Restaurant: Cheng Long Xing Xie WangFu
Date: August 10, 2018
Cuisine: Hairy Crab
Rating: Amazing crab
We spent a hot day but fun day in Suzhou.
A city often called the “Venice of China” before returning to Shanghai and Pudong.
Our friend in Shanghai again offered to take us out, this time for some of the famed Shanghai Hairy Crab from Yangcheng Lake.
This lead us into the huge side lobby of an even huger Pudong tower.
And up to Cheng Long Xing Xie WangFu and…
It grandiose gates.
And even grander interior surrounded by semi-private and private dining rooms.
This is actually INSIDE the restaurant!
They had traditional musicians performing as well.
We had our own private room with a view of the atrium.
When we first sat, they showed us some of the bundled up crabs. For those not in the know, during the 9th and 10th months of the lunar calendar, autumn to you and I, Shanghai’s culinary scene is all about hairy crab. Hailing (supposedly, if not fake), only from Yangcheng Lake the crab has been famous for 2000 years!
But before that, we began with some cold appetizers like this wood ear mushroom and pearl onions.
This peanuts and other mushrooms.
A section of shrimp, pork, peanuts, and pickled vegetables.
Vegetarian abalone. Some kind of mushroom, but it was really delicious.
Crunchy pickled carrot. Sweet and absolutely delicious.
Nut cake. A bit like a peanut brittle.
The simple Shanghai shrimp are everywhere! You pour a bit of vinegar over them.
Spicy crispy beef. Delicious. I really loved this dish.
Now the crab dishes invade. First some sesame buns that you stuff…
To make hairy crab stuffed buns.
Here is the meat from the hairy crab, mixed with “crab brains” (which is really crab liver).
The staff showed us the whole steamed crabs after cooking.
More smoked sweet fish.
And the crab main event. Steamed Shanghai Hairy Crab. The guts proudly in the shell, the meat to the right, and the legs carefully prepared so that you can get every morsel out without any work. Love it when it’s easy!
A close up of the crab itself.
Steamed crab meat.
Super crab cake. The meat and some kind of breading in a shell. Scrumptious.
Crab XLB. Best Crab XLB I’ve every had. Crab and crab guts inside the delicate wrapper.
A bit of lemon juice (slightly sweet) to cleanse the taste.
With more crab guts.
For topping. This was some awesome umami crabby pasta.
And fried rice cakes.
Then sweet sesame balls. Like cute little eyeballs.
And a kind of wonton soup to close.
Overall, a unique meal I’ve never had before. Really fabulous crab and like a fancy Chinese version of one of the crab shacks from my youth.
For my catalog of Chinese restaurant reviews in China, click here.