Ping Pong Dim Sum opened mostly to jeers from the critics, so I was hesitant to try it even though it is right across the street from where I work most days. With its recent introduction of a new $15 executive lunch (including a choice of tea) of several courses guaranteed in a half hour, a colleague and I decided to give it a whirl.
And it was fun! The tea was the star of the show. A loose leaf jasmine varietal served in large mugs that was wonderfully fragrant and flavorful and a real treat no doubt on a winter day. But even with the heat (thanks to DC over air conditioning) a hot beverage was a great compliment to the food.
The food itself though was just okay. The variety made it bearable. Plus there is something about eating with chopsticks that takes at least some of the stress out of the day for me.
My favorite dish were the fried, flaky BBQ chicken buns topped with candied pineapple. They were buttery and seemed to almost melt in your mouth. However, the accompanying dumpling's fillings of seafood and vegetables lacked any discernible flavor.
The service until up until the end was attentive. We opted to also share a dessert (as a TGIF reward) and got the chocolate buns. These took forever to arrive--frustrating for a business lunch, particularly given their time guarantee; and when these did arrive, I wasn't a huge fan. To me they tasted like white bread had been soaked in water, wrung out, and balled up. The chocolate center was decadent, but it could not save the texture of this dessert.
The total with the addition of dessert and tip was $23. I'm still undecided on my recommendation; if anyone tries this, let me know what you think.
Also of note, I hit up happy hour there a few weeks ago with another colleague and the $5 kumquat mojito is worth the trip between 5 and 7pm!