FOOD FOR THOUGHT | The heading out to a dim sum brunch on a weekend morning is by now a pretty normal occasion for many Canadians. When my family first moved to the country, one of the cultural oddities was that dim sum here didn’t usually start until about 10am, in fact most restaurants not even open until 9 in the morning.
In Guangzhou, a part of China where the tradition is said to have originated and flourished, there are generally two rounds of dim sum service. The first, catering mostly to the elderly who rise at dawn then take their birds out for a walk or enjoy their morning exercise, starts around 6am where the locals gather to chit chat over sips of tea and a few rounds of pastries. The second serving usually beings closer to 8am when the first families and the younger working crowds arrive and the restaurant begins to fill with a different atmosphere.
Stumbling upon this video, it was nostalgic to see a small family owned business serve dim sum the way that it has been taught and passed down from his father. In fact, the idea of having dim sum (or a small bite) has parallels to us grabbing fast food at McDonalds late night/early morning. Of course, the adaptation of tradition follows the rhythm of life in a particular place but if you ever find yourself in southern China on a sleepless jet-lagged morning – go for dim sum.