Dumplings Encino

Moonlight Restaurant Shines With Russian Dumplings

For the past six years, Moonlight Restaurant has been relatively quiet most days. Artur Ulikyan’s second-floor restaurant in Encino Plaza tends to heat up at night and on weekends. The native of Yerevan, Armenia, who previously ran Philly Steak House in Glendale, now hosts frequent banquets and birthday parties at Moonlight. People fill rows of […]

For the past six years, Moonlight Restaurant has been relatively quiet most days. Artur Ulikyan’s second-floor restaurant in Encino Plaza tends to heat up at night and on weekends. The native of Yerevan, Armenia, who previously ran Philly Steak House in Glendale, now hosts frequent banquets and birthday parties at Moonlight.

People fill rows of six- to eight-seat tables covered in white cloths, gazing out windows with blue curtains and enjoying the sweet stylings of either a live DJ or Russian music videos that play on flat-screen TVs. One of the biggest draws is the food: a mix of Russian and Mediterranean classics, including dips, kebabs and dumplings.

Moonlight’s dumplings are especially satisfying. Vareniki are filled with mashed potatoes seasoned with salt and black pepper. They’re available deep-fried or boiled, topped with sweet sautéed onions. Pelmeni w/Meat features either fresh ground beef flap meat or chicken thigh meat, deep-fried or boiled. I’d recommend getting vareniki fried and pelmeni boiled, dusted with chopped parsley in both cases. Sprinkle the pelmeni with black pepper and pair with cooling sour cream to create dream bites.

18000 W. Ventura Blvd., Encino, 818-757-1235

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