Restaurants / Openings

Houston’s Having a Major Dim Sum Moment — New Montrose and Midtown Hotspots on Tap

Ready to Pling It?

BY // 09.11.19

The Houston food scene is doing something right. Or, rather, sum-thing right. The epically diverse collection of restaurants in Houston is on fire, and right now the scene’s proving that sometimes, big things come in small packages.

Dim sum is taking over.

First, a brand new spot hit Midtown. One Dim Sum is serving up Cantonese delicacies at 510 Gray Street in the old Maba Pan-Asian Diner space.

The menu’s made up of a bevy of bite-sized beauties, a combo of traditional eats and dishes with creative twists. One Dim sum packs a punch in terms of flavor and variety, but you’ll also find an extensive list of stir-fry options.

Thus it’s not your traditional dim sum spot, but more of an inclusive Chinese bistro. Consider it a haven of Cantonese cuisine. But, hey — there’s something for everyone.

One Dim Sum is on par with Asiatown’s most authentic dim sum. You don’t have to drive down to Bellaire to find top-notch pan-fried dry shrimp cheung fun, xia long bao, pea shoots and crabmeat dumplings, spicy pork Szechuan wontons and more.

Stir-fry aficionados have their pick between stir-fry ho fan, stir-fry tenderloin beef in Mongolian sauce, as well as entrees like black truffle duck and kung pao chicken.

But One Dim Sum is not the only newcomer. Another dim sum spot is set to open in Montrose by the end of the year and put its own spin on the beloved dumpling tradition. Say hello to Pling.

Pling may be the last syllable of “dumpling,” but it also represents a whole new era. It’s all built on galbi, the traditional marinade you find in Korean barbecue restaurants. It’s a sauce you’re unlikely to experience in any other kind of Asian restaurant.

“We tried to compact the flavor and savoriness of galbi into a bite-sized dumpling,” owner Jun Hyun tells PaperCity. “We want to stand out by making people feel like they had a ‘Pling,’ not a normal dim sum dumpling that you can see or taste anywhere else.”

pling dim sum
Pling is still a major Montrose mystery.

Pling plans to offer a selection of different sauces to add variety to their menu. So far, its team expects the cheese katsu plate and the tail-on black pling galbi to be the biggest hits.

Hyun figured he could launch Pling in Los Angeles or New York, but he believes they’re oversaturated.

“We felt like Houston was the up-and-coming new city. We wanted to choose one with a good mix of cultures blending together,” he says.

“I love the diversity and variety that the Houston restaurant scenery provides. How can you have Tex-Mex at one location and Vietnamese just down the street?” Hyun laughs.

Unique-yet-accessible is the name of the game.

“I want to create a restaurant everyone can access easily and feel like they can drop by for a quick bite, or when they want to grab a drink with their friends,” Hyun tells PaperCity.

The design at 223 Westheimer will have a modern, airy look with an open kitchen in its 8,250 square feet of space.

When it comes to this selection of small plates, you’ll find the whole cuisine is greater than the dim sum of its parts.

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