Holiday Gift Guide

Preface:
Loisaida Throwback Crawl: Kossar's Bialy
Loisaida Throwback Crawl: Doughnut Plant
Loisaida Throwback Crawl: Pickle Battle

From Guss' Pickles, we walked a few blocks over to Eldridge for one of my favorite spots in the LES- The Dumpling House. They've recently renovated since the last time I was here about a year ago, taking over a neighboring storefront to create a space double its original size. It literally used to be a tiny hole-in-the-wall, called "The Dumpling House" (the "Vanessa's" part must have been tagged on with the renovation), with just a few stools at the counter and a dingy bathroom. There was something charming about that setup, but I was happy to see that business was still booming in their new and improved space.

It was crazy packed when we got there around 1pm- the space was dark and spacious, but the line still snaked around the restaurant. With its new facelift came some sad news: the dumplings which used to be 5 for $1 are now 4 for $1!!!! 4 for $1 is still a spectacular deal though and everyone was excited to get 25 cent dumplings, so I'll stop complaining now.

They have these huge pans that they use for pan frying about 50 dumplings at once. You're pretty screwed if you get to the front of the line and they just ran out of dumplings- it means you have to wait until they cook the next batch. The line is super chaotic and long so you just have to be patient here.

The pork dumplings are piping hot and crispy on the outside.


Christy: I always love dumplings, and I think the ones from here were as good as, if not better, than the ones we had in that Flushing shopping mall basement.

Todd: The dumplings were fine, but nothing special. Not worth the crazy line.

I was happy to see that the sesame pancake sandwiches were still the same quality and price, at $2. The lady still makes the sandwich in the window, taking a large sheet of pancake, cutting it down the middle, and stuffing it with beef, duck or chicken, cucumber and carrots.


Customers eagerly await their sandwich. There's Christy and Troy!


Sesame pancake with beef.


Christy: Matt loved his duck sesame pancake (below)- that was definitely his highlight.


Order of dumplings and pancake sandwich for $3!!!


Payman: Delicious and amazingly priced—the true recession special is here in Chinatown/LES.

Will be back tomorrow for Russ and Daughters. Check out all previous Umamiventures here. Thanks to Christy, Michelle, Jill and Jessie for the pictures. Make sure to join the UM Facebook group to stay updated on all future Umamiventures.