Let me just preface this by saying that I have always had thing for Chinese food and am dumpling obsessed. When La Ravioleria Sarpi in Chinatown opened this past winter, it took me quite a long time to figure out just what it was exactly. The crowd in front of it was about ten thick and on top of that were two long lines. Anytime I got close enough to figure out what was going on, I would get elbowed, stepped on or worse, so I kept my distance for quite a long time.
Then one day, I passed by during the off hour and realized what was happening there: dumplings! So, ravioli is the Italian word for dumplings which, as an American, has always been a bit weird because dumplings are not ravioli to me. Anyway, I didn’t even know the name of the place otherwise I would have become a regular here much sooner.
So in short, La Ravioleria Sarpi in Chinatown is a street food, take-away, standing room only kind of place. There are little five things you can get, three of which are dumplings filled with pork, beef and vegetables.
The other two are bianjing, or Chinese crepes made from egg and Mulino Sobrino type 0 and integrale flours. Apparently, they are a popular breakfast food and La Ravioleria Sarpi serves them two ways: with or without the Piemontese beef and pork. Also in inside are leeks, herbs, three delightful fritters (I heart fried things) and you have a choice of spicy or mild sauce. I always opt for the spicy. Dumplings cost 3 euro each, the meatless crepe is 3.50 and the carnivorous one is 4.50. You get four dumplings to an order. You can also swing by to pick them up uncooked and prepare them at home. Eight uncooked dumplings costs 5 euro.
Now it can be crowded so here’s how it works. You pay for your order first; if you’re getting dumplings, yo udon’t have to queeu up again, you just have to wait until they call your name. For the bianjing, you line up and you get to watch them make it fresh right in front of you. It’s amazing.
La Ravioleria Sarpi, Via Paolo Sarpi 27; 331 887 0596; Open seven days: 9.00am-3.00pm and 4.00pm – 9.30pm