Have You Found Melbourne’s Dumpling Oasis?

By Clare Acheson
28th May 2015

When hunting for the best dumplings in Melbourne, we often find ourselves surrounded by chaos in China Town. Yes, it’s fun for a little bit, but if you’re looking to have a more relaxing evening with friends, it can be a bit, um, mental, amirite? Bring on Melbourne’s newest dumpling oasis, New Shanghai—a paradise filled with all of our Chinese foodie desires!

New Shanghai is hidden in Melbourne’s impressive Emporium complex and, while the centre itself is a hub of shop-til-you-drop activity, the Melbourne dumpling restaurant is the most zen place we’ve eaten at in a loooong while. The menu covers all of our favourites (Dumplings, tick! Spicy soups, tick! Hot-pots, tick!) as well as traditional noodle and rice dishes, made with super-fresh ingredients. But it’s the dumplings that keep us coming back for more. The hand-made parcels of perfection are incredibly tasty and look almost too good to eat!

We caught up with New Shanghai’s Melbourne dumpling chefs to find out what exactly goes into some of the best dumplings in Melbourne…

1. Fresh ingredients.

The chefs at New Shanghai use only the best fresh, local ingredients, combined with authentic Chinese spices and their amazing culinary skills to create dumplings that are to die for. Starting with delicious raw ingredients is the first step in dumpling success!

2. Tender meat.

Much like fresh veggies, tender, top-quality meat is a key ingredient for dumplings that are juicy, tasty and ever so moreish. The team at New Shanghai expertly season and cook top-notch meat that then goes into their hand-made parcels of deliciousness, making for a real treat.

3. Super-thin dough.

There’s nothing worse than heavy Chinese dumplings that don’t get hit that carb and filling portion right on the mark. In the same way, dumplings that fall apart because their casing is too thin obviously aren’t ideal either. New Shanghai use premium dough that is a mere 1mm thick to create each one of their tasty dumplings—pure dumpling perfection!

4. Count the number of folds, people!

The number of folds in the dumpling skin is CRUCIAL to making a dumpling that you’ll be raving about for days to come. A couple of folds just isn’t enough…Ten? Twelve? No, we’re talking THIRTY individual folds to close the dumpling. At New Shanghai, they take the time to do this all by hand—so that you can munch them down in seconds.

5. House-made secret sauces.

I bet you’re going to tell me that the sweet chilli dipping sauce you pick up from the local Asian corner store will do just fine, thank you, but seriously, you haven’t had a true dumpling experience unless you’ve dipped them in a home-made sauce. New Shanghai’s dipping sauces, which are made fresh, in-house, every day, are next level. Ask for extras of the peanut sauce every time, Listers. You can thank us later.

The best thing about the dumpling plates at New Shanghai is that there’s always enough to go around—yes, it’s the perfect venue for a quick CBD bite to eat, but it’s also fitted out with a private dining room and several larger tables, making it ideal for a group feast of dumplings in Melbourne, washed down with a couple of bubbly imported beers, natch.

Ready to wrap your lips around some of the best dumplings in Melbourne? You’ll find New Shanghai on level 3 of Emporium in the CBD. We’ll fight you for the last wonton!

New Shanghai | Melbourne CBD

Image credit: Simon Shiff for The Urban List

Editor's Note: This article is proudly sponsored by New Shanghai and endorsed by The Urban List. Thank you for supporting the sponsors who make The Urban List possible. Click here for more information on our editorial policy.

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