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Jun 3, 2009 09:47 AM

Shanghai Dumpling Shop in Millbrae?

Hi all,

A friend suggested that we visit Shanghai Dumpling Shop this evening for their XLBs. I can't seem to find mention of them on this board, I was wondering if anyone had an opinion of their food? I am debating between visiting this place or taking my friend to Sunny Shanghai in San Bruno, as I love their food.


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  1. Check out Dumpling Dumpling in millbrae. It just opened on El Co accros the street from hong kong flower. Its pretty good if your only after dumpling items.

    1. I like Shanghai Dumpling Shop much better than I did Sunny Shanghai. I've tried Sunny Shanghai twice and didn't really like it at all. I've been to Shanghain Dumpling Shop many times and have almost always been very happy with my meals there. By the way, Dumpling Dumpling is owned by the same folks who own Shanghai Dumpling Shop. I've been there once an found their menu a bit limited.

      1 Reply
      1. re: Nancy Berry

        Is SDS the place on Broadway? If so, the food is pretty solid, some of the plates were a little small though, IMO

      2. If you go to somewhere other then Sunny Shanghai please report back. I have like Sunny Shanghai since my friend introduce me to them and have not try another dumpling shop since I like many of there dishes.

        Maybe I need to expand my vision of xlb's.

        3 Replies
        1. re: yimster

          I prefer Shanghai Dumpling over Sunny Shanghai. SD is much more plump and juicy, as for SS I seem to taste a dishwater scent in everything I ordered it was very off putting. I heard that SD is owned by the original owner of Shanghai dumpling king in San Francisco. Does anyone know if this is true?

          1. re: cocochanelella

            We have never notice the dishwater scent on anything before. My son and I have petty strong taste buds and would have notice. Maybe we are lucky and you had bad luck.

          2. re: yimster

            I will say that Sunny Shanghai's XLB are not bad, but perfect value for the $. What was it, like $4.95 for a steamer? Although I'm not too crazy about seeing congealed globules of soup/pork fat after steaming (Hu Chiang Dumpling House in Cupertino had this problem recently).

          3. SDS has a more English friendly menu (with pictures) and seems a bit more mainstream.
            But I do not find their food overall to be better than Sunny Shanghai (then again I had a pretty bad experience at SDS as a result of poor service via a grumpy older lady working there).

            Sunny Shanghai, I think their strengths are on the white board, which is (unfortunately to most non Chinese readers) by far more authentic, although that may be a mixed bag for others. XLB wise, I think Little Shanghai in San Mateo is the best thus far if you are willing to go a bit further south.

            If that's too south for you, Koi Palace does some great XLB for a non Shanghainese restaurant (although not necessarily pretty).

            6 Replies
            1. re: K K

              KK you are right the strongest dish are on the Chinese only menu. If I remember right the owner/chef cooked and part owner at Little Shanghai prior to opening SS.

              1. re: K K

                I have tried to get info about Sunny Shanghai's whiteboard menu, but there seems to be nobody there who has either the English language skill or the interest to help non-Chinese speakers. My husband and I were pretty much pushed toward the English menu and were told that "you won't like" the other dishes by one server. Even when we pointed to dishes on other people's table that looked interesting, they served us different dishes or seemed not to understand what we wanted. It was very frustrating -- enough not to want to go there again.

                1. re: Nancy Berry

                  Reminds me of 5A's which also has a Chinese menu. But I have asked servers why they to push non-Chinese out of ordering the real deal. I was told that my times the non-Chinese ordering these dishes have sent them back.

                  Not every place is like Beijing where they allow you to order what you want. But then again do not have a Chinese menu. I do not know what to say.

                  1. re: Nancy Berry

                    Well it certainly sucks that such restaurant folks perceive non Chinese people to stick with certain kinds of "Americanized Chinese" food (and being so narrow minded).

                    I think the key here is persistence and curiosity. If you give up after they say "you will not like it" vs assuring them "we will not return it if we don't like it" sort of thing they will either give in, or think you are brave. I suggest trying this persistent tactic out once, and if it works, and the food is good, just give them the thumbs up. And if it works out, come back again, which will work once they recognize you.

                    I'll say the best thing about Little Shanghai is that everything is on the menu, no special separate Chinese only menu, plus the standard offerings are listed in both Chinese and English. And if you focus on the specialties/regional cuisine part of the menu, you're guaranteed the hardcore non watered down stuff. This is also exactly how Bund Shanghai in SF Chinatown operates (assuming the owner/mgr guy fluent in English is working the floor).

                    1. re: K K

                      If you've read my many messages on this board, you'll know that I am anything but shy in Chinese restaurants and that I let the servers know that I am very curious and adventurous. This was one of the only restaurants where my curiosity and persistence didn't work. We got very mediocre food and the folks there didn't seem to care whether we liked it or not or whether we would return. We were quite surprised by the treatment we got at Sunny Shanghai given the enthusiastic recommendations for the restaurant on this board. In contrast, every time we ask questions at Shanghai Dumpling Shop, they describe the dish without telling us whether we'll like it or trying to steer us to a "safer" dish. In fact, they now tell us when there is a special or a new dish because they know that we are likely to try it. And at Beijing Restaurant they serve us new dishes that they're thinking about putting on the menu -- they've gotten beyond looking at our faces and understand that our tastes have nothing to do with how we look. I won't go back to Sunny Shanghai because I'm tired of having to beg in order to get the best food that they have to offer -- it's a matter of respect. And, by the way, if I order something and then don't like it AND it is cooked properly, I would never ask them to cook me something else without paying for the dish that I didn't like -- that's a matter of respect, too.

                      1. re: Nancy Berry

                        Ahhh ok I understand where you're coming from then. In your case then there's no need to return to Sunny Shanghai if people are going to treat you like that.

                2. I don't care for them, to me they were no better than frozen ones.