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Jan 10, 2008 01:33 PM

Dumpling Inn SD: What's your favorite dish?

Was planning on going to Dumpling Inn on Friday - and wanted to try some new dishes. I've had the steamed pork buns, the honey shrimp special, the salt/pepper fish special, and one of the chowmein dishes - all have been excellent. What other recommendations do you have?

Thanks so much!

- S

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  1. Dumpling Inn is on my regular rotation... so it's nice to see a thread on it! Try these:

    Spicy garlic eggplant- made with ground pork and if you can handle heat, you'd like this one.
    Pork and pickled cabbage noodle soup
    Cashew diced chicken
    Beef with scallions (I think that's what the dish is called on the menu)
    Potstickers- if you try nothing else, get these... I think they're one of DI's best dishes. They tend to use a slightly thicker skin for their dumplings and a thicker skin works really well when pan-fried.
    Beef shank noodle soup- you'll find a better bowl in Los Angeles, but DI's isn't bad at all.

    Look in the refrigerated case and see if there are saran-wrapped bowl of what looks like a hunk of meat. I believe it's pig's leg... I had it once and it's served with a delicious sauce. The meat's super-tender, falling off the bone, and is served with crisp bok choy.

    1 Reply
    1. re: geekyfoodie

      Definite second for the garlic eggplant and beef shank soup, those are both amazing.
      Egg drop soup there is also quite nice.

    2. Even though, as noted above, the wrappers for the Jiaozi are a bit too thick, I enjoy the shrimp and chive dumplings. I also enjoy the jellyfish salad.

      I thought the Niu Rou Mien(beef noodle soup) was really watery, and the meat flavorless. But perhaps the 2 times I had it at Dumpling Inn were on "bad days".

      9 Replies
      1. re: KirkK

        Their beef noodle soup has never rocked my world, but without a lot of competition here (if you know of a good place, don't hide it from us, Kirk! :)), it's one of the better bowls. I thought it definitely needed more "oomph" in flavor, but it was always "decent" to "pretty good" for me. Too bad that you didn't have good bowls... I do think the pork and pickled cabbage soup is better than the beef noodle soup, so hopefully the OP has the opportunity to sample all.

        This is OT, but if you haven't tried the same dish at Chang's Garden in Arcadia (LA area), it's worth a trip up there. One of the best beef noodle soups I've ever had.

        1. re: geekyfoodie

          The Niu Rou Mien at Shanghai City is IMHO much better, and cheaper....especially if you go during Sat-Sun morning-early afternoon for the weekend Chinese Breakfast. The broth is richer and deeper in flavor, noodles have a nice "pull" to it - we initially thought they were handmade, but they were not. Beef can be +/-, but is pretty good.

          Chin's Niu Rou Mien that they make on the weekend is not very good either, but the broth is better than Dumpling Inn's, their noodles are terrible though. There are some nice items on the breakfast menu.

          Dai Ho in Temple City had good NRM, but the Owner is a real jerk.
          Mei Long Village was good as well.

          1. re: KirkK

            Ah, I remember reading about Chin's in your blog. I can't stand terrible noodles... a perfectly good broth can be ruined by mushy or hard noodles. I haven't had a chance to go to Shanghai City, but looks like I'll have to pay them a visit soon. They've been popping up on my radar often, but BF is a creature of habit and likes his Dumpling Inn, so we haven't stopped by.

            1. re: geekyfoodie

              I understand completely.....I have to force myself to keep trying new places.

              1. re: KirkK

                Do you know if Shanghai City bears any relationship to New Shanghai? I remember looking at their menu and thinking it sounded very similar. A lot of the same items were on both menus.

                1. re: Josh

                  I suspect not. New Shanghai was actually a small chain with branches in Irvine and Las Vegas, but I think both of them may have closed. Similarity could merely reflect that both serve Shanghai style cuisine, which is quite distinctive from the predominant Cantonese fare we're used to seeing.

            2. re: KirkK

              Champion Gourmet Products in Las Vegas has very good NRM. Full flavored broth with big chunks of beef and tendon. Noodles also had a good "pull" to them. They also add a small lump of pickled vegetables to the bowl.

              Dumpling Inn's NRM is ok but I think the broth is on the watery side. Their stir fried ong choy is very good, as are any of their stir fried seasonal choy.

              1. re: KirkK

                I searched for threads on Shanghai City and didn't find any, so I'll start a new one. Figure it's best to not take this thread too far OT.


            3. re: KirkK

              Ah. Their niu rou mien used to be so much better a couple of years ago. That goes for most of the dishes on their menu as well.

            4. I like the Xiao Long Bao (soup dumplings) at DI a lot. Beef with scallions and the spicy fish fillet special are also very good.

              1. I love the pork pan fried noodles!

                1 Reply
                1. re: surfer1966

                  Pork and Chive dumplings, pot stickers, and scallion beef

                2. Thank you all for your responses!! This is very helpful. Now I just have the impossible task of picking which recommended dish to try.. :)

                  1 Reply
                  1. re: shicali

                    All the more reason for repeat visits! What I love most about Dumpling Inn is that they tend to be fairly consistent. I've never experienced a dish that's terrific one visit and absolutely terrible the next, which can be an issue when dumplings are a specialty of the house.