Food & Drink

Popular Plaza Midwood restaurant closes its doors

Dim Sum on Central Avenue was a popular spot for Chinese New Year’s celebrations. The restaurant closed Wednesday.
Dim Sum on Central Avenue was a popular spot for Chinese New Year’s celebrations. The restaurant closed Wednesday. Observer files

Dim Sum, a popular stop for authentic Chinese cuisine on Central Avenue, closed Wednesday after 21 years, according to owner Yee Kam.

Kam posted a sign on the door of the popular Plaza-Midwood restaurant at 2920 Central Ave. announcing its end.

Kam says she had already decided to close the restaurant. Her lease was up for renewal in April, and she had already decided that she didn’t want to commit for another five or six years.

“Twenty-one years is a long time,” she said. Her dim sum chefs also were in their 60s and ready to step down as well.

Kam closed earlier than she expected, though, after a health inspection gave the restaurant a grade of C, or 70%, down from the A, or 92%, it got in December. Kam says some of her staff wanted her to appeal the rating, but she decided not to. She says it wasn’t reason she closed, though.

“We’ve been here 21 years, we’ve never had anything (that was a problem).”

She says it was a combination of things, including the difficulty of working seven days a week, that led to her decision.

“It’s about time anyway,” she said.

With authentic styles of cooking and service, the restaurant has been named many times as one of the best places to get authentic Cantonese dishes in Charlotte. Lines frequently formed on weekends during the day for the dim sum service, served in the traditional style from small carts rolled through the dining room.

John Chen of the Carolinas Asian-American Chamber of Commerce was sorry to hear the news.

“Their dim sum, the quality, is as good as anybody up and down the East Coast,” he said.

Kam said she’s ready to do something else besides running a restaurant.

“My No. 1 thing, I feel bad for my customers,” she said. “They’ve given me support all these years.”

Kathleen Purvis: 704-358-5236, @kathleenpurvis

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