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Chinatown Dumpling Tour

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I'm trying to put together a Chinatown dumpling tour, walk the area and see what dumplings are the best. Does anyone have suggestions of what dumpling joints I should visit from that area?


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  1. I think the Dumplings at Prosperity dumpling on Eldridge Street are done pretty well. Cripsy and not soggy was my last experience.

    15 Replies
    1. re: designerboy01

      Unfortunately they seem to be full of gristle as was the sesame pancake with beef. The flavor was good though.

      I'd rather pay a little more for quality meat.

      1. re: CornflakeGirl

        I agree that the sesame pancake with beef is not as good as tasty dumpling. But I found their dumplings pretty good for a dumpling house. The way it is supppose to be made is on order and with more meat which you can get at some restaurants in Flushing. But for a cheap dumpling house I think they are pretty good in that price range of restaurants.

        1. re: designerboy01

          Hmmm... I'd take Prosperity's over Tasty's any day. Same goes for the sesame pancake.


          NYCnosh* http://nycnosh.com

          1. re: Nosher

            The last two times I went they re-heated the sesame pancake and it didn't have that crisp. Its best to catch it right after he cooks it. But at tasty dumpling, I guess its because of the volume of people that go there that you have better chances of getting bread fresh and crispy.

            1. re: designerboy01

              We had a fresh sesame pancake at Prosperity and it was very tasty. It was the meat that turned me off. If I went back I'd skip the meat. My BF also found some gristle in his dumplings which we both found sort of odd.

              I haven't been to Tasty but I think I'm going to have to try it.

              1. re: CornflakeGirl

                The beef is like kind of a roast beef. Maybe you are not use to seeing the meat like that.

                1. re: designerboy01

                  Sorry, my BF is a chef and used to be a butcher. He's seen it all. This meat wasn't cooked long enough or slow enough to soften the gristle. In the sesame pancake you could see the gristle stripes throughout the pieces of beef. The dumplings had chewy bits throughout.

            2. re: Nosher

              definitely. i've never had a problem with anything being gristly at prosperity.

              1. re: wleatherette

                I agree with Nosher and wleatherette: Prosperity Dumpling is tops. Personally I think their sesame "pancake" is even better. I have to wonder if they're putting crack in it or something. SO good! To me, the quality of the meat seems to vary. Once I got the dumplings and the meat was AMAZINGLY good. Other times it's just average, and tastes about the same as the other dumpling places. I definitely haven't had much gristle in the meat in their dumplings though. Maybe a little tiny bit, but not much, esp. considering the price.

                I'm glad to see that customers are discovering Prosperity Dumpling. The first couple of times I went there (usually in the evening), hardly anybody else was around. But the last two times, it's been much busier. Last night, a yappy guy showed up and picked up two bulging plastic bags that were waiting for him, and other people were there too.

                I wasn't as impressed with my first visit to Super Taste last night, but then I'm not a big soup person, and I tend to prefer rice or bread over noodles for my carbs. I only went because I have a cold. Some of the beef in that soup WAS gristly, but I probably should've just gotten a veggie soup anyway, b/c by then I was bit beef-ed out. Still, some of the pieces of beef were tasty and tender, and the noodles were good at first, though I got tired of them after a while... that's a big bowl of soup for $4. Watching them make noodles was fun, too. While I was eating, a Chinese guy and a white guy finished their food, walked up to the counter and paid their bill of $10, puzzled the girl behind the counter by giving her a tip, and then one of them said to the other, "Heh, the cab ride over here was $13."

                1. re: Ike

                  I went to Super Taste recently, delicious broth and noodle in the in the spicey beef soup, lots of everything, but i wasn't feeling the beef as it was too gristley. Still lots to eat by just eating around the beef

          2. re: CornflakeGirl

            The one time I've been, I loved the sesame pancake with beef and didnt find any gristle.....

            1. re: CornflakeGirl

              the sesame pancake sandwiches are made with brisket, right? or a similar cut?

              1. re: CornflakeGirl

                Dumplings at that price point are made with the cheapest ground pork...i.e. the fattiest part of the pig. Although there should be no gristle (pork really has no gristle, as does beef)it might have slipped in.

                Most of my fellow Chinese would never eat these dumplings..those who do are looking for cheap eats, not quality

                1. re: Buddha Belly

                  You get what you pay for! Trust me at that price point I often wonder what I'm eating. I don't think I really want to know.

                  "There's a reason why it only costs 99¢"—Fast Food Nation

            2. theres the place on mosco street and the store right around the corner on mulberry. whether they are crispy or soggy seems to depend on the amount of people on line. you could also try the two places on the corner of henry and catherine. again it's sort of hit or miss but at $1/5 it can't hurt to try them out.

              6 Replies
              1. re: SomeRandomIdiot

                Skip the Fried Dumpling on Mosco, which I personally think is vile (the Allen St branch is better). I think you're referring to Tasty Dumpling on Mulberry, which I agree is superior. The best I've had is at Dumpling House on Eldridge and Broome, but I still haven't tried Prosperity, which gets good reviews.

                1. re: a_and_w

                  I'll cast my ballot for Tasty Dumpling at 54 Mulberry too. Also the place called Fried Dumpling at 25 Henry, which may or may not be related to the Fried Dumpling on Mosco. Don't forget that with all these places we're talking about ridiculously inexpensive fare, so gourmet quality food should not be expected.

                  1. re: Chandavkl

                    Dumpling House and Tasty Dumpling on Mulberry is run by the same people. I tend to go to Tasty which is less crowded.

                2. re: SomeRandomIdiot

                  is this the place across from the original Hong Kong egg cake stand? with the extreme angle on the street? stopped by for a very late batch, but it was still pretty damn good. I can't say if it was the best tho; my standard are home-made, with the two open ends on the side, expressly designed for the guo-tie . . .

                  1. re: bigjeff

                    Yep, that's the place. I've not been having luck with it recently. I'm consistently getting the batches of the somewhat mushy all stuck together type.

                    1. re: SomeRandomIdiot

                      had some of those extremely mushy ones today. bad.

                3. Do handmade noodles count? They'd be a nice break from dumplings. If so, then try Supertaste or Sheng Wang on Eldridge Street.


                  1 Reply
                  1. re: Brian S

                    I really enjoyed super taste's dumplings too. They're very plump.

                  2. I LOVE the soup noodle dumplings at Joes Shanghai. They are amazing

                    5 Replies
                    1. re: Moz

                      I long ago concluded that those at Yeah were better, with New Green Bo second and Joe's third (at least, of that grouping), but I don't really love them at any of those places. Have you tried xiaolong bao elsewhere?

                      1. re: Moz

                        I second your vote for Joe's, Moz. I was turned on to them by a friend who grew up in Chinatown (her mother still lives nearby).

                        1. re: gido

                          I prefer the dumplings at Joe's, but it's a matter of what the eater prefers. I've had the dumplings at New Yeah Shanghai, and they're distinctly different. Like the dumplings at Din Tai Fung in Beijing, the broth inside is lighter. The broth at Joe's is heavier and really coats the inside of your mouth. But, like any dumpling, you have to eat them hot. If you get soup dumplings that have been sitting around, whether it be at Joes, or Din Tai Fung, they'll pale in comparison to a fresh batch.

                          1. re: Greg

                            What irked me about Yeah's xiao long bao was the thickness of the skin. And way too chewy. I've been to Din Tai Fung in Arcadia, CA (though not Beijing) and I just don't think you can compare the two, though I'm pleased to see someone post who can!

                          2. re: gido

                            I'm with you on Joe's Shanghai dumplings. I've heard other people criticize them, but I've eaten there at least 10 times in the last year and they've always been delicious.

                        2. North Shore Dumpling (I think that's the name) on Essex between Hester and Grand has some very fresh veggie dumplings, worth a try. There's also a place on Eldridge, just below Canal, that's well known for their hand pulled noodles (Super Taste, I believe), but they also have great meat dumplings, very distinct, strong flavor.

                          1. Love the fried dumplings and soup dumplings at New Green Bo

                            1. Tasty Dumpling at 54 Mulberry St. is the king of dumpling houses. You can get 50 frozen for only $7 too! Their dumplings are perfect. I'll have to try Prosperity. Worth a visit, though not as good as Tasty, is Fried Dumpling at 99 Allen Street. Joe's Shanghai on Pell St. has great soup dumplings, but they are no dumpling house.

                              1. Eldridge dumpling is No.1, Fried Dumpling on Allen is no.2, Northern Dumpling on Essex is good and convenient to combine with spicy pork jerky, Malaysian, pickles, economy candy, Gertl's, kossar'sbialys and donut plant all within 5 minute walk. Super Taste's steamed dumplings are amazing and i think you get like 15 for 3 bucks. Haven't tried Prosperity yet-they never seem to be opened as early as Eldridge DH or Super Taste. Soup dumplings at Joe's are a fantastic experience but a different animal.

                                2 Replies
                                1. re: guttergourmet

                                  where do you get the spicy pork jerky?

                                  1. re: jimmyjazz

                                    Ling Kee on Canal and Ludlow-best jerky in Chinatown

                                2. we just did a little fried pork dumpling tour yesterday afternoon. we only hit three spots because we got full. we ate at Dumpling House first, then Tasty Dumpling, then Fried Dumpling, which is the exact order they placed in our rating system. Dumpling houses dumplings were crisp, not too doughy and burst with flavor with the first bite. We topped off the excursion with Mocha bubble tea and stopped at Egg Custard King on our way back uptown, someone mentioned liking the green color of egg custard, but we both thought that the yellow was the best variation, just slightly sweeter and more eggy. The tea they serve there is really good too.

                                  Our next available weekend we are going to do a pancake tour in Chinatown. YUM.

                                  1. OK-just tried Prosperity's fried dumplings-very good-very fresh-good chive to pork ration. Vegetarian sesame pancake also very fresh-equal or better than Eldridge DH up the block.

                                    1. I love Tasty dumpling the best and buy their frozen dumplings to cook at home all the time. One thing I like about their dumplings is that they are not too big or doughy and they have a good meat to skin ratio. They cook up really well at home, too and are such a good deal.

                                      1 Reply
                                      1. re: bolletje

                                        Have you by any chance tried the frozen dumplings at Deluxe Food Market for comparison? Those are my preference. I've eaten plenty at Tasty but it's been a while, and for some reason never thought to buy the frozen ones.

                                      2. Dumpling House on Eldridge is the best.

                                        1. Love Excellent Dumpling House

                                          1. I've walked by Prosperity Dumpling a few times, and the menu looks identical to Dumpling House. That is, it isn't just the same items, but they're in the same order and printed in the same format ... it's the exact same menu.

                                            I'm guessing that means common ownership. Is that the case? Is the product any different? I live closer to Dumpling House, which I've been to many times ... is there any reason to walk a few blocks further and check out Prosperity?

                                            7 Replies
                                            1. re: chetlemon

                                              i don't recall the menus being identical, but it's possible that prosperity's menu has changed since i've been. in any case, i think their dumplings are tastier - more flavorful and succulent, with a thinner skin. i've always found excellent dumpling house to be underwhelming, not to mention insanely crowded.

                                              1. re: wleatherette

                                                This thread got me curious, so I stopped by Prosperity for dinner tonight. To elaborate, there is a menu posted on the outside that looks like a copy of the one Dumpling House, but the one of the inside is definitely different, so it's certainly not a complete clone. (To further complicate matters, the paper takeout menu has different numbering.)

                                                As for the dumplings, they're great. As was mentioned, it did seem like the ratio of chives was quite a bit higher; they're at least as good as the ones at Dumpling House and certainly better than Tasty Dumpling.

                                              2. re: chetlemon

                                                It's a very similar menu (we wrote about the place and took pictures a few months back and commented on this, actually), but the execution is often different than up the street at Dumpling House, and the original dishes they do are pretty fantastic.


                                                NYCnosh* http://nycnosh.com

                                                1. re: Nosher

                                                  Dumplings are definitely better at Prosperity for a dumpling joint.

                                                  1. re: designerboy01

                                                    wow, everyone's crazy about prosperity dumpling. it's surprising to me, bc i've had a very different experience with this place.

                                                    i've been there 3 times, and my experience has always been decidedly mediocre--the dumplings are way too greasy, as if they've been drenched in a pool of oil, while the skin is not crispy enough; it doesn't have that nice brown crisp that you see at other dumpling places. instead, it almost seems as if it's slightly undercooked, what with the barely-there crispness on the bottom and the gooeyness of the rest of the skin. seems like they should've left the dumplings in the pan for a little longer.

                                                    same goes for the sesame pancake--it was not as "well-done" as the other dumpling places in the area. while it wasn't terrible, it certainly didn't match up to, say, dumpling house.

                                                    i didn't even like the boiled dumplings. my favorite thing to get at dumpling house is item #6 ("boiled pork dumplings with chinese vegetables"), so i decided to order the exact same item at prosperity (also #6 on the menu). i was really underwhelmed--the skin was a little thicker and doughier than i would've liked, yet the meat was not as flavorful.

                                                    so i'm really confused. i've never had anything even remotely resembling a good, tasty, crispy dumpling or sesame pancake at prosperity. yet everyone here seems to rave about it. what gives? is it the time of day when i'm showing up? each of my three visits have been between 8:30 and 9:30pm, as i recall. i know that they close at 9:30 (at least on weekdays) bc my first visit was at 9:30pm sharp and they said they were closing, but sold me dumplings anyway. as i was underwhelmed (no surprise since it was a leftover batch sitting in a pool of oil in the pan), i decided i had to go at an earlier time, but still haven't been able to make it down to chinatown earlier than 8:30.

                                                    please tell me what i'm missing. some of you guys who are raving about prosperity are among the more respected posters on this board, so i'm sure what you ate was delicious. i just don't know how my experiences have been so different.

                                                    let me know what are the "optimal" times to go so that i can get the full prosperity experience. thanks

                                                    1. re: lebron

                                                      It might be that going very late in the day is responsible for your experiences, but I am really surprised to hear that you've had such middling dumplings and pancakes there. I'll tell the manager when I go in next, just to hear what he has to say.


                                                      NYCnosh* http://nycnosh.com

                                                      1. re: Nosher

                                                        thanks for the quick reply. yeah, i'm really baffled by the disconnect between my experience and everyone else's. in particular, i was really psyched about this place after reading your post (along with those great pictures) on your blog.

                                                        like i said, you and a bunch of others on this board seem to really know your food, so i don't doubt that you guys had a great experience at prosperity. maybe there's a different chef around closing time? maybe i need to go earlier in the day and/or on weekends? all i know is that the food was so mediocre, it seemed as if it wouldn't be good *even if* it were hot and fresh. that's how unimpressed i was. truly bizarre given what you guys have said. as if i entered the twilight zone or something and the good food disappeared the moment i entered the place, LOL.

                                                        thanks for promising to speak with the manager next time out. hopefully he'll say something that'll help explain all of this.

                                              3. for traditional cantonese style dumplings, nothing beats 69 rice shoppe on bayard just between
                                                mott and elizabeth- yeah its right in the heart of the touristy section of chinatown- but you wont regret eating them, served with oyster sauce (delicious brown sauce) the way they should be. Only other mentionable dish at this rest is the panfried noodles- remember this is a traditional rice shop that my grandparents hung out in - not a fancy shanghai res.

                                                Tell me what you think if you go

                                                2 Replies
                                                1. re: snaxattax

                                                  you're talking about the place with the dollar bills? I never liked their dumplings, both steamed or fried; too big and thick for my taste but I agree, for takeout, I always get either the beef chow fun or panfried noodles with charsiu, both incredibles deals under $5 or $6.

                                                  1. re: bigjeff

                                                    That is not a good place for dumplings. I only go there when I feel like having an old school Chinatown dish and too lazy to read the menu.

                                                2. where is the best place to get soup dumplings that you need to use a straw -- like in China?

                                                  1. what about steamed roast pork dumplings? i'd love to know the best place for them...cooked as well as anyplace that has good ones to put into the freezer.

                                                    1. hey, flushing, under the bridge there's like a stand alone dumplind window, but if you go around the corner to the left of that place (facing it of course), there's a window in a wall on the right side of the street (would it help if i told you there was a bubble tea stand across the street? i thought not) with 5 dumplings for a buck or 2 GIGANTIC steamed buns with pork and cabbage for a buck (i don't speak cantonese or mandarin so i have no idea what the guy was saying to me, but was pretty friendly and a huge amount of tasty dumpling/steamed(and then panfried)bun goodness for a greenback.

                                                      1. Dim Sum Gogo at East Broadway is the best I have tried

                                                        1. I had to mention this. I was at Ling Kee for my spicy pork jerky before going to Northern Dumpling which is mediocre but is the only place that offers plain white vinegar to mix with the soy sauce. Anyway, I noticed a brand new dumpling place right where Division Street meets Canal. Went in to try it but was told they only sell frozen dumplings. Strange as that may be, even stranger was their sign on the brand new awning with the Chinese name which I don't remember next to the word "Dumping" (sic) instead of "Dumpling". Somebody with digital photo/computer skills please post a photo-it's hysterical!

                                                          2 Replies
                                                          1. re: guttergourmet

                                                            oh dear... the chinese and their engrish.

                                                            1. re: emma

                                                              To flip that around, I was recently at Dumpling House and attempted to drag my spotty Mandarin from the depths of my foggy brain ... tried to order 35 dumplings for my two friends and I ... but managed to order $35 worth of dumplings (= 175 dumplings) instead. Luckily, the friendly staff was incredulous for 10 straight minutes until I realized my error and quickly corrected myself. D'oh.

                                                          2. Any new developments in the dumpling wars? I'll be visiting the battlegroiund in a month's time.

                                                            12 Replies
                                                            1. re: Gary Soup

                                                              I thought the pork/crab xlb at New Green Bo were very good but the broth is not nearly as tasty as in China, that's for sure.

                                                              I would like to know the verdict on frozen dumplings..would these be necessarily terrible? (they seem to sell for $13.00 for 50, if I am remembering right, on Grand just east of Mott; more like a stand than an actual store..??)

                                                              1. re: erica

                                                                Hey, erica. We've got to stop meeting like this!

                                                                I'm thinking about the 5 for $1 shuijiao/guotie here. I'll probably post a separate query to help me update my xlb quest in NY. Believe it or not, to date the best orthodox Shanghai-style xlb I've found in the Big Apple so far were at the M Shanghai Bistro in Williamsburg two or three years ago.

                                                                1. re: Gary Soup

                                                                  I know..people are starting to talk!!!

                                                                  But what do you think about frozen? Bad idea? For when the cravings hit those of us who do not live as close as we might like!

                                                                  I think the new query is a good idea.

                                                                  1. re: erica

                                                                    Frozen can work pretty well. If you can get a good version from a restaurant that serves dumplings and makes extra to sell, that's best, as they will be fresher (and likely will have no preservatives). For supermarket brands, the best I have tried are from Wei-Chuan. A Brooklyn company, Prime Foods, makes some pretty good frozen dumplings, too. We can get them all the way out here on the West Coast.

                                                                    1. re: erica

                                                                      You can buy a good variety of frozen dumplings, including soup dumplings, at the meat market on Mulberry Street just south of Canal.

                                                                      1. re: erica

                                                                        i actually now prefer to buy my dumplings frozen from dumpling house, rather than wait 15-20 minutes to eat-in. i boil them at home, not sure what the results would be if you fry them.

                                                                        1. re: emma

                                                                          I haven't tried many places because I already found the one I like, but my favorite frozen are the Shrimp/Chive dumplings from Deluxe Food Market.

                                                                        2. re: erica

                                                                          Dumpling House on Eldridge sells 50 for $8--As you would expect very good, too!

                                                                    2. re: Gary Soup

                                                                      Prosperity Dumpling at 46 Eldridge St has won over some people as the best guo tie (including me). It's also particularly close to the pulled and knife-cut noodles at Super Taste (26 N Eldridge). So you can go to both in the same trip.

                                                                      1. re: spchang

                                                                        An update on Prosperity Dumpling. I went yesterday evening and had one older and one new batch of fried dumplings. They weren't as good as I remember, without a good consistent crust on the bottom. However, the flavor was good and the boiled dumplings were very good. Anybody else notice a drop in quality?

                                                                        1. re: spchang

                                                                          i've always thought they were good, but i think dumpling house is much more consistent though it maybe something like the cart where b/c they have so many people coming you always get it fresh

                                                                    3. 30 years in NYC, I would like to second that Eldridge Street dumpling place (forget the name) (between hester and grand) has one of the better dumplings in chinatown. $1.00 for 5 piece makes eating 10-15 piece for lunch very attractive. While you are there, i would pick up a sesame flat pancake sandwich with 3 pieces of chinese roast beef with carrots/cilantro and sauce for the knockout meal. I like to add, that if you stand on a line that is 15-20 minutes long with ABC (american born chinese) and Caucasians and locals. You will trust me when i say it's quite good.

                                                                      - foodcritik

                                                                      1. New Green Bo or Shanghai Cafe are both good. I like the pork/crab soup dumplings at New Green Bo and the pan fried pork dumplings at Shanghai Cafe. The scallion pancake is really good from Shanghai Cafe also.

                                                                        3 Replies
                                                                        1. re: ChowDiva

                                                                          I agree with shanghai cafe, however i think the one on pell street is still my favorite!

                                                                          1. re: foodcritik

                                                                            Other than late at night, Dumpling House on Eldridge definitely has the best guotie and sesame pancakes I've had downtown. Also, ran into a good post on dumplings in chinatown and elsewhere in manhattan: http://gridskipper.com/travel/new-yor...

                                                                            1. re: theyoungkid

                                                                              Since the original thread I've had a chance to try Prosperity Dumpling and I think their sesame pancakes are as good as Tasty Dumpling.

                                                                        2. I'm very fond of the soup dumplings at New Green Bo on Bayard, or the same dish at Shanghai Cuisine, also on Bayard. And, after Green Bo, you can cross the st. for dessert at the Chinatown Ice Cream Factory. If you're feeling perverse, have the durian ice cream. Smells just like the fruit.

                                                                          6 Replies
                                                                          1. re: Gorilla Bob

                                                                            The place I mentioned a while back that has the frozen dumplings is called something like Su Hou, on Grand and Mott, north side of Grand Street. I walked past today and see that they have a place to sit in the back..and about 2 dozen varieties available frozen....I am sure I am getting the name wrong, though but it did start with an "S".
                                                                            Has anyone had these?

                                                                            1. re: erica

                                                                              Sun Dou. On the North side of Grand St, between Mott and Elizabeth. They seem to use more MSG than the other dumpling sources described here, but have a lot of takeout and frozen options, and have opened another takeout window for prepared food. The steamed buns from the other window are fantastic, with and without fillings - unfilled scallion rolls are a personal favorite. The fried dumplings and meat bao share the same filling, which is weird, by the way.

                                                                              1. re: i8dumplings

                                                                                i'm really surprised that there's not more on SunDou at 214-216 Grand on this thread. their take-out pork and cabbage dumplings for example are, in my book, the best downtown. however, get those they sell at the take-out window, or if you sit inside make clear that you want the take-out variety - if not they'll serve a different version with thicker dough.

                                                                                1. re: ebauchoir

                                                                                  i just tried soudou's dumplings last saturday based on a recommendation from a chowhound on a recent post who had mentioned that their scallion pancakes were worth a try.

                                                                                  well, they were good but i just had to try their dumplings as well. WOW!!! i had done a dumpling tour last winter trying nearly all the places mentioned above. i felt some were better than others but when the filling was better than others the covering wound up being better somewhere else.

                                                                                  anyway, i liked the covering here very much (very tasty and crispy bottom) although the dumplings had a bit more scallions/cabbage i would have liked so i couldn't get a true taste of the meat. however, the filling here was one of the better ones of all i've tasted.

                                                                                  1. re: nativeNYer

                                                                                    Well this is great to hear...I will stop by there next time I am at DiPalo down the block....I have to remember to ask for the take-out type...by the way, would it be reasonable to take some out and re-heat at home? And if so how would one reheat?? Or just forget that idea and get the frozen if I cannot eat them asap...??

                                                                                    1. re: erica

                                                                                      i just nuked them for abut a minute. i usually hate doing that b/c it ruins nearly everything but they really weren't bad. btw, since i only had one left over, i only do it for one. china fun sells really great frozen ones. i throw them in boiling water for 5 minutes and then fry them with sesame oil or veggie oil. tastes great.