Dumplings and Beer

Callan Boys
Simplicity: Prawn and scallop dumplings at Dumplings and Beer.
Simplicity: Prawn and scallop dumplings at Dumplings and Beer. Photo: Sahlan Hayes

Shop 2, 9 Ward Avenue Potts Point, New South Wales 2011

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Opening hours Mon-Sun midday-10pm
Features Cheap Eats
Prices Cheap (mains under $20)
Phone (02) 9380 4744

Everything you need to know about Dumplings & Beer is in the name.

Well, almost everything. At the time of writing D&B is still waiting on a liquor license so a better name for the Potts Point eatery might be "Dumplings & BYO Beer".

D&B is hoping to have a license by mid- to late-February. A headache for the owners but a dream for skint Kings Cross backpackers who, for now, can bring their own beer without corkage. There's nothing like a six pack of cheap, watery booze to accompany dumplings. Maybe soy sauce and black vinegar so it's a good thing there's plenty on D&B's newspaper-laminated tables.

The curiously named siao lung boa dumplings.
The curiously named siao lung boa dumplings. Photo: Sahlan Hayes

These are the type of dumplings that need beer too. The pan-fried pork numbers ($9 for six) are fat pillows of pig with as much nuance as a dog-track kebab. Embrace the grease and order a few serves with a bunch of mates and wash them down with a bottle of Tsingtao. It's one the best pot-sticking times in Potts Point.

Gluten-free prawn and chive gow gee ($5 for three) have a gossamer-thin wrapper cocooning tiny prawns with the right amount chubbiness. Not the freshest tasting gow gee around, sure, but they keep with the mindless beer food theme like a bog-standard barbecue BBQ pork bun ($2.50) and an "actually-that's-quite-good" roast duck bun ($3).

D&B is a cute place. The knee-knocking 25-seater has kitschy lanterns, a kitschier chandelier, Chinese pop-paintings, and a projector playing kung fu films with the sound down.

The impressive duck wraps.
The impressive duck wraps. Photo: Sahlan Hayes

Two things would get me back once beer has to be purchased on premises (which, when the time comes, will be a mix of standards plus local and imported craft brews). 1. The staff who are as hospitable as they are forgetful of orders. 2. The "crackling pork belly slider" ($8 for two) – a bao-style steamed bun with spring onion, hoisin sauce and soft pork belly with delicious shards of crackling.

In the meantime, though, it's a new dumpling house and you can BYO beer. And that really is all you need to know.

DO …
 order the "siao lung boa". They're actually soup-filled xia long bao dumplings spelt incorrectly and not a snake with a respiratory issues.
DON'T ...
 expect anything too finely crafted.
DISH … dumplings. And beer.
 Super casual, bottle-clinking, fun times.