Shandong Mama Mini

Centre Place / Melbourne
This is not your typical dumpling stop in Melbourne. Stripping away the menu and serving just a handful of Mama's best, this mini outlet delivers maxi happiness.

There are two good reasons to head to Shandong Mama Mini. Firstly the dumplings are not your typical Beijing or Shanghai offering, instead they are semi-wrapped morsels that have been pan fried only on one side in the Shandong style. Second is that they stay open from lunch through to dinner, so when you find yourself trapped at a desk and miss the lunch rush, Mama Mini is still open and ready for business.

The owners of Shandong Mama Mini also have a super busy restaurant off Bourke St called “Shandong Mama”, which does cause confusion for people looking for the little haunt on Centre Place. The mini menu is trimmed down, with a range of tempting fillings for the dumplings, a couple of steamed bun options and an ever changing choice of daily iced tea in the summer or hot tea in the winter.

The fish dumplings are what Mama is most famous for, but we like the “Melbourne” and chicken dumplings best for their perky flavours. A little trolley with vinegar and chilli completes the experience. Dip your hot dumplings into the cool vinegar to get the perfect balance of heat and meat.

It’s a small venue that fills up quickly in peak hour but settles down to a peaceful hum once the suits head back to their offices. Dumplings come in small servings for one, or large servings to be shared. The deep fried lotus root chips are lip smacking good, and offer a salty contrast to a tall glass of ice cold lemon tea.

We love this blend of China and Melbourne, right down to naming one of the best Shandong dumplings after our beloved city.

This page was last updated on January 14, 2016

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Yummy Tummy

These are our favourite street dumplings in town. Quick and tasty plus excellent iced tea.

Dollars & Sense

Large serve of dumplings, pork belly buns and iced tea for two costs under $30.

Chill or Kill

Limited seats and limited noise.

No Queues Thankyou

People don't queue for a table in this laneway, they just head to the next cafe. Usually easy to get a table.

Shandong Mama Mini

5 Centre Place, Melbourne
(near Degraves Lane)
Open 11am-9pm
Closed Sundays

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