The build-out may begin any day now for Dumplings & Buns, the new Pac Heights Asian food stop we briefly mentioned a bit ago. The 700-square-foot former pet store will become the realization of owner May Lee's life-long dream: to create a dumpling shop using her family's tried-and-tested Chinese recipes. The idea has grown to include a retail grocer, selling esoteric Chinese ingredients and foods like kimchee and Asian-flavored dog treats. But we're very much interested in the eatery side of things, which aims to "do for Chinese buns what Beard Papa did for éclairs." Dumplings will be baked off continually throughout the day, so wafting fresh dough fumes will fill the sidewalk outside. Lee has recruited professional baker Katie Leaird to help execute savory pork, chicken and seasonal veggie buns, plus sweet options like chocolate, coconut cream and "boozer buns" with liquor-spiked fillings like rum and framboise. There's also talk of a signature TBA gluten-free item, Asian-style salads like marinated tofu with soba noodles, and soup. The space only has room for 16 seats, so it'll end up being a mostly take-out affair. ETA here is still mid-July.
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