Written by Anita
February 5, 2011
Photograph 1 courtesy of BWF Communications
The Chinese Lunar New Year is here, giving us a reason to get out and shake off those mid-winter blues. At Ping Pong Dim Sum, nestled in the heart of the Penn Quarter, you can celebrate by sampling dishes that give a modern twist to traditional dim sum.
A great introduction to Ping Pong is its daily Happy Hour (4-7pm) which features $5 cocktails and $3 select menu items, all served in Ping Pong’s sleek, sophisticated bar and lounge. Nibbling a pork puff (a flaky pastry shell filled with sweet honey-roasted pork and topped with sesame seeds) and sipping a creative cocktail (like the vanilla & chili sidecar made with cognac, triple sec, lemon juice, and vanilla-chili sugar) is sure to get you in a celebratory mood. Not a drinker? At Ping Pong, you can choose from several delicious non-alcoholic coolers that will make you the envy of your drinking buddies. Our current favorite muddles mango juice with peppermint leaves, and then adds antioxidant-packed (and energy-boosting!) goji berries.
During the week, check out Ping Pong’s power lunch (available until 5pm), which offers an assortment of dim sum items plus tea for $15. You’ll start with two chicken puffs (light glazed pastry filled with chicken and topped with a chunk of pineapple) and the earthy and satisfying Asian leaf and three mushroom salad in a light sesame dressing. Next, you’ll sample five steamed dumplings (chive, scallop shitake, spicy pork, spicy vegetable, and har gau). The spicy vegetable dumpling got our juices flowing, packing a big, flavorful kick in a little unassuming package. Dumplings are followed by steamed choy sum—bright green Chinese broccoli bathed in a garlic soy sauce. Wash it all down with one of Ping Pong’s soothing gourmet teas or delicate flowering teas (hand-tied teas wrapped around real flowers that slowly “bloom” as they steep).
Can’t hop in during the week? You still can try items individually or sample other set menus, including the dumpling collection, the seafood collection, the vegetarian collection, or the signature Ping Pong collection (for two to share) anytime. Or make reservations for Ping Pong’s love party Sunday brunch, which features five hours of unlimited dim sum and bottomless lychee mimosas for $45.
To celebrate the year of the rabbit, Ping Pong will showcase four new dishes throughout February. We can’t wait to try the crisp, lightly fried white fish and seaweed roll with spicy sesame sauce, the spicy beef and shitake mushroom rice pot, and the rich Chinese chocolate brownie with blood orange sorbet. Toast the New Year with a pear and elderflower Collins, which combines gin, elderflower liqueur, lemon juice, and fresh pear. Guo nian hao!*
*Happy New Year!