Mamalan has evolved quite a bit since their humble beginnings in Brixton Village.
The story started even before that, in Beijing, when Ning Ma – now the owner of five restaurants – would watch her Mum and Grandad making beautiful little dumplings for their busy market stall. Having moved to London in her teens, Ning always missed the food she had back home. Mamalan (which you guessed it, is named after her mum who taught her all the recipes!) started as a supper club in her London home. Shortly after, the first restaurant opened in Brixton Village before spiralling to Clapham, Dalston and Stratford, including dim sum making classes at the Stratford branch. After success in these four locations, in was only a matter of time that a Shoreditch restaurant would be added. Hurrah!
Located in the Richmix Square, the new restaurant is beautifully designed, with brass birdcages hung from the ceiling (which they apparently flew straight from China!) and with the stylish wooden furnishings this is definitely an upgrade from the Brixton location.
The menu has also evolved over the years. You’ll still find the scrumptious dumplings and super tasty soups that Mamalan is known for, but now expect delicious salads, buns and noodles as well.
Start with a few small bites – the super crispy vegetable balls were a firm favourite of ours. Spicy chicken wings were perfection, slightly crisp on the outside and just the right level of kick! The steamed dumplings were just as delicious as always and the beef and spring onion option (THE BEST in our opinion) had some serious flavour.
Buns are served in portions of two and toasted (not steamed) which we really liked and the pulled pork with pickled cucumber was our bun of choice!
Moving on to the bigger stuff, the slow cooked beef soup was just as good as the first time we had it years ago in Brixton, mouth-watering beef in a heart-warming broth with plenty of noodles, loaded with pak choi and coriander, it’s the ultimate winter comfort food. Pair it with the fresh, chicken ban mein salad – ideal if you’re looking for something healthy and filling.
We sipped on delicious cocktails such as the Beijing Blues with gin, sake, curacao, lavender bitters and ginger cordial and also knocked back a few Lucky number 8 with rum, crème de peche and absinth, topped with lemon and pineapple juice…it certainly felt lucky to us!