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日上海 Paris of the East ~ Meet the parents (2)
Jul 15, 2012
Good Shanghainese restaurant in Admiralty.
Decent quality food at reasonably price.
Natural light and comfortable seats but a bit busy.
Second stop of my in-laws from Japan (first stop was "八月居 House of Jasmine"). This time I chose something closer to work for a quick lunch with the in-laws.
First we ordered
: apparently one of the signature dishes of Ye Shanghai. It's Shanghainese smoked eggs with a little bit of cavier placed on top. The eggs were very aromatic! Everyone liked it. I was in two minds whether to take photo of the eggs (again, I was quite focused on listening to my in-laws and responding with my very limited Japanese as well as providing translation services to my Hong Kong family members....*phew*.) before I know it, those were gone. Anyway, as always, the smoked eggs at Ye Shanghai were good, slightly fluid at the centre with a strong smoked taste of tea leaves.
Ma Lan Tou
: Nice small plate of chopped up vegetables named " Indian Kalimeris Herb" (found it on the internet, I hope it means something to you because it doesn't mean anything to me
). I've only tried this at Shanghainese restaurants and not in other Chinese restaurant. It is very delicate type of food (read "small") which I believe Japanese people are quite fond of. Indeed everyone liked it.
Basically its chopped into very small shreds, steamed and tasted like it was mixed with some peanuts. You take a spoonful of it and pick those up with your chopsticks. The texture is a bit similar to slightly dried spinach. My description might be a bit weird but it's extremely flavourful. It had a very nice and fresh vegetable fragrance. Try it and you might like it.
Ma Po Tofu:
I couldn't resist ordering something spicy. Again, everyone really liked this. Quite spicy but definitely not overwhelming. I believe most could handle this. The spicy level is perhaps similar to 1/2 - 1 teaspoon of chopped chilli. Enough to give you a hint of spiciness but nothing to worry about (if you usually eat spicy food).
The great thing about it was that it had a bit of the tingling sensation from the spices (including aniseed), which is what most people are looking for if they are having Sichuan cuisines.
The tofu was very smooth, almost as smooth as Japanese style mapo tofu (which placed a lot of focus on the softness of the tofu above everything else.)
麻婆豆腐: 豆腐幼滑，居然真有一點麻及辣! 可以一試。
My in-laws were pretty freaked out when I suggested ordering this. They were freaked out by the name (bearing in mind where there were, i.e. HKSAR, is not impossible that we actually consume lion's head - nothing is impossible in Chinese cuisine.
) Anyway, I ordered it for fun.
It's basically simmered pork meatballs with vegetables and Chinese mushroom in a thick gravy. The meatballs were the size of a fist so probably that's how the artistic name came from. I've tried Lion's head in other Shanghainese restaurants but I can't differentiate between very good Lion's head and mediocre Lion's head (yet).
Anyway, this seemed not bad. All the ingredients were reasonably fresh, the meatballs had a good balance between lean meat and fatty meat, about 7:3. Even the in-laws liked it.
Fried string beans with bamboo shoots:
I always order this whenever I'm here. It's hard to go wrong and quite popular with most people:
As always, it's very flavourful. The string beans and the bamboo shoots were coated with a bit of salt with flour sauce. The string beans were very fresh and crisp. I'm a big fan of bamboo shoots. I think the bamboo shoots here were soaked properly but not soggy; also very crisp.
Just a gentle reminder, since Shanghainese cuisine generally use a lot of salt and vinegar. The taste is slightly on the strong side. It's made with Chinese wine, soy sauce, salt and pepper. The taste might be a bit heavy for some.
Xiao Lung Bao:
This is always a sure fire hit with Japanese family and friends:
(No photo available: It's gone before I manage to pull my camera out!
I'd say not as good as those provided by Xiao Lung Bao specialists like "Ding Tai Fung 鼎泰峰", "Wong Ka Sa 王家沙" and possibly "Crystal Jade 翡翠拉麵小籠包"; however, the quality was decent enough.
Every Xiao Lung Bao had a lot of flavorful meat juice inside. The skin was not too thick and the pork had decent pork taste. Be careful when you lift the Xiao Lung Bao, it's easy to break.
All in all, not bad and we ordered another portion.
(This reminds me to go to "Ding Tai Fung" or "Wong Ka Sa" on their next visit.
Kung Po chicken:
Another tourist's favorite, whether from Japan or elsewhere.
According to some recipe books (which I've relied on when I was cooking abroad), it's normal to add Chinese wine when flash frying the chicken with red and green peppers before adding at least a teaspoonful of chopped red chili. Luckily, they did not tone down the spiciness too much and there was still a hint of chili aftertaste.
The chicken cubes were very tender. Fried with cashew nuts and chopped red and green pepper. Quite good but a little bit oily.
Stir fried Scampi with tea leaves
This is also something which I'd usually order and the quality here tends to be fairly consistent. Fortunately, this was another hit with everyone one the table. The river shrimps / river prawns / scampi (how you call it depends on where you're from) were flash fried with "Lung Jeng 龍井" tea leaves. The taste of "Lung Jeng" tea leave are somewhat more "licorice" in taste than the bold "Pu Er 普洱" tea leaves. I believe Lung Jeng Tea Leaves is classified as a green tea 青茶 as opposed to the fermented Pu Er (check the HK tea museum for the details, it's very interesting).
Anyway, the scampi should be marinated in a bit of salt water before flash fried and were quite fresh. I'd suggest the restaurant put the river prawns in a small pot or a dish similar to those for the Ma Lan Tau. It would make it a lot easier to fish the scampis out.
Another gentle reminder: Remember to add a few drops of
Shanghainese Black Vinegar
before you eat the scampi! It adds a lot of complexity to it. The Shanghainese Black Vinegar taste very much like balsamic vinegar.
A great thing about "Ye Shanghai" is that almost every dish had the option of "topping it up" to cater for the number of persons you have. In my experience, the restaurant is quite honest and fair when going about it. They certainly won't rip you off.
We did everything in usual portion other than the Scampi and Kung Pao Chicken because we weren't too hungry and the last thing we wanted was to waste food.
Salted pork and vegetable fried rice
Nevertheless, Chinese and Japanese need carbs - i.e. rice, where in the form of fried rice, sushi, congee or onigiri (rice balls). There may not be room for desserts but there is always room for some carbs. So after having another look at the menu, which contained quite a large number of options, we ordered this:
The literal translation, if I remember correctly, was "
Salted pork and vegetable fried rice
". It may not sound like a very interesting dish judging from the name. But this in fact one of the highlighted dishes.
The rice had possibly been cooked in a clay pot and had the crispy rice at the bottom. So we had a bit of that in each bowl of rice divided for us by the polite staff. The salted pork was similar to thick cut ham, not exactly cured like the Chinese ham (Gum Waa For Tui) but it taste similar.
The rice was not too soggy. The texture was not bad. It's more similar to a clay pot rice than fried rice. The vegetables gives the otherwise dry rice some moisture.
Service and Environment:
, nice, polite and patient plus willing to divide up the rice. But the place is usually pretty busy during lunchtime so not easy to flag down staff.
were spaced widely apart and the chairs were comfortable. But the ceiling wasn't high enough and could get a bit noisy at times.
Large windows which allows natural light to enter, which relaxes diners in spite of the noise. Certainly a very nice lunch location in Admiralty.
. Not just something to wash down your food with. It's worth drinking it slowly. It's very aromatic.
I find the price very reasonable price for the location and the quality of the food. HK$1,500 for 6 persons including service charge and a few beers(that's right, bottled Tsing Tao beers during lunchtime for my father in law - that's another common language.
I remember that they had song performances of the good old days in Shanghai. So possibly a good dinner option as well.
可說是招牌之一。煙味很濃。蛋味挺濃郁及流心。帶有咸香。暫時除了灣仔【囍。宴】之外 (Chef Jacky 在的時侯)，食過做得最好的。推介!
名字嚇壞了外國人的"獅子頭"。 自己還未能太分辨何為好獅子頭，何為不好的獅子頭。 肉質新鮮，但整體不算突出。
亦屬於精緻系小菜，日本人"定番" (例牌)。沒有專門店如【鼎泰峰】,【王家沙】,【翡翠拉麵小籠包】等那麼專門 (
中上 Fine Dining 推介!
Paris is also known as "Paris of the East" in the past. Indeed, there are a lot of French people working there now.
夜上海 (Nightlife in Shanghai)
作曲:陳歌辛 (Composer: Chen Gexin)
夜上海 夜上海 Shanghai Nights Shanghai Nights
你是個不夜城 You're a city that never sleep
華燈起 樂聲響 The pretty lights come on The music sounds
歌舞昇平 Singing and dancing in peace and harmony
只見她笑臉迎 One only sees her, smiling in welcome
誰知她內心苦悶 Who could have known she was feeling dejected on the inside
夜生活 都為了 Shanghai Nights It's all about
衣食住行 The clothes, the food, the board and the travel
酒不醉人人自醉 The wine and women are intoxicating and mesmerizing making it hard to leave and easy to indulge
胡天胡帝蹉跎了青春 Recklessly squandering their youth
曉色朦朧醉眼惺忪 Daybreak blurs the drowsy drunken eyes
大家歸去心靈兒隨著轉動的車輪 Everyone starts to regain their wits, following the turning of the tyres
換一換 新天地 Everything changes up, it's a new world
別有一個新環境 There's a new environment
回味著 夜生活 Thinking back on Night life
如夢初醒 Waking up from the dream
(Translations from Youtube user: Jupidroid, who made a very interesting but sad MTV based on the black and white movie Ruan Lingyu 【阮玲玉】)
Table Wait Time:
Date of Visit:
Jun 07, 2012
Spending per head:
Value for Money
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Paris of the East
Jul 26, 2012 12:18
Typo in the food comment:
Shang Hai (and not Paris - obviously) is called "Paris of the East", perhaps it still is.
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