Fat Dumpling, a funky dim-lit Oriental den in Brunswick St is the Valley's go-to for authentic handmade dumplings and a smattering of Asian delicacies.
Inside the cosy space the walls are old exposed brick, adorned with Asian characters and art and diners sit hunched over dark wood tables, hoeing into bamboo baskets of juicy steamed dumplings and Asian beer or Chinese tea.
Dumplings come poached, steamed or pan fried, with flavours including pork and Chinese cabbage, chicken and asparagus, vegetarian or prawn, pork and chives (as well as poached or steamed fish).
In addition there’s the Shanghai special pork xiao long bao (steamed dumpling with hot broth) and shallot pancakes.
Small dishes to accompany include Chinese broccoli salad, pork and sprout bean spring rolls, spiced chicken skewers and braised beef sliced, while non-dumpling mains include the highly recommended pork belly braised in sweet soy and salt and pepper squid or prawns.
Save room for the house dessert of peach spring rolls and vanilla ice-cream – a taste sensation that is a fave of co-owner David.
Being licenced, diners can enjoy a Tsingtao or Sapporo beer – the perfect accompaniment to dumplings, White Rabbit ale or small selection of boutique wines (by the glass or bottle), otherwise there’s traditional Chinese tea served in ornate pottery teapots, ice tea or soft drinks.
Need to know: *While Fat Dumpling is licensed, customers can BYO for a corkage charge.
368 Brunswick St