Heavenly Choices at Shangri-La

Shangri-La, a Taiwanese place in Belmont, doesn't look like much. Housed on a nondescript block, far from any T-stops, it nonetheless draws an enormous crowd, particularly on the weekends, when there's usually a waiting list posted outside the door by 11:30 a.m. Since the atmosphere is meh and the service can be kind of grumpy, hounds are clearly showing up for the food. Good orders include:

• Ginger chicken
• Scallion pancakes
• Jumbo meatball
• Turnip cakes (a dish with near-universal acclaim: "just right, with turnip taste, and similar to those my mom used to make for Chinese New Year's," says alohagirl)
• Tea-smoked boneless duck
• Egg-drop soup, called "homestyle" on the menu and served in a giant bowl

Basically, "stay FAR AWAY from anything that reeks of Americanized Chinese. If you do that, you are generally OK," says StriperGuy. Oh, and avoid the other Shangri-La in Boston. It's not connected to the Belmont one, and is definitely "down-scale," as jgg13 politely points out.

Shangri-La [North of Boston]
149 Belmont Street, Belmont
617-489-1488

Discuss: Tried the Dim Sum at Shangri-La in Belmont
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