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a tale of two dumplings

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on the way back from a client meeting yesterday, didn't realize how close flushing chinatown is to the LIE. Stopped at nan xiang and white bear.

I've been to nan xiang 3-4 times, as usual, the dumplings were full of delicious broth and I love the delicate skin. As an aside, I was to taiwan cafe in boston this week, reputed to have the best in boston, and there was really no comparison.

First time to white bear, ordered the wantons in "spicy" oil, while I liked the dumplings, there was absolutely no heat and I found the whole dish a little bland. yes, a great bargain, but I've had better versions...and you do have to close your eyes while eating, I don't mind dumps (my wife claims I've created my own rating determined by the ratio of food to decor score) but to my eyes, this place was dirty.

a few steps to ten-ren for some bubble tea, then to tai pan for all manner of pastry for my family and I was back to my car just before the one hour parking limit.

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  1. It's strange, but the first time I had those wontons at White Bear I found them bland. Then I bought some frozen and eating them plain and also with my own chili oil I marveled at how delicious and flavorful, but clean-tasting they are, and those lovely skins. Then I had them at the restaurant again, and bland once again, though hotter than the first time.

    1. The White Bear wontons aren't supposed to be Sichuan style. They are from a different region.

      2 Replies
      1. re: kathryn

        Oh yeah, they're very different from the Sichuan style. Speaking of, where can I get good Sichuan ones? I was disappointed with Chengdu Heaven's wontons.

        1. re: kathryn

          what ever region they're from, they use the words "wontons in spicy oil" on their menu. It's reasonable to expect some heat and there was none.

        2. White Bear is not Sichuan. They do sell a decent dan dan mian though. The wontons there are legendary

          1. Taiwan Cafe in Boston doesn't have very good soup dumplings. It's Dumpling Cafe. And I do think they're better than what I've had here.

            1 Reply
            1. re: saria

              thanks, next time I'll try dumpling cafe.

            2. I was very underwhelmed by White Bear's wontons, too. Way to bland for my tastes, but I'm probably just weird (e.g. thinner skins on soup dumplings are not a virtue to me).