Quirky new restaurants in Cape Town – The South China Dim Sum Bar in Long Street

Quirky new restaurants in Cape Town – The South China Dim Sum Bar in Long Street

It is such exciting times – Cape Town has its first Dim Sum Bar!!  Quirky!! Seriously quirky.


Ed & Clint saved their money from working weekends at the City Bowl Market in town and used it to transform an absolute hole of a spot in Long Street into a fab and funky little Dim Sum Bar.  This spot was formerly a very tiny night club with solid black walls.  One can see that this restaurant has been decorated on a shoe string budget- but that is part of what makes it feel so magical!  Both of the guys are serious food enthusiasts – they are also well qualified guys who have taken the plunge and left their corporate careers to follow their passion and their love of the cuisine of their forefathers.  We love that they are sharing it with us!!

Ed & Clint cooking at South China dim sum

A few weeks ago we decided to head in as a large group to support their new restaurant.  Ed is a close friend of our friend Melissa – so she rallied the troops and off we went.

Simple renovations done to the inside

We had such fun!! I love going to place where the people know you – you can really make yourself at home – and we really did so!  Our wine was popped in their fridge.  We handed over the ordering to Melissa who simply worked us through most of the menu.  We relaxed, we laughed, we chatted and we loved the flavours.  In fact I had so much fun – I forgot to photograph the food – so we will have to return!

Good prices at South China Dim Sum!


  • Similar to the Dog’s Bollocks Hamburger Spot – there is no ice!!  Buy your own ice on your way in and bring an ice bucket!
  • They do not have a liquor license – so bring your own – no corkage.  Perhaps bringing ones own ice bucket would be a good idea!
  • The menu is written up each day.  It contains a variety of dishes from South Eastern China – not just Dim Sum!
  • Once you have decided what you would like, simply place your order and pay at the counter.
  • I would recommend that you book – this allows the guys to know how many people to prepare for – the dishes they make are extremely labour intensive.  Also note that the guys make everything themselves by hand.  As such their is a limited amount that they can turn out each day.  As such come early or else you are likely to be told later that they are “fully booked” – which is code for “we have nothing left to sell you!!”


Ed & Clint face the hoards who all want Dim Sum!
Delicious ice tea
Having fun at the South China Dim Sum Bar


I loved it!  Quirky!! Great food.  Great vibe.  Lovely spot to relax with your friends for the evening.  It was also extremely well priced and the combo of that with the fact that you can take your own wine meant that it was a really inexpensive evening out on the town!

My advice to the guys: get a Chinese granny who can sit and fold Dim Sum all day in the shop – there is such great scope to sell so much more!

Congrats Ed and Clint on a lovely addition to Cape Town.

The philosophy behind South China Dim Sum:

“our philosophy is simplicity… make great simple food; meet people and promote earth friendliness!”


289 Long Street (at the top just before it becomes Kloof Street) and on the left hand side after Royale. Opening times:

Tue – Fri: 12:30 pm – 3:00 pm

evening: 6:30 pm – 10:00 pm

Sat: 6:30 pm – 10:00 pm

Saturday morning at the 14 Hope Street at the City Bowl Market.

To book: Call 078 846 3656

Check out their facebook for more information.  

UPDATE – 2019 – this is still one of Cape Town’s absolute foodie favourites.   When you ask top Chefs in this region where their favourite place is to eat out – South China Dim Sum comes up each time!   I would highly recommend a visit!

Note that Clint decided to move on and that Ed took it over.   You will still find Ed in the kitchen every night!

Come and visit them – chop chop!