New shanghai Chatswood Chase - Vivian
Throughout the years, I’ve travelled to at least 70% of the provinces etc. in China where I’ve had meals that were fit for a King/Emperor (can’t say I enjoyed it though) and street food meals (not recommended for those who haven’t had their tetanus shots) that were cheap as chips. Chinese blood runs through my veins and whilst I may not be the most ‘Chinese-proud’ person, lately I find myself conflicted as I must admit I do enjoy a good Chinese meal – not the greasy, take-out kind.
Rice for dinner is a Monday-Thursday staple in my household whilst Friday-Sunday are mum’s international experimental days where she’ll make Italian, French, English, or Japanese cuisine. I’m not fond of rice unless it’s in sushi, kimpbap or fried rice, so when we have noodles or dumplings on a rice night, it’s exciting and something to grin about :) Wednesday, rice night, but not for my brother and I as we were dining as guests at New Shanghai - Chatswood Chase.
Deep fried tofu coated with salted egg yolk $forgot to take pic of price :(
It’s a dichotomy between naughty and nice but I can’t stop myself from picking up another and popping it into my mouth. Don’t eat too many if you’re watching your cholesterol, but they’re seriously addictive! The batter is like a thin layer of skin and the tofu retains a silky bite whilst the coating of salted egg yolk melts on the tongue.
Delicious food, comfortable spacial seating without feeling cramped like other Chinese restaurants; clean, good service, and detailed interior design. They even have baskets so you can put your belongings in them without leaving your handbag on the floor :) As my brother points out, “a lot of thought has gone into the design to make you feel like you’re in the streets of Shanghai - it feels authentic. Music would enhance the experience but otherwise, this is a good investment.” Well said brother, well said :)
Steamed meatball with crab meat and Chinese chestnuts $6.80 each
If you can read the Chinese, this dish is literally called Lions Head, why I’m not too sure but don’t worry there’s no lion meat in this ;) The soup is light and flavoursome, it’s a very Canton-style soup. I love the crunch of the roughly chopped water chestnuts mixed in the steamed pork and crab meatball.
New Shanghai Xiao Long Bao - Steamed mini pork bun $7.50
You can’t go to a Shanghainese restaurant and not order a fresh batch of xiao long bao steamed in a bamboo steamer. Last year when Din Tai Fung opened up in Sydney, I declared them the tastiest dumplings I’ve ever had. These ones are a high contender; the dumpling skin may not be as thin and translucent as DTF but I prefer the meaty filling and soup at New Shanghai.. plus the lines for DTF is ridiculous -.-
Pork belly braised over night in sweet soy sauce $forgot to take pic of price :(
The middle-aged couple on the table next to us had just finished eating as this dish arrived; the curious husband peered over, wide-eyed and was smiling like a dog. I got the sense that he was drooling at the sight and he asked us which number it was on the menu so he could order it next time! Glorious gelatinous fat that doesn’t fill your mouth with oil when biting into it - some restaurants can’t seem to get it right and you end up with an oily aftertaste. Being braised overnight meant that the meat was tender and the steamed bok choy hiding underneath soaked up the sweet soy sauce. This dish always reminds me of my granddad as it was his all time favourite, he would’ve loved it here.
Deep fried crispy skin chicken with special garlic and chilli sauce on noodle soup $forgot to take pic of price :(
Yes, we may have ordered a bit more than we should’ve but it was so hard to decide on what not to order ^^” we had already restrained ourselves from getting the pan fried buns.. Anyway, we did not expect the noodles to come out in such a large bowl! The serving size is very generous, I would share this between three, or two if you’re feeling very hungry. The noodles are like a skinnier cousin to their Japanese udon and are usually used to make Chinese-style spaghetti (Zha jiang mian) or peanut butter noodles :)
Freaking delicious. That is all.
It tastes like the chicken you would get at a Vietnamese restaurant when you order crispy chicken with tomato rice but this is better. De-boned chicken is the way to go. Crispy skin and succulent meat. I could rave on about the chicken but surprisingly it’s the sauce which I’m addicted to! The garlic is fragrant and though it says it’s a chilli sauce, the kick is quite mild and there’s a tang to it but it’s oh so delicious - I hope they never change the recipe for it.
Special blended black tea $3.80
Calamondin with fresh lemon juice $4.80
Both drinks are refreshing and I like how they don’t add sweeteners to their drinks. The literal meaning of Chinese black tea is red tea and the flavours are distinctly different to your regular black tea. Neither of us knew what calamondin was but I wanted it anyway as I was lured by the fresh lemon juice. It’s not overtly sour and it’s a good balance of sweetness, my first sip brought back memories of this lolly I used to eat as a child. Can’t remember what it looks like but I could recall the taste :)
New drinks menu! We noticed a lot of people, especially kids who kept pointing at our table saying they wanted the drinks we were having haha.
Kiwi blended ice $5.80
This literally is kiwi and blended ice. Great for those watching their weight (healthier option than a fruit smoothie) and needed a boost of vitamin C. I could taste the freshness of the kiwi fruit as I could feel the tingly aftermath on my tongue. Would order this again next time!
Mango shaved ice $6.80
I love mangoes but not fond of eating it unless it’s cut up for me because I don’t like how the juices drip down my arms and then it’s all sticky and messy ><. I’m glad it was evaporated milk and not condensed milk so the sweetness came from the mangoes. Kids were going gaga over this ;)
Slow cooked white fungus with papaya $forgot to take pic of price :(
This is a common dessert at home and it’s good for the respiratory system (to do with Chinese medicine) and there’s lots of collagen in the white fungus (cloud ear fungus) too! If you’re used to your dessert being a sugar hit, Chinese desserts tend to be a toned-down version. I love how they serve it chilled, personally I think it tastes better cold than when it’s warm.
My family tend to frequent New Shanghai - Ashfield whenever we want Shanghainese food but Chatswood Chase is where we’ll be headed to from now on - better ambience! Bookings are recommended because they do get quite busy. When we leave, it’s 8:30pm and there’s still a steady stream of customers lining up and waiting for a table to free up.
Pairing Chinese food with wine, definitely innovative.
Overall, New Shanghai has a good grip on their flavours. No one in my family ever adds salt to a meal (I don’t even like to eat my sushi with soy sauce as I find it detracts from the taste of the ingredients) and we tend to find food in Chinese restaurants to be a little salty and oily - whenever we order, dad always requests that the chef makes our meals less salty and to use no oil haha. This may sound bias but the food here feels like a home-cooked meal and it tastes healthy despite the duck egg tofu and braised pork belly ^^”
New Shanghai - http://www.newshanghai.com.au/
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