Thanks to Trailing Rachel, I discovered the hometown hit that is Boston’s Gourmet Dumpling House. While Beantown’s Chinatown is relatively small when compared with those in New York or San Francisco, it’s still home to a huge Chinese population with an even larger number of Chinese restaurants to boot. I’m sure I would have had a hard time choosing one to eat at but with her rave reviews, I knew this would be the one to go to.
Rachel had mentioned the Gourmet Dumpling House being a very popular place, one where lines are common, so since our flight to Boston arrived in the morning and Chinatown was only a couple of blocks away from our hotel, we headed there shortly after checking in. And I’m glad we did because even at 11:30 AM the place was basically packed. Now granted, it’s a tiny spot to begin with but still. We passed by numerous restaurants in Chinatown before getting there and none of them looked nearly as filled.
We got half a table-we shared one with a Chinese couple who were both tiny and slim but ordered so much food-it was semi-mind boggling. The Gourmet Dumpling House is not a place to go to if you’re looking for a stress free, quiet meal. It’s hectic times 10. You’ll basically be right on top of your neighbors (or be right up against the people standing who are waiting for a table like I was) and constantly have staff rushing to and from the kitchen. But judging from the almost entirely Chinese diner population, you know it was the real thing.
We split an order of the Pan Fried Pork and Leek Buns (not enough places in Pittsburgh offer the dim-sum style buns). There were four in the order and they were huge. With chop sticks they were incredibly hard to eat (i.e. too big to stuff in one’s mouth in one bite) but when in Rome.
For my entree, I went with the Noodle Soup with Dumplings. The broth was delicious (it had a slight kick to it, extremely aromatic) and the dumplings were dumplings…never can go wrong there.
D opted for the lunch special of Fried Chicken Szechuan Style (all lunch specials come with white rice). He liked it although he thought it would be more like the American style of “fried.” And as it was Szechuan, it was extremely spicy (Szechuan is known for its fiery dishes).
There were some incredibly authentic and a bit intimidating dishes that were also on the menu-sauteed pig’s blood with leeks, bitter melon with salty eggs, and fried pork intestines.
As Pittsburgh doesn’t have a Chinatown, dining at the Gourmet Dumpling House was a truly unique experience, one that my stomach and I thoroughly enjoyed.
Note: Gourmet Dumpling House doesn’t have a stand alone website and I’m finding conflicting info on prices, but for all the food I mentioned above plus a pot of tea, the total was a whopping $22.
Gourmet Dumpling House
52 Beach St | Boston, MA | 02111