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Davis, California

Tuesday, April 16, 2024

Best Restaurant: The Dumpling House

The local hotspot is voted Best Restaurant by UC Davis students 


By ALEX UPTON — features@theaggie.org


The Dumpling House, located in the heart of downtown Davis, was voted Best Restaurant by UC Davis students, receiving 35.8% of votes in the competitive category. Despite popular neighboring restaurants such as Sophia’s Thai and Davis Noodle City, The Dumpling House manages to keep a strong and steady customer base.

The restaurant was originally a London Fish ‘N Chips restaurant and still contains elements of this cuisine, embracing a quirky menu that includes both dumplings and fish ‘n chips. 

Courtesy of Alex Upton

Restaurant Manager Ivy Mai has worked at the Dumpling House since 2012, experiencing both a four-year closure and a remodel during her time working for the restaurant. Like many of the businesses in downtown Davis, the restaurant operates out of a converted house that gives it a close-knit feel. Mai talked about how this atmosphere and her bond with her coworkers contribute to the store’s ambiance. 

“I love working here, we treat everyone here like a family member, we are happy every day and we work together as a team,” Mai said. 

Mai’s favorite item on the menu is the pork and chive dumplings., which she says are not only delicious but also have a sentimental value for her. 

“I started out as a waitress here in 2012, and then if it wasn’t busy, I would try to make dumplings, and then I learned how to make them from my co-worker,” Mai said. Now, making dumplings is her favorite part of working at the restaurant.

UC Davis student Mili Molinari agrees with Mai that the pork and chive dumplings are the best item on the menu. Molinari is a second-year environmental engineering major and lives near The Dumpling House, so she eats there often. She said that she appreciates the consistency of their food and the welcoming environment. 

Clearly, the friendly staff is a big draw for students, as Molinari made a point of describing how welcoming everyone is when she comes in. 

“The food is really good; it’s a super friendly environment,” Molinari said. “And I really like the staff here, they’re super nice.” 


Written by: Alex Upton — features@theaggie.org