Denian’s is a new Chinese bun and bubble tea shop that has popped up at the intersection of Waltham Street and Marrett Road in Lexington. These are not dumplings: Chinese buns (bao zi) are breadier, have a thicker skin, and are steamed rather than baked or fried. Word on the street is that most everything is good—not “destination restaurant” good but “if you’re in the neighborhood” good. It’s a casual place with just a couple of tables and what lipoff describes as an “elegant, clean interior.”
The buns are homemade and fresh; the carrot, red bean, and taro paste buns are all great, particularly the taro paste, which lipoff calls “exceptionally good.” lipoff also loves the chicken bun: “The chicken was almost ground, with a great texture and a bit of ‘kick’ to it.” The scallion pancake is “thin, crisp and very good,” says lipoff. And, if you have a craving for dumplings instead of buns, Denian’s does offer pot stickers.
The bubble tea is described by several hounds as quite nice, with good texture but just-OK flavors (which are made from powdered mixes, not fresh fruit).
315 Marrett Road, Lexington