photograph by Golden Unicorn

When you get to the Golden Unicorn, you’ll feel like you’ve entered the lobby of an office building. But once you get off the elevator and are assigned a “ballroom” to sit in, you’ll then feel like you’re in the heart of Chinatown with the festive and over the top red and gold decor. The carts come around with English labels and the Spring rolls, shumai and shrimp dumplings are the best around! 18 East Broadway, New York, NY 10007

Dong Yi Feng — Good Kitchen Seafood Restaurant

Photograph by Instagram
Photograph by Instagram

One of the most popular spots in the bustling Chinatown section of Flushing, Queens — Dong Yi Feng is known for good service and an amazing selection of dim sum. The servers pushing around the cart are good natured and happy to share what they have on hand. But be sure to find the carts with the shark fin soup, young chow fried rice, honey glazed shrimp or steamed rock fish — those are the best things they serve though you really can’t go wrong with anything you try! 135-29 37th Ave, Flushing, NY 11354

WESTCHESTER

Aberdeen

Photograph by Aberdeen
Photograph by Aberdeen

Named after the famous Aberdeen Harbor in Hong Kong, this spot is known for fresh seafood dishes and homemade dim sum that’s made from scratch every day. If you want to veer away from dim sum, their seafood dishes are fresh from the tanks they have on display and of course they have a special menu in celebration of the Chinese New Year too. 3 Barker Avenue, White Plains, NY 10601

What are your go to dim sum spots in the area? Tweet us at @serendipitysoci with your best picks!