New York’s first dim sum restaurant, Nom Wah Tea Parlor, opened its doors in 1920 in Manhattan’s Chinatown neighborhood. The restaurant was owned and operated by the Choy family until 1974, when Wally Tang, a waiter at the restaurant, bought the business from the family. And over the past few decades, the Tang family has rapidly expanded the business — to the point where you’re now likely to find a line out the door any day of the week.
You may think delivery would be a natural next step for a restaurant like Nom Wah, but Wilson Tang (Wally’s nephew, who now manages Nom Wah) was never a fan of the idea. He was worried that delivery treks across Manhattan would affect the quality of his food and service (delicate dishes like siu mai and har gow don’t carry so well).
But then he read about Caviar and it seemed like the perfect solution. The delivery service offers restaurants a means to quickly deliver the best dishes of the city without compromising their quality. “I thought it would be a great opportunity to make some additional revenue and still have the food delivered in a professional manner without me having to staff the delivery,” says Wilson.
Since signing on with Caviar, Nom Wah has been able to generate more than $10,000 in additional sale a month — with very little strain to its employees. Nom Wah’s kitchen staff uses the Caviar app (which Wilson describes as “dummy-proof”) to see orders as they come through. “The thing rings, you answer it, punch your order in, wait for the delivery person to come, and out it goes,” says Wilson.
Caviar and Nom Wah continue to partner on new ventures. The restaurant is part of Caviar’s Fastbite service, which enables Manhattanites to order curated lunch meals delivered in 15 minutes or less for $15 or less.
And thanks to Caviar, foodies got a first taste of the offerings at Nom Wah’s second location in Philadelphia, even before critics tried it at the restaurant’s grand opening.
So nearly 100 years after Nom Wah first opened, Wilson continues to innovate through services like Caviar. And he plans to continue to invest in his family’s business to bring Nom Wah’s signature dishes to more customers across the country for years to come.
All that and dim sum.
*Photo courtesy of An Rong Xu