gracecheung604 | write on time: Modern City - Shanghainese in Kerridale

Thursday, June 27, 2013

Modern City - Shanghainese in Kerridale

While I was in Toronto, I ate pretty good food, but most of them were European cuisines, such as Cafe Boulud (see more of my Toronto posts) with only Momofuku the notable exception. It was only normal that my first two meals out were both Asian, first Copa Cafe, and now Modern City.
2013-06-22 11.04.50 2 Sigh, spell check anyone? 
2013-06-22 11.21.55 
We ordered a total of four dishes intending to have some leftovers. Because many Shanghainese dishes are high in carbs, we decided to order something soupy for a light but comforting dish. This is the Deep Fried Tofu with Vermicelli Soup. There are large cubes of tofu, deep fried with a crispy crust but the tofu inside is super soft. The vermicelli is a nice touch and serves to make this dish just hearty enough, but never heavy. 
2013-06-22 11.31.05 b 
Another "must-eat" on my list for Shanghainese this Salted Sticky Rice. It's like a sushi roll, but instead of filled, it's filled with a Chinese Donut, topped with some shredded preserved veggies and pork floss.  It shouldn't be exploding like this, but in a way, this is helpful since it showcases the inside. Despite the presentation, this was good. Chances are, the rice was just too hot to hold together and broke apart as it was rolled. I would give this another shot on my next visit.
2013-06-22 11.15.36 2 
The heaviest dish we ordered was the Shanghai Style Rice Cake with Soy Sauce. This dish (~$7) was just a tad small for my expectations. However, what we did receive was delicious. The rice cake had a fantastic chewiness and bounce, and didn't not stick together, something that often happens when they are not made to order. The rice cakes are stir-fried with some shredded pork and spinach. The flavours were good, not overly salty and benefited from the touch of heat from the extra hot sauce I requested. My only complaint was that this dish was just a touch too oily...look closely at the bottom of the plate  (7 o'clock area) and you'll sort of see what I mean. 
2013-06-22 11.16.41 b And no Shanghainese lunch is complete without Xiao Long Bao, so we decided to try these. Alas, these were a disappointment. The best I've had so far is Dinesty. Of the six we had, four broke the minute you picked them up. Either the skin was too thin on the bottom or they didn't do enough to prevent them sticking to the paper. But the one I had that didn't burst was filled with a very flavourful broth. However, the top of each bun was overly thick, and took away from the overall enjoyment of the dish. If you need to order XLBs every time you visit a Shanghainese food, then you might not think this place is worth a shot. 

Take Note:

  • Lots of lunch specials for under $10.
  • Credit costs extra unless your bill is $35+.
  • Probably the only Shanghainese cuisine in the area, so they do get busy.
Modern City Chinese Restaurant 新上海酒家 on Urbanspoon

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