Lu Bo Lang – Recommended (if you’re in the area)
Yu Yuan Lu 115
Final meal on the tour was this joint in the mad touristy Shanghai area Yu Yuan. Basically, a fake Epcot center looking pavilion that was built around this garden that existed before things got ripped apart during the cultural revolution. Yu Yuan is insanely loud and crowded, so definitely not my cup of tea. Food was pretty good at Lu Bo Lang, but not worth the trip to this madhouse.
Egg Rolls *
Standard egg roll you get at your local Chinese joint. These were good, but really shocking that they serve this same generic egg roll in China. Again, not sure if this is catering to the tourists or not.
Jelly Fish *
Decent texture with ok flavor.
Pickled Vegetable *
I think this is some sort of radish, but this was pretty tasty with the rice. Standard stuff you’d see in a Chinese restaurant in NYC, but this had much better texture as it probably wasn’t sitting in a jar for a year. Salty and slightly spicy with some good herbal flavors.
Water Chestnuts, Carrots, and Broad Beans ***
So, this is what real water chestnuts taste like. I’m used to the crap they serve in a can which basically have no flavor, but just add textural crunch. This had huge chestnut flavor with the same crunchiness that I was used to. Love the broad beans as this added an earthiness to the dish that was immediately satisfying. Definitely need to start playing with broad beans more since real water chestnuts will be tough to get back home.
Sauteed Celery and Hearts of Palm? **
Similar dish I saw in Suzhou with the celery sautéed and glazed with chicken stock. The hearts of palm had amazing flavor and texture – soft yet some resistance.
Chicken soup with egg whites *
Flavorful soup, but nothing really to it.
Pepper Beef **
This is another one of those – do they really serve this stuff here or is this for tourists? The pepper beef is similar to pepper beef back in the states although done much much better. The beef is incredibly tender and the pepper sauce is out of control good. Very pronounced pepper flavor with some sweetness going on with the green, red peppers and onions.
Fried Rice *
Not the kind I’m used to back in the states which are loaded with a ton of stuff. This was perfect as the rice was slightly coated with oil for some flavor and with some diced leafy greens thrown in the mix.
Xiao Long Bao *
Skin was relatively soft, soup base was decent, and the meat was nice, but I know there’s better out there.