i continued our little quest on the west side of the bay last night, specifically at the millbrae 'shanghai dumpling shop'.
it was a chilly night, and i spied an inviting bowl of beef noodles on an adjacent table, so i decided to try their version. it was disappointing. first, no spinach. second, the noodles were prefab and had a watery lifeless consistency. third, the soup did not have definitive evidence of bean sauce, and lacked depth of flavor. fourth, the beef did not have tender tendon. i guess i shouldn't be surprised given the name of the establishment. well that brings us to the next item.
naturally, we had to get xlb. they had dozens of steamer trays full of xlb stacked up and ready to go, so our tray of 10 came out fairly quickly. while the volume of juice was impressive, the filling was well beyond normal ranges of saltiness. also, i couldn't help feeling that the skin had somehow hardened at some point in the process, perhaps as they sat on the counter before cooking? or could it be the salt?
regardless, for one more visit i will give them the benefit of the doubt and assume that someone didn't mix the salt in this particular batch of filling and that lunch will yield fresher wrappers.
as for the beef noodle soup, has anyone tried it at 'joy' in foster city? despite the allure, i don't want to have to go to union city if i can help it.