Tuesday, March 19, 2013

Shanghai 456- Edmonton, AB

A Chinese restaurant attached to a private airport. Now I can't say that I've been to many of those in my lifetime. But that is exactly what Shanghai 456 is. This truly Asian restaurant run by REAL Chinese people, located in the Edmonton City Centre Airport, is definitely an interesting place to have a meal. Located in a very remote area, there were a good amount of cars parked outside of the restaurant. Upon entering Shanghai 456, one thing is obvious: they do not put much effort into their decor or appearance. Have you ever been to one of those dirty Chinese restaurants where you are constantly scared you are going to get a bout of the stomach flu? Well, Shanghai 456 feels like one of those places.

Sitting down at the cafeteria-like tables and chairs, we were greeted by the waitress who could only really speak Chinese (Mandarin, more specifically). Ordering is somewhat challenging and therefore it's best to go with someone who can speak the language. Going for a quick snack with a couple friends, we decided on the Shanghai noodles with ground pork and cabbage, the steamed mini pork soup buns and the deep fried beef dumplings.

Shanghai style noodles with pork and cabbage

The plate of Shanghai noodles was definitely a disappointment. There was way too much cabbage and not enough ground pork. On top of that, the entire dish was greasy and did not have much flavor. For $8.75, I expected more noodles and better tasting food.

Steamed mini pork soup dumplings  (aka. Xiao long bao) 
The steamed soup dumpling were the best thing ordered (and I suspect the best thing on the menu). Biting into the dumpling released a gush of delicious pork flavor. These buns hold in all the pork juices that are released when cooked and when you eat them, it's like a nice little surprise waiting for you. There aren't many places in the city that serve good xiao long bao, and Shanghai 456 is definitely among the top.

Deep fried beef dumplings (aka. Wor Tip)
The deep fried beef dumplings had a very crispy outer shell and provided that much needed crunch when biting into. The dumplings also had a lot of flavor and juices wrapped into that little packet of goodness. The beef flavors could truly be appreciated with this dish.

Tea flavored jelly with goji berries

A nice thing that these owners do is that they give every customer of theirs a free dessert after finishing their meal. Today the dessert was a tea flavor jelly with goji (or wolfberry) berries. The jelly was very sweet and was a good end to the snack. However, one downside of the food served at Shanghai 456 is that no matter what you decide to order, the taste of grease will never escape your mouth. There is an excessive amount of oil that this Chinese food is cooked with. Overall, the decor of Shanghai 456 requires a much needed upgrade and the Chinese food is average to SLIGHTLY above average. The prices are reasonable but the location is very inconvenient. I am not sure this is a Chinese restaurant in Edmonton I would go back to on a consistent basis. 

Menu at Shanghai 456

3/5 Erics

Shanghai 456 on Urbanspoon

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