A Dumpling Primer in an Unlikely Wrapper

In recent years the New York Daily News' food coverage has rarely made me hungry. I say that as someone who wrote the Eats column there for a few years in the mid nineties, and someone who used to really look forward to reading restaurant reviews and features by Arthur Schwartz and Daniel Young in the seventies, eighties and early nineties. But yesterday there was a piece by Jean Tang on Chinese dumplings that actually made me jump on a subway to Chinatown to chow down. Many of the places she wrote about were the usual suspects (Fried Dumpling, Dumpling Man), but a couple of them were legitimate finds. China North Dumpling (15 Essex St., 212-529-2670) is the "home of the ugly dumpling." According to Tang, "the tiny Kingdom of Pancakes (7 Allen St. 212966-5658) makes dumplings that are "hearty, with chew and flavor," and "tender beef stew in rich, peppery pork stock." Yum!