Speakers of Mandarin know that the actual name of the place translates as Mama’s Dumplings. They also know that, yes, you can do well for yourself with plates of crispy beef, a cut above the norm, but that the best reason to come is the specialty of the house—fresh-made dough hand-rolled and stuffed with any of 16 fillings (we’re partial to the combinations, such as shrimp-and-chive or beef-and-celery) and steamed till they’re plump and juicy. Make dumplings the centerpiece of your meal (they come 12 to an order), and augment them with small plates—garlicky cucumbers, for instance, and a bowl of cold sesame noodles with its numbing chili sauce.
Where you can get it: 755 Hungerford Dr., Rockville; 301-294-0808
Also good: Pork-and-napa-cabbage dumplings; pork-and-chive dumplings.