It’s a…a…well, it’s a really great place no matter what Google says it’s name is supposed to be.
I may seem disciplined as a Food Blogger, but in truth I’m not.
I really should start writing these reviews as I’m sitting there, in the restaurant waiting for my food. But it never works out that way. Instead, I usually am trying to pound out four or five of these things at once on the weekend, so I can make a self-inflicted publication deadline f Monday.
That’s the downside. The upside is that usually as I write five reviews at once, it causes me to reflect on five restaurant all at once, all together.
Would you believe that of all the places I wrote about this week, it is Shanghai Gourmet (Facebook listing only) that I’m looking forward to going back to the most?
Looking at it, you’ve never guess that in a million years. Shanghai Gourmet looks like…well…every other Chinese place you’ve been too in last couple of years. Clean, wood paneling on the walls. A Kitchen/Slide Area semi-open to the public. A good measure of To-go orders heading out the door. You know, a typical family place.
And yet, I got in and out for there for under ten bucks, and left tremendously happy at a time when I needed both. (To be happy and to have it happen for as little as possible). My little dish (to be described in a minute) did loads to make me happy.
Shanghai Gourmet isn’t about to set the Gastronomic world on fire. It’s not going to get the attention of something like a Chengdu Taste. It may not even be the best restaurant in the little complex it calls home (that distinction might belong to Luscious Dumplings). But I’ve often wrote about little places that just do what they do, and do it damn well, and thus are deserving of your attentions (i.e. money). Shanghai Gourmet is one of those places. It’s really good. Get over here and see for yourself.
WHAT SHOULD I GET?: What was it? What made me so happy? It was a little plate of Pork and Wok fried Bean Curd.
Me? I love Bean Curd. I love it with Sushi. I love it Wok fried like this. It may be a texture that’s off-putting to some, but I’ve always liked it. I’ve always preferred it over Tofu, and it even absorbs a little of the taste of things it’s cooked with. Put it with some strips of Pork in a nice brown sauce? I’m in heaven. I was in heaven. It is literally weeks later, and I’m still thinking about this dish.
The plate came with rice, so scoop and pour over as you please. But truth be told, I didn’t need the rice. The dish alone was worth it.
They also served me an appetizer bowl of Hot and Sour Soup. It was the most ordinary thing on the menu, but again, this is a soup I always like so if scarfed it up like it was going out of style.
IMPORTANT SAFETY TIP, PEOPLE: Like I said, Shanghai Gourmet is a straight ahead restaurant. Very family style (as in you get a place for each person and share), and straight ahead. The only weird thing was the name. On internet searches, this location came off as Shanghai Bamboo House, but the sign clearly says Shanghai Gourmet, so…
Also, because it’s a family style restaurant, sucks to each alone. Bring a friend next time.
That was more of a note for me, than for you.
PARKING: Easy. Shanghai Gourmet is part of a large retail complex, and has plenty of free parking. You might have to park a bit more toward the Grocery store, but you’ll find a space, easy.
933 W Duarte Rd.
Monrovia, CA 91016
Tel: (626) 574-5960
Monday: 5:00 – 9:30 pm
Tuesday-Sunday: 11:00 am – 9:30 pm