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Paul's Pel'meni

MuralIn a word: Pel'meni happy returns.

The specs: #01011   
203 W Gorham St., 53703
Details at Yelp, Facebook

Latest Paul's Pel'meni news and reviews

JM ate the pel'meni.
Nichole ate the pel'meni.
Everyone at Paul's eats the pel'meni.
The bill was $16, or $8/person, plus tip.
JM gave Paul's Pel'meni a B+; Nichole gave Paul's Pel'meni an A (see our grading rubric).

Paul's Pel'meni is a one-food wonder.  They have a few sides and beverages to go with their well-made Russian dumplings, but we got a majority of the menu between just the two of us. If these pel'meni weren't really, really good -- well, it seems unlikely they'd have lasted this long.

Pel'meni

This leads to an important point. If you don't like pel'meni, GO ELSEWHERE! There is literally nothing for you here. Nichole got the opposite of nothing, which is to say her pel'meni came with the works - curry powder, sriracha-based red sauce, and parsley, and sour cream on the side to slather or dip in - and the dumplings were indeed very good. The flavor balance is critical in the toppings, which is why JM's red-sauce-only concoction was a little one note. Furtheremore, these dumpling are little packets of delicious gold. Each is a warm reminder of life well enjoyed. Imagine everything you loved as a kid about Chef Boyardee. Now imagine that this food is made with real ingredients, and comes quick and cheap. 

Paul's Pel'meni

The space is small and leaves much to be desired, but that comes with the territory in borderline student cuisine. Madison lacks almost anything from betwixt Deutschland and China, and even a small comfort like this barely begins to scratch the itch. Maybe now that Bombers is closing, someone else can open a borschterie next door and turn this block into little St. Petersburg.

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Yes, the atmosphere leaves much to be desired, but I couldn't care less when the food is this good. Pure, simple, real ingredients handled by real people, and delicious to boot. I'll take it!!! I've followed these little bits of doughy joy around town (for instance, having them in Fitchburg at a coffee shop I can't recall the name of) for a good reason. They're also terrific people, putting up with my crazy requests such as packing an order in a thermal mug so they'd be hot when I picked up my kid after a trip to Honduras (she had requested pel'meni as her first meal upon her return). Go. Be happy.

Intermarket, a small Russian grocery store on Old Middleton Road, sells excellent frozen pel'meni.

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