Hours: Wed.-Mon. 8-4 p.m.
Tian Jin Dumplings, a takeout window in Oakland’s Chinatown that specializes in dumplings and other northern Chinese xiaochi, or “small eats,” has more in common with a street stall than a full-service restaurant. But what the place lacks in amenities and breadth of offerings it makes up for in good old-fashioned deliciousness. In particular, the juicy, delicate handmade dumplings — available in two standard pork-and-vegetable varieties, as well as several unconventional versions that need to be ordered in advance — are probably the best in the East Bay. A shaobing (savory baked biscuit) stuffed with a smoked boiled egg makes for a tasty $1 breakfast “sandwich.” And the “pancake fruit” — a huge, savory, egg-coated crepe filled with Chinese fried cruller, crunchy pickled mustard stems, and fresh cilantro — is the perfect thing to warm you up on a chilly morning.