I am surprised I never wrote anything about Shanghai Home 上海人家. It was one of the first restaurants I was acquainted with the first time I went to Shanghai in 1996.
Over the years, it has grown from one restaurant in Jingan, to a chain with multiple locations. It went through the necessary growing pains – the standard dropped, others caught up, they lost clientele.
However, they managed to find their roots – Shanghai cuisine. They were good at it, they still are good at it. So with the menu settled, its about positioning and marketing.
As I was dining alone, it was really difficult to order anything substantial. Luckily, 老上海橙香蟹糊 crab roe in orange was available in a single portion. In a shelled-out orange, a generous helping of hairy crab roe was cooked in a heavy sauce. The orange reduced the richness of the crab in a good way, like how lemon makes seafood better. An excellent first course.
Next up, 本帮糟钵斗 appetiser in wine marinate featured four appetisers soaked in wine lees – ribbon fish 带鱼, edamame, pig stomach and shrimps.
But it was the peanuts at the bottom that stole the show. There was a lot of it, and I packed it back for a TV snack later that evening.
The main was 腌笃鲜馄饨 wanton in rich stock. 腌笃鲜 is a classic Shanghai soup that consists of salted pork, tofu skin, bamboo shoots cooked in Shanghai bakchoy and pig bone stock. Of course I could not finish a standard portion of the soup. Again luckily for me, it is now available as a single portion wanton soup base. The wantons were very generous too, a single large shrimp with pork per wanton. It was a meal in a bowl.
草头圈子 pig intestine with Caotou is another Shanghai classic, but I was too full to enjoy it. It was made very well, with the thick, sweet and oily sauce typical of Shanghai cuisine.
With the crackdown on corruption, their marquee high-end brand 花样年华 In the Mood (named after the uberchic movie by Wong Ka Wai) took a hit.
With its art decor interior, it was a very fine place to entertain. Food standard was back to where I remembered. But the addition of the bistro like noodle place next to this was an excellent touch.
Shanghai Home 上海人家 花样年华 (龙之梦店)
Date Visited : Dec 2019