We both liked the dim sum. Once you are seated in the large dim sum dining room, the waitress drops off a paper ticket. Stamped each time you choose a dish from the passing carts, it becomes your bill when you are finished. This was all new to me, but for my friend, the sight of the dim sum cart brought back loving memories of her childhood--especially the sticky rice stuffed with Chinese sausage, pork, and egg yolk and steamed in banana leaves.
A newcomer needs a sense of adventure to do the dim sum--and even the buffet, since not every item is labeled--and it helps to know Chinese. (Few of the waitstaff speak English, and all of the dim sum items are unmarked.) But with my friend's guidance, I plunged ahead.
She liked the tripe and turnips (like a little stew), while I liked the congee (rice porridge) with dried scallops. We both enjoyed the fried shrimp patties and turnip cakes (steamed and then pan fried.) The shrimp noodle dish--large, flat rice noodles with shrimp rolled into them--was also delicious. For dessert, the egg tarts and baked durian puff were a hit.
My friend disapproved of the small portions--"very un-Chinese-like," she said--but otherwise gave Asia City's dim sum high marks for authenticity. She says that at her favorite dim sum place, Shangri-La in West Bloomfield Township, the portions are a little larger and the prices a little lower. But it's a long trek there, so my friend now alternates between the two places. She says that, all in all, she likes Asia City's dim sum just as much.