Why all caps you ask? Because that's how great the Dumpling Inn is. We went there last Friday. We both knew we wanted to go there. It was a rainy day. Perfect weather for the place. I was congested, so I wanted hot soup.
I've written about this place before, but here's the recap. It's on Convoy Street in San Diego. What, you've never heard of Convoy Street? It is only maybe the most exciting street in San Diego as far as food is concerned. It's chock full of all kinds of Asian restaurants, and other stuff too - from Wienerschnitzel to some pancake house. What, you've never heard of San Diego? Pick up a geography book, then.
Okay, THE DUMPLING INN. It's this teeny restaurant in the corner of a shopping center on the corner of Daggett Street and Convoy. Convienently enough, right down the street from our practice space for our band, perfect blue. THE DUMPLING INN has about 10 tables,and one large round table seems to be mostly for family meals for the staff. They are always sitting there eating big plates of yummy looking food when we go. So we got the pork and pickled cabbage soup. We got it the first time we went, and I had been dreaming about it ever since. Then we got the shrimp and chive boiled dumplings and the pan seared pork dumplings.
So the soup - it is just soup perfection. Good broth. Nice and flavorful. The pork, not dried out, good flavor. The pickled cabbage. It is like no other pickled cabbage I've had. It doesn't taste like pickled cabbage, it's - meatier, in a good way. (But c'mon, can anything be meatier in bad way besides a vegan dish?) This time they put udonlike wheat noodles in the soup. That was a very nice addition. This soup makes me want to cry just thinking about it. We got a huge bowl, and we pretty much finished all of it.
the DUMPLINGS. What can I say? They were great. End of blog.
Okay, just kidding. The shrimp and chive dumplings. They just come in a soup bowl, and there's about 10 or 12 of them for $7. The shrimp is all pureed,and it's flavorful, like it's boiled in broth. Some places just have dumplings that taste like they blended shrimp and folded it in the dough, or balled it up, or whatever, and cooked it - no seasoning, no spice, nothing. Just shrimp. These were the complete opposite. Flavor coming out the wazoo (is that how you spell wazoo? or is it wahzoo?).
The pot stickers. OMG These are amazing. I wish I had a picture of them. They come out on an elongated rectangular plate like for sushi. And they are sitting with these flat brown faces staring at you, all stuck together like pretty siamese octoplets. Doesn't sound pretty, well to each his own. (That reminds me, if you want to see a sick disturbingly compelling movie, watch this Japanese flick called Ab-Normal Beauty. If you have digital cable, it's playing on the freezone on demand sundance channel) Anyway. These are so perfectly browned and crisp on top, and the rest is nicely steamed. Then you reach for one with chopsticks and can't wait to bite into it. But you must. It was piping hot. My first bite seared my mouth with all the escaping steam. I waited a few minutes, ate soup and shrimp dumpling. I tried again, but it was still hot, and there was even a hole in it (insert dirty comment here). Finally,when I got to take a temperate bite, it was dumpling zen. We gobbled all that shit up in probably under 15 minutes. I have to go, all this writing about THE DUMPLING INN is giving me a female hard on!