Sally Ling’s, the high-end Chinese restaurant that held court on the South Boston waterfront from 1984 to 2003, attracted notable diners (Julia Child, Martin Yan) and suburbanites alike. Now, more than a decade later, Ling’s dishes are making a comeback, thanks to her daughter, Nadia Liu Spellman, who left a Manhattan finance gig to open Dumpling Daughter in Weston this past November.
Whereas Sally Ling’s specialized in white-tablecloth, banquet-style fare, Dumpling Daughter focuses on the “classic, Chinese comfort home food” that Spellman ate when she was young—especially these Taiwanese-style pork-and-chive-filled dumplings, which have thinner skins and a more-oblong shape than classic Peking ravioli. Because they’re the restaurant’s namesake, there was extra pressure to get them just right. “Sally Ling’s was more gourmet—this is really what we would do at home,” Spellman says. “That’s really what our menu is all about.”