Top Cafe Dumpling House
I love a place that knows what it is, and what it does well. And there’s certainly no confusion at Top Café Dumpling House. It’s all about luscious pastry wrapped around juicy fillings, fried till delightfully golden. What’s not to love?
There are 11 different types of dumpling, seven of which are pork and something. There’s also Beef and Carrot, Vegetable and Egg, Chive Egg and Shrimp and Vegan. And that’s it. Nothing else on the menu. It’s a tiny joint, with appealing modern décor; the service is mediocre but you don’t really care as the dumplings are fab. The lady who served me was friendly but not prone to extended conversation and the other server duly took orders and then returned to the game he was playing on his phone. But when you’re paying $11 for a huge lunch in a place smaller than your Nana’s kitchen in her one bedroom flat, this isn’t really a contributing factor.
We went for the classics – Pork and Cabbage and Pork and Chive. Both were excellent with that slightly crunchy outer and perfect spurt of savoury pork juice in every bite. I made up my perfect blend of black vinegar, soy sauce and chill oil and was in dumpling heaven. I was surprised that I favoured the homely pork and cabbage flavour over the slightly fresher chive enhanced version, maybe it was the Auckland rain making me crave comfort food?
I wouldn’t recommend this place for a first date, it’s too small. But I would recommend it for a quick bite before a movie with your special friend or a dumpling-loving mate. And even better for a solo lunch where you don’t have to share anything. The way the seats are make it perfect for dining on your own.
And make sure you take your chiller bag for some frozen Top Café dumplings next time you feel like eating them in your PJs. You know as the weather gets colder, that day is going to come.