Hong Kong hole in the wall Tim Ho Wan made waves in 2009 when it received a Michelin star for dim sum that, at the time, all cost around $5 or less a plate. The restaurant’s reputation and mystique has only grown since then, with Anthony Bourdain recently naming it to his personal dream list of vendors for his forthcoming Bourdain Market. Now the restaurant will come to New York this September — but chef Mak Kwai Pui, who worked at the three-Michelin-starred Lung King Heen before opening his restaurant, will be doing it on his own terms.
In recent months, Gor has expanded beyond Hong Kong, where he runs five Tim Ho Wan restaurants, with a slew of outposts now open or opening in Australia, Singapore, the Philippines, Taiwan, Indonesia, and Thailand. The New York location will be his first in the United States, and Gor tells the Village Voice that he’s looking for “a local Chinese face” to helm the kitchen. Throughout expansion, he says, he’s sought chefs that understand the local clientele, and while the Tim Ho Wan here will maintain the dim sum format, look for it to embrace New York’s beef obsession. Assuming Gor finds the right chef, this could be huge news for the city and its dim sum scene, which has long lagged behind har gow hot spots like Vancouver and Hong Kong, of course.