I love everything about dim sum. Tiny morsels of food. The pretence it's healthy if it's steamed. Huge variety. You can have dessert in the middle of dinner if you want and then go back for more savoury. No waiting for food.
Except of course, traditionally you needed to wait until Sunday morning before the big Northbridge dim sum restaurants opened for your yum cha fix. But now, you can get your Northbridge dim sum every day of the week (except Mondays) thanks to New Moon, which is the new name for Hoi's Kitchen on James Street.
We arrived without a booking on Boxing Day evening. We were shown to a table by one of the eleven staff, and literally were being offered food before we had even sat down. Brilliant.
Our dishes (after we had already tasted some of them)
Like most dim sum restaurants, there is a large range of mostly steamed dishes constantly being taken around the room on trolleys and trays. I would estimate there were around 30 dishes or so ready to go at any one time including large wedges of roast pork, fried wontons, steamed buns, vegetables and desserts.
The rest of the dishes (approx. 75) can be ordered from the menu and include porridge dishes, soups, stir fries and deep fried dishes. It's quick, it's fun and it's very easy to over eat.
The quality of the dishes are no better and no worse than any of the other big dim sum restaurants. They are tasty and standard and ultimately satisfying. It's faster than fast food, and so much better tasting.
The restaurant is quite small compared to others, and it can get very busy on Friday and Saturday nights (the only two nights it is open for dinner) and Sunday mornings, but as the food is served so quickly, turnover of tables is relatively quick. It's got blinged up walls and sparkly chandeliers but you spend most of your time scanning the room to see what food is coming next. Despite all the staff, service is average, and smiles are rare.
Prices are normal and you can get a huge feed for around $20-$25 per person. There is a $1.50 service charge per person and a corkage fee of $1.50 pp as well.
New Moon is very welcome, and I can't wait to get my dim sum fix during the week.
I love this place. The prawn and almond patties are to die for, and the egg tarts superb. (I ordered three dozen of each for my birthday party :-) .) At lunchtime they can get really busy so be prepared to wait in line out in the street until a table clears.
I got to New Moon all the time, and I have found the staff to be wonderful. They can't do enough for you if you have small kids with you - we have been known to rock up with huge prams and need several high chairs and they are totally accommodating. Also, several of the staff spend lots of time giving my flirty son heaps of attention. Maybe when it is very busy it is different, but we have found them to be incredibly warm and welcoming.