Page history last edited by Mark P 14 years, 9 months ago

Old Shanghai Review

We'd return to Old Shanghai for its pork Shanghai steamed dumplings (xiao long bao) and Shanghai chow mein.


The dumplings were good, definitely better than most. The skin was of a medium thickness, hard to accidentally puncture unless one stuck a sharp object directly into it. The broth was nicely salty and flavorful. And the pork was fairly good as well. I'm proud we resisted eating them until they cooled a bit, thus saving burning ourselves with a mouthful of scalding liquid.


The crab and pork dumplings we tried later in the meal didn't match up. People didn't like the taste of the crab.


The green onion pancakes, served nicely crispy, hot, and freshly fried, were exactly as they should be. Satisfying.


"Crystal shrimp" turned out to be wok-fried tail-less shrimp. Crystal is an apt description as they were pristine in their unadorned, naked state. Served with a slightly vinegary soy sauce, they didn't have much distinct flavor or complexity and so we thought they were merely okay. One person actively disliked them.


The Shanghai chow mein, served with thick noodles, pork, onions, and greens, was greasy, though happily not oily. It was good, satisfying and filling. Our once-China-dwelling attendee assured us this was spot on.


We tried the pan-fried pork buns, under the hope that they would be like the buns a friend of mine would bring me when returning from visiting New York. These were decent. They were the closest I've seen yet on this coast: fairly thick slightly doughy wrapper, much like a cross between a steamed pork bun and a dumpling, and a chunk of pork inside. These also were topped with green onions and dotted with sesame seeds on their fried bottoms. The New York dumplings always had a little liquid on the inside, much like xiao long bao, but these did not. (Well, one actually did and it surprised me very much.) The pork was decent, much like the pork in the other items from the meal, but not as assertive and spiced as I remember the New York dumplings. Guess I'll keep looking.


The decor was pretty typical for a Chinese restaurant: homey, green tablecloths, fairly standard photos on the wall. We were only one of two tables with white people in the restaurant, and, I believe, the only one that didn't speak an Asian language when talking to the waiter.


The total was $22/person including tax and tip. We didn't order drinks. Tea was free.


After dinner we headed to Creations Dessert House to chat more.


Original Announcement

Last week I thought I'd choose another Persian restaurant for this week. But given my leftovers and the other meals I've had in the last week, I'm meated out. Instead, I've selected a cheap and unusual joint: we'll head for dumplings and more at Old Shanghai in the outer richmond.

5145 Geary Boulevard

(between 15th & 16th Avenues)


As always, please tell me if you can make it.


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