Add:29 Shanxi Rd S.
Credit Cards Accepted
English Service Available
This small noodle restaurant offers the authentic local flavors usually only found in a Shanghainese mom’s kitchen or street food stalls at the entrance to a traditional longtang alley.
Tradition is a hallmark of Xiaolin Noodle Shop, with the owner showing a strong commitment to recreating the local dining scene from the 1970s and 1980s: from the dishes served to the dining ambience; the selection of utensils to the use of local soy sauce.
The restaurant is located in a two-story 1920s villa, though with much of the original decor now indistinct and crumbling away.
A signature dish is spicy meat soup noodles. Thinly sliced noodles are stewed in pork bone stock with minced pork, which is stir-fried in soy sauce with chili, then topped with pickles. The slight spiciness of the pork adds a rich aroma to the soup, while the pickle — savory and slightly sour — cuts through the meat’s fattiness.
Regular customers know to order the fried duck egg braised in soy sauce as its topping.
Local cuisine connoisseurs should order the signature Shanghai home-style deep-fried pork chop — only 20 are available each day — to pair with the noodles. The pork chop is tenderized and then coated with flour and breadcrumbs before being deep-fried until the outside is crisp, while inside it’s juicy and tender.
The restaurant serves it with spicy soy sauce, a local adaptation of Worcestershire sauce.
If you are not a noodle fan, try the signature caifan — literally, rice with greens — which in this case is rice steamed with Shanghai cabbage and slices of marinated pork. Chef tops the rice with crackling before serving, bringing rich textures and fatty flavor to balance the fresh cabbage.
For committed carnivores, banfan (literally, mixing rice) is recommended.
Plain rice is topped with half lean and half fatty pork, and then braised in soy sauce with dried greens.
Before you tuck in, mix the rice and sauce thoroughly to let it fully absorb the flavor and aroma. The dried greens taste rich after absorbing meat juices, while cutting through the fatiness.
Xiaolin Noodle Shop doesn’t take reservations, it’s first come first served.
Average check: 22 yuan