By Nancy Tujague, freelance writer
Walk past Dumplin’s on any day of the week during lunch and you’ll see that the place is filled to the brim with customers.
Everyday, for the few hours that the bakery and restaurant are open, the sweet smell of the freshly baked bread that hangs in the air lures customer after customer through the doors. Dumplin’s, located on Main Street in the heart of Franklin, has been one of the city’s mainstays since most of us can remember.
As one of the first restaurants that I came across in Franklin, it remains in my mind the perfect place for experiencing what Franklin has to offer. In fact, the food, atmosphere, and service are so consistently pleasant there, it’s hard sometimes to go anywhere else.
My favorite part of Dumplin’s, the part about which I remember with such satisfaction that it overshadows all else, comes before you even order your food. Their complimentary bread and butter are so incredible that it deserves its own paragraph. The freshly baked buns come to your table right out of the oven, their warm, sweet layers tasty enough to make it your whole meal. What makes it even more irresistible is the homemade butter.
The honey butter is so delicious, if it weren’t a solid I would drink it through a straw, and I don’t even like butter. Be sure to save room for whatever you order, though, as you’ll quickly find that you’ve eaten more than your share of bread if you aren’t mindful.
The menu is simple and somewhat limited, but its dishes have been tweaked to perfection. All of the sandwiches are made on similarly delicious bread, with their chicken salad sandwich perhaps being the best and most popular item on the menu. This sandwich, which comes with a side salad, makes for a perfect summer meal when combined with their refreshing fruit tea.
They also have daily lunch items that are created using healthy techniques and ingredients for the more health-conscious diners. These are surprisingly tasteful for a low-fat alternative. Other notable items on their menu include their chicken dumpling soup, which is the ultimate choice in satisfaction for those cold, blustery days.
Just like the breads, their desserts are homemade and on display at the counter in the front of the restaurant tempting everyone who walks by.
Although the place seems to be eternally busy, the staff manages to keep things moving, and I have never had to wait more than five minutes for a table. The servers are friendly and hard-working, and the atmosphere is as relaxed and charming as it gets in the South.
Download the menu here!
H.R.H. Dumplin’s428 Main St, Franklin, 37064