Penn’s campus has a new dim sum spot: Dim Sum House by Jane G’s at 3939 Chestnut Street.
Jackson Fu, a 2005 Drexel graduate, opened the eatery with his mother, Jane Guo. It's the latest face of his family’s influence on the Philadelphia food scene. Fu’s wife, Sally Song, owns the popular Chinatown destination for Penn students, Dim Sum Garden. Guo, the new restaurant's namesake, also owns Jane G’s on 19th and Chestnut streets, a Chinese restaurant that serves authentic Sichuan cuisine.
Fu has been involved in the restaurant industry since he was “a kid doing homework on one of the back tables and my parents were in the kitchen.” Although his parents wanted him to pursue a different profession, Fu returned to the family trade.
“It came naturally," he said at the restaurant's grand opening party. "They wanted me to do the 'nine-to five,' but it just wasn’t me. I really have a passion for this industry."
Dim Sum House by Jane G's diverges from the family's past ventures and offers a novel experience.
“We incorporated both Shanghai and Cantonese dim sum, which, to my understanding, hasn’t been done before, quite like us,” Fu said.
This fusion of different styles required the restaurant to hire three different executive chefs to specialize in the different parts of the menu. While some of the more exotic meat cuts are not yet on the menu, dim sum lovers can expect to find staples like chicken feet and beef tripe.
The restaurant is styled like a more upscale version of the Chinatown restaurant, with a full bar with ten signature cocktails, private dining rooms and a pool table. The interior is illuminated with Edison bulbs and decorated with Chinese art.
“I went to Drexel and I’m very familiar with the University City area and I’ve always felt like coming here. This was an underrated destination for food,” Fu said. “Now it’s been catching much, much more attention.”
The food scene in University City has seen a transformation in the past few years with food spots aimed at students and professionals springing up — places like Han Dynasty, neighboring Distrito and Bobby’s Burger Palace. Five new restaurants will also be opening on the ground floor of Hamilton Court, and Beiler’s Bakery is slated to open on 39th Street in Chestnut Hall.
All comments eligible for publication in Daily Pennsylvanian, Inc. publications.