China Beach Bistro Debuts in West Palm Beach

Real Chinese cuisine in Palm Beach County? 

Well, stranger things have happened. 

At least they will if all goes according to plan at the new China Beach Bistro (409 Northwood Rd., 561-833-4242), an upscale restaurant dedicated to  turning out authentic Chinese fare (no sushi!) and dim sum in West Palm's resurgent Northwood neighborhood.  Proprietors are financier Roger Hochstin and interior designer wife Judi, along with Café Centro owners T.K. Kaytmaz and Sal Kutsal, who apparently have tasted their way through local Chinese eateries and found them about as truly Chinese as Chun King. 

To pull off this bit of culinary alchemy the quartet raided real Chinese restaurants in New York for three chefs, including one specializing in dim sum (literally, "touch the heart"), the Chinese small plates that are rarely seen in these parts and even more rarely are worth eating.

Among the dim sum offerings are steamed shrimp and snow pea leaves dumplings, beef potstickers with baby carrots and ginger, and a crispy roll of applewood-smoked bacon, shrimp and asparagus. Entrée-sized dishes include half and whole Peking duck, kung pao baby bamboo shoots with crispy tofu, steamed snapper with baby bok choy, and wok-sauteed pork belly with garlic, scallions and pickled ginger. 

Prices aren't takeout Chinese cheap, with dim sum priced between $6 and $10 and entrees from $14 to $25. But given the abomination that is most Chinese food in South Florida, it's probably a pretty good deal.

Follow Clean Plate Charlie on Twitter: @CleanPlateBPB.

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