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“BEST SOUP DUMPLINGS in NY (possibly the world).” 5 of 5 bubbles
Review of Shanghai Cafe

Shanghai Cafe
Ranked #1,431 of 13,479 Restaurants in New York City
Price range: $1 - $20
Cuisines: Chinese, Asian
More restaurant details
Restaurant details
Good for: Large groups, Kids, Families with children, Dining on a budget
Dining options: Late Night, Lunch, Dinner, Seating, Serves Alcohol, Takeout, Waitstaff
Neighborhood: Chinatown
New York City, New York
Level Contributor
130 reviews
73 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 38 helpful votes
“BEST SOUP DUMPLINGS in NY (possibly the world).”
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed February 3, 2014

These are hands down the best soup dumplings I have ever had. Let me qualify that by saying, I went to Shanghai this summer looking for better soup dumplings and did not find any. Allow me to note that i did not try every soup dumpling place in all of Shanghai but I did eat soup dumplings at least one time every day at different notable locations and could not find ones I liked more. Here is why I think Shanghai Cafe has the best Soup dumplings. 1) The Flavor of the crab and pork dumpling is divine. The pork fat and crab juices mix together to create a flavor better than anything else I have had. 2) The size of the dumplings: these are the biggest soup dumplings I have seen... ANYWHERE! They are big and have a lot of soup. Their size may be abnormal to traditional soup dumplings (as the ones I have had in Shanghai, San Francisco, Vancouver, and other places in NYC have all been smaller) but I feel this is the perfect portion. 3) They do not fall apart easily. Breakage is a problem with most other soup dumplings but not these so long as you eat them while they are hot. Lastly, if you want to kick these up a notch ask for the spicy chili oil and drip some in, it is an incredible addition if you like some kick.

As for everything else at Shanghai Café… well… it is whatever. The food is fine. The other dim sum is good. The place is almost always crowded and you have to wait. The staff is sort of nice in an overly busy, trying to turn tables as quick as possible way. Regardless, this place is a must go simply for the soup dumplings. They are in the top three best dishes I have ever had, which keeps me coming back for more. Enjoy!

  • Visited December 2013
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Atmosphere
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Service
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Food
Helpful?
Thank spyro m
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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235 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
    Food
    Service
    Value
    Atmosphere
Date | Rating
  • English first
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English first
Baltimore
Level Contributor
1,009 reviews
764 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 332 helpful votes
“Overrated”
2 of 5 bubbles Reviewed January 13, 2014

Shanghai Cafe is wayyyy overrated...

Most patrons come here for Chinese soup dumplings. Now, the soup dumplings are decent. I can't say they're the best I've had, nor can I say that they're even the best in NYC's Chinatown. What I can say is that they're cheap and probably worth the money. Now when you tack on the long waits, cheap, average-Joe soup dumplings doesn't sound so enticing anymore.

Another thing to note. This place is known for quick turnaround. As a result, my beef pan-fried noodles didn't turn out so well. The beef was raw, still visibly red with powdered corn starch...

Visited December 2013
Helpful?
1 Thank Tunaidi
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
New York City, New York
1 review
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
“HORRIBLE, RUDE HOSTESS”
1 of 5 bubbles Reviewed January 12, 2014

Horrible hostess!!! We were told to "get to the back of the line" while entering the very crowded waiting room where there was NO "line". The hostess was impatient and rude. Of course O took my business elsewhere, why should anyone spent hard-earned money at a place that shows no respects to customers!?!!

  • Visited January 2014
    • 1 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 1 of 5 bubbles
      Atmosphere
    • 1 of 5 bubbles
      Service
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Food
Helpful?
1 Thank jess c
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Teaneck, New Jersey
Level Contributor
86 reviews
56 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 22 helpful votes
“Great "soup dumplings"”
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed January 7, 2014

Went here for a late lunch on the day of New Year's Eve. The soup dumplings are great - piping hot, juicy and tasty with yummy sauce. we also had eggplant with pork. There's very little meat but it's very flavorful. The crispy duck was also good - meaty and filling. For dessert we had black sesame rice ball soup (don't know the correct English name) - yummy also. The food came out fast and hot. And the bill was really low for the amount of food we had.

  • Visited December 2013
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Atmosphere
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Service
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Food
Helpful?
Thank Annette L
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Sydney, Australia
Level Contributor
133 reviews
69 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 70 helpful votes
“WOW factor”
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed January 1, 2014 via mobile

1st jan 2014 HNY
Had to que to get in, I never que...but I did only because of the great TA reviews...
the short wait was well worth it.
dumplings to die for, fried pork, steamed veg and the shanghai dumplings...excellent
mains also great
service was prompt and exact
be organised know what you want, its very much a process of getting people in, served and out
but the quallity of food is excellent.
do your self a favour and have a meal in this place...



Visited January 2014
Helpful?
Thank Rustyone w
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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