Wednesday, April 26, 2006

The YongFoo Elite, Shanghai

Deep Fried Mandarin Fish in Sweet and Sour Sauce

This place (200 Yongfu Road, 21-54662727) was interesting. It is supposed to be quite exclusive, entertaining celebrities and heads of state, and decorated in a very artsy-sophisticated fashion in one of the former European parts of town. It all reflected in the food too. Clearly with a bit of fusion in mind, we started with some kind of salad featuring avocado and grapefruit in a wasabi dressing but with cold marinated meats Chinese-style (eating salad - and slices of avocado - with chopsticks is quite a chore, mind you). Fortunately, it was not all like that - there were some traditional Chinese dishes like the sauteed fresh water shrimp as well as the kung pao chicken. The meal finished off with some sweet and sour fish and - interestingly enough - a single dumpling sitting in its own tiny little steamer for an individual serving. It had hairy crab roe inside, which is apparently a delicacy in this part of the world (BTW, that's roe from a hairy crab, not crab roe with hair on it), thus giving it a nice taste (although I wish we had gotten the whole crab).

Nanjiang Pork Dumplings With Hairy Crab RoeAnyway, that's all. This wasn't bad food, and it's everything you'd expect from a nice place. But honestly, I'd rather go on the street and get just a bowl of noodles for much cheaper (and much more of an emotional reaction).


Venitha said...

One little steamer dumpling? It looks so lonely! Crab roe sounds pretty good, though. I liked the crab xiao long bao at the famous place in old town Shanghai.

Crush Communism said...

I still haven't found as good xiao lung bao as those in Joe Shanghai's in Chinatown NYC.

Here in Singa Crystal Jade has teh better ones, way better than din tai fung's

bma said...

Sorry to stomp all over your comment here, but what is the big deal about Joe's Shanghai? I went there a number of years ago after hearing nothing but rave reviews from New Yorkers about that place, but I found the dumpling skins horrendously thick and tough, as if nary a whimper of care went into assembling those little suckers. Granted, the crab meat stuffing inside was fair, but still, I went home totally baffled as to why people like that place so much. Din Tai Fung, while not necesarily the best (I've had better in Shanghai), still beats that place by a long shot in my opinion.

(BTW, I'm not a huge fan of Crystal Jade either, so I think we must have drastically different tastes in food.)

Bolshevik Revolutionary said...

obviously we disagree BMA but here are some pointers:

1. due to the hefty amount of soup packed, the skin has to be just a tad (i dont find it THAT much more) thicker than, say, their DTF counterparts (which at least in Sing, it appears they forget there's should be some soup there);

2. xiao lung baos are soup dumplings. and thanks to the lard and what not, they carry plenty of goodness. the only soupier dumplings i found were in san fran..

3. I just find the (quality+quantity)/price ratio superior at CJ than DFT. enjoy bali!