After reading the comments on my last Din Tai Fung post, I decided that we had to go and try the xiao long bao at Dragon-i to see which is better. The reason why we've never visited until now was because I did not know there was a Dragon-i in MidValley. Even when we went earlier this week, we had to ask for directions in order to find it. It is actually located in the lobby of Cititel Hotel, and you can get there via a small passage just before you reach Coffee Bean on Ground Floor of MidValley.
The restaurant is spacious and nicely appointed. Service was good, food was served quite quickly and our kids were given kids cutlery set without us having to ask. The restaurant serves Shanghainese cuisine/specialities and I ordered several dishes for us to share. Baby C put in a special request for the piggy pau that she saw when I was flicking through the menu.
Open kitchen, whereby one can view the chefs at work
Chef showing off his la mian making skills
Braised peanuts (RM2)
Of course the first thing on our order list is the xiao long bao (Shanghainese steamed meat dumplings). This is what we came here for, right? I would say texture wise, it is on par with Din Tai Fung's. The XLB here is handmade with at least 18 delicate folds. The filling is a mix of minced pork shank, ginger and natural pork skin gelatin, which after steaming melts into a delicious soup.
Price is slightly more expensive here (RM9.80 for 4 pcs vs DTF's RM12.30 for 8 pcs). I did notice that the broth in the XLB here was warm, rather than very hot, so you need not worry about scalding your tongue eating these. So, the XLB here deserves a thumbs up from me. :)
Perfect little parcels, eaten with ginger with Chinese black vinegar
Both kids squealed in delight when the piggy buns arrived at our table. Even the adults found them simply adorable. The cute little piggy is filled with red bean paste and lotus paste. Baby C picked the piggy with the pink ears. Baby D started off by eating the piggy's "face" LOL whereas Baby C ate everything except the face and ears, and just before she ate it all, she said "Sorry piggy, I'm gonna put you in my mouth now." It really made us laugh.
Steamed piggy bun (RM9 for two)
Coincidentally, Baby C was wearing her Peppa pig top, so she introduced piggy bun to Peppa. ;)
The deep fried beancurd with salt and pepper (RM8) was really delicious. The filling was smooth (like silken tofu) and the exterior was crisp. Quite a generous portion, Baby C helped herself to a few pieces as she liked it a lot.
The tofu filling was smooth and slightly cold, and the exterior hot and crispy. Great combo!
The only dish we did not really enjoy here was the chilled drunken chicken with "hua diao"rice wine (RM16). This was one of their recommended dishes, however I felt the chicken meat was just too fatty and the flavours weren't really that great. I also found it a little too salty for my liking.
La mian (hand-pulled noodles) made with top flour from Canada are a speciality here. The chefs, hail from Lanzhou, China and they can create 1800 finely crafted noodles in one minute. The la mian can be made into 6 different shapes - dragon beard, double width, flat face, broad face, Northern hand made and hand sliced.
We went for the dragon beard (finest one), which resembled mee suah a little in texture. We ordered the la mian with Shanghainese deep fried pork ribs (RM18). The la mian is served in a clear soup and topped with some chopped scallions. It was simple but nice. I love the pork ribs too, well-marinated and non-oily.
Crispy on the outside, tender on the inside - just as promised on the menu
Baby D slurping his la mian noodles!
I wasn't sure which dumpling to order, but I was very glad that I picked the pan fried meat dumplings with teriyaki sauce in hot stone pot (RM10 for 3 pcs). Very very delicious, from the crispy dumplings to the teriyaki pork filling.
Seriously good dumplings
We ended our meal with these delectable salted egg yolk custard bun (RM9 for 3 pcs). They're a bit messy to eat since the filling oozes out as soon as you take a bite, but again it's very delicious! Soft buns with sweet-salty filling.
Filling overload! (just like a lava cake)
Current hairy crab promotion - 4 crabs for the price of 3 - RM198+
Hairy little fellas
Verdict: Great food, nice ambiance. Their xiao long bao definitely doesn't disappoint. Lots of other worthy dishes to sample here.
Opening times: Mon-Fri 11.00 am - 10.00 pm, Sat - Sun 10.30pm - 10.00pm.
Price: Total bill RM105.90.
Location: Dragon-i, Cititel Hotel, Main Lobby, Ground Floor, Mid Valley City, Lingkaran Syed Putra, 59200 Kuala Lumpur.
Tel: 03-2282 0155