Pel'Meni Dumpling Tzar: Cooking up Russian dumplings in Fremont
Pel'Meni Dumpling Tzar has arrived in Fremont, offering Russian dumplings for dinner and into the wee hours.
Seattle Times staff reporter
Pel'Meni Dumpling TzarDumpling House
3516 Fremont Place, Seattle
No phone. Email firstname.lastname@example.org
or Facebook: pelmeni Seattle dumpling tzar
Hours: 5 p.m.-2:30 a.m. daily, though on Fridays and Saturdays it may stay open as late as 3 a.m.
Etc.: Visa and MasterCard accepted; street parking; no obstacles to access; no alcohol.
If you attended Western Washington University, no introduction is needed. The Russian dumplings that have been a big hit in Bellingham for students and bar hoppers are now available in Fremont. Pel'Meni Dumpling Tzar is located — where else? — near the Lenin statue.
Open since February in an alley, Pel'Meni wants to draw the dinner crowd, but the food is intended more for the barhopping set. Doors open at 5 p.m. daily. Closing hour can be best described as flexible. Pel'Meni doesn't shut down until the last bar hopper departs.
The menu: There's a blackboard menu of just beef or potato dumplings ($7 for about 16 dumplings) or a combination of both ($8 for about 20 dumplings). Each order is served with rye bread in a biodegradable tray. Sodas and water cost $1, energy drinks $2.
What to write home about: Beef dumplings are more like chewy vessels for the sauces and spices. Dumplings get a squirt of hot sauce, rice-wine vinegar, butter, sour cream and a sprinkle of curry and cilantro for a tart, tangy and mildly spicy bite. Once you've gobbled up the dumplings, use the spongy rye bread to mop up the leftover sauces. They taste better at night after you've had a few.
What to skip: Vegetarians, you're out of luck. The potato dumplings were bland. The sour cream helps.
The setting: It looks like a coffeehouse, which the spot once was. It's now a shared space with Alley Cat sandwich shop during the day and Pel'Meni at night. There's a dining space and also a courtyard, though many prefer their orders to go. The boiled dumplings are made to order in the open kitchen. Takes about five minutes per order.
Summing up: An order each of the meat and potato dumplings and the combo totaled $22, enough for three. The dumplings, more like an egg-noodle pasta dough, aren't the authentic Russian version. They've been tweaked with a pleasant tart, spicy and curry flavor, with a chewy texture, ideal for the bar hoppers who get the late-night munchies.
Tan Vinh: 206-515-5656 or email@example.com
When vice president of Sub Pop Records Megan Jasper isn't running things at the office, she's working in her garden at her West Seattle home where she and her husband Brian spend time relaxing.