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Top Gun Seafood Restaurant

12450 S.E. 38th St.
Bellevue, WA
(425) 641-3386

Top Gun has the reputation with many on Chowhound as being the best dim sum restaurant in the Seattle area. I have found it to not only have excellent dim sum, but to be of a quality that far exceeds anything I thought possible based on my experiences in the Southwest.

Top Gun's excellence, however, goes well beyond the dim sum menu. A Mixed Vegetable with Tofu and Ginger dish I ordered was the best mixed vegetable dish I have experienced to date. The vegetables were delicious and and fresh as possible. The sauce was so light as to almost not be noticeable, yet delicious beyond my experience at just about any other Chinese restaurant. The tofu was perfectly prepared with a light golden crust and soft interior.

A Tofu Clay Pot dish is similar to the mixed vegetables, except it is served in a ceramic pot with a thick sauce similar to a stew. This has become one of my favorite dishes at those Chinese restaurants that are authentic enough to serve it. The one here was one of the best, and the tofu was cooked to perfection. Still, I liked the vegetables that were served in the mixed vegetable dish, so I would probably have to give the edge to that dish rather than the clay pot.

For the Dim Sum experience I went with a friend to enjoy as many items as possible. The Honey Walnut Shrimp was very unusual and very good. Covered with huge walnuts, the sauce tasted something like a waldorf salad, only with more delicate flavors.

All of the shrimp dim sum items were fresh and enjoyable. Egg Tofu Stuffed with Shrimp was the best of the shrimp dishes.

The real surprise, though, came from the pork dishes. While I have never had pork dim sum in the Southwest that I really enjoyed, the ones here were excellent. One of the best was Sticky Rice in Lotus Leave (that is the way it is spelled on the menu), a delicious mass of steamed rice with such fresh and flavorful chunks of meat that it must have been successfully transplanted from China in its original form. The Steamed Tofu with pork inside was even better, and was probably the best dim sum dish I tried (although all of them were really excellent).

Noodle Plates are served as "deluxe" dim sum items, and although they are more expensive than the regular dim sum items, I would judge that one of these dishes and an extra dim sum item would make a substantial lunch. Top Gun serves thick noodles and the thin variety. The Thick Noodles are similar to the hand shaven noodles at Shanghai Garden, and the sauce is just about as good as well. Although it was excellent, I did not go wild over this dish as I did with most of the other dim sum items.

Dim sum is served every day until 2:30 p.m., but food from the regular menu is excellent as well. This places goes on my "highly recommended" list.



Cuisine: Chinese Cantonese
Cost: $$$
Hours: Open Daily
Accessible: Yes
Tea: Jasmine (loose leaves) house
Smoking: No Smoking
Special Features: Dim Sum Daily

Most Recent Visit
May 24, 2006

Number of Visits: 4

Best Items
Dim Sum, Mixed Vegetables with Tofu

Special Ratings
Mixed Vegetables: with tofu
Tofu Clay Pot:

Dim Sum Ratings
Egg Tofu Stuffed with Shrimp:
Steamed Tofu:
Sticky Rice:
Honey Walnut Shrimp:
Noodle Plate:

Restaurant Web Site
Top Gun

Health Dept. Report
King County