The hubs, Future Foodie and I popped into Ala Shanghai in Latham this weekend to give it a try. We had heard great things about it and J was dying to try their pork soup dumplings.
We were there for lunch and there was a good crowd already enjoying their meals there. First off, before talking about the food, I have to say that the service was just great. They were really on top of things and very friendly. J and I excitedly perused the Shanghainese centric menu. We ended up ordering the:
Pork Soup Dumplings (we started with one order and gave in to our gluttony and ordered another after devouring the first order)
These were very good soup dumplings. Nice flavor to the broth and the pork. The only thing is the actual dumpling skin is a little too thick. But these were absolutely the best soup dumplings we have had in the Capital Region so we’re not really going to complain. They served it with the traditional Chinese black vinegar and sliced ginger sauce, which we poured generously over the dumplings.
Shanghai Spring Rolls (again we started with one order and couldn’t stop ourselves from ordering two more)
These were probably some of the best spring rolls I’ve had. Crispy on the outside, not too oily, and the filling was so tasty (cabbage and pork).
Mini Pork Buns
The mini is probably a misnomer since these buns were actually quite big. We’ve had them at other restaurants where they are small and pan-fried so that they are nice and crispy on the outside. These were more just like normal buns with some pork inside. These were our least favorite dish of what we ordered.
Chinese Rice Cakes with Vegetables
This dish was another home run. The rice cakes were perfectly cooked – soft and chewy. The flavor was rich and kind of smoky. Absolutely yummy. They vegetables – carrots, mushrooms, and Napa cabbage were all delicious and obviously fresh. Future Foodie was also a fan of this, an extra plus!
General Tsao’s Chicken
Okay, so I totally have a weak spot for this completely inauthentic dish. So sue me. But I am so glad I ordered it because it was so darn tasty. We asked for it to be extra spicy and they definitely delivered on that. The flavor was delicious and my lips hurt from the spice, but I couldn’t stop eating it. My only quibble is that the quality of the actual chicken could have been better but their General Tsao’s blows away any of the offerings from the run of the mill Chinese take out restaurants that are ubiquitous in the Capital Region.
We will definitely be returning to Ala Shanghai, sooner than later.