Top 100 Chinese Restaurants (Overall Excellence) (2012)
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Top 100 local Favorite (2011)
Top 100 Specialty (2010)
Emily F. on:
3/27/2013 9:21:00 AM
Great place. We went on a Wednesday around 7 with a party of four. This was my first time here and we went on a whim. Good thing to know is that when you get there, if there's a wait you sign yourself in on a clipboard by the door (name, # of ppl).We asked to look at a menu while we waited. About 30 minutes which didn't seem too bad. Well worth the wait for this food.Once we sat down we ordered lamb dumplings with Chinese vegetable, chicken and green chives, pork dumpling with spinach, soup dumplings, lamb skewers and onion pancakes. You're only allowed to order once so we were okay with the thought of leftovers. The food was too good to leave anything behind. The hot sauce they have is amazing.Definitely looking forward to eating here again. They have take out as an option, so we might look into that if we don't want to wait. Can't wait to try the other stuff.The table area is a bit small and they shuffle tables accordingly. Gets pretty warm too if they close the door.
Josephine S. on:
3/23/2013 3:09:00 PM
It was alright. I like Dumpling Kitchen better. I went here with my friend and ordered Shanghai Dumplings, Pork & Corn Dumplings, Pork & Napa Cabbage Dumplings, Garlic String Beans, Wide Cold Soybean Noodles, and Crispy Chicken Wings. Yeahhhhh....We ordered a lot for 2 people because we were super hungry. We didn't have to wait long to get seated but we had to wait to order. The waiters went to tables that were seated after us and we waited a while. The Shanghai Dumplings fell apart more than I was used to which is a disappointment because the whole reason for those dumplings is to have that burst of soup in your mouth. The Chicken wings were gross. I thought a customer told me to order it but he was talking about a different restaurant....whoops. Order the dumplings, its what they are known for and what they are good at.
Ula C. on:
3/20/2013 8:06:00 PM
Like this place needs more revies. In fact, I almost want to write a negative review on this place so no other people can discover it and I get to have it all to myself!This place is a definition of what "hole-in-the-wall" really is. It sits about 15 people. Tables and chairs are all super close to one another. Not enough ventilation (which is fine because the aroma of the dumplings is just divine...). Basic menu. Completely unpretentious...but all around this box of a restaurant you can see all the awards and recognition this place has received. I remember one said "Top 5 Best Places to Get Dumplings in The United States" (that's the country people--not just SF).Order:-XLB-pan fried dumplings-pretty much everything on the menu...that doesnt have soup (I found it a lil bland...)I love this place. Period.
Jamie T. on:
3/20/2013 6:09:00 AM
Om nom nom nom! I am a huge fan of dumplings!The goza's here aren't that great but the traditional asian dumpling is amazeballs!!! All the dumplings are delicious, if you are a fan of lamb, get the lamb dumpling. My favorite the the Shanghai soup dumpling. The meat pancake is pretty good too.Buy me dumplings from here, and I'm yours!
Lily P. on:
3/20/2013 4:09:00 AM
Better than the shanghai dumpling king more north since the SERVICE is amazing here with the owner willing to fix any wrong doings with the XLB or refund you. The food comes out fast and is wonderful. The XLB comes out the perfect size, green beens were great, and the dumpling skins were just the thickness I wanted. They said the chives pancake would take a while to make but they were made and came out first. 4 dishes $25 will give 2 people a food coma :)
Phaik Lyn O. on:
3/17/2013 12:44:00 AM
Non dumpling dishes were good as well such as salt and pepper tofu and radish cake.
Jenn A. on:
3/7/2013 6:18:00 PM
So good! I came to this tiny whole in the wall place with a friend on a Friday night. We had to wait a half hour for a table but it was worth it. The food was great! We got the garlic green beans and pork dumplings- both which were awesome!The service was average. I mean, I guess Friday nights anywhere are busy. We had to remind them about something we had ordered because they had forgotten. And they didn't refill our waters. And they were out of a few items we wanted.But I still recommend this place. Tip:make a reservation before you go. The wait can be long, especially if you go with a lot of people.It's well priced as well. I split the bill with my friend and it was about $12 each- and we each got leftovers! Well worth it!
Alice L. on:
3/7/2013 4:12:00 PM
These are the BEST dumplings I've had aside from the dumplings in Beijing. They make their dumplings fresh everyday and it's sooo good! The dumpling skin is nice and chewy and the meat is perfectly marinated. I really like the pork with cabbage and Shanghai Xiao Long Baos! They also sell their dumplings frozen at one of their shops which is an amazing idea.
Lydia W. on:
3/6/2013 4:11:00 AM
I was amazed that we didn't have to wait for a table (for 3) at noon on a Sunday!Kingdom of Dumpling is a tiny restaurant that doesn't try to look fancy, but you just know will be delightful.We started off with the spicy beef tendon and a plate of the fungus with cucumber. I loved the tendon which was marinated perfectly, but found the fungus (wood ears) a bit bland. Definitely could be tastier.We ordered the xiao long bao, which were absolutely delicious.As far as dumplings go, we got a chicken with napa cabbage, and then a pork, shrimp and chinese veggie one. There are 12 dumplings per order. They are so good with the orange hot sauce, or even the vinegar/ginger combo.I really enjoyed finally getting to try this place and would highly recommend it for some wholesome Chinese food.
Kenyon S. on:
3/3/2013 6:50:00 PM
Moist flavorful and very delicious. Very cramped but authentic experience and not too expensive. The dining area can get very hot and humid.
Kyle D. on:
3/3/2013 4:44:00 PM
I'm not particularly well versed in Chinese food, so I can't speak to its authenticity, but Kingdom of Dumpling sure has some tasty food. I've been here twice now, and other than feeling like I was going to pass out from heat stroke each time I've been cause their exhaust fan broke, I've sure loved the food.
Lyna K. on:
3/2/2013 2:17:00 AM
Most of our XLB's burst or were not very soupy because it was just a soggy dumpling when it got to our table ( probably 30 minutes after our initial order). The green beens were great and the pork and chive dumplings were decent.I appreciate the hand crafted dumplings but the wait time in between orders was ridiculous. I'm surprised that a restaurant called King of Dumpling takes so long to cook their namesake. It takes me 7-8 minutes to steam/boil the ones I make at home. Considering the size of the restaurant I know the turnover is not too crazy.I wonder if our experience was a fluke based on so many reviews, sometimes reviews start to take on a mind of it's own once everyone is on board. What a let down.
T L. on:
3/1/2013 4:19:00 PM
When I first tried this place, I was immediately hooked. This place is a tiny hole in the wall type of place on Taraval but don't let that stop you from trying it. The dumplings are made fresh and usually you can see them bringing in a new batch as you're eating.Since it is a small place, sometimes the wait can get tedious, however I've never waited for more than 15-20 minutes. They try to seat people as quick as possible and beware, it does get hot in there!My favorite dishes would have to be the xiao long bao, pork and green onion dumplings, chicken and corn and whatever with napa cabbage. Also, their chicken fried rice is amazing!The orange hot sauce they have on the table is the best sauce I've ever tasted and has a real kick to it so be careful when putting it on!
Philip W. on:
2/19/2013 3:10:00 PM
Oh man, these dumplings were DELICIOUS. I'm always a fan of Shanghai soup dumplings but I the pork and (insert vegetable) dumplings here were good as well. Don't overlook the other dishes though! The multi-layered beef pancakes are amazing and the noodle soups are good as well. Food arrives fairly fast - most of your waiting will be done outside while you're waiting to be seated. It's pretty cramped on the inside and you'll have to walk through the kitchen in the back to get to the bathroom. Depending on your perspective, that's either incredibly cool or really awkward. This is a fantastic place that I would love to bring friends, but the wait time means my decision to come here is pretty situational and time-dependent.
Janee P. on:
2/18/2013 8:46:00 PM
I adore little hole in the wall places like this! And no joke, this place is teeny tiny. Eating here is an experience in and of itself. Crammed together with other patrons, sweaty, steam condensation on the windows, your elbow hitting the owner everytime you take a bite because he's standing over you to see your reaction. Oh did I mention the whole place shakes when the MUNI goes up the street? Visiting from AZ where everything is large and new and commercialized, I desperately wanted to take my husband for something authentic. We got it here for sure!The food is amazing. Amazing! I told my husband, you know Chinese food doesn't have to be covered in sauce all the time! We ordered the XLB of course, onion pancake, garlic string beans, and chicken fried rice (ok I was embarrassed when my husband ordered that!)XLB was perfect! Good flavor too! Garlic string beans were crisp, fresh, well seasoned, with a little char on them...omg yum I want some right now! The onion pancake was light, fluffy, crispy! So good! I didn't waste my time with the fried rice but hubby said it was good.They also bring jasmine tea. But if you want water, you'll need to ask for it.The owner was very nice and accomodating as well. Oh I just loved eating here! And it's cheap! 4 dishes for $24!I can't give it 5 stars because I highly doubt the cleanliness of this place. I caught a glimpse of the kitchen as we were sitting down and screamed a little inside. Also there was a hair on my husband's plate. I mean, it's pretty dirty and run down, but to me it adds to the charm :) The place could use a good scrub down and some updating.
Emmanuella Z. on:
2/18/2013 2:53:00 PM
Best dumplings I've ever had!The place itself is very tiny and so steamy that the windows were fogged up. Other than the atmosphere, the food is really good. The food tasted very fresh. I recommend Kingdom of Dumpling!
Andrew I. on:
2/17/2013 3:23:00 PM
1000+ reviews can't be wrong, can they?Well, this place does not deserve a 5 star review, that's for sure. So all those trying this place for the first time, please, do not set your standards too high. Because by the time you reach the bathroom in this place, you want to get out. I would rather have a port-a-pottie outside rather than the awkwardness of going to the bathroom here. They have a clean bathroom, but to get there you must go through the kitchen, dodge flying elbows from chefs, fit yourself in about 10 inches of space, avoid getting splashed by frying pan oils. Trust me, this is part of the whole experience of dining here.Or you can just not use the bathroom.The menu is very straightforward. It's divided into 2 sections, the way I saw it. New stuff.... or .... Old stuff. But from the looks of the menu, the paper was written decades ago. So it's old stuff... or... old stuff. They have some Mandarin styled dishes, then they have a lot of fried stuff, then they have the dumplings. Chicken, beef, or shrimp with either corn, spinach, chinese spinach, chives, or a couple other choices. Everything is hand made, of course, and that's why it is amazing! One serving is enough to fill one person, provided they eat with rice. The Sesame donut looks good for desert, also, so try that too!Space is tiny, decor is nonexistent, and ventilation is sufficating. I came around 5pm on a weekend, not busy at all, but with only 8 or 9 tables, I can see that it will get extremely busy real fast. I was sweating like a pig by the time I finished eating, because it was sooo stuffy, I swear I thought I was eating in the middle of Beijing. Still, this is part of the experience. Although I am not coming back in the summer. I am getting it for take out.One thing that I love is the hot sauce! I want to buy a whole jar of it, where can I get it? Dumplings made by experienced hands with lots of love will not go wrong. You must try this place, despite everything I said here!!! Service is also quick and efficient. They bus tables within 30seconds, get you situated asap, but you just can't speed up dumpling makings.
Leslie K. on:
2/17/2013 3:27:00 AM
Best Dumplings in the Sunset!String beans, shrimp and chives, and pork dumplings are a must. The sauce may look a little scary, but don't write it off so quickly. Even the smallest drops will take your dish to the next level. Try it!Only 4 starts because of limited seating (very limited,) and slow service.
Alice C. on:
2/14/2013 10:59:00 PM
5 stars for the food, but 2 stars for the environment.This is a hole-in-the-wall joint with a whole lot of people waiting for a table on a Saturday night. They have very little space, but only around 6-8 tables, and they don't take reservations. If you want to get your hands on the yummy dumplings, you gotta get here early or at least snack a bit so you don't faint while waiting.It is quite crowded in the restaurant, so don't expect to sit very comfortably. The decor looks like they haven't done much to it, and it's not very clean looking. Perhaps not a great place for a romantic date ;)We ordered XLBs, pork and shrimp dumplings, string beans, chives "boxes" pancakes and spicy beef tendon to share. The beef tendon hit the spot -- it was spicy, numby, and shaved really thinly, with a generous serving of cilantro. The pork and shrimp dumplings were very delicious as well, with fresh fillings and not-too-thin chewy skin. However, the XLBs that everyone raves about are not as good as I had expected. While the filling was great and there was plenty of soup, the skin was on the thick side. I think Yang Sing still does it better, but at a price premium. The chive pancakes are not that great though, and as for the string beans...let's say I still haven't found anyone that does it right in the bay area.The owner is super nice, and he even announced that if there is no soup in the XLBs he will put in another order for free. I understand that San Franciscans like to queue up for their favourite restaurants, but the restaurant could use a little interior upgrade.
Katie N. on:
2/14/2013 6:16:00 AM
I go to "The Kingdom" (as we call it) semi-regularly with my boyfriend and/or family/friends for a very distinct, true-blue, hole in the wall experience that you can always count on.. You just have to roll with the punches if you want to embrace its awesomeness. That's what hole in the wall spots are all about, and we love this place.You want to know why this place is hoppin' all hours of the day? It's certainly not for the impeccable service, fine decor, and ass-kissing hospitality (you'll have to look elsewhere for any of that). It is for the scrumptious, authentic food.Everyone who knows of its greatness willingly smushes together with the rest of the city folk in their tiny, hot kitchen, waiting patiently for their delightful surprises to arrive.And when they do arrive, (always very quickly) there is a small small chance that you will be unsatisfied.. Often people find a few things they love and order that every time.PLEASE, for the sake of your soul, order the garlic green beans and shanghai soup dumplings. Oh, and the pork shrimp and chive dumplings too.THE KEY: you MUST use the garlic green bean sauce for dumpling dipping!! Don't let them take away the plate if you haven't already rescued the precious leftover sauce!CONS-Tea will always on the table, but water is always hard to get from your server, so ask right away for it. You might have to ask twice. They always lag on that.-The only unimpressive orders have been the vegetable pot stickers and the shanghai donut.Go see for yourself!Bring a friend, an appetite, an open mind, and don't be afraid to voice what you want. I doubt you'll be disappointed.
Lisa H. on:
2/13/2013 4:45:00 AM
Excellent xiao lung bao! Everything else is a-ok. In our error we ordered non-dumpling like items - hello, its called Kingdom of Dumpling. So skip the (very sweet) chicken wings and string beans. Just pop in for the xlb and dumplings, oh and the beef pancake. Note, the place is very small and gritty and shakes as the MUNI goes by. Also, circulation is bad, so if you get stuck at a table right by the kitchen, get ready to perspire. Yum. Oh and don't forget to bring cash!
Kristina R. on:
2/12/2013 1:30:00 PM
After reading reviews, I was excited to try the xiao long bao here --but sadly, left unsatisfied.My Shanghai soup dumplings were so bland! The filling was tasteless. Most of the dumplings had popped, or had little broth. And even if the dumplings survived, the broth inside lacked that savory goodness I often long for. It was just very disappointing.We also got: the crispy lotus, five spice beef (note: both are cold dishes), a few of the other dumplings, onion pancake, wonton soup, and garlic bok choy. They were good, but nothing to rave about.Sorry, Kingdom of Dumpling, I wanted to like you so much. I guess we just weren't meant to be..
Marco M. on:
2/9/2013 7:44:00 PM
Decided to give this place a try after seeing the tremendous amount of reviews and I must say that it lived up to the hype.We had the xiao lung bao of course, which was our favorite dish. We also ordered the five spice beef, the onion pancake, the pork and shrimp dumplings and the black sesame donut for dessert. Every dish had its own unique flavors and they were all outstanding. This is definitely a restaurant that I would come back to.
Zha L. on:
1/30/2013 8:12:00 PM
Bad dumplings!!I honestly don't see what's the hype about this place! Just like everyone else, I was intrigued by the amount of reviews this place has. I love finding hole in a wall restaurants with awesome hearty food, but this is not one of them.The dumplings were very disappointing and lacked on flavor. I don't think they have marinated the meat well enough to make it more savory. The quality of the XLB was also so-so. The lamb skewers were okay, but over spiced. The only thing that was decent at the restaurant is the garlic string beans.
Sophia H. on:
1/30/2013 4:22:00 AM
This is such a cute hole-in-the-wall place that serves hand-made dumplings! The dumplings are super juicy and packed with meat, so its definitely worth the price you pay. There's also a huge variety of combinations to choose from, and you can even order some frozen ones home if you'd like.Other dishes that we ordered were the chicken+spinach wonton noodle soup and sauteed green beans; both were delicious. Overall, a very solid and authentic place to eat quality Chinese food. However, it is TINY so get here early if you want to beat rush hour!
Dot D. on:
1/29/2013 11:30:00 AM
I've had thinner skin dumplings that are juicy (in Asia). I like how juicy it can be but it's like hit or miss. On a good batch you'll get ones with unbroken skins. But I hate it when I get all dried ones. Price is okay.I would come back expecting what I know from this place. At least these type of foods are healthier than other outside foods. Since I don't know how to make these dumplings I might come back until I find a better place. :)
Derek S. on:
1/27/2013 11:18:00 AM
our group of 10 got seated after 30-45 minutes of wait which is pretty good. It was worth the wait.pork and chive dumplings: It's a good starter to get yourself into the food imo.lamb dumplings: Distinct taste of lamb so you know exactly what you're eating. Good amount of lamb taste while not too overpowering.Corn pork dumplings: If you like corn, order this one, nothing much else to say about it.Shanghai soup dumplings: What you're really here for. They're amazing, eat it while it's still steaming. Perfect ratio of meat, to soup, to wonton wrapping. Eat it in one bite or poke a hole and then drink the soup first. It doesn't matter really. Enjoy this, for I haven't had any places in my area (Sacramento) that can do it this well. It's just this balance of flavor, fun, and simplicity that manages to be captured in a soup filled dumpling.Cucumber salad and the string beans were a great starter as well in terms of simple flavors yet delicious.Beef pancakes were delicious and flavorful.The regular onion pancakes lacked flavor though. (so stick with the beef pancakes if you want that stuff)If you really don't know what to order, the older gentleman when our group was there made excellent suggestions while not being pushy about you ordering more food. Our bill came out to be $100 for 10 people and we were more than satisfied with what we had. Seriously, ask him if you're having trouble knowing where to start. They're a friendly bunch who want you to enjoy their food.
Anna H. on:
1/22/2013 12:20:00 AM
OK this place is good - but, in my opinion, highly overrated and definitely NOT worth the wait.I'll admit that I may be picky when it comes to dumplings since 1) I am Chinese 2) my dad owned a Chinese restaurant and 3) I had XLB almost everyday for two months while in ShanghaiMy boyfriend and I made our way over to the lovely sunset on a Saturday afternoon. There were about 5 parties ahead of us so we were seated about 30 minutes later. We ordered the pork/shrimp/chive dumplings since we decided it was the perfect combo on the list of about 10 different dumpling selections. We also ordered the Shanghai dumplings and fresh soy milk.Soy milk - I prefer fresh, hot soy milk to be hotter and frothier!! BUT my boyfriend thought it was the perfect consistency...Dumplings - fresh and flavorful, but definitely not the best. Don't get me wrong, the filling was seasoned well and the ingredients were balanced but it just didn't impress me.Xiao long bao (Shanghai dumpling) - decent, pretty good but not great. The skin on the XLB could have been thinner and softer. I found it to be a little chewy, especially after it had cooled down a bit. That itself might have been -1 yelp star for me LOL. The soup was pretty fatty and sweet, as it should be. It is no where close to being the best Shanghai dumplings I've had outside of Shanghai - sorry!I rated this place solely on the quality of the food, not the establishment or the service. The place is small and a little run down, but I am not one to judge. I've been to dirtier and more crowded places for good food.We came here for the XLB and it did not deliver...I will, however, be coming back to try the garlic green beans!!! It looked delicious but we did not have the stomach for it :(
J S. on:
1/19/2013 10:20:00 PM
Very unclean & not so great. Wonder why this has so high reviews.Tried XLB and other dumplings but really poor taste & service.Also, the plates were so dirty... watch out this is the flu season.
Chris S. on:
1/18/2013 7:10:00 PM
tl;drGreat place for a Chinese Dumplings 101 since they've apparently mastered the art of conjuring dumplings. Just come when you're hungry and hope there's not a long wait.---My mom is from NE China (aka. home of fat dumplings and tall women), so I've literally had dumplings as soon as I could eat solid food. During Chinese New Year, my mom used to go to the bank to exchange completely new coins to be added to the filling and randomly wrapped into dumplings. The people who get the coins in their dumplings during the big family dinner is supposed to have a prosperous new year :)Kingdom of Dumpling (KOD for short) is quite good, on par with Prosperity Dumpling in NYC if you've ever been there. They have a lot of variations so you'll probably find something you like.I love the cabbage and pork dumpling here - it's well balanced and perfectly seasoned. Napa cabbages usually emit a lot of water when cooked so even my mom's cabbage/pork dumplings tend to be soggier when she makes them, but you don't really find that at KOD. They're just perfect bursts of flavor and joy here :)If you want a more nuanced taste, just replace cabbage with chives. Note they're not the western chives that you see on top of smoked salmon sometimes. Chinese chives have a stronger flavor, kind of like a mild green onion - it's great, try it! There, I've described for you the two big Chinese dumpling staples - cabbage and chives.Of course, depending on your dietary habit you could swap pork out for shrimp or chicken or even beef/lamb. I don't think I've ever tried a beef dumpling at KOD but their lamb dumplings were a surprising let-down (actually kind of bland). Their shrimp one is also good (although still a stretch from the pork IMO), if you want to switch things up a bit.One of the things that I didn't discover until my 5th or 6th visit here is their GARLIC STRING BEANS. I'll just leave it at that and leave you to discover for you its greatness. We had to get two orders of that because it was just so good. The baby bok choy is a milder version of the string beans (and less oily :P), just FYI.If you come by yourself, I'd recommend getting a boiled dumpling, another type of dumpling*, and you're good to go. It'll come out to about $15, but you'll feel great after washing everything down with a pot of tea :)* other dumpling assessments:Xiao Long Bao - they have the funniest shaped XLBs I've ever seen...they're shaped like little turrets. They're not bad, but they're also not ridiculously good. Try it once and decide if you want to keep getting it - it's good to switch things up a bit and have a steamed dumpling though.Pan-fried versions - a hot oily griddle + dumpling is a match made in heavenor you can also just get another order of boiled dumpling. or two. ;)ps. The wait can be kind of long at lunch/dinner rush hours so try to come at an off time if you can. It'll save a lot of waiting since the restaurant is really small and there's no covered area to wait. Also, parking on Taraval can be kind of hard sometimes. I recommend parking on Santiago and then walking over.
Elias A. on:
1/15/2013 5:12:00 PM
This place was decent. I was impressed when I saw the high rating, but not so much after eating here. The place down the street, Dumpling House, is better as far as I'm concerned, and way easier to get a seat at.The service was sub par. The waitress seemed annoyed at having to take my money for food I was more than happy to accept in return. The place was cramped and little. We had to wait a while to get seats for two. The dumplings, I will admit, were quite tasty, but not the best. I can't vouch for the rest of the menu, as I didn't try anything else. I'll probably not come here in the future if other places nearby are open. This is more for the lack of kind atmosphere than for the edibles.
Miyako L. on:
1/14/2013 9:34:00 AM
Waiter: What would you like to order?Me: Hi, I'll have 3 orders of the pork dumpling, 3 orders of siu lum bao, 2 orders of pork and chive dumpling, 1 order garlic string beans, hot tea and a large beer. Oh, and whatever they want.Friends at table: *awkward silence* Uhhhhh, is that for everyone?Me: Oh, um, no... I mean yeah... sure... I guess we can share. *forced smile*Me(internal thought): GODDAMN IT!
Linda N. on:
1/9/2013 2:08:00 AM
You have got to be kidding me; 1000+ reviews, 4 stars?!Based on my experience, I only have one conclusion for these absurd ratings:Dumpling Kitchen (located a block away) was closed or too busy which forced all THEIR customers to come here. There I said it, you get the hand me downs, the sloppy seconds, the I'll just settle for this place customers (that was me!)THIS PLACE IS HORRIBLE. You call this a dumpling? Where's all the flavor? All the juice? That's a green onion pancake? Jeez, was it heated in the microwave then pan fried? I hate you.
Cecilia W. on:
1/8/2013 10:31:00 AM
Kingdom of Dumpling does not deserve the crown. No no no no.I came from the Dumpling capital of China and am accustomed to large, meaty dumplings with thin skins.This place is the opposite. Their dumplings (http://s3-media2.ak.yelp…) had thick skin and very little meat. I swear to you, I can make dumplings better than that. And my parents dumplings will blow you out of the roof.The beef pancakes were eh (http://s3-media3.ak.yelp…), nothing special there.I am extremely disappointed. Maybe I will revisit on a good day, since this place is always nice and warm from boiling of the dumplings. Maybe.
Allan H. on:
1/7/2013 5:01:00 AM
Wow, what a difference 5 years makes! From my 3* review back in 2007 to this past weekend, the dumplings and service have evolved! This time around, the 5 of us ordered several dishes ranging from the Spicy Beef Tendon (definitely recommended!) to the Shanghai Style Donut (Just okay...) to the dumplings (recommended!). Everything came out quickly and was quite tasty, although the service left something to be desired.Issues:We had to ask 3 times for water before we actually got any.We had called to make a reservation, but they had no actual reservation for us when we arrived.They had the offer for free pancake/bag of dumplings on the wall but refused to offer it despite it being advertised.Other than those three things above, I think I would return here again.
Lana N. on:
1/5/2013 7:42:00 PM
Kingdom of Dumpling is the epitome of hole in the wall. The place is maybe the size of a (nice) walk in closet... no more than 20 people are seated inside, and even with that... you're packed in like sardines. We came in with a group of 6 people and it was a tight squeeze; wouldn't recommend this place for large parties... though by the time we got seated, we were all starving and it was a perfect opportunity to feast and try all they had to offer.4starsEgg and Chive Dumplings - no meat but surprisingly good; I could eat these all day!Pork and Corn Dumplings - a favorite amongst the group! The bits of corn provided a sweetness that you don't normally see.Beef Sesame Roll - crispy fried sesame pancake with marinated beef inside... nothing like I've seen and really good! Not too oily either :)3starsBean Curd Noodles - nothing extraordinary but nice starter.Garlic String Beans - yum overall and no complaints.Lamb Dumplings - surprisingly not bad. I was afraid of the gaminess, but it actually wasn't too bad and was a nice out of the norm dumpling. The soup/broth generated was nice also.Pork and Shrimp Dumplings - shrimp flavor was a bit lacking, but these were pretty good, juicy/soupy, and flavorful overall.Beef Pancake - oily and pan fried, a fave amongst the boys.2starsPork and Napa Cabbage Dumplings - nothing extraordinary, I'd try pork and chive instead.Xiao Long Bao (Pork Soup Dumplings) - these were disappointing. The skins were thick and chewy, and there was little to no meat, plus the meat and soup wasn't flavorful. The XLB were a definite low for KofD.If you're not looking for specifically XLB, KofD is great! Beware of the small space though if you're coming with a group as there is generally a wait regardless of if its even just a party of 2. Marco Polo Italian Ice Cream (http://www.yelp.com/biz/…) is down the street though, which is great enough for me to consider coming back here.... but honestly I'd probably go elsewhere though for my dumplings since I'm searching more for XLB. Plus KofD does have a take-out grocery location... and how hard can it be to boil some dumplings??
Ezra G. on:
1/1/2013 1:28:00 AM
Save $15 and the schlep to Taraval to wait in the freezing cold. Buy a can of cat food, mix it with some spaghetti and toss in some cheap black vinegar instead. Seriously.These were among the worst dumplings I've had in my life and, yes, I'm talking about the "famous" xiao long bao/Shanghai soup dumplings. The pork and Chinese vegetable ones were even worse. They couldn't even make the dipping sauce properly or bother to offer passable chili sauce to add to it. I couldn't even finish them and didn't even take the leftovers home.What do I know about dumplings? I lived in China and spent 3 years living with a Taiwanese girl and another 3 years with a Japanese girl.If this is even remotely considered to be the best SF can offer, I'll just make my own.
Killah K. on:
12/27/2012 5:51:00 PM
Pretty good dumplings here. Kind of a small place, but it felt really natural and homey.The Shanghai dumplings were perfect and served on cabbage the old fashion way - without the plastic holders. Also had the pork dumpling with napa. It wasn't as good as the shanghai dumplings, but still good for what it was. For me, the filling just felt like mush to me. Meh. Ordered the green beans - a little on the salty side for me but still enjoyable. Just had a little too much seasoning of the peppers. Minor details.Will probably come back to try the other numerous different kinds of dumplings.
Allan L. on:
12/27/2012 4:17:00 PM
We came here for lunch on Christmas Eve and I was surprised at how small this place was. People were bumping into me constantly and it felt like I was in a club. The food was good and affordable (the highlight was the garlic string beans), but I couldn't get over the tiny space. Using the word "Kingdom" in the name is deceiving. It's more like " Crawlspace of Dumpling."The weirdest part of the meal was when we were ordering, we asked the waiter if we could order more later on once our friends arrived and he said "no." He told us we could only order once. Here I was, basically throwing money at this waiter and he was refusing it left and right. Silly me for thinking he would want additional business from us.My tummy gives Kingdom of Dumpling...3 Stars!
Ms K. on:
12/18/2012 7:58:00 AM
If you're a fan of Din Tai Fung like me, you'd agree the dumplings here are not exactly the best. I don't mind the hole-in-the-wall atmosphere of the restaurant. In fact, I think it adds a certain charm if the food were so amazing that it wouldn't matter if you had to squeeze in a table in the corner next to the kitchen.We ordered a variety of the dumplings along with a vegetable and noodle dish. The dumplings in general are good, but the skin is too thick. As good as the meat and vegetable fillings are, the dumpling skin plays an equally important role.The pork dumpling with chives and pork dumpling with corn fared better than the Shanghai soup dumpling and Shanghai pan fried soup dumpling. The latter two are just too doughy for their kind.The chicken chow mein and the garlic string beans are flavorful but are on the salty side.This restaurant is ok if you're really craving dumplings, but it's not worth waiting in line for.Bon appetit!