Dear Deer Dumplings is a Chinese restaurant serving a range of dumplings. Located on Holtermann Street in Crows Nest you can stuff yourself with house made dumplings like xiao long bao or divine wagyu beef and black pepper pan fried buns or you can also order seafood, beef, pork, chicken and noodle and rice dishes. All in a kitsch semi fantasy setting with lots of deers!
"Wait til you see it upstairs," says Sammie. We are having our last lunch before she moves back to the UK and it's also a belated birthday celebration. We usually bring the dogs with us but we decided to have a bit more of a relaxing lunch without our beloved little monsters and as Dear Deer Dumpling is indoor only we take the opportunity to go there.
Dear Deer Dumpling was formerly a Japanese restaurant which you can definitely see from the pale blond wood, fan patterns and cherry blossoms but now they've added lots of deer figurines and motifs to it. Downstairs is where they dumplings but we head upstairs to the main dining room. We booked a table by the door for airflow. The waitress shows us the menu where you order by ticking the items that you want.
Jasmine tea $5
The jasmine tea comes in a large teapot and is served to share and they'll happily offer to top it up with water if you go through it. Service is very friendly and accommodating.
Xiao Long Bao 6 for $8.80
The food doesn't take long to arrive. The first item to come out are the xiao long bao. These have a noticeable amount of delicious soup. The skin stays intact for all of these and they're quite thin too so it's nice to get some XLB where the skin doesn't break.
Pork Wonton With homemade Chilli Oil 8 for $12.80
Another favourite are the pork wontons with home made chilli oil. The pork filling is so flavoursome and delicious. These are a firm favourite for both of us.
Prawn Wonton Burger $9.80 for 3
The prawn wonton burger is one of the "chef recommended" items and we weren't quite sure what it would be whether it would be a prawn wonton in a steamed bao or a burger. The burger part is made of deep fried wonton skin and inside there's a prawn and mayonnaise. It's actually very tasty and although there is just one prawn inside you get enough in each bite.
Steamed Crystal Prawn Dumplings 4 for $12.80
We both enjoy the plump steamed crystal prawn dumplings. We make fast work of these tasty morsels.
Pan Fried Prawn Dumplings 6 for $14.80
The only dumplings I didn't really go for were the pan fried prawn dumplings. It's odd because they're usually one of my favourite types of dumpling but the flavour of these are quite fishy and I'd prefer any of the other dumplings over these.
Peking Duck Roti $14.80
We also ordered the Peking duck roti. These are quite nice although they are quite small little bites. They're wrapped in a Peking duck pancake rather than one of those super crispy rotis.
Pan Fried Pork Buns 6 pcs $13.80
I love a classic pan fried pork buns and these are fat and juicy with a nicely crispy golden base. They've got the bun to filling ratio just right here and I really enjoy both pan fried buns with some of the chilli oil on the table.
Pan Fried Black Pepper Wagyu Beef Buns 4 pcs $15.80
However my very favourite item of the whole meal are the pan fried black pepper wagyu beef buns. The filling is so juicy, luscious and flavoursome especially with the black pepper seasoning. They remind me a little of the black pepper beef buns in Taiwan's night noodle markets that are the best thing there.
So tell me Dear Reader, do you have a favourite type of dumpling? What do you think of the deer theme?
This meal was independently paid for.
Dear Deer Dumpling
Shop4/29 Holtermann St, Crows Nest NSW 2065
Open 7 days 11am–3pm, 5–9pm (9:30pm Friday to Sunday)
Phone: (02) 9436 1575