Dinesty and Chen's Shanghai Restaurant- Battle of The Xiao Long Baos ~ Eating With Kirby

8 February 2013

Dinesty and Chen's Shanghai Restaurant- Battle of The Xiao Long Baos

In a span of a week I went to two different Shanghai restaurants in Richmond for XLB (Xiao Long Baos aka Shanghai Buns) so I decided to make a post on it and make it a battle! 

First up is the XLB from Chen's Shanghai Restaurant. They come 6 in a basket and the dumplings are consistently filled to the brim with soup. I love how I can pick up these dumplings with my chopsticks without puncturing the skin or it leaking. 

As apparent by my first ever post on 'Eating with Kirby', their Salty Soy Milk is what I live for. It's savoury, spicy, and full of ingredients like seaweed, shrimp and tofu puffs. It doesn't get much better than this. 

I always tend to get noodles at Shanghainese restaurants and I opted for the Fried Pork Chop with Noodles here. 

The broth was nice and clean to balance out the greasiness of the fried pork chop. Noodles were plentiful so you can definitely share this with many people.

The pork chop was nice and crispy but a little oily on the outside. You get a decent amount of meat considering how little you pay for this noodle soup + meat combo (roughly $5 CAD).

I have no idea what this is called in English but it is another type of noodle dish we ordered consisting of spinach, bean curd wrapped around meat, tofu puffs, and vermicelli. This is pretty good but not amazing.

They make really good Gyozas here. They look pretty average on the outside but when you bite into it, it is incredibly juicy and flavourful. 

For dessert, we had Rice Balls with Sesame Filling Coated in Crushed Peanuts. The peanuts were freshly crushed and the sesame filling was flowing like lava the instant I bit into it. Two thumbs up if you like black sesame.

Now onto our opponent, Dinesty in Richmond. You may remember from my previous post that I was disappointed and unsatisfied after trying this place out for lunch. Nevertheless, I came here once again to give them a second chance and they didn't disappoint. What you see here is Crispy Rice with Seafood and Veggies

These are crisped rice that was purposely made to give a crunchy airy texture. You are suppose to eat this with the soup so it kind of crackles and pops when the liquid touches the rice.

This is what it looked like after I spooned both the rice and the soup together. It is an interesting concept and  tasted pretty cool texturally on the palate.

These Xiao Long Baos come in a basket of 8 and are slightly more expensive than the ones in Chen's Shanghai Kitchen. The skin was just as thin and durable but the thing that was lacking was the abundance of soup within each dumpling. You can even tell from this picture that some dumplings are 'sunken' looking from the lack of soup filling.

I always enjoy Cold Noodles with Taiwanese Meat Sauce ($6.50).

You mix everything up and it'll look something like this. The fermented black beans always makes this dish delish!

We took a risk and ordered the Stewed Pork with Brown Sauce and Steamed Buns ($7.95). We didn't know what the heck 'brown sauce' was suppose to mean in terms of culinary terms but we trust that it would be at least edible and hopefully tasty.

They made these steamed buns fresh so it took 30 minutes for it to arrive. I love how these buns look like scallops! So cute!!

Once you combine the fatty pork, veggie, and bun together, you've pretty much just made yourself an Asian sandwich. This is worth a try if you are looking for something new to get.

 The Verdict: Chen's Shanghai Kitchen WINS against Dinesty with their delicious soupy Xiao Long Baos. 

Chen's Shanghai Kitchen have remained undefeated for two years now so please comment or tweet me if you think there are even better XLBs in Vancouver/ Richmond that I should try!

Happy Eating!

courtesy of http://seeyanwaitingforever.blogspot.ca/2012/10/love-xiao-long-bao.html

Chen's Shanghai Kitchen 白玉蘭餐館 on Urbanspoon Dinesty Chinese Restaurant 聚 on Urbanspoon

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