A new food stall specializing in Northern Chinese-style handmade dumplings has opened in the West End. Meet Nine Dumplings, which set up shop just about a month ago inside the food court of the Robson Public Market.
Family-Owned and Operated
This family-owned and operated business is no stranger to the dining scene in Metro Vancouver. They used to run Nine Dishes – an award-winning restaurant in Richmond (behind Costco) which focused on Sichuan cuisine. The restaurant closed after their landlord sold the property for redevelopment.
Nine Dumplings Menu
Nine Dumplings features a lot of the dishes from Nine Dishes but new to the menu (and the focus of their offerings) are the handmade dumplings.
The handmade dumplings feature 9 different types of fillings including pork & cabbage; pork & chives; pork & cilantro; pork & kimchi; pork & green pepper; vegetarian; squid pork chives; lamb & zucchini; and scallop & fish.
The dumplings are $4.99 for 6 pieces of the regular fillings and $5.99 for 6 pieces of the more specialty fillings.
Or if you can’t make up your mind, get the 10 piece sampler featuring 1 dumpling of each of the flavours offered for $9.99.
The dumplings can be steamed, boiled, cooked in a soup or made spicy with Szechuan oil and chilis.
If you want to know what colour the dumplings are, just look at the menu as the item name is colour coded based on the colour of the dumpling skin.
The owner, Yves, tells me that the colours are natural. Turmeric for yellow; squid ink for black; butterfly pea for blue; spinach for green; beet root for red; and purple cabbage for purple.
There are also a few Sichuan-style dishes including Spicy Drooling Chicken, Spicy Boiling Fish, Spicy Fried Chicken and more.
What We Tried
The owner presented us with some complimentary dishes to start. I loved the sweet, warm, glutinous rice and red bean dessert soup.
We also had the spicy clear noodles which was slightly spicy and stimulated the appetite.
I ordered 6 different types of dumplings:
- Pork & cabbage (half Green/half Plain)
- Pork & cilantro (blue)
- Pork & kimchi (green)
- Pork & green pepper (red)
- Vegetarian (purple)
- Lamb & zucchini (yellow)
The dumpling skins were sturdy, a bit chewy and not overly thick. The fillings were delicious, flavourful and tasted fresh.
All the dumplings tasted true to their flavour and very excellent. My favourite was the pork & cilantro and second to that would the pork & kimchi. There are quite a few options so there’s something for everyone.
I didn’t get the sampler as I like to try the dumplings a few more times rather (even just to judge) rather than just one piece. However, the sampler would be a good intro to the type of fillings offered.
I talked to the owner Yves afterwards and he seems very humble. His wife and daughter are helping out with the business. He brought out a tray of his dumplings for a quick photo op!
All in all, Nine Dumplings is a hidden gem in the West End and definitely worth checking out. Time and money well-spent and stomach space happily occupied. I’d be interested to try the other fillings that I missed this time (pork & chives; squid pork chives; and scallop & fish) as well as other Beijing dishes (like the green onion pancake). Rating: 5/5
Nine Dishes @ Robson Public Market
204-1610 Robson Street Vancouver, BC