With lines around the block, are these dumplings worth the wait?
Getting dinner at Dumplings of Fury feels more like a leap of faith, its menu more of a wish list.
At least that’s what it must have felt like for the scores of folks who lined up around the block at this new dumpling house, not knowing if the soup dumplings — or any dumplings, really — would be left by the time they made it to the front of the line.
Dumplings of Fury has become one of the new “It” spots in Seattle since it opened in mid-July, bringing a taste of Asian street food to West Seattle.
Dumplings of Fury
Asian street food
4302 S.W. Oregon St. (West Seattle), Seattle; open Wednesday-Sunday 4 p.m. until sold out, 206-257-0695; dumplingsoffury.com
The kitchen is the size of a walk-in closet, so tight the staff of five can’t take more than one step without bumping into one another.
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The staff is frantically making dumplings on site and at Shadowland across the street (two of the three dumpling owners also run that bar) but still can’t keep up with demand.
Wait until the buzz dies down if you don’t want to wait in line.
In the meantime, the owners have set a more realistic hour of operations, crossing out 4 p.m. to 10 p.m. and replacing it with “4 p.m. until sold out.”
So far, that means soup dumplings are eighty-sixed by 6 p.m., the other dumplings usually by 8 p.m. Come after that? Ugh, I hear Subway is pretty fast.
The menu: Five dumpling variations ($7-$10), either fried or steamed, with pork and/or shrimp. The gyoza (tofu, Field Roast meat substitute, shiitake mushroom and water chestnut) is the lone vegetarian option. Add barbecue pork and Chinese broccoli for $2.50 more. Steamed bao buns come with either kalbi short ribs ($8 for two) or fried chicken ($7). Wontons are also served in a hot-and-sour soup ($9).
Don’t miss: Those pan-fried Mandu-inspired dumplings may be the most satisfying morsels. Three per order, each is the size of a hockey puck, overstuffed with pork, tofu and spicy kimchi, the fillings perfect for soaking up the dipping soy sauce.
The steamed wontons may be your best consolation prize when dumplings are sold out. The skin is silky and slick, covered in a spicy Szechuan glaze with fried shallot for crunch to go with morsels of shrimp and pork. It’s the kind of spicy, sweet and salty bite of umami you would find at Asian street markets.
The bao (two per order) is sandwiched with ribbons of fatty Kalbi short ribs with a kimchi kick.
What’s disappointing: The soup dumplings, xiao long bao, are inconsistent, undercooked on one visit and leaking on another try. Orders of soup dumplings come too fast for the modest kitchen to keep up with the pace and maintain quality.
Prices: An order of soup dumplings ($10), wontons ($9), shrimp-and-chive dumplings ($8), Mandu ($8) and kalbi bao ($8) totaled $47.13 including tax, enough to feed three.