Tuesday, May 25, 2010

Shanghai Tea Garden

Bored out of my wits during a Sunday night trying to finish all my ilectures, I googled up "Perth Xiao Long Bao" and realised that Perth actually has Xiao Long Baos now?
omg i've been hiding at home for too long! For YEARS i've been complaining that Perth does not have Xiao Long Bao, Krispy Kreme and Gourmet Cakes (like those in lindt cafes). Need to go explore more and find them!

Well Xiao Long Bao - is a kind of dumpling that originates from Shanghai. The distinct feature of these dumplings is their soft silky skin, with meat filling, and there is SOUP inside these dumplings! There are lots of xiao long bao chains in Singapore, Indonesia, and eastern states of Australia. Now there are actually some in Perth (not sure where are the others but they are out there) this is so exciting! 
I was so excited to try my first xiao long bao in Perth, i have been living here for 7 years. This new restaurant looks really nice and I've always wanted to try it one day, thanks to urban spoon i found out that they actually have xiao long bao. Without hesistation i drove down there within 30 minutes.

Very nice interior and atmosphere, with white table cloth. I find that white table cloth makes any restaurant classy. The setting of the table was beautiful. I think the lady boss of this restaurant owns Cafe Mozart (and cakes unlimited) that was the cake shop (very yummy cakes) before it is converted to this restaurant. The restaurant still sells her cakes, so you can always have a cup of coffee or cake if you don't feel like dinner. The lady boss (i presume) who served us was really friendly, she even recommended what I should order, felt so motherly to me. Big plus for service!

Fried Squid - approx $6
fried squid with salt and pepper - this was hot! very good starter. however i was expecting those crispy squid tentacles, nvm. it was still good

Shanghai Xiao Long Bao - $10
These babies were the reason why I am here! They looked pretty awesome. I heard that the skills of the chef who make these are judged by the number of folds they have on top of these dumplings. The skin of these dumplings were alright (slightly thicker than the ones i have in singapore) but I still think they are absolutely delicious. The soup inside these dumplings was piping hot. *please do not put the whole dumpling in your mouth, you will definitely regret it as you won't be able to taste anything for a day after that**
These dumplings normally go with vinegar and ginger (served as dipping cause). Usually, i bite the top of the dumpling, suck the soup out of those naughty things and eat them!

a good xiaolongbao is when you hold the skin, and it doesn't break even though it is 'heavy' with soup and meat. The broth inside these dumplings were flavoursome, and the filling was yummy. For those who hasn't tried xiao long bao, please try it! Most yumcha places in perth serve these dry dumpling disguised as xiaolongbao, there is no soup inside and the skin is so tough. Shanghai Tea Garden serves pretty authentic ones.
Now i have a place to go to satisfy my xiaolongbao cravings!

Crystal Prawns - approx $25
Recommended dish by the lady boss. She was right, this was delicious! It is actually a dish that looks and tastes very simple, but it brings out the wonderful freshness of the prawns. And the prawns are so nicely coated with sauce and oil, they glistened in the light!

Braised Beef with Onions in a stone pot - approx $25
The gravy was thick and full of flavours and the beef was tender. However, I found this dish a bit ordinary compared to the rest.

Flavoured Chicken - approx $16
This was another star dish of the night. This roast chicken lived up to its name, it was really fragrant. It is coated with a sweet and savoury thick sauce (maybe some honey in it) and was heavenly. I will definitely order this again!

Then we proceed to order another serve of xiao long baos, because one can never get enough of dumplings! 

The price of the food is a bit high, but the ambience of the restaurant is really good, and the quality of the food is of high standards too. In addition to that, the lady boss and staff are all very attentive, service is very fast and awesome.

Rating: 4.5/5

Location: 1/399 William Street, Northbridge
Telephone: 92277066
Opening Hours :
Tues to Sun : 11am - late.
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Shanghai Tea Garden on Urbanspoon


  1. I work with a girl from China and I showed this to her and we are definitely going to try it!

  2. hey do me a favour, if you know of any other restaurants that serve xiaolongbao (with soup inside - very impt!) please drop a comment in this blog ok? I hope you guys will like it

  3. you have been living in perth for 7 f-ing years?!? i didn't realise that!!!

  4. Heh 7th year alr, we are getting old babe, seems like just yesterday we were partying at cheekymonkeys. Miss those days u wild thing!

  5. dimsum cafe also does some pretty good xlb! surprisingly welcome inn [also on william street] aren't bad either. though i have to say the ones at shanghai tea garden are the best ones i've tried in perth so far =)

  6. i didnt know so many places have xlb obviously i need to go out more. will try those that you've mentioned! thanks for the recommendation and comment, let me know if there are any good food around :)

  7. Ah, checked back on this a bit late!

    I'm more of a fan of cafes [I love brunch/breakfast!] and casual eats. Have you heard of Miami Bakehouse? The original one is is in a suburb called Falcon, a bit further south than Mandurah. They also have a branch in Mandurah [main area] and one in Melville on Canning Highway [not too sure if the quality is the same across the board]. Their pies are amazing and have won many awards =) The seafood ones are highly recommended!

    I'm also a student, gotten more into exploring eateries this year. Bit tricky on a student budget sometimes but Perth has some decent food =)

  8. perth has some interesting cafes after i've started exploring! some of them i really like, with a tight budget, i also just go once a week or something. at least something to look forward to. haha yea i went to the miami bakehouse in falcon, the pies were yummyyyyyyy!!!