Had been intrigued by a new Chinese dumpling resto in Parc Ex, and finally went last night with 3 friends. Jiu Xiang Dumpling popped up recently in the midst of Little India on Jean Talon, just east of Acadie, across from Punjab Palace.
I called to see if they were open beforehand as it was later on a Sunday, and the owner said "No, sorry." then after a moment continued, "well, sure. Come by and we'll make you some food" (??!!). After the meal, we learned that they recently switched to being closed on Sundays, but he happened to be in the space when I called and made an exception.
It's a slightly strange setup- it almost feels like a pop-up restaurant in a non-descript bar, but we were pleasantly surprised and had a great meal.
The dumplings are very similar to the Qing Hua style - soupy, hand-made to order, 15 per plate and done steamed, fried or boiled. The menu covers pork, beef, chicken, lamb, veg and seafood options, along with a few cold appetizers.
We tried the pork & coriander, pork & cabbage and chicken & leek, along with a seaweed salad and cold, spicy tofu to start. We tried steamed, boiled and fried (which had that satisfying crunchy latticework holding the dumplings together). All were very good, and easily on par with the Lincoln/Chinatown locations of Qing Hua.
Service was friendly and quick by the proprietor/chef, whose wife was also working in the kitchen. We talked to him for a while about the setup and he said that his family loved his dumplings so much, he thought he'd try selling them to the public.
Again, it's a bit of a strange layout (a couple of VLT terminals are hidden in the back), but it's clean and spacious, and with a full bar, I could see it being a fun Friday night spot to eat and have a few drinks with a group.
Will definitely be back; it's nice to have a reliable dumpling spot in the north now. I wish them success.