Handmade dumplings are the drawcards here, and after a brief dumpling making experience hosted by personable owner Aaron Mi, I tucked into my perfectly pleated Xiao Long Bao ($10.80/8 pieces) with renewed appreciation.
Behind the bars and their masks, these ladies pleat, pinch and fold up an intimidating collection of dumplings, presented in a glossy, beautifully photographed magazine-style menu.
Skip straight to the menu hits with Pan Fried Pork Buns ($10.80/8 pieces). They’re the ones that require the on-spoon hole punching to avoid being scalded with hot soup, which forms inside them from melting gelatin broth cubes.
Pork Wonton in Hot Chilli ($10.80/10 pieces) impress too, offering up a good kick of chilli and fragrant Sichuan peppercorns. However if you’re less of a hot-fiend, green Shrimp and Chive Dumplings ($12.80/8 pieces) make for another palate pleasing selection.
More than just a dumpling bar, Taste of Shanghai also excels in other parts of their extensive menu.
Peking Style Shredded Pork ($18.80) is slightly sweet, but a real crowd-pleaser when wrapped in Pancakes ($3.50) so thin they’re practically transparent.
Similarly, Crispy Duck ($19.80/half) shines once encased in Chinese Wraps ($5.50), with the pillowy white, freshly steamed bao dribbling sticky sweet soy down your fingers.
Slotted spoonfuls of Fish Fillet in Spicy Chilli Oil ($22.80) assist in filtering off the chilli oil, leaving behind tender boneless ling fillets brimming with flavour.
They’re even more appealing on a bed of Special Spicy Fried Rice ($13.80), perhaps with a side of Stir Fried Green Beans with Pork Mince ($16.80) for contrast.
While the usual suspects like Salt and Pepper King Prawns ($26.80) and Grilled Spring Onion Pancakes ($6.80) are present and accounted for, this menu really rewards diners who journey beyond them into the wide range of regional Chinese cuisines represented in the vibrant city of Shanghai.
Taste of Shanghai also lends itself nicely to group dining, with many of the signature dumplings coming in easily divisible serves of 8-12 pieces. Yes, there are plenty of reasons to be looking down (rather than up) next time you come to World Square with handmade dumplings in your sights!
Taste of Shanghai
World Square, Shop 907, 644 George Street, Sydney
Ph: (02) 9261 8832