Peckish for a bit of dim sum but I didn’t want to travel too far from home. And I wasn’t fussed about quality either. Those two statements only point to Gold Leaf in Preston.
There’s nothing much to report here really. Parking is available in the Preston market lots (remember to park in the white lots) away from the cramped High St street parking. Eye the baked buns in their bakery sales store as you make your way up the stairs to the second level restaurant. You might have to push past the patrons making their way down, but remember to play nice and no need to make a fuss. Everyone is there with a hungry stomach to fill up, check in your grumpiness at the door. I would also recommend making a booking, just in case. This place is popular with the masses and a phone call or online booking is easy peasy.
Once you sit down, you should have to wait for more than 30secs before the first 4 food trolleys come rolling by. For some reason, they wouldn’t take a no from my table even though we had declined the fried cuttlefish 5 times. In no time, the table was piled with braised chicken feet with ginko, har gow (the shrimp steamed dumpling), glutinous rice, braised pork spare ribs, steamed pork balls and sharkfin (fake, no need to scream) pork dumplings.
I liked the chicken feet, they aren’t the ones which are fried first so they are more substantial. The added ginko was nice. The prawn in the har gow was fresh so no complaints there but the skin was simply too thin and tore away too easily. I found the glutinous rice a tad dry, and rather bland. Might need more chinese sausage and/or peanuts. The braised pork spare ribs were nice, but probably need more pepper on the seasoning. Pork balls were ok.
The siewmai was the best dim dum on offer. It was a solid chunk of meat, and dipped in the chilli sauce, that’s the kinda thing I need for mindless Sunday brunch feasting HK-styled.
I don’t have a picture of the custard tarts because they disappeared into our bellies so quickly. It had a flakey brittle base so it’s not the biccy type of dough. And the custard is the soft, more fluid type despite some amount of egg yolk detectable. The reason for me stating these features is because custard tart is so variable that you just have to pick the particular style of preparation that you like and stick with it. For me, I simply love custard tarts so I’m not fussed.
Overall, if you want a no-brainer, cheap and menu-free dining, then Gold Leaf is Preston would be a recommended port of call. It’s ~$30 per person or less. Look, you aint’ gonna get high quality finely presented dishes, but I guess there are places in the city for that if that really floats your boat. I see that Gold Leaf has several other outlets, so it might be a curious comparion to check out the other restaurants.