When My Neighbours the Dumplings opened up a five minute walk from my flat, I knew it was trouble. Originally marred by a series of delays in getting their fixtures ready for the opening night, they are now beyond busy any night of the week.They are a little casual dumpling house bang in the middle of Lower Clapton, a growing mortar of fine eateries.
At first I expected a proper dumpling house. Either Japanes (like its name, borrowed from the Studio Ghibli film "My Neighbours The Yamadas") or Chinese, I didn't care. I love dumplings. But soon I discovered that theirs is not a traditional shop but a fusion of reimagined bites from Asia.
The food is superb. The tastes are perfectly balanced, whether sticky, tangy, umami, crispy.... the one thing they are not, is Japanese. The way the food is put together is not as detail-oriented as, for example Uchi's nearby.
But they more than make up for it with their small menu of fun samplings and their variety of Sake, their great music playing through the speakers, the upbeat vibe and the friendly service.
If you're in and around Clapton, I definitely recommend you swing by My Neighbours.