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Oct 27, 2009 08:28 AM

Best Hot and Sour Soup????

I used to hit a restaurant just south of College on the east side of Spadina...I think it was called The Shanghai Restaurant. The hot and sour soup there was unmatched! I also believe they were voted the best in the city in a Star reader's poll. They disappeared a few years back and I have yet to find any H/S soup that can hold a candle to this one. Again, as with most things I have posted here lately, I am pregnant and the baby REQUIRES a HUGE bowl of this soup. It was hot and sour, yes, but it also had a small hint of sweetness that I have yet to find anywhere else. I even emailed the food columnist at the Star, but she couldn't help.

So, I leave it in your capable hands. Please find me the BEST hot and sour soup....or one that is close to the Shanghia Restaurant. Does anyone else remember this place?

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  1. Try the hot and sour soup at Thai Plate. It is exactly what you describe -- a solid Chinese hot and sour soup but with a sweetness that I suppose makes it Thai. The sweetness is what I don't like about it, but it is otherwise a very good soup.

    2 Replies
    1. re: TorontoJo

      TJ....I'm a big fan of the Hot and Sour at Thai Plate...had it on a cold, windy, snowy night last winter and it lingers in my mind as one of the best ones I've had in recent times.

      1. re: tochowchick

        Yeah, my lunch buddy swears by that soup -- says it's his favourite hot and sour soup of all time. But I can't get over the sweet aspect of it. I just grew up with soup that had no hint of sweetness, so this just tastes wrong to me. It is otherwise a great soup -- right consistency, good ingredients, nice heat. Sigh.

    2. The one at Graceful Vegetarian also has a sweetness to it. It is one of my favourites in the city!

      1. Kom Jug Yuen hands down. I often ask for extra hot, and add vinegar if it needs it.

        1 Reply
        1. re: Everythingtarian

          My all time fave and sooooo cheap considering it has chunks of tofu, shredded bbq pork, and descent sized shrimps...a little on the sweet side but definately hot and sour. The size small is big enough to feed two people if you are having just one other item.
          The bathrooms though...less than fresh.

        2. I remember that place. I don't think I ever had H & S soup there but I thought it was a good restaurant.

          I think it depends on what you like in your H & S soup. I tend to be (what I think is probably) a purist: I like fungus, bamboo shoots, tofu and maybe a little egg. I don't like much if any meat or seafood in it and I think it should have a little bit of fresh scallions to finish it. I used to really like the H & S soup (even though it has chicken in it) at Asian Legend but last time I tried it, it just seemed wrong. Not unpleasant but too pale and just the wrong depth of flavour. I try H & S soup at pretty much any asian place I visit and many are very forgettable. But the classic type I've found most memorably at Spadina Gardens and (oddly) C'est Bon. The only issue I have with CB is they need to make it more hot (stove hot, that is). I sometimes ask them to reheat it. They are both very good, reliable H & S soups.

          1 Reply
          1. re: Ediblethoughts

            I like the h&s soup at C'est Bon as well. It has a touch too much black pepper, but otherwise, I really enjoy it.

          2. My favorite is at Hua Sang on Baldwin - not traditional: has pork, shrimp, all kinds of stuff, but I find it delicious - kind of a meal in a bowl.

            3 Replies
            1. re: FresserGuy

              I agree...I love their H & S soup...better than anything I have had and I worked in Markham for 7 years so I have been to a few places.

              1. re: ebay3392

                No, Hua Sang's hot & sour is average at best, and hardly worth the price ($12 small bowl). Served tepid by an angry waiter, the broth was OK in flavour but not at all hot OR sour. Only thing good about it was the varity of veggies and shrimp morsels.

                Hua Sang
                41 Baldwin St, Toronto, ON M5T1L1, CA

                1. re: Chitlin

                  Their Hot and Sour was totaly bland in my opinion. I went with Chitlin ...and we were shocked when the 12.00 bowl arrived and was smaller thanany of the $5-$7 bowls we have ordered in many other places. I am a spice woose...really sensitive...and even I found this to be devoid of flavour or spice. No tanginess/sour though there were good sized chunks of tofu etc. I think this is the place to go for lobster though. Great deals.
         takes some serious effort to be this rude.