#aucklandeats: Watda Dumplings, Truly a “Watda” Experience!

by Michelle Li

Watda Dumplings | Shop 14, Ponsonby Central, 4 Brown Street

Instagram | @Watda Dumplings 

A new fusion restaurant has entered the scene in Ponsonby! I’ve noticed slowly more and more fusion restaurants opening up in Ponsonby giving us countless options! This time it’s Korean owners sharing their new take on dumplings, and it’s definitely not what I expected to say the least! Watda Dumpling perfectly fits into Ponsonby Central where you’ll find all sorts of different cuisines. They’ve just opened in mid-October with their unique approach to my personal comfort food, dumplings. So of course, I had to take a visit and share with you my experience.

Walking into the place, the interior feels very new yet the seats and tables give a rustic feel, purposely done with a little distressing. A unique contrast that I think represents the Watda Dumpling concept perfectly. If you are thinking of the traditional Korean dumplings filled to the brim with fillings, this place is not that at all! It’s loaded dumplings, a never before seen dish, so all the toppings, spices and sauces are piled on top. Every bite gives you more and more flavour! As soon as I took a bite, I was left shocked 😦 It’s a totally different take that is unique and very, very creative!

Let’s start with my personal favourite, the Philly Cheese Steak. A classic sandwich option that is turned around in a new way by incorporating dumplings into the mix. So yes, dumplings that are loaded with Korean bulgogi beef, which is often marinated and grilled for a smokey flavour, on dumplings are already super new. But what about the bread that completes a sandwich? I was shocked when I took the first bite, as the ciabatta bread was wrapped up in the dumpling skin. And surprisingly it works really well! For the Philly Cheese Steak, the dumpling was fried so it was textural heaven with the crunch of the dumpling that went well with the other flavours. Loaded with tangy yoghurt sauce, pickles, and jalapenos it definitely elevated this dish! A total surprise but very delicious 🤤

Next up, the Prawn Volcano was what got me very much intrigued! I was wondering what would be filled in this dumpling, as the Philly Cheese Steak had ciabatta bread in it. Being inspired by another go-to meal for many, sushi, the Prawn Volcano dumpling was stuffed with sushi rice. It may sound a little bizarre but somehow it worked 😂 This time the dumpling was steamed so there still was a little bit of chew and bite that went well with the texture of sushi rice. It was topped with crab meat, pickled ginger, teriyaki sauce and even some puffed quinoa for the crunch! 

Of course, I couldn’t skip out on dessert. As the total sweet tooth I am, I had to try out their Churr Oreo. If I wasn’t so full from the other two dishes, I would have easily devoured this. Thinly fried dumpling skins that somehow were made extra crunchy topped with brown sugar and cinnamon, a combo that comes very close to churros. To finish it off, this dish was loaded with oreo crumbs, chocolate sauce and custard for an extra treat that made each dumpling skin so moreish. This dish sure satisfied my sweet tooth! Plus there were also fresh bananas to cut through a little of that sweetness which was a nice addition.

Instagram | @Watda Dumplings 

As dumplings are my comfort food, I was really excited to try this place out but did not expect how out of the ordinary it would be! It was delicious, filling and I think it would be a great place to go whether you are in need of a snack or a complete meal. I love how Watda Dumplings really experimented with a new concept and still made it taste amazing. They are able to incorporate meals that are usually our grab and go options and transform it into something totally new and different. A must go just to see for yourself how they can intertwine our usual quick meal choices into dumplings!





11:30AM - 9:30PM


 11:30AM - 10:30PM


11AM - 10.30PM


11AM - 9:30PM

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