Saturday morning in New York, surely it’s time for brunch. I can just see it now, eggs Benedict, hash browns on the side, a cup of coffee, a bloody mary, and the times on my kindle…life would be good. However, I chose a different approach to my late Saturday morning meal. I took a cab to Chinatown in hope of finding some quality dim sum. Several blocks of traffic later, I was dropped off on East Broadway and I made my way into the rather inconspicuous Golden Unicorn. After the usual confused stares at the request of a table for one, I was seated in the middle of the hustle & bustle of a weekend dim sum service.
A serving of crispy fried dumplings was next.
Yellow egg dumplings joined in as dumpling number three.
Also pan fried, these dumplings had a very chunky filling. Even though they were quite satisfying, I can’t remember the last time I saw corn in a dim sum dumpling filling.
Stuffed bean curd has become one of my fast dim sum favorites
The best part about stuffed bean curd is the contrast between a crunchy filling and the soft, shearing quality of the bean curd skin, but these wraps had an extra bit of gelatinous mouth feel. I’m used to stuffed bean curb having a thick sauce, but this was like jello.
It’s impossible to eat a dim sum meal and not try an order of har gao.
With an extra sticky wrapper and mealy, dried out shrimp filling, these were certainly a disappointing batch of dumplings. It’s not often that I encounter an inedible batch of har gao, but these fit the bill.
Along with har gao, siu mai is one my favorite dim sum litmus tests.
Topped with a touch of roe, these shrimp and pork dumplings were juicy and greasy but just a touch overcooked. While certainly better than the order of har gao, these siu mai were nothing spectacular.
Even though I had a variety of plates hall full of uneaten dumplings, I was looking for something a little different to try. When a waitress appeared with a cart bearing taro and pork dumplings, I decided to give them a shot.
Beneath a thick, sticky wrapper was an oddly soupy filling that was heavy on the taro and very light on the pork. While I enjoy taro in odd dishes, this dumpling was not for me.
I suppose that last comment on the taro & pork dumplings about sums up my meal at Golden Unicorn. While, outside of the har gao, there was nothing entirely unpleasant about the meal, it smacked of banality. A few items, namely the pan fried dumplings from the start, did satisfy my need for chili sauce, dumplings, and tea, but I felt mildly disappointed in what Golden Unicorn had to offer. I suppose the next time I'm in New York, I'll just look somewhere else for my dim sum dumpling fix.
Golden Unicorn Address & Information
18 E Broadway, New York, NY 10002 // 212.941.0911