Ok ... so Spicy Barbie has decided to dip her char-grilled toes into the Dumpling bamboo basket, and its another culinary hat trick that we can slip up our sleeves. We finally have access to Xiao Long Bao almost within spitting distance ... ok there's a bit of poetic license, but its 10 mins up the road.
The Spicy Barbie part of the menu is still there, but I believe its not as expansive, understandably so, as the joint has now morphed into a dumpling/barbie hybrid called I love Dumplings.
So its not the best dumplings you are likely to have, but the atmosphere is convivial enough and the prices still reasonably cheap. There's really not much to complain about.
We had said Xiao Long Bao - or Shanghai Dumplings as per the menu. The dough was a little too pliable and the contents had too many high ginger notes and not enough salty oomph at the bottom - still yummy though.
M had his favourite tomato and egg soup which I actually also enjoyed only because it wasn't tomato-ey at all (yes I know this is a bit of a contradiction in terms ... but I'm not entirely a fan of tomato - we have a love/hate relationship).
We also had the lamb dumplings in spicy sichuan sauce. One plus One and Dumpling King have better versions. I Love Dumpling's offering was a tad insipid. I would much prefer a stronger lamby hit. Again, still yummy.
We also had some fried noodles for carbs. Nothing spesh, nicely soy sauced.
Bottom line is if they weren't close in proximity, I probably wouldn't be paying too many repeat visits. However, the next time I need a Xiao Long Bao fix (which can be reasonably often) I know where to go.
Have you heard ... its all happening in the West baby!!