Mall dining is rarely fine dining. Hotels and stand-alone eateries in plush locations are generally reserved for the cream of the restaurant crop. So it’s no surprise when we enter Telford Plaza’s new Shangainese, The Dining Room, and find exactly what we’d expected. No classic twist. No elegant touches. A pure, pretty basic meal-in-a-mall experience.
But, let’s face it, we weren’t expecting a palace – or meals fit for a king. We were expecting good, hearty mall fare – and that’s just what we get here. And the new Shanghai Min chain eatery is certainly at the top end of the shopping centre munching experience. It’s minimalist in interior design – white walls, oak floors – and there’s a semi-open kitchen which is worth a peek inside.
The grub here is billed as ‘new Shanghai cuisine’. And it is. The best way to eat is to order an assortment of dishes, à la the traditional dim sum experience, and tuck straight in. We plump for the sweet and sour spare ribs ($40), the noodles with eight treasures ($38), the steamed pork dumplings with hairy crab cream ($60 for five pieces), the hot and sour soup in Shanghai style ($38), the crispy pork fillets with spiced salt ($68), the signature pan-fried crispy pork soup buns ($40 for four pieces) and the steamed chicken with chilli sauce in Sichuan style ($58). There’s no gold medallist in our feast – but neither is there a wooden spoon award. Gun to head, the Sichuan chilli sauce is most flavoursome – but we’d happily come back for any of the dishes, on any night of the week. We finish, bloated, with the longevity sweet buns with red bean paste ($28 for three pieces) which are a little dry but nevertheless tasty.
So, it’s cheap, cheerful, filling fare and you get what you came for. Just ask the crowds. There’s a constant queue outside on our visit. It helps that the waitresses are superbly attentive too. It’s, again, what you’d expect. And who can really complain about enjoying decent nosh while shoppers continuously poke their noses in to eye up your feast? If you’re not looking for anything fancy, this place is worth checking out. Matt Fleming
Shop G53A, Telford Plaza I, Kowloon Bay, 2348 2299. Mon-Sun 11.30am-11pm. Dinner for two: around $500.
|Venue name:||The Dining Room|
Shop G53A, Telford Plaza I, Kowloon Bay