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TCL Chinese Theatre
Photograph: Sean Pavone /

For the first time ever, Hollywood’s Chinese Theatre will serve Chinese food—and it might actually be good

Beginning this Saturday, March 23, the concession stand will serve dim sum from one of the San Gabriel Valley’s best dim sum chefs.

Patricia Kelly Yeo
Written by
Patricia Kelly Yeo

Though the TCL Chinese Theatre in Hollywood is famous worldwide for its exotic revival architecture and the collection of over 200 celebrity hand and footprints, the 97-year-old “Chinese” theater itself has never actually served Chinese food—until now.

Starting this weekend, the concession stand will begin serving a small Cantonese dim sum menu created by Tony He, the well-known San Gabriel Valley culinary veteran behind Rosemead’s Sea Harbour and Chef Tony, his newer, more upscale mini-chain with locations in Arcadia and Monterey Park. (He also owns and operates Vancouver’s Yidong restaurant group.)

Chef Tony Dim Sum
Photograph: Courtesy Chef Tony Dim Sum.Assorted dim sum at Chef Tony Dim Sum.

The theater’s new Hollywood Dim Sum will serve three combos with commonly offered dim sum items including shrimp dumplings (har gow), shrimp and pork dumpling with black truffles (siu mai) and xiaolongbao, or soup dumplings. Combo C is entirely plant-based, making it suitable for vegans or vegetarians, while Combo A also features a stunning jet-black salted lava bun, one of He’s signature dishes. Combos are priced at $20.99, with a dollar upcharge for the plant-based option.

Hollywood Dim Sum by Chef Tony
Photograph: Courtesy Wonho Frank Lee.Combo A features He’s signature truffle-covered siu mai and squid ink salted egg yolk bun.

Though the San Gabriel Valley and, increasingly, the South Bay offer a wealth of excellent dim sum restaurants, there are relatively few actually good options within the City of L.A. (Not too far from the Chinese Theatre is ixlb Dim Sum Eats, which also has a location in Westwood, as well as the newer Kingdom Dim Sum in Los Feliz.) So for tourists, moviegoers and neighborhood locals, Hollywood Dim Sum is a chance to try out-of-the-ordinary concession fare from a chef whose other eateries, in our humble opinion, are first-rate. Will the quality at Hollywood Dim Sum rival He’s other restaurants? It remains to be seen, but we’re excited nonetheless.

Hollywood Dim Sum is located within the TCL Chinese Theatre. Initial hours of operation will be daily from 11am to 8pm beginning Saturday, March 23. 

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