Diners looking for dim sum in Raleigh will be happy to find out that there’s a new option in town: Golden Palace. Captain J’s at 4420 Capital Boulevard revamped into Golden Palace earlier this summer and now serves dim sum (dian xin), the Cantonese version of tapas where servers roll metal steamer-stacked trolley carts around the dining room and diners can order whatever their hearts desire.
For dim sum newbies, Golden Palace offers a pictorial menu to navigate through the 38-plus dim sum items available displaying the standard fare like banana-leaf wrapped sticky rice and fried shrimp balls. Dim sum steamer baskets and plates are broken down into three main categories, “small”, “medium” and “large” which range in price from $2.95 to $3.95. Your server will tick your order sheet accordingly as you order a la carte.
Carts may take a while to circulate around to your table, but once they do, you will have a breadth of options to choose from. You’ll find the siu mai (open-faced pork dumplings) apt and the har gau (steamed shrimp dumplings) sufficient, if not with a bit sticky with its execution of the wheat starch skin. The cheong fan (shrimp-filled) rice noodles lack a bit of finesse in its clumsy presentation, but taste fine. The cha siu bao (barbecue pork bun) needs a little work on the bun side and lacks a robust flavor in its sweet and savory Chinese-style barbecue pork filling. The lo buo gao (fried turnip cake) and zi mao qiu (fried sesame balls) will likely win you over. The turnip cakes come out nicely golden with little bits of mashed turnip throughout and the sesame balls show off a bouncy puff from being deep fried and coated in sesame seeds.
A word to the wise: if you get frustrated by the cart service which can be regrettably spotty at times, flag down a server and ask for specific items. The server will usually oblige to help you out and go directly to the cart or kitchen to locate which dim sum item you want.
Judging by the Sunday crowd, Golden Palace will continue to thrive from its dim sum menu as long as service can get more coordinated. For fans of dim sum that have long dealt with a dearth of options in the Triangle, hopefully this iteration of Captain J’s past several untenable reincarnations will finally stick around for good.
Golden Palace | 4420 Capital Boulevard Raleigh 27604 | 919.900.7665