Dian Xin – Asian Soup Dumplings in New Orleans?!
Authentic Chinese fare in New Orleans isn’t what I was expecting, but here we are. I have had similar meals in NYC but when Chas said he found a Xiao Long Bao (soup dumplings) spot that was the real deal in Louisiana, I was honestly a bit skeptical. I was wrong. I’ll eat that crow…and just about anything on this menu. Enter Dian Xin – a wonderful change of pace from the creole/cajun dining experiences of New Orleans (don’t worry, there’s a bit of fusion here as well).
Not just soup dumplings
The Interior is small but nice. There is a cool little Koi style pond inside with running water and lights. There are large images of some of their more popular dishes on the walls. Basically just a single open space filled with tables and servers running around to take orders and deliver hot food. No frills, no fuss…just amazing aromas and interesting sights. It was quite busy here, and we were about to find out why.
We ordered the Pan Fried Dumplings, Xiao Long Bao, Crabmeat and Crawfish soup Bao (told you the fusion was coming), and the Chicken Jian Bing. We will definitely be back to try out some more of the bao varieties and Jian Bing selections as well as some of the Char Siu. It was so hard to order here because everything sounded excellent but you only have so much stomach space!
The pan fried dumplings had a nice hard crust on one side and a doughy exterior to the other side. Exactly what you look for in an authentic fried dumpling. It’s so hard to find them cooked in this traditional way so this was exciting right out of the gate. The pork filling was excellent…rich and savory and it was such a nice bite.
The Crabmeat and Crawfish Bao was clearly one of their offerings honoring the area while still staying true to their own history. This was a very good dumpling and had I not tasted anything else here, it would have been good enough for me to come back again. With that said, it was my least favorite item we ordered. The seafood flavor was strong and delicious but it did feel a bit one dimensional in that way. If they had some pork in this dumpling with the crawfish I think that would have been a huge hit.
The Xiao Long Bao was incredible. This flavor rivaled the ones I’ve gotten in NYC and were for sure a true testament to Shanghainese cuisine. The broth inside was extremely flavorful and the meat was so tender and moist. I could have eaten 3 orders of these myself, and I may someday. Don’t judge me.
The Jian Bing was exactly what I hoped it would be. Basically similar to a very thin omelet or a crepe, this was stuffed with chicken and Chinese vegetables and it was fantastic. We had a plan to Shanghai that got cancelled (thanks Covid) but I watched so many videos of people grabbing these from street food vendors and I had such a longing to try it. To say I was happy is an extreme understatement. I’d order this again many many more times.
Is Dian Xin the Best?
All affordable prices at a spot right in the French Quarter near Iconic spots like Café Du Monde and near one of our favorite dive bars (Molly’s at the Market) makes this an even easier call…Dian Xin in New Orleans, Louisiana – Didn’t Suck!