DOS HERMANOS DO DIM SUM AT DRAGON CASTLE DOWN THE ELEPHANT
As records go, it’s not one of the more important ones. It’s not up there with Donald Campbell’s world speed record or the first steps taken on the Moon. But, for Dos Hermanos, it is a milestone, a pinnacle, our Everest, if you will.
What is it? Well, the magnificent achievement of fifteen different assorted dim sum along side a plate of roasted duck and crispy belly pork. A good three more than our previous best and our hearts gave a little skip when they had to bring the table extension into play.
After recent disappointments at Harbour City, we have been pondering on a solution to our basic level Dim Sum needs. Dragon Castle on The Walworth Rd was the site of an excellent supper recently and we thought it worth a try for an early Sunday lunch.
A hour long walk from our part of town to The Elephant & Castle. It was hot as hell and I think the heat must have got to us as outlandish statements began to be exchanged, the most bizarre of which was “ there are some really hot women in professional chess”
Fortunately, the vast dining room at Dragon Castle was beautifully air conditioned and we soon began to return to some semblance of normality as we looked at the menu which is extensive but standard and offered dishes that you would find in most restaurants in Chinatown. However, there was a wide range of specials too, from which we chose about five or six options.
On the whole, the cooking was competent. Baking was below par and the pork puffs were luke warm.
Steaming was better with decent prawn dumplings, scallop cheung fun and light, fluffy chiar sui buns which did not sit in the stomach as they are want to do.
Frying was very good, strips of squid were crisp if a little rubbery, prawn and chive cakes likewise.
Best of all were the specials. A hot pot of trotters with pickled ginger in a sweet vinegar had gelatinous piggy foot to chew on and crunchy ginger to add fire. Yam cakes with aubergine topped with crispy fried garlic and a wrap of chicken and prawn in fish maw both worth the extra pennies charged.
For some inexplicable reason, we ordered a sweet dim sum. A “cinnamon and kernel pudding” which was, in fact, three blocks of ugly looking jelly which wobbled ominously. HP had no intention of trying it. I took one bite and then pushed it away in disgust. As we often find ourselves saying at a Chinese meal “ I guess it’s a texture thing” It certainly wasn’t a taste thing.
The bill for two including service and tea was £51. About standard now for this level of Dim Sum which is strictly third tier but serves a purpose for a quick Sunday lunch.
Another hour long walk home so no more outlandish claims about the babes of the checkerboard world but a quiet sense of pride in our own minor piece of history.