Long’s Noodle House is a Shanghainese restaurant that has been around for ages in the Mount Pleasant neighbourhood best known for traditional home-style comfort Chinese food from xiao long bao, tan tan noodles, and delicious soups at an affordable price. You could say they’ve earn the reputation of being a ‘hidden gem’ due to their obscure location and the fact that pretty much only locals dine here most of the time (even before social media became a huge thing). My friends and I came here for a belated birthday dinner because it was the only location we could think of in the Mount Pleasant area for decent Shanghainese food.
Despite early closing hours of 9pm, the place was consistently packed with hungry patrons from beginning to start. This casual eatery is extremely small for a restaurant with about three large tables and the rest small tables for parties of 2-4. Similar to most Chinese restaurants, the menu is extensive with categories ranging from appetizers, soups, rice, poultry (beef, chicken, pork), noodles, etc. I did some research prior to coming here, so I had a good sense of which items were considered as ‘must-orders’ for our party to share.
Steamed Mini Pork Buns ($6.95) Also known as ‘xiao long bao’. Every order comes with eight pieces served in bamboo steamers. The skin was delicately thin and the meat filling had great flavour. The black vinegar and slivers of ginger added a nice kick of acidity with the xiao long baos. My friends and I ended up having three orders of this! We were surprised to find that only one small plate of black vinegar and slivers of ginger was provided.. usually each person has their own for dipping at other establishments.
Beef Rolls ($7.50) Beef shank rolled in a Chinese pancake with cilantro and sweet black bean (hoisin) sauce. For a beef roll, the meat filling was extremely skimpy as only one thin layer covered the pancake, but it was flavourful. Overall, ingredients were lacking and the pancake didn’t have a crispy exterior. For the price, it’s more on the expensive side.
Hot and Sour Soup ($8.95) This came with sliced carrot, chicken, wood ear mushroom, tofu, egg, and green onion. Great hot and sour soup should be rich and thick and have contrasting flavours of sweet, salty, and tangy. While the consistency was spot on, the soup was not sour enough and more on the bland side. We tried adding white pepper to add more flavour too it, but it ended up being too peppery! Very generous portion size, though!
Shanghai Style Pan Fried Thick Noodle ($11.95) The noodles are stir-fried with Chinese broccoli, cabbage, and bits of pork. Noodles had a nice deep brown colour from dark soy sauce. Texture of the noodles were nice and chewy. Just a touch on the oily side, but I personally enjoyed the flavour component of this dish.
Crispy Rice with Salty Egg Yolk ($13.95) This was another recommended dish from reviewers. There was a fragrant, briny aroma released from the salty yolk. The flavour was as rich as its golden appearance. However, bits of it were overcooked resulting in an unpleasant burnt taste of the wok. We ended up having to pack almost a third of it to go. I was a little disappointed with the outcome of this dish as I had high expectations- maybe I came on a bad day or the kitchen was quick to close that compromised a supposedly staple dish.
Yellow Fish with Seaweed ($18.95) Almost resembling the texture of tilapia, the lightly battered pieces of fish were slightly firm and flaky. Most importantly, delicious! I normally hate using the word ‘best’, but seriously these were some of the best fried fish I’ve ever had in the Lower Mainland! The seaweed infused batter gave a nice savoury component to the mild sweet taste of the yellow fish. This dish definitely lived up to its hype and I would totally order these again and again.
Wine Chicken ($8.95) poached chicken marinated with salt and rice wine served cold. Apparently another signature dish and must order here. While I did enjoy the tenderness of the chicken, majority of us weren’t really a huge fan of this dish. I grew up eating something similar to dish so the taste of something marinated in rice win wasn’t super unique to me, but I guess it was too adventurous for my friends as wine chicken is more of an acquired taste than anything. Again, maybe it was because we arrived just before closing for dinner- so i’ll have to give this dish another try!
Service surprisingly was really good for a Chinese establishment. Our waitress was very cute and attentive. She even suggested having us order a ‘green’ (vegetable) dish to our carb and meat heavy dinner. Despite our late seating, we didn’t feel rushed at all.
4853 Main St