Where Do I Find Northern Chinese Dumplings? [Happy Chinese New Year!]


Northern Chinese dumplings, thick-skinned and cheap

Samantha G. asks: Hey! I love northern Chinese food. I grew up with a wonderful northern/Cantonese dim-sum-style restaurant in Rockville, Maryland. I was wondering if there is anything similar in NYC? Thanks!

Dear Samantha: While NYC has plenty of Cantonese dim sum palaces, I don’t know of any that offer an exclusively northern take on what is basically a southern phenomenon.

That said, we had an influx of northern Chinese dumpling places beginning about a decade ago, usually located on the fringes of the city’s five Chinatowns. These are generally stall-size and offer none of the creature comforts (beer, big family tables, dragons with blinking eyes, rolling carts) that your request seems to imply. Nevertheless, the hearty, thick-skinned dumplings (fried or steamed), wheat-based flatbreads, and other humble northern delicacies are perfectly turned out, and cheap in the extreme.

Some of our favorite dollar-dumpling stalls include:

Inexpensive Delicacies Company
99 Allen Street

China North Dumpling
15 Essex Street

Prosperity Dumpling
46 Eldridge Street

Nam Zhaou Hand Made Noodle and Dumpling Place
144 East Broadway

C & L Dumpling House
77 Chrystie Street

Vanessa’s Dumpling House
118A Eldridge Street

Vanessa’s, one of the original Eldridge Street stalls, now has a hipsterized Williamsburg branch, where beer is available, as is more traditional restaurant seating:

Vanessa’s Dumplings
310 Bedford Avenue
Williamsburg, Brooklyn

Also in Brooklyn:

205 Sackett Street
Carroll Gardens, Brooklyn

Kai Feng Fu Dumpling House
4801 Eighth Avenue
Sunset Park, Brooklyn

Of course, the city also has a plethora of full-service Cantonese dim sum palaces, of which we recommend:

Royal Seafood
103 Mott Street

East Ocean Palace
113-09 Queens Boulevard
Forest Hills, Queens

East Harbor
Sunset Park, Brooklyn

Next time I’m in Rockville, Maryland, I’m looking for the place you mention!

Happy Chinese New Year!

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