New Shanghai, Chatswood, Sydney

Restaurants reputedly based on Shanghainese cuisine are exceeding popular in Sydney. New Shanghai is just one of the chains offering modern Shanghai cuisine (the other two are Din Tai Fung, my review here and Taste of Shanghai). New Shanghai spans 5 locations in Sydney (two in Chatswood alone, Ashfield, Bondi Junction and Charleston), one each in Brisbane and Melbourne and has even made it into Shanghai. There is much to love about New Shanghai. Their funky street scenes interior in their signature bright red colour recreates the hustle and bustle of vintage Shanghai streets. Think screens, pictures of retro Shanghainese ladies in cheongsams and old bicycles. The xiao long baos preparation is done behind glass walls (like that of Din Tai Fung) so you can chose to sit at the counter in front of the chefs and watch their deft dumpling making skills. P2088572 The service is just about the fastest I’ve experienced. On this Sunday, five of us arrived at 7:30pm, 15 minutes before the kitchen closed. We were quickly seated and given 3 minutes to select our orders, with the wait staff hovering over us. To our amazement, all 7 dishes were delivered within the allocated time. The menus are used as tablemats, and the extensive menu span cold dishes, dim sum selection, soups, vegetables, noodles and rice and larger protein dishes. The selections are tweaked regularly and there are also specials on offer. P2088555 We started off with cold shredded jellyfish and radish tossed with sea salt and light soy dressing ($7.80). I grew up eating jellyfish at the dinner table, and this was more for nostalgic reasons than taste. Jellyfish is eaten primarily for its texture, and this slightly savoury, crunchy and chewy entrée is a good way to whet your appetite. P2088553 The two must-do are the Shanghainese xiao long baos ($7.80 for 8 pieces) and Shanghai pan-fried pork bun ($10.50 for 8 pieces). Both of these have soup in them and arriving piping hot, it’s always a struggle to wait for them to cool down sufficiently before biting into the dough to release the fragrant soup. P2088566 P2088562P2088567 I enjoyed the stir-fried clams with ginger and shallots ($15.80), perfectly cooked and redolent with spicy ginger gravy. P2088571 BL always orders the stir-fired prawn coated with salted egg yolk ($24.80). The salted duck egg yolk coating gives it a very rich taste, nice to have as the occasional treat. P2088559 The pork belly braised overnight in sweet soy sauce ($17.50) is served in an earthenware pot was beautifully tender. P2088563 To balance out all the protein, we had garlic stir-fried seasonal vegetables, which on the day was choy sum ($11.50). P2088560 New Shanghai is an easy choice for a delicious quick meal, in pleasant surroundings. The 3-hour free parking at Chatswood Chase is a great bonus. New Shanghai B38, Chatswood Chase 345 Victoria Avenue, Chastwood, Sydney Ph: +61 (0) 2 9412 3358 Hours: Mon- Wed, Fri 11am – 9pm Thu & Sat 11am – 9:30pm Sun 11am – 8pm

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