This Summer, we have been lucky enough to have the delicious Dumpling Bae on the scene at Courage Yard.
They have been here with a smile through rain and shine every Saturday as part of our Provisions pop up series.
We spoke to Jialei, one of the brilliant minds behind this street food gem, to find out a bit more about their independent business.
Firstly, how and when you create Dumpling Bae?
The idea first came about in 2019 when two friends from work, exhausted from their nine to midnight corporate job, thought about pursuing their passion and putting their culinary skills to work. After exploring and testing a number of different cuisines and concepts (including Skewer Sisters – yes, everyone had a good laugh at it), we finally decided on Dumpling Bae because we both loved dumplings and there is a lack of high quality authentic potsticker dumplings outside of Chinatown.
However, things never go according to plan so we ended up being caught up with work again. It took us another 2 years and 2 more exhausted friends from work to finally launch Dumpling Bae this summer.
What made you choose Courage Yard for your first pop up venture?
Firstly, we are very familiar with the local area as we live and work near Shad Thames. Next, we really love the location and vibe. Nestled in a quiet residential area that is right next to the bustling Tower Bridge, Courage Yard offers the best of both worlds. Finally, the Courage Yard team who manage the pop-up market have been a dream to work with, and have been more than supportive of new traders like us.
What have you enjoyed about popping up at Courage Yard?
The people! The Shad Thames residents are the loveliest and have been the most supportive. We absolutely enjoyed seeing familiar faces and chatting with our loyal customers every week (Lucy, Jon, Steven, Justin, Caroline, to name but a few), as well as constantly meeting new customers and making new connections.
What has been your best-selling dumpling flavour?
Traditional pork is by far the best selling flavour. We use authentic Shanghainese recipe which has a slightly sweeter taste that really complements and highlights the natural umami of the pork filling.
What’s your personal favourite flavour?
Each of us has a different favourite but the Veggie dumplings are undoubtedly the most popular among us. The umami and unique flavour of shiitake mushroom blends perfectly with the sweetness and freshness of the carrots and cabbage, and all topped-off with the deep aroma of sesame oil. As our team member Carl would say, “I never knew vegan food can taste so good!”
Is there anything new you would like to develop and add to your menu in the future?
We are constantly thinking about new flavours and have released our limited edition premium Veal Truffle dumplings a few weeks ago. As we move forward, we’d like to explore more fusion flavours, break the boundary between different types of cuisines and use our dumplings as a vessel to bring unique flavours from across the world to our customers.