PORTLAND, Ore. (KOIN) — A new dumpling spot in Downtown Portland aims to represent the wide array of Chinese cuisine, from xiao long bao to wild pepper beef noodles.
Located in the former Thirsty Lion space, Xin Ding Dumpling House has been open for business since Friday, May 12.
Assistant manager Mindy Chong says she and owner Leon Liu relocated to Portland from California just a few years ago after Liu’s father had already established a life in the city.
The owner soon got connected with mentor and long-time chef Keli Jiang, who has since brought his four decades of expertise to Xin Ding Dumpling House.
Liu has prior experience working in California restaurants and Portland establishment Duck House, but between his background in economics and Chong’s full-time job in the accounting field, this dumpling house is a new venture for the duo.
Chong says she doesn’t know if the surrounding businesses or if social media is responsible for the customers who have visited so far, but either way, it’s worked in the restaurant’s favor.
“The first two weeks — it was okay for us,” she said. “It was beyond our expectation already because I did not expect it to be crowded by that time, so I’m grateful.”
Xin Ding Dumpling House features an extensive menu that reflects not only Liu’s upbringing in Northern China, but also Chef Jiang’s years of cooking other Chinese cuisine.
The xia long bao, or soup dumplings, are the specialty items on the dumpling house’s menu. Customers can also find Peking duck, wontons in chili sauce, Chong Quing hot chicken and more. The restaurant additionally has a full bar where customers can order wine, beer and cocktails.
Xin Ding Dumpling House is located at 71 SW 2nd Avenue in Portland, but in two or three years, there could be a location for Eugene or Salem foodies. Chong says expanding the brand is the ultimate goal for her and Liu.
“That’s our wish. Hopefully, we can meet it. But if not, we’re going to stick with one and try to make this one a success,” Chong said.