Excellent lunch with great hospitality yesterday at two sister restaurants sharing space in Cambridge: Dumpling Daughter and Vester. I use the word “sister” quite literally, as the owners are a pair of sisters from Weston, Nadia Liu Spellman ’00 and Nicole Liu. Weston residents are already familiar with the original branch of Dumpling Daughter, which is thriving; this branch opened just recently. Anyway, my friend Meredith and I were welcomed warmly by Nadia, who realized immediately that I was a Weston teacher even though I had never been her teacher.
We had a delicious lunch of veggie spring rolls, a scallion pancake roll-up with beef shank, pan-seared pork dumplings, sesame wontons, and roasted BBQ pork buns. Taking home leftovers was necessary, of course.
Right after we arrived, a Weston alum who is working at Vester, Katya Checkovich ’12, came over to the Dumpling Daughter side to say hello. Katya was a memorable student from my precalc class in the 2010–11 school year; she suggested that we pop over to this more-or-less Danish cafe afterwards for coffee and dessert. We happily did so and finished our meal with first-rate coffee and pastries. The salads also lucked yummy, but we had already eaten a large lunch.
I highly recommend both places, but good luck finding parking. (I think you’re expected to either be at MIT or work in Kendall Square.) We actually managed to find a meter just a block away, but there’s certainly no guarantee of that. You can always take the T and get off at Kendall, if the train doesn’t break down before you get there.