I was fortunate enough to work with a family medicine physician in the San Gabriel Valley back in the day. It was great, because I went home at noon everyday and on some days I got to taste some of the best food in the SGV at the expense of some pharm reps. Sea Harbour Seafood (or as I like to call it, Seafood Harbour, because that’s the name I was told and it’s stuck ever since) was one of the restaurants I was fortunate enough to try. It has to be one of the BEST dim sum restaurants in Southern California. Please correct me if you think there is something better out there. But when you serve fresh meaty shrimps bigger than my eyeballs, you can only be known as the BEST in my opinion. Even Ludo Lefevbre and his wife are fans. I saw them take a gigantic bag of takeout from here one Sunday. It’s a wise decision to get take out, because the wait here is RIDICULOUS. A few years ago, I’d wait for over an hour to get a table. Nowadays, the wait isn’t as bad, probably because the place is pretty pricey and times have changed.
Chinese Greens in brine
You just can’t beat the vegetables from the good Chinese restaurants. It’s like they get the pick of the crop and the rest of the mid quality vegetables goes to market. Whenever I try to make vegetables at home, they never have that same freshness or clean taste. Here, they are cooked in a tasty brine with some slivered radishes. Today’s version was a bit olier than usual, but still delicious.
I never really eat these, but not because I don’t like it. I do, but it is just a lot of trouble to eat with all those little bones. Mama H.o.P. and Smooth Obturator love chicken feet so they gobbled it all up. Smooth Obturator says “This is the BEST chicken feet I’ve ever eaten!” I forgot to ask why, but he’s pretty critical.
Bean Curd Seafood Roll
Sticky Rice in Lotus Leaf
Nothing too spectacular about this standard dim sum dish. The rice is sticky and fragrant from the lotus, filled with a mixture of egg yolk, pork, shrimp, and mushrooms.
Turnip Cake in XO sauce
I don’t know why, but they don’t serve your regular pan fried turnip cakes here. These are pan fried with XO sauce. They’re not too different from the regular variety. Still a nice texture, not too pastey or gelatinous.
Char Siu Bao
They are known for their baked pork buns, but Dumpling Man likes his steamed. They bao was fluffy and light and the filling was meaty and maybe a little too sweet for my tastes. We both agreed that nothing beats Mee Sum Pastry.
Shrimp Chow Fun Roll
Action shot! This is just the start of the wonderful shrimp fest at Seafood Harbor. The chow fun roll is soft with just enough chew. The shrimps are huge. Yum! We also ordered one with pork but I forgot to take the picture. I’m a fan of the shrimp roll of course.
The BEST har gow I’ve ever tasted. The skin is chewy and translucent. The filling is 100% shrimp. There is very little in the way of fillers or shrimp pastes.
Porky goodness! These are huge, and of course delectable. These unlike the har gow probably have some amount of filler and are not 100% meaty perfection. The taste is good and they’re not too fatty.
Har Gow with Scallop and Shark Fin
Take fresh meaty shrimps and pile on a little scallop and a sprinkling of shark fin and you have one rocking seafood dim sum delight. These taste pretty similar to the regular har gow, just with some added food “bling.” Bling ain’t cheap, just remember that.
Low Fat Milk Bun
These buns have got to be one of the BEST DAMN THINGS I’VE EVER EATEN. I will pay you if you don’t think they are the deliciously light, fluffy, sweet embodiment of all things perfectly Chinese and baked. Just imagine a bun that is just slight warm, with a light crusting of sugar and flour on the top, and a crunchier version on the baked bottom. The texture just melts in your mouth from some ingenious combination of flour, yeast and whatever else. Hidden within is a sweet, milky, delicately coconutty pudding like cream. Don’t worry, the coconut taste is very subtle. These buns are just an amazing combination of textures and light flavors. They go perfectly with a nice cup of hot tea. You will definitely want to eat more than one. These beat out cupcakes, cookies, brownies, pies, cakes, bars, or candy as the best sweets ever. Everything else is just so pedestrian in comparison. If someone knows how to make them, or where else they have them, please let me know!!!
Whenever I eat dim sum anywhere else, Seafood Harbor is my standard for comparison. I have yet to have dim sum in Hong Kong or Vancouver, but I’ve heard its pretty comparable. Of course I would not be surprised if others felt the dim sum was far superior in these other cities. Maybe the ingredients are fresher, the portions more generous, the prices significantly lower. But for the LA area, and probably for all of Southern California, this place is bomb! Also, other places probably do not serve low fat milk buns, and based on that alone I could never love another place more than I love Seafood Harbor. Just like I figured out how to make the perfect green milk tea a la Tea Station at home, one day I promise to figure out how to make these buns too!
Sea Harbour Seafood
3939 Rosemead Blvd
Rosemead, CA 91770