HOME > Chowhound > Manhattan >


Soup dumplings

Ok second question about upcoming first trip to NYC in August.

From what Ive been reading soup dumplings are a must try. Im near Chicago so they must have them somewhere but in any case---

have penciled in Joe's Shanghai but--there must be other places that have equally as good ones? And if I;m reading a menu that says dumplings, are those soup dumplings, or are they more like pot stickers or gyoza?

  1. Click to Upload a photo (10 MB limit)
  1. Check the link below, there are a few places that are equally good as Joe's Shanghai


    1. Stanton Social has some delicious French Onion Soup Dumplings

      7 Replies
      1. re: jza1218

        I think you are confused. Soup dumplings are a shanghai thing, pork or pork and crab dumplings that have hot broth in them...

        1. re: prunefeet

          Oh, I know what they are. I'm Chinese and have them at home all the time.

          Just thought that Stanton Social's variation on it was worth trying as well.

          1. re: jza1218

            Oh really? So they are really soup dumplings?? That sounds really interesting. Very jealous that you have soup dumplings at hoem all the time!!! Lucky!!

            1. re: jza1218

              Where do you get the soup dumplings? If you get them in the market, what's the brand name, etc? My husband loves soup dumplings! It's a little harder for us to get them because we live in the suburbs.

                1. re: jza1218

                  Wow, you are lucky! Are they hard to make? I imagine that they must be very time-consuming. I tried once w/a recipe that called for putting cubes of cold aspic in the dumpling to make the soup. They kept melting and making a mess!

                  1. re: chowmeow

                    No clue. I don't bother her when she's making them. She HATES that :p

                    I just assume that it all comes natural after making it for a while

        2. I had soup dumplings for the very 1st time recently at New Green Bo. They were awesome & I can't wait to go back. I have never tried Joe's Shanghai but may go there next!

          3 Replies
          1. re: julesj66

            I personally prefer Joe's Shanghai to New Green Bo. Joe's soup dumpllings have thinner skins and less "doughy" texture, and the juice tastes more fresh. The thicker skin of New Green Bo's soup dumplings, particularly at the top (where the skin folded together), is not to my liking.

            That said, there are plenty of supporters for New Green Bo in the Manhattan board, so you will see people responding to this and disagree ^_^"

            Unfortunately, Chinese food in NYC is really not too exciting. You get much better Chinese food in West Coast or up north in Toronto. Sad but true.

            1. re: kobetobiko

              You should check out Flushing's chinatown. I think you might find some of it more exciting!

          2. Shanghai Cafe on Mott Street right off of Canal Street in Chinatown have amazing soup dumplings. I definitely recommend giving them a try.

            2 Replies
            1. re: mnairne

              The Shanghainese restaurant on Bayard at the corner of Mulberry has wonderful soup dumplings.

              1. re: mnairne

                i second that... shanghai cafe is great

              2. Just a reminder to the OP. If you do go to Joe's Shanghai, I'd recommend going to the one in Flushing if you're able to. I think it tastes much better than it's other sister locations. It's also cheaper if I'm remembering correctly.

                3 Replies
                1. re: jza1218

                  Thanks but because this will be a short trip (3 1/2 days), I don't think we will get out of Manhattan. Unfortunately I don't even think we will get to see much on the UE or UW Sides...

                  On a Joe's tiny sidenote: any real difference between the Joes Shanghai and Joes Ginger?? They seem near each other and similar??

                  1. re: aviva1

                    I could be wrong, but I think Joe's Ginger simply took the name so that they could attract business from people THINKING that they were affiliated with Joe's Shanghai.

                    1. re: jza1218

                      You are wrong. Same owner for both. Joe's Ginger makes sense because of the crowds at the original location.

                2. HELLO! *wink* Joe's Ginger & Joe's Shanghai is owned by the same folks! This is in NYC's Chinatown aka Manhattan.
                  I've been told the one in Flushing Queens is good - but I prefer the one on Pell St in The City. I think they opened Joes Ginger cos Joe's Shanghai is often PACKED to the gills! Down the street at JG you can also get the soup dumplings (hands down the best!) - again cos they're the same folks so the recipe etc is the same.
                  Service kinda sucks - but the dumplings are awesome!
                  Caveat - the soup inside the dumplings is VERY hot - but don't let them cool off 1st cos they get sticky and hard to handle without breaking the delicate dough-skin.

                  1. Do any restaurants in Chinatown serve soup dumplings as an offering for cart-style dim sum?

                    3 Replies
                    1. re: savina

                      It wouldn't make sense to serve on a dim sum cart as part of the allure is that the soup is boiling inside the dumpling and the only way to get it is have them freshly steamed.

                      1. re: aimeezing1

                        I first heard of soup dumplings from a friend who had them as part of a dim sum meal in Hong Kong. She's coming to town this weekend, and I thought she might want to replicate that experience. Maybe they do it differently there.

                        1. re: savina

                          Hi savina, not to sound too negative, but the soup dumplings in Hong Kong are FARRRR superior to the ones here. In fact I would consider soup dumplings in Hong Kong probably the best in Asia (even better than the ones in Shanghai IMO). Therefore I would not recommend bringing your friend from Hong Kong to try out the soup dumplings. Joe's shanghai does do it similar to the ones Hong Kong, it is just not as good. I think she may feel disappointed.

                    2. Place on 9th ave and 24th street (Grand Sichuan's the name I believe) has excellent dumplings and food as a whole. May not rank right at the top of the list, and it's not shanghai-nese... but def one of the best options outside of c-town.

                      6 Replies
                      1. re: thievery

                        I've never had soup dumplings and all this talk has gotten me very interested!

                        Now for the stupid question...do the dumplings come with a bowl of soup or are they ordered à la carte (with soup inside the dumplings)?



                        1. re: TipsyMcStagger

                          They are a shanghai specialty - steamed dumplings filled with boiling soup and, at Joe's Shanghai, either pork or a mix of pork and crabmeat (don't actually know anyone who eats the crabmeat version). They come to the table in a steaming basket - and are totally addictive. I went recently with 10 people and we ordered 10 orders (80 dumplings) and had to get some more.

                          1. re: aimeezing1

                            Thanks for the info! Funny thing is, I'm in Shanghai quite often and have not seen soup dumplings. Obviously, I'm not looking in the right places!

                            I'll go over the the Asia board and see if I can get some recommendations on where to go near the PVG Hilton.



                              1. re: aimeezing1

                                I'm with you, aimeezing1. To me, the crab is subtraction by addition. Plain pork all the way.

                              2. re: TipsyMcStagger

                                Hi TIpsyMcStagger,

                                You can visit Joe's Shanghai website as they have a good description and pictures of what soup dumplings are:


                            1. I just ate at Joe's Shanghai at 56th street tonight. After an unfortunate incident at Grand Schizuan in Hell's Kitchen, I have not been able to return. I have been missing their spicey fresh chicken dishes, the green parrot side spinach, and of course, their soup dumplings! IMO, the soup dumplings at Joe's were excellent...bigger in size than GS and the pork filling was more solid....GS's filling sometimes is too mushy. The JS downside on 56th street are the very high prices and subpar quality on everything. On a budget, we just ordered a "spicy" chicken entree. Not at all spicy and overcooked chicken. Next time, we'll order 2 soup dumplings!

                              1. The real question is: where can I find legit, Taiwanese style Xiao Long Bao?

                                I had such delicous xaio long bao in taiwan. Man Joe's shanghai is a joke compared to this. The meat should be more like an emulsion in the "soup". And to call it a dumpling is crazy!

                                Where is this good stuff in manhattan?! It must be somewhere!

                                6 Replies
                                1. re: fosh

                                  OP here, thanks for all the replies so far. One other question about Joe's===how is the rest of the food? One would think you'd order other stuff in addition to the soup dumplings...???

                                  1. re: aviva1

                                    Actually, oddly enough, one often doesn't. Often, it's a great thing just to go for a couple of steamer baskets of soup buns and a couple of bottles of Chinese beer... I have had some of their other things, but they have never been as memorably delicious as the food I love best at Grand Sichuan (i think they put something addictive in the au zhou chicken...). Try walking around to see what other diners eat. That sometimes produces good results.

                                    1. re: linengirl

                                      Second linengirl - Joe's is really only good for the soup dumplings...if you're looking for more variety/a bigger meal, though, I'd try New Green Bo. I prefer their soup dumplings, and they have a fairly reliable menu too.

                                    2. re: aviva1

                                      Oh yeah, I think Joe's other dishes are very good. I love their "kung pao chicken" and "sauteed dried string beans" if you are a noodle person, their Shanghai noodles are very good too. One order of dumplings can be considered an appetizer for 2 or 3.

                                      I normally go with my friend and we share an order of dumplings then get 2 other dishes...we leave with a little doggie bag. I agree w/ an above poster that the Flushing branch is tastier but the Pell one is still good, imo.


                                      1. re: aviva1

                                        I recently had the Crispy Yellow Fish Fingers with Dry Seaweed, a side order of sauteed baby bok choy and another of sauteed pea shoots to share with another person (as well as soup dumplings!) and thought it was very tasty. The fish was very fresh and well prepared...and the portion enormous.

                                      2. re: fosh

                                        Oh man ... I'm disappointed no one has responded to you about Taiwanese-style soup dumplings yet, fosh. I don't know that they're necessarily a different style than the Shanghai-style (in fact, I have no idea), but I went to high school in Taipei and there was a great place next to our apartment that I used to frequent ... man, oh man, do I miss that place. Would love to find some that replicated that taste. I seem to remember the skin being more delicate and the broth less aggressively flavored.

                                      3. For something a bit unusual - You should try out Annisa (In the W Vill) where they have fois gras stuffed soup dumplings. It's pricier and not as stuffed with broth as the Joe Shanghai variety, but they are quite tasty. Then again, fois gras on a door knob would be tasty as well.

                                        1. The only 2 words you need to know: STANTON SOCIAL