Fu Lam Mum on Castro has reopened after a year plus closure, during which they converted the second floor into office space and retained the first floor as dining space. With rent being so high in Silicon Valley, I wonder if they earn more from the office space than from the restaurant.
I was there yesterday during the lunch rush. Dimsum is served during lunch and Fu Lam Mum uses carts for dimsum, though some less ordered items can be ordered from the menu.
Har gao: a good version, big plump shrimp, nice clean taste.
Tripes with ginger/ scallion. Also nice and clean, though I prefer versions with a bit of heat from chili pepper. Could use a little more steaming to soften the tripes up. Enjoyable.
Sticky rice in lotus leaf: nice version. the salted egg yolk was kinda hard though.
Steamed char siu bun: nice version. Filling was mostly meat versus some other put in a bunch of random fat.
Sesame balls (there were three of them). Pretty nice. For one of them, the interior separated from the shell, oddly.
Tofu skin rolls (there were three of them)- pretty good
Now the highlight of the meal- the durian puff. We ordered that one and its served straight out of the oven hot. Crispy on the outside, creamy and just right on the inside. Its great stuff. Took a while to arrive since its baked to order.
Nice looking space by the windows.
Somewhat limited initial selection of live seafood, but its only a few days after opening. Probably take some time to rebuild the customer base and expand the selection
Fu Lam Mum is run by the younger brother of the guy who runs Yum Cha Palace in Menlo Park. Prices are quite reasonable for Dim sum in Silicon Valley, and for Castro. I used to rate Fu Lam Mum’s dim sum below Saigon’s in Sunnyvale. On this visit, the dim sum were satisfying and better than Saigon’s on its best day. Whoever they hired for dimsum service during the initial opening are definitely up to the task. Service were ‘no-expression’ Cantonese-efficient. Which was perfect for me.
Waiting was half an hour long, which was not bad.
Some items I’d like to explore more on the dim sum menu: the Chiu Chow rice soup with seafood ($18 though, kinda pricey), the Chiu Chow fish belly vermicelli soup, the Shunde pan fried fish belly. The sticky rice with chicken and abalone, duck pastries, the stir fried vermicelli with XO sauce and the beef stew with glutinous rice. I would be back for sure.