Every now and again Dad tell’s me of the best Dim Sum he and Uncle Ding had when they visited Manchester 20+ years ago. Lucky for me, I have friends, Ger & Joanna, working in Manchester and I finally came down for a visit. The Yang Sing brand has been around since the late 70’s. Over the years the business has moved from various locations and expanded by opening sister restaurants and an Oriental themed hotel which unfortunately failed to succeed in the tough economic climate, resulting in closure. Click for the full history of Yang Sing. Only the downstairs section of the two story building is open during lunch and a hostess took our jackets when we arrived. She looked slightly puzzled not knowing what to say – “Hmm a Chinese guy with a white friend and he doesn’t seem to speak any Chinese/Cantonese, what menu shall I give him?”. To save the poor lady from further confusion, I quickly said “Table of 2, Dim Sum Menu please”. The Irish accent blew her mind. 😯 My friend Gerard had never tried authentic Dim Sum in Chinese restaurants. He is quite fed up of the crappy stuff you get in takeaways and wanted to try real authentic food. So he left the power of ordering entirely in my hands, big mistake! I wanted him to really experience how Chinese people eat when dining out… i.e. LOADS! Food to Asian’s is like drink to the Irish. Asians seem to live to eat, not vice versa. I guess that helps explain my plump teenage years. 😳
Owners & Brothers Gerry (right) and Harry Yeung (centre) in the kitchen at Yang Sing
The Dim Sum I ordered: – HAR KAU (Prawn Dumplings) – SUI MAI (Prawn and Meat Dumplings) – STEAMED CHICKEN’S FEET IN SPICY SAUCE – STEAMED CHAR SUI BAU (Roast Pork Bun) – CHAR SIU SOU (Roast Pork in a flaky pastry) – LO MAI GAI (Steamed rice dumpling in lotus leaf) – WU GOK (Taro dumpling)
– LO BAAK GOU (Turnip cake)
In total I think we had 9 Dim Sum. Can’t remember what the last one was. Anyway it was way more than enough for two people. After putting the order through, an impressive row of shiny glistening crispy roast duck all hung up side by side caught my eye, tempting and teasing. My mouth began to water and knowing it was way too much food, I decided spice things up and ordered half a roast duck! 🙄 I told Ger to buckle up for a war we may not win as the first plate of Dim Sum approached the table. We made a valiant effort of battling through the continuous onslaught of bamboo steamer dishes, wave after wave. Both staff and other customers looked shocked at the amount of food on our table. (**Note never eat with a Tan if you want a peaceful meal with no attention drawn to the table!) However with our best attempts we were defeated, and I kindly asked the waitress to split the food into two doggy bags for us to take away.
The total bill came to under £35: 2 cokes, a Chinese tea, 9 Dim sum and half a roast duck. Compared to Ireland, the UK is so much more cheaper for authentic cuisine and in some cases tastes better. Fantastic value for money and would happily come back again. One thing that stood out was the lack of Chinese customers in the restaurant. There were a few, but more English people. This rose suspicion that there could be better Dim Sum offered elsewhere. Chinese will always eat where the food is good and cheapest around. However I had my mind set on visiting Yang Sing as it is a Manchester institution and one of the UK’s most famous Chinese restaurants. Most important of all, I wanted to follow in Dad’s footsteps! Job done 😉