Vanessa: Situated back from the bustle of military road in Cremorne, sits the home of ‘Chinaman Dumpling’. Making its foray into this north side dining district five months ago, this fairly new eatery serves up some classic Chinese dishes. The restaurant itself has a real warmth about the design, with intricate wooden bird cages hanging from the ceilings and red tones throughout. The long, open style kitchen allows patrons to see head chef Alex Lee (formerly of Mr Wong’s) and the team hard at work. Team FFS were invited to check out Chinaman Dumpling this past Friday evening and it was a perfect end to a busy week had by all.
We were introduced to the very charismatic business owner, Kenny Lee, whose other successful ventures include Cha Cha Dumpling Bar and Makanai Ramen Restaurant. Thankfully Kenny had taken the tough task of ordering out of our hands as we were brought some of the crowd pleasing dishes. The restaurant is BYO, so we had grabbed ourselves a bottle of plonk from the cellar across the road and settled in for the experience.
The clue is in the title of what some of their feature offerings might be..yep you guessed it! We were brought two different types of steamed dumplings one with ‘Pork and Chive’ ($13/8pcs) , (which we also later had in the pan-fried variety) as well as the ‘Shumai stuffed with pork and prawn’ ($9/4pcs). They were delicious and definitely did the job of easing the stomach rumbles ahead of the main dishes.
Next up was the Peking duck pancake ($16/4 pcs or $30/8pcs). 4 pieces of succulent duck were served up with the usual accompaniments of pancake, hoisin sauce and cucumbers. The duck was cooked perfectly and our only gripe was that the portion was on the small side for the three of us.as we each could have done with one more pancake.
We were brought out a few dishes from the main menu with one particular stand out being the Salt & pepper prawns ($19). This dish consisted of marinated tiger prawns that had the perfect combination of seasoning and crunch served up with wasabi mayo. This was a cracker of a dish and one that would absolutely be on my list to try again!
We also tried the Black Pepper Wagyu ($26) consisting of stir fried beef with cabbage, onion, pepper and char-siu. Overall it was a very flavorsome dish but we weren’t overly wowed with the taste of the wagyu, it didn’t really make any waves with us maybe due to the heaviness of the sauce
The Duck Fried Noodle ($14) considered to be a side, was very decent portion and definitely passable as a main meal. The small pieces of diced duck were juicy and mixed well with the stir fried noodles, leek and bean sprouts.
We were very keen to try the crispy pork belly with bok choy, but unfortunately this was so popular that it had sold out! Sadly, an unfortunate mechanical fault with the fridge meant we also missed out on fried ice-cream that night..but again another reason to return! We may or may not have sought ice-cream elsewhere later that evening…
There are some definite wins on the menu that I would return for and if you are north side I would recommend a visit when in the mood for some well-priced Chinese food in a relaxed setting.
Photos by Alex
*ForFoodsSake were invited to dine by the team at Chinaman Dumpling. All opinions however are our own.