dumplings ¥110 - ¥200, sets & main dishes ¥800 - ¥1000
- 1 Chome-36-5 Asagaya-minami, Suginami, Tokyo
- Distance from Station:
- 6 minutes from JR Asagaya Station
- 11:30am - 10:00pm
- Staff speak Japanese, Chinese, and some English
Pandas and Dumplings Too Cute to Pass Up
Walking through the Pearl Center shopping street in Asagaya you’ll surely notice this cute shop with many pandas displayed. By the panda imagery you can probably guess this is a Chinese restaurant. Honkaku Panda has a large sign that says “I’m Bao” (the name of their panda character, after the Chinese name of the type of dim sum dumpling). Other than cute pandas, here you’ll find authentic Sichuan cousine, famous for spiciness due to Sichuan pepper, including classical Chinese dishes like jinjao, Sichuan style tofu, beef, and pork.
However, the specialty of Honkaku Panda is their colorful dim sum dumplings. They have 8 different dumpling flavors, and each flavor has a different color, making it like a fun game where you can taste them all and decide which one is the king of dumplings!
Of course, they have the usual classic flavor, which is absolutely tasty and fresh but could even be considered “boring” after experiencing Honkaku Panda’s colorful dumpling world! Every dumpling is handmade and steamed upon order; the consistency is perfect– soft but still firm and the right size and shape to fully enjoy the taste and try all of them. If you don’t like taking risks, the shrimp dumplings and celery dumplings are the right choice to bring some color to your dish (pink and light green, respectively) and try something not too extreme. For the spicy lover, there is also the spicy dumpling that you can easily guess from the color. Another one that will remind you of its Chinese origins is the original flavored Oolong tea dumpling. Really unusual!
Crab dumplings and cheese dumplings are other options (the yellow cheese one is absolutely divine) but the prize for most unconventional dumpling goes to the black truffle dumpling!! A little more expensive, but it is absolutely worth it!
Meal sets are available, including hot or cold drinks. They also have take out, and delivery by Uber Eats is possible, but part of the experience is also a visit to the shop with cute pandas everywhere, even hanging off your chair! (Panda lovers will now double their reasons to come to Asagaya, with Honkaku Panda and Panda Coffee within a minute from each other on the south side of Asagaya Station)
[published December 2018]