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Hong Kong restaurant reviews

First impressions of Jin Jiao Gold Dumpling Bar – worth checking out if you’re in Tai Hang

This corner spot in Tai Hang doesn’t take bookings and the stools don’t encourage lingering. Traditional boiled or fried dumplings with fillings such as corn and beef with celery and cumin were nothing special

PUBLISHED : Tuesday, 04 April, 2017, 5:18pm
UPDATED : Wednesday, 05 April, 2017, 3:05pm

New restaurants continue to open in Tai Hang, and the latest is Jin Jiao – Gold Dumpling Bar. Although the restaurant is on a corner and has signage on both sides, it’s easy to miss and we walked right past it.

The dumplings are worth checking out – home-made with a good variety of traditional fillings. It’s really an eat-and-go kind of place: diners sit on stools, which don’t encourage lingering. They don’t take bookings but if you eat earlier at lunch or dinner, you probably won’t have to wait.

The menu is straightforward: choose the dumpling fillings, decide on six or eight pieces, and how you want them cooked – boiled or fried.

The meal didn’t start off well when we tasted the beef, celery and cumin boiled dumplings (HK$42 for six). They were overcooked and we couldn’t  taste much cumin, although we liked the home-made feel. The boiled dumplings were garnished with chopped spring onions, but they would have been better without.

We enjoyed the vegetarian boiled dumplings (HK$42 for six), filled with chopped Chinese chives and black ear fungus. Three of the dumpling wrappers were green because they had been dyed with spinach, while the other three were red from beets, but we couldn’t detect the taste of either.

Tomato and egg is a typical homestyle Chinese dish, and at Jin Jiao it is used as a dumpling filling together with corn kernels (HK$52 for six). We had these fried, and they were on the bland side. A small cup of corn in a thin cream sauce was served with the dumplings, but we were told it wasn’t meant to be used as a dip.

We were surprised that this place doesn’t offer a plate of vegetables to go with the dumplings, although snacks are available. We ordered the finger spring rolls (HK$38 for three), which were fried and piping hot, but they didn’t have much filling.

The trio fried crisps (HK$38) weren’t much better: a small bucket filled with leftover dough bits in spinach, carrot or original flavour. If you were looking for a bar snack to go with your beer, these might have worked if dressed with some vinegar, but they didn’t have much substance.

Jin Jiao – Gold Dumpling Bar, 9A Sun Chun Street, Tai Hang, tel: 2618 8782

 

While you’re in the area:

Restaurant review: Kakuuchi, Tai Hang – good-value casual Japanese fare

Restaurant review: Second Draft, Tai Hang – inspired dishes paired with beer

Restaurant review: Two Two Chicken in Tai Hang – Korean fried chicken