Fancy an Aussie meat pie-flavoured dumpling? Head to Drumplings

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Photo taken by Adair Winder.

When it comes to dumplings the bar is set pretty high for me, so when I heard about the quirky restaurant that showcases dumplings with an eccentric twist, my curiosity was naturally aroused.

Before we get into the nitty gritty food review, I think it’s important to address the ambience of the place. Drumplings’ overall aesthetic ticked every box in terms of style, decoration, lighting and overall vibe. The entire restaurant is filled with dim purple and pink lighting, the tables are covered with bamboo steamers and candles and indie pop music plays in the background.

Drumplings’ radiant atmosphere is quite youthful and would be best suited to a very niche market of younger patrons or couples going on dates. The aura of the restaurant itself doesn’t really cater to older demographics or families with children but this doesn’t mean the restaurant is any less busy – the night I was there, multiple people were turned away for not having a booking.

Image retrieved from Drumplings Instagram.

Now let’s get into what you really want to hear about: the food
Drumplings boasts a menu that challenges traditional dumpling norms in every way possible; cheeseburger dumplings, mac and cheese dumplings, beef rendang dumplings are just some examples of the unique mouthwatering flavours.

Choosing your flavours is fun and forces you to engage in conversation with who you went out to dinner with, making Drumplings the perfect spot for a first date.

In the company of a few friends, we wearily ordered the cheeseburger, beef rendang, pepperoni pizza and the Aussie meat pie dumplings. Not sure what to expect from the interesting flavours, I must say I was pleasantly surprised … there was not a single flavour that was bad, all of the flavours worked well together.

Pepperoni pizza dumplings. Photo: Adair Winder

If I had to pick on anything I would say that the size of the dumplings themselves were a little underwhelming and left all of us still feeling quite hungry afterwards, which is pretty disappointing as you’re paying $12-$14 for a portion of five dumplings.

Due to still being hungry, we went on to order edamame beans ($6), spiced tapioca chips ($8) and a serving of three steamed barbecue pork buns ($12), which were again all delicious choices.
Sadly, after the three of us devoured all these dishes along with the servings of dumplings, none of us left feeling sufficiently full.

Photo retrieved from Drumplings Instagram.

What were the best and worst flavours of dumplings?
Surprisingly enough, the flavour that I had the least hopes for ended up being my favourite and that was the Aussie meat pie dumpling. Normally, I don’t even like meat pies so this is quite an unexpected choice for me. The underdog dumpling of the entire menu was to die for with its winning combination of grass-fed beef, Worcestershire sauce and the additional touches of crispy pastry and ketchup on top – $12

My least favourite dumpling would have to be the beef rendang dumpling. The toasted coconut sprinkles on top worked well with the ginger, tamarind and beef but it just didn’t quite capture the taste of a delicious rendang curry for me. – $13

Beef rendang dumplings. Photo: Adair Winder

Final thoughts on Drumplings:
Drumplings is an experience and I feel that it is definitely worth the visit, especially if you’re interested in pushing the boundaries and trying something new, however it is not somewhere that you would attend and dine in regularly.

It is important to mention that Drumplings also sells a range of traditional dumpling flavours, but in saying that, if you are looking for the big plates of cheap, traditional pork and chive dumplings, stick to Boxhill or China town. I would not suggest going to Drumplings for traditional Chinese dumplings since you are paying more for a smaller portion size.

All in all, I recommend giving this place a try – the food is flavoursome and your tastebuds will thank you later.

Photo: Adair Winder.

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