[Daly City, CA] Koi Palace

I thought they did a good job. Nice mixture of conpoy and spiciness. Though I really don’t eat XO sauce too often to do a fair comparison.

Sadly sometimes for our family, if there’s a “deal” we might jump on it even if its a terrible deal haha.

I see. Me too. I like XO sauce, but I don’t use it very often… High five.

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I had been wondering where I had this dish before as it seemed something I had eaten somewhat recently. Its Tasting Court in HK, without the stuff that I considered extraneous at Koi- foie, truffle. Obviously, the wok skills were better at Tasting Court too.

I like Koi Palace, but yes, foie and truffle can be interesting, but most of the time distracting. These days people just put too many things to try to impress. It works though – to get customers excited.

I’d probably argue that in elevated cooking, what a chef leaves out is just as important as what a chef puts in.

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Just a slight update on dim sum. I tend to go there early morning (right when it opens) so I actually don’t wait and this tactic still works! Even on weekends! Well… at least for small tables…

At any rate… I’ve noticed that Koi Palace is now displaying their specials now on the little receipt forms. That’s a nice update, though there’s really no great layout to indicate what you want (Put the number next to the item was what I did).

Decided to try an old throw back item and a newer rice noodle roll.

In any case, started off our meal with classic beef balls with a bit of yuba steamed on the bottom and a dash of Worcestershire sauce. As one of the “small” classifications for KP’s dim sum menu, I guess that’s a victory… In any case, I enjoyed them, still has a good texture to the bite.

We got the steamed daikon cake with dried shrimp and meat. I was pleasantly surprised to see it topped with XO sauce (no mention of that on either the Chinese or English portion of the menu). A nice little spicy kick that goes well with the daikon’s sweetness. Good strips of daikon were in the dish, so it wasn’t just steamed dough.

Next up was one of their special of the day. The wild yam fish maw with duck feet. If you can’t tell, all the aforementioned ingredients were wrapped in yuba skin and had a good braised sauce accompanying the dish. However, the yuba skin seems to have been steamed a little too long. I’m not a huge fan of duck feet either. I also have little idea how people ate this dish, I just unwrapped it and ate each item separately. The duck bones prevented eating it together. I believe this item is considered a more traditional/old-style dim sum. In any case, I wasn’t too interested in trying this dish in the future at KP.

Next up were the crab roe sea bass dumplings. Even though they had an open top, the dumpling was still quite juicy. The asparagus could’ve looked a little brighter, but the fish wasn’t overcooked so still quite enjoyable.

We got the siu mai next and mmm… look wise it could’ve been better. But eating the dumpling was still quite good. The meat still had a nice textured bounce that is chewable and not a solid puck of protein.

Next up were the XO har gow. I’ve always enjoyed them, and I still find them quite good. Wasn’t too pleased with the placement of the dumplings though, the wrapper were a little close to each other and they seemed to like sticking to each other.

I know… I know… not quite the same as the XLBs you’d find in Shanghai etc. etc. … but I still quite like them. I find them to have a good amount of soup and I find the soup more savory than sweet (I prefer savory over sweetness). The meat is a little more compact than I desire, as I recall hyperbowler linking it to the use of machinery.

Ah… the pumpkin rice roll with sea cucumber and seafood (and by seafood, mixture of scallops and shrimp couldn’t seem to find other items). Honestly, if you don’t add the soy sauce, it looks terrible…

There we go! In any case, couldn’t quite tell the sea cucumber apart as I tasted mostly the shrimp/scallop mixture. I still found it quite tasty. The pumpkin pretty much just made the rice noodles yellowy-orange and seemed to cause the noodles to lessen the stretchy/chewiness of the noodles. I think I prefer the regular variation more.

This item, the abalone and smoked ham dumpling soup) is still one my favorite items to order at dim sum restaurants (though usually its dried scallops and shitake mushrooms). Add a dash of the red vinegar to the soup, and it brightens the taste just a bit. Pretty much a buddha jumps over the wall variation, I think KP does a great job on this dish.

As one of the few deep fried things my family likes to order… we got the glutinous dumpling with diced pork. A nice crunch on the outside with a relatively thin chewy later in the middle, combined with the mushroom and diced pork filling in the middle makes this a delight.

Lastly to end our meal, we got the herbal turtle essence. Nothing too fancy about this, but the bits of syrup over the herbal jello has a nice cooling feeling-- a palate cleansing effect for me.

Overall, I still think Koi Palace does a great job for dim sum and I’m always happy to see variations in dim sum (feels like they’re trying to stay relevant and not rest on their laurels). Could things be better… well… yes, what can’t? But I don’t think Koi Palace is falling from the bay area’s dim sum ranking (I also have no idea how the Daly City version compares to the Milpitas or Dublin versions but I would like to think they’re very comparable).


The Siu Mai usually look much better than this in your photo. I do like their Siu Mai. I tried the pumpkin rice rool with sea cucumber too. I didn’t hate it, but also didn’t like it. What I am told is that the Koi’s herbal turtle essence uses real turtle shell (most places do not ). Thanks for your update.

Yeah, not sure what happened that resulted in that appearance. They tasted just fine though lol.

Huh, wow that’s news to me. Glad to see they still incorporate that.

Went to Koi Palace for an early dim sum lunch. First visit for me in a long time. We got there early at around 10AM and were seated right away. It was probably a good idea to go a little early as when we left there were a lot of people waiting for a table. We had:

Coffee Pork Ribs ($8.80)

One of the dishes that KP is known for. My first time trying it. Slightly crispy ribs in a sweet slightly bitter coffee glaze, topped with a little sweet whipped cream. Pretty good, but I wouldn’t rush back to re-order it.

Har Gow ($5.95)

Very good, lots of shrimp. Wrappers were thin but a little too thin as they were tearing apart a little.

Ja Leung ($5.95)

This is basically a youtiao stuffed in cheung fun wrapper, served with sweet soy sauce like cheung fun. Pretty good rendition. It had I think some hoisin and sesame paste on the side for dipping.

Pig Feet ($7.95)

First time having this dish. Quite good. Served cold. Gelatinous skin with firm meat. The marinade gave it a sweet and savory taste. One of those things where you can eat one and be done with it though.


Suckling Pig ($22)

Great! Worth the $22. Delicious crispy crackling skin, not super fatty, just the right amount of fat. Served on top of a bed of beans, with a sweet sauce on the side.

Pork Buns in Clay Pot ($6.50)

I forget what this was called, it was going around and resembled shenjiang bao. In a clay pot with some onions on the bottom probably to keep the buns from sticking to the pot. A little wine(?) was poured into the pot, which sizzled and generated some steam to ostensibly give it some more flavor. Wouldn’t get these again, they were very bread-y and the pork filling wasn’t very juicy.

Fried Daikon Cake (Lo Bak Go) ($5.95)

Fried turnip cake arranged like a game of Jenga, served with a spoonful of XO sauce. Pretty good.

Steamed Pork Ribs with Black Beans ($4.95)

I’m not a big fan of this dish in general and only had a bite. It was fine.

Deep Fried Glutinous Rice Dumplings (Haam Seui Gok) ($5.95)

Delicious, nicely fried mochi like wrapper. Could have maybe used a little more filling though.

Xiao Long Bao with Crab ($9.90)

The bill listed these as made with Maine crab which was interesting. These were really delicious. Lots of broth inside with crab and pork. Good textured wrappers.

Tripe and Things ($8.80)

Forgot the actual name of this dish, but it was mostly tripe with some daikon and some other organ meat. I only had a piece of tripe, which was good and clean tasting, with good flavor from the broth.

Almond Cream Filled Buns ($5.95)

Dessert. Very nice textured bun dough, with a crispier layer on top. Almond cream filling had a lot of almond flavor and wasn’t too sweet.

A good meal overall - highlights for me were the crab XLB, haam seui gok, the suckling pig, and the almond cream filled buns.

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Nice. I am eating there. The Dim Sum is as good as always. Well, the funny thing is that I still enjoy their standard dim sum more. I ordered a few from the special menu. While they are interesting, they are not amazing.

Of the one you have above, I would say I usually enjoy their shrimp dumplings the most. The suckling pig, pan fried daikon cake, pork ribs and tripe and things are good too.

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“Tripe and things” is the dish typically known in the Bay Area as “beef haslet”, no?

That term is new to me - in Cantonese I believe it is called ngow jaap, which translates to beef organs or beef tripe.

Actually it just translates to “beef mixture”, so in a way “things” is not a bad translation.

By the way I had some shrimp dumplings from Koi (since we last communicated). They are not as good as before. The wrapper is a little thin and it is a little gummy too. I think they used to be better. I still love their steamed BBQ pork buns. The various steam rice rolls are great.

Had a crab on Sunday. It was good too. I meant to have a fish, but people arrived before me took out all the fishes I want – you probably ate one of them, I bet.

I see, thanks for the correction.

It’s usually pork, not beef.

If we are talking the dish photo above by Mr_Happy, with the same name, then it should be beef.

The pig one tends to show up elsewhere.

I just saw multiple pomelo skin dishes offered on The Kitchen’s menu. Not sure if they are good, if they are available at all.

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Is it even pomelo season yet? Didn’t think the citrus fruits were in at this time.

Evidently pomelo have a long season in California- there’s a grower down south whose website gives the local season as from early fall to mid-spring. I saw some big ones in a Vietnamese market in Chicago last week, and they did have a USA sticker on them.

(The main citrus fruit that doesn’t at all obey the usual rule of a winter season is Valencia oranges.)

Oh wow go figure. I just usually see them in droves around Chinese New Year so figured they were mostly a late winter fruit.