2007_07_FoodGumFung2.jpgCall it yum cha, dim sum or just plain good. But if you plan on eating it in Manhattan after say 1 p.m. or hate crowds, call it off all together.

Like many savvy eaters we often hop on the 7 train to avoid the weekend crush at Manhattan dim sum parlors that feature every method of crowd management save for hostesses waving orange batons like culinary air traffic controllers. With excellent dumplings as well as heaping platters of baby octopi, whole fried shrimp and other exotica, Gum Fung has long been our Flushing favorite. Gothamist was quite distraught when we recently learned that it was undergoing renovations and would be closed until September. We've always found the joint quite spiffy. Perhaps they're installing new dragon and phoenix sculptures. This minor setback did not keep us from going to Flushing for dim sum, though. Thanks to a recent thread on Chowhound, we were hipped to Tung Yi Fung. In the hopes that we'd been misinformed, we passed by Gum Fung only to find its windows papered over. So, we headed over to Tung Yi Fung.

2007_07_FoodTungYi1.jpgEven though it was getting late, we took heart in the fact that Tung Yi Fung was still packed at 1:45 p.m. Carts with fresh dumplings kept emerging from what's surely the most savory-smelling elevator in Queens. After a scant 10-minute wait, we were seated. Here's a glimpse of what we ate Sunday.

We got our yum cha session started off right with a heap of meaty short ribs slicked with a black pepper and garlic sauce. These were so luscious that stripping every last bit of meat and cartilage off the oblong bones and spitting them out onto the plate seemed proper etiquette at the time. We also tried triangular seafood dumplings teeming with shrimp and tiny, sweet scallops.

2007_07_FoodTungYi2.jpgHow can one pass up har gau? Tung Yi Fung's are so packed with shrimp that you may just want to bring a guest with an aversion to seafood so you can have them all to yourself. The shark's fin dumplings were also quite good. Incidentally, they're so named not because they contain any shark fins, but because the crimped top resembles a dorsal fin.

Next up were turban-shaped dumplings rife with huge shrimp and greens. When the rolls of yellow cake you see above were plopped down on the table we couldn't help but waft the rich eggy aroma toward us much to the amusement of the couple with whom we shared a table. These delicate sponge cakes struck us as something a small child would have fun eating. They're sweet, hot and you can play with your food by unrolling them. What's not to like?

2007_07_FoodTungYi3.jpg2007_07_FoodTungYi4.jpg

Tung Yi Fung, the manager tells us, translates to "too much." Somehow we think it means something more along the lines of "abundance." But we'll settle for "too much," given how much dim sum we downed.

Tung Yi Fung, 135-29 37 Ave., Flushing, (718) 886-8233