When the mood for yum cha strikes, nothing will satisfy you until you are among the carts piled high with baskets containing all your favourite morsels. Everyone deserves to experience this absolute satisfaction, but sadly it can be tricky to weed out the dodgy yum cha serving up lukewarm, rubbery dim sum, from the greats cooking up steaming parcels of pure heaven.
Not to worry, because there are some utter gems in the Brisbane yum cha scene. Here are the best yum cha restaurants in Brisbane.
Howard Smith Wharves
Boozy bottomless yum cha? Count us in. Every Sunday, Stanley dishes up a decadent yum cha lunch matched with free-flowing champagne, all to the backdrop of their glamorous Cantonese-inspired venue. Of course, you can feast on their dim sum dishes at any time, with platters of dumplings one of their specialties, alongside their Peking duck pancakes.
Sunnybank and Chermside
Known for their phenomenal yum cha is Landmark Restaurant. Brisbanites come from far and wide to eat at this iconic yum cha style restaurant, known for its authenticity and utterly amazing roast duck. The tea selection is also something to write home about, so grab a bamboo basket and start eating.
Tucked away in Sunnybank, this yum cha and Chinese restaurant is well worth the drive out of the CBD. Whether you're after brunch, lunch, dinner, or anything in between, Parkland Restaurant is there to bring you the goods on the daily. Specialising in their seafood dishes you can order an entire fresh mud crab from the tank if you're a sea critter lover, but nothing beats choosing baskets of prawn and Shanghai pork dumplings from the rolling trolleys.
Brisbane City and Upper Mount Gravatt
Not quite your traditional yum cha but too good not to mention is New Shanghai. Have a seat in their restaurant with a full view of the skilled chefs cooking up a storm in the kitchen. Witness first-hand the delicate art of assembling every kind of dumpling under the sun. We recommend the soup dumplings (xiao long bao); they are a work of art, wonder, and magic all wrapped up in a delicious parcel.
Serving up what has to be every yum cha dish in the world is Golden Lane. This stylish restaurant seats 300 people, feeding everyone a fresh take on traditional Chinese food. By applying both Eastern and Western cooking techniques Golden Lane moves with the times, enhancing traditional cuisine rather than getting stuck in it. Stop by for their legendary dim sum and you won’t be disappointed.
It's always a good time for yum cha, espeically at Paddington's King Tea. This funky Chinese restaurant is an inner city fave, especially amongst broke young things happy to take advantage of their $30 banquets on Monday and Tuesday nights. If it's dim sum you're after though, stop in any night of the week for endless pork pot stickers, vegetable spring rolls and beef, prawn and pork wontons.
Whether you’re a yum cha regular or you’re completely new to the joys of over ordering baskets of pork xiao long bao and having to basically roll yourself home, Brisbane Phoenix will be sure to have you grabbing the chopsticks for a feast of epic proportions. A dark and moody restaurant, with a black, red and gold colour palette reflecting its Chinese origins, Brisbane Phoenix will have you lost for words at the sight of their specialties like crab xiao bao and prawn and garlic chive dumplings.
Of course we have another Sunnybank fave on the list, Haoke Chinese Seafood Restaurant. Though a tad small, this place is the real deal, leaving the cosmetic trimmings of other, lesser yum cha aside and focusing all their attention on the food. The offerings are traditional, tasty, and legitimately brilliant, as is the fact that they are open until midnight seven days a week. Late night spring rolls anyone?
King Of Kings
Lording over Chinatown Mall is a Fortitude Valley veteran, King of Kings. As one of Brisbane’s most iconic spots for yum cha, King of Kings is filled with a bustling energy unlike any other place. It has been synonymous with old-school yum cha for decades and within that time, the menu hasn’t changed much, and that’s a big part of the appeal. They’ve also got one hell of an egg-custard tart recipe.
For something delightfully fresh, tasty and a bit different, hit up Sunnybank’s Taste Gallery. The restaurant's menu is loaded with traditional favourites and some epic vegetarian options. Try a few of their house specialties, including shallot pancakes and steamed mini pork buns—you won’t be disappointed.