Chinese Fast Food, Ashfield

All hail the xiao long bao.

Don't let the English name of this place fool you, because the Chinese translation specifies Shanghainese cuisine. It should really be called 'Shanghai Fast Food.' Then again, I can't say that the food came out particularly Well anyway, I think that they are attempting to distinguish themselves from Shanghai Night and New Shanghai restaurant which are both just a few doors down.

Chinese Fast Food is located on the main road in Ashfield

The store front

There are also trenches inside the restaurant, offering food that you can takeaway or eat-in.

It seems like this place has also gotten some good reviews in the past.

The inside of the restaurant is quite narrow, and it seems to be a family run business, or at least a friends enterprise as the staff are very casual and lax.

The first table in the restaurant is taken up by a wonton-making station

And it seems like every bit of space is used for storage.

I knew that Ashfield was the place to go for (cheap) xiao long baos that have been popularised by the (expensive) Din Tai Fung. So I didn't really look at the menu once I was assured that xiao long baos had been ordered.

The menu

Sample page from the menu - everything sounded the same

After ordering, there was nothing to do but to sit back and wait for the food to arrive.

Complimentary tea

At long last, the xiao long baos arrived! And boy, were they worth the wait!

Xiao long baos with crab roe ($10 for 8)

Pleated tops of the xiao long baos

After one bite - notice the puddle of soup at the bottom of the bowl?

These were absolutely delicious. It had been so cold and windy outside that when I ate one of these babies, the soup just glided down my throat and warmed me up. The soup had some great flavour and a slightly oily texture. I drank the soup that pooled at the bottom of my bowl.

Pan- fried pork buns ($8 for 8)

As soon as I saw those deliciously, crispy golden bottoms, I knew I was in for a treat.

The bottom was delightfully crispy, a perfect complement to the soft dough on top. And the inside! Oh my, the inside. It had soup as well!!!

The inside of the bun

See the soupy goodness?

They were a definite winner, but it seemed like we were in for a soupy trifecta today.

Pan fried pork dumplings ($8 for 8)

A few were on the darker side of crispy

Inside of the dumpling

Yum yum yum. Crispy on the bottom with a slight crunch, soft pork mix on the inside with more of that oily soup.

There was one more thing that we ordered:

Joong (sticky rice parcel) - $3

The joong was a bit bland. The glutinous rice was extremely soft, almost to the point of mushy. We wanted some sugar to sprinkle on top but the two waitresses on duty were nowhere to be seen.

I wouldn't order the joong again, but am adding the other three items to my continuously expanding list of favourite items to eat!


We have been writing about food in Sydney since 2009. No place is too far or too wide for us to travel to visit. We always give an honest opinion and love to hear your comments too. Here's to an ever-growing society of foodies!


  1. wow really delicious looking photos (no matter what other anonymous posters may say)! have you tried the other two places that you mentioned?

  2. No I haven't, but I definitely want to.