Sake
KOD_moneyshot

Nestled deep in the OG fabric of San Francisco, Kingdom of Dumpling is the quintessential down to earth dumpling spot. I originally discovered this place a few years ago after a visit to my dentist, whose office is on Noriega Street in the Sunset district. After a routine cleaning, I stuck around to explore the neighborhood and stumbled into an unassuming storefront.

KOD_outside

Inside there was only two small freezers and a back kitchen with a window so you could peak in. Behind that glass was a small workspace space for dumpling preparation -- I had just stumbled upon a modern-day freakin' dumpling factory!

KOD_place

I hid my excitement and quietly bought three bags of these doughy delights. The man rang me up and handed me my change with a business card of their restaurant, Kingdom of Dumpling, located on Taraval Street; what can I say, I wear my heart on my sleeve.

Flash forward to the present and I'm back where it all began, the Kingdom. I snag a table with my homie Carlo, and we begin to survey the menu.

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A few familiar items and a few foreign, this epic combination usually makes me giddy, so we decide to get a lil of this and a lil of that and take a deep breath, because it's about to be ON.

KOD_dishes

The sous chef at my restaurant gig told me that the dumplings here are Beijing-style, which is a boiled thick, doughy dumpling. When twelve of these dumplings come per order, you have to ask yourself a sobering question: how far are you willing to go?

KOD_dumplings

We started with the pork and shrimp dumplings with chinese greens, and went onto a second round of pork and napa cabbage dumplings (those were AMAZING).

To balance our meal, we ordered the bean-noodle with cilantro and crispy lotus root. The noodle dish was pretty much tofu spaghetti with a Cilantro garnish, not bad, but not flavor-town. It needed to be sauced more and I had no idea why Cilantro was in the name of the dish. I'm DYING to know what 'bean-noodle' with NO cilantro tastes like, next time. And the lotus root salad was nice.

KOD_foods

I've been on a lotus root kick since Kristyn's farm party and I'm still too intimidated to prepare it myself -- I'm sure it's a no brainer kinda thing, but ignorance is bliss. Each bite provided a nice crunch to counter the soft textures of the dumplings.

Then there was you:

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The sesame sandwich is a big reason Kingdom of Dumpling stands apart from the rest. It's a thin, yet doughy sesame cake ripped open and filled with marinated beef, green onion, and a lil sweet sauce, like a teriyaki.

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Hell yes! No words, y'all, no words -- just delicious.

Streets like Noriega and Taraval are not destinations for the tour-bus crowd. But with dumplings this good, I definitely go out of my way to make a visit.

KOD_KOD

KINGDOM OF DUMPLING
1713 Taraval Street
San Francisco, CA 94116

*All photographs taken by Melissa D. Gordon
Column: Snack Break
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4 comments

  • Just one question: is there at least one vegetarian choice (among dumplings)?

    PaMar on

  • Wow, these photos are great! I will have to go to this place soon. Sesame sandwich?! What a treasure!

    Yoko on

  • Boom! sounds new Where do i find kingdom of dumpling? :d just kidding. im craving now you awake my appetite :D very interesting post.Thanks for this sharing post. its a fact to my new wish list. im actually a traveler that ALWAYS attracted in food.. :D anyway You got my attention. seriously its look delicious I love it , and i also a food explorer. that’s why another reason why i go travel :) . i’ll keep in touch just keep it great..

    Aijika on

  • @PaMar Yes! Actually some of the most delicious looking items coming out of the kitchen are vegetarian. There was one Veg. Dumpling that all the grandma’s were ordering – it was huge and looked more like a delicious doughy pocket filled with mushrooms and green veggies. Kingdom of Dumpling has a lot of unique dishes that I haven’t seen on other menu’s; you should definitely try it out!

    melissa on

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