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The first thing I noticed after walking into Crown Princess was the over-the-top décor. The restaurant is furnished with marble, chandeliers, velvety purple chair covers and fancy tablecloths. From the outside, the restaurant looks deceivingly larger, so I was surprised by how small the actual space was inside the restaurant.

Baked BBQ pork puff pastry

My friend, Chris and I came for dim sum on a weekday and found that it wasn’t very busy. After being seated, I was given an order sheet. This definitely isn’t one of those places that will have cart service.  Although, I don’t think there are too many restaurants that still do that.

What I really didn’t like about their order sheet was that they didn’t have any prices. I was afraid I’d get stuck with a ridiculous bill, given the over-the-top décor of the restaurant. However, Chris had been here once before and assured me the dim sum prices weren’t too bad. He doesn’t seem to believe in sleep… so I crossed my fingers and hoped he wasn’t wrong.

The first dish to arrive was the baked BBQ pork puff pastry ($5.30). It came with three light and flakey pastries. These two-bite morsels were filled with delicious barbeque pork. Simply delicious!

Shrimp dumplings (har gow)

Next came the shrimp dumplings (Har Gow), which was also for $5.30. The dish came with four plump dumplings. The skin was the perfect thickness – definitely not too thick like some other places, and was filled with a good portion of shrimp. Another great dish.

I never really get a chance to order tendon when I go out to eat with Mike since he hates it. Luckily Chris and I have similar tastes, so we ordered the beef tendon – in Thai sauce ($5.30). Sadly, this was my least favourite dish of the meal. The “Thai” sauce, which was a light curry, didn’t have as much flavour as I would’ve liked. I feel like tendon needs to be eaten with a very flavourful sauce since on its own it doesn’t have much of a taste to it. The tendon itself also wasn’t soft or tender, so I wouldn’t order this again.

Beef tendon in a Thai sauce

The last dim sum dish we ordered was the spare ribs with black bean sauce ($3.10). Sure, the portion wasn’t very big, but the spare ribs were delicious. They were also quite tender and easily came off of the bones.

We supplemented our dim sum dishes with the preserved egg with clam and vegetable congee ($8). Similar to the tendon, I never get to order congee with Mike since he can’t stand it, so this was a nice treat. My go-to congee is always one that contains preserved egg. To my delight , they certainly didn’t skimp on the egg or the clams. I love a congee with a good filling to congee ratio. The congee itself was nicely seasoned and was of a perfect consistency. My only complaint is that we found that there was a bit of sand in the clams. Otherwise, a great dish.

Spare ribs with a black bean sauce

Overall, I thought the food was pretty solid. Although the prices weren’t as high as I had expected, at $5.30 for most of the dishes, they are still on the high side. The service was amazing as the servers were constantly coming over to change our plates and replenish our tea. For these prices, you’re really paying for the high-end atmosphere and the stellar service. But if you’re looking for great value, I’d recommend skipping Crown Princess.

Preserved egg, clam and vegetable congee

At a glance:

  • Overall, great dim sum dishes
  • Amazing service
  • $1.50 charge per person for tea/sauce
  • Elegant, over-the-top décor
  • Ratings (out of 5):

  • Food: 4 stars
  • Service: 5 stars
  • Atmosphere: 3.5 stars
  • Crown Princess on Urbanspoon

    1. Amy (Reply) on Sunday 28, 2011

      Wow, crown princess. I can only imagine how princess-y it looks inside. With the velvety purple chairs and chandeliers, you’re making me very curious, haha. I never knew such a place existed in that area of downtown! I rarely have Chinese food dt since there are so many where I live already, but it’ll be interesting to try this place out 😀

      • Jess (Reply) on Sunday 28, 2011

        Yeah, the decor was so over the top! I rarely eat Chinese food since I’m always downtown and all the good stuff is uptown. I really need a car!