Served in bamboo baskets, Xiao Long Bao are tiny soup dumplings that are often craved and revered for their comforting goodness of soupy broth and meaty filling with each delicate nibble of their translucent skin. This Chinese delicacy of miniature soup pockets is said to be invented in the town of Nan Xiang in Shanghai, China.
There are many places in the metro where you can get your Xiao Long Bao fix, each restaurant catering to different types of budget and craving — here, we've rounded up seven favorites for your dumpling domination requirements. Which one's your top pick?
1. Din Tai Fung
Mega Fashion Hall, SM Megamall
www.dintaifungph.com | FB: /dintaifungph | IG: @dintaifungph
Forbes Magazine has called theirs 'the world's greatest dumplings,' making the five-time Michelin star awardee the top of mind whenever Xiao Long Bao cravings strike.
Order: Pork Xiao Long Bao (P160/5pcs, P315/10pcs), Crab Roe and Pork Xiao Long Bao (P285/5pcs, P565/10pcs), Truffle and Pork Xiao Long Bao (P135/piece)
2. Shi Lin
The Podium, BGC, Alabang Town Center, Power Plant Mall, Lucky Chinatown Mall, Trinoma, Eastwood Mall, and Greenbelt 3
Dimsum, noodles, buns, and authentic Taiwanese eats are in store for every diner at Shi Lin, and best-selling since day one are their soupy dumplings.
Order: Xiao Long Bao (P165/6pcs, P275/10pcs), Black Truffle Xiao Long Bao (P218/6pcs)
3. Lugang Cafe
Greenhills, Glorietta, SM Mall of Asia, SM Aura, SM North EDSA, SM Megamall
www.lugangcafe.com.ph |FB: "Lugang Cafe"| IG: @lugangcafe
Home to arguably one of the best Xiao Long Baos in the metro, Lugang Cafe has become a destination for foodies seeking a mix of traditional and modern Chinese dishes.
Order: Pork Xiao Long Bao (P248/8pcs), Crab Roe And Pork Xiao Long Bao (P288/8pcs), Angled Loofah with Shrimp Xiao Long Bao (P228/8pcs), Kimchi Pork Xiao Long Bao (P268/8pcs)
Glorietta and SM Mall of Asia
FB: /ModernShanghaiPhilippines | IG and Twitter: @ModernShanghai
This restaurant concept originally from Hongkong specializes in Shanghainese cuisine and also offers the fabled soup dumpling steamed in traditional bamboo baskets.
Order: Our Signature Xiao Long Bao (P198), Chef's Special Pan-fried Xiao Long Bao (P198)
5. Shang Palace
www.shangri-la.com/makati | FB: /MakatiShangrila | IG: @makatishangrila
First, a caveat: Makati Shang's popular Chinese restaurant serves their xiao long bao as part of a dim sum buffet, which is a regular delicious occurence for the weekday lunch crowd. So, save space for other dim sum, soups, appetizers, rice, noodles, and desserts!
Order: Steamed Shanghai 'Xiao Long Pao,' included in Dim Sum Plus lunch menu (P888+ per person, Mondays to Saturdays, from 11:30am to 2:30pm)
Yuchengo (Nueva) Street, Binondo
For authentic and cheap Chinese eats, your best bet is to head to Chinatown, where streets are busy and foodtrips are inevitable. For a no-frills dimsum fest set in an open kitchen like no other, Dong Bei is the way — plus points for selling XLB in frozen packs to bring home!
Order: Steamed Xiao Long Pao (P120/6pcs); available in frozen packs (P200/15pcs)
Granada Street, Quezon City
A favorite of the Greenhills community, Mien San is a not too hidden gem serving comfort food hits from both Chinese and Taiwanese cuisine, with special emphasis on fresh noodles. Their affordable selection has been a crowd-pleaser for years, just like their baskets of Siaolong Pao.
Order: Siaolong Pao (P168/4pcs), Shrimp Sialong Pao (P178)