Jeem Asian Restaurant
14850 NE 24th St.
Redmond WA 98052
Former Wild Ginger Chef On His Own
By: Steve G
Buried within the heart of an ordinary strip mall, Jeem is another good location for authentic Chinese food and Dim Sum. In case you are wondering why the restaurant is called "Jeem", Jeem Lock is the name of the owner, who used to be a former chef at a restaurant that some people might be familiar with in downtown Seattle: Wild Ginger. From the outside, Jeem Asian Restaurant comes off as one of those sketchy places serving mediocre food with poor service. Once you step into Jeem, that impression is soon gone and you wonder if perhaps you've just warped through a portal into another restaurant located in Seattle's Chinatown. It is a surprising and refreshing option for dim sum and satay in the Redmond area.
Jeem offers an impressive array of food that includes Chinese, Thai and Vietnamese. One of the big items of note is the satay bar, which offers skewers at $3 per serving. Many of the items at Jeem are around the $10-$11 per plate range while the average dinner usually rounds out at about $20+ for two. A number of people have suggested that the best time to go is on weekday afternoon when they have fresh dim sum. Luckily for us, we happened to be eating there at that exact time and decided to try out their dim sum.
Jeem was decorated with a spattering of bamboo trees near the front of the main room while the spacious high ceilings give the illusion of much grander space. Different types of tables are available ranging from smaller, four person tables to larger twelve person tables meant for bigger parties. It's easy to see that Jeem can be a great place for a large party as well as a small group just looking for some dim sum.
We had about three tray carts in constant rotation while we were there. Each of the carts carried specific items: pastries/dry dishes, deserts/appetizers, and steam entrees. The dishes that we ordered were Hum Bow (BBQ Pork Buns), Bean curd with Beef, Shau Mai (Pork Dumpings), Fun Gor (Shrimp Ball), Taro, and finally Fried Shrimp and Egg Tarts for dessert. Most of these items are the mainstays for dim sum and the quality and taste were up to par except for the Fun Gor. The outer starch skin tasted as if it was pre-made rather than homemade on the spot. It had a thicker consistency and tasted as if something just wasn't right. Lastly, the taro tasted more fried than flaky, which was a small disappointment, but nothing that truly derailed the experience.
The cost of all the dishes came out to around $26, which is roughly around $3 per plate. At most dim sum restaurants, the cost per plate is typically around $2-$2.50. Although the prices are slightly high, the differences aren't enough to break the bank and shouldn't act as a deterrent to what will likely be a pleasant and enjoyable meal.