Best Casual Chinese 2014
May 1, 2014
GOLD: TOP SHANGHAI CUISINE
Silver: Alvin Garden | Bronze: Ningtu | Honourable Mentions: Ho Yuen Kee, Dinesty Chinese
Top Shanghai (Gold) is a proper family-style Shanghainese room, with a correspondingly friendly menu: things here are hearty and home-style. Judges praised its cold-wine chicken-"it has a real edge to it; you get these hits of rice wine"-and soup dumplings. The extensive menu is underlined by a Shanghai trademark: smartly doled-out salinity. Alvin Garden (Silver) consistently puts out dishes with an undercurrent of floral, peppery flavours and cuminy spice. Judges were impressed by the care and attention: "This isn't a place for stunt food." Humble Ningtu (Bronze) got props for house-made rice cakes and vegetable and bean curd dumplings. A simple enough room, but a treasure for rainy-day brunches.