Best Dim Sum Restaurants in Kota Kinabalu City

Dim Sum
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Weekends are family days to most people of Kota Kinabalu (KK). For food and family lovers, it’s the best to spend quality time with family with quality food, so local Chinese likes to enjoy Dim Sum breakfast on Sat & Sun. Below are a few well-known Dim Sum restaurants in KK. Besides serving classic dumplings such as Har Gao (shrimp dumpling) and Shao Mai (meat dumpling), these restaurants have their own variety of Dim Sum. Please note the prices listed here don’t include tax.

variety of dim sum
Pic: Dim Sum makes you wake up happy in the morning. Agree?

dim sum with tea
Pic: let’s go Yam Cha

Same as Hongkies, Sabahans also have the the culture of “Yam Cha” (饮茶), basically means having of cup of tea / coffee and chit chat together in a Kopitiam (Coffee Shop) or restaurant. But if anyone says to you, “next time I’ll call you to go Yam Cha!”, it’s as empty as saying “keep in touch” and you would never receive the call. 😀 Hey, just be proactive and call them for Yam Cha in any Dim Sum restaurant. Probably another side is waiting for your call too.

yamcha with family
Pic: Yam Cha with family

dim sum cart
Pic: just take whatever looks good from the Dim Sum cart

Most Dim Sum is served in steamed basket. You can order deep fried items and pastries too. Normally 4 to 5 baskets already can make you really full. If you want stomach filler, you may order sticky chicken rice wrapped in lotus leaf (糯米雞), Bao (Chinese Bun), or fried noodle. Usually I have Dim Sum as brunch, to avoid the peak hours in the morning and to eat as much as I can.

1. Foo Phing Dim Sum (富平点心楼)

Hearing this name, most KK folks will node their heads because it is the most famous Dim Sum restaurant in city. The price of their Dim Sum ranges from RM4.00 (≈US$1) to RM6.50 (≈US$1.60) per basket, quite affordable (and taste very good). During weekends, you can expect a large crowd here in the morning, and you will have to wait for vacant seat for some time.

Foo Phing Dim Sum

interior of Foo Phing Dim Sum restaurant
Pic: inside Foo Phing Dim Sum Restaurant (air-conditioned)

Foo Phing Dim Sum - outside area
Pic: open air area of Foo Phing Dim Sum Restaurant (not air-conditioned)

They have 40 types of Dim Sum. I only list some here. You can download their menu (prices as of May 2016) for the full list.

Har gow (shrimp dumplings)
Pic: Har gow (shrimp dumplings, 虾饺 in Chinese)

Shaomai (燒賣 / 烧卖)
Pic: Shao Mai (meat dumpling, 烧卖 in Chinese)

beef balls
Pic: steamed beef meatball

bamboo skin rolls
Pic: Spring rolls

deep fried yam dumplings
Pic: deep fried yam dumplings

rice noodle rolls or coeng fan (腸粉)
Pic: rice noodle rolls (腸粉 in Chinese)

Turnip cake (蘿蔔糕 / 萝卜糕)
Pic: fried raddish cake with bean sprout (萝卜糕 in Chinese)

Opening Hours: 7am to 2pm daily (rest 1 day every 2 weeks)
Address (see Location Map): Block A, Lot 6 & 7, Ground Floor, Kolam Centre Phase II, Jalan Lintas, Luyang, 88300 Kota Kinabalu, Sabah, Malaysia
Phone: +60 88-259692

2. New WK Restaurant (新旺角酒楼)

New WK Restaurant or Wong Kwok is another decent air-conditioned Chinese restaurant that sells Dim Sum and they have two branches, one in Luyang and another one in Penampang. Both serves delicious Dim Sum so just pick the one nearest to your house. The price of their Dim Sum ranges from RM3.50 (≈US$1.10) to RM7 (≈US$2.10) per basket. The food is nice and the place is spacious, very suitable for family group.

Luyang Branch

Opening Hours: 7am-2pm & 6pm-10pm daily (include holiday)
Address (see Location Map): Lot 4, 5 & 6, Wisma HCS, Jalan Kolam, Luyang, Kota Kinabalu, Sabah, Malaysia
Phone: +60 88-217278, +60 16-7101728
E-mail: newwk.rest@gmail.com

New WK Restaurant (Luyang)
Pic: New WK Restaurant in Luyang

Shao Mai with scallops
Pic: Shao Mai with scallops

mushroom dumplings
Pic: mushroom dumplings

tofu skin dumplings
Pic: tofu skin dumplings

salted bun
Pic: salted bun (流沙包)

filling of salted bun (流沙包)
Pic: look at the yolk inside salted bun, it’s kids’ favorite

Phoenix claws / chicken feet
Pic: Phoenix claws, the glamorous name of chicken feet lol

Penampang Branch

New WK Restaurant (Penampang)
Pic: New WK Restaurant in Penampang

Opening Hours: 7.30am-2pm & 6pm-10pm
Address (see Location Map): Lot 21,22&23, WK Commercial Centre, Jalan Bundusan, Penampang, Kota Kinabalu, Sabah, Malaysia.
Phone: +60 88-719988, +60 16-8338718

Spare ribs (排骨)
Pic: steamed pork ribs (排骨 in Chinese)

Shao Mai (燒賣 / 烧卖)

蝦餃

There are many more variety, but I can’t post everything here. Btw, this restaurant is also a great place for family dinner.

Halal Dim Sum

Most Dim Sum contains pork. For Muslims who are keen to try Dim Sum, there are a few places in KK. Next time you can invite your Muslim friends to Yam Cha.

Shang Palace (香宫)

Shang Palace (香宫) of Shangri-La’s Tanjung Aru Resort & Spa offers the Halal Dim Sum. I have tried their Dim Sum a few times and I’m really impressed because it tastes almost the same as real Chinese Dim Sum.

Opening Hours (for Dim Sum Buffet): 11:30am to 2:30pm (Sat) and 10am to 2:30pm (Sun)
Address (see Location Map): Shangri-La’s Tanjung Aru Resort and Spa, No. 20 Jalan Aru, Kota Kinabalu, Sabah, 88100, Malaysia
Phone: +60 88-327888
Website: www.shangri-la.com
Facebook: ShangrilaTAH

Do you know other good restaurant for Dim Sum? Please share with me in comment section below.

Photos taken in Kota Kinabalu, Sabah, Malaysia Borneo

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By Murphy Ng