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Jonathan Gold
Three of Jonathan Gold's favorite soup dumplings in the L.A. area
Three of Jonathan Gold's favorite soup dumplings in the L.A. area

What? There are soup dumplings outside the Republic of Georgia? I could scarcely believe it myself. Xiao long bao Wang Xing Ji is the first American branch of the most popular dumpling house in Wuxi, a lakeside city about 45 minutes outside of Shanghai. The dishes are famous for their sweetness — they date from an era when sugar was a pretty good signifier of prosperity. Its famous soup dumplings, xiao long bao, may not be as precisely machined as the ones at Din Tai Fung, but the thicker wrappers are soulful, engineered to absorb just enough black vinegar, simultaneously chewy and tender. You can get unsweetened XLB, but you probably want to go with the original — as...

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