1/F, 5 Tonnochy Road, Wan Chai
Tel: 3125 3232
Price: about HK$280 without drinks or the service charge.
Ambience: with its low lighting and black decor with white and red accents, Shanghai Lo looks more like a nightclub than a restaurant. The four of us were initially seated at a round table in the centre of the restaurant, but we asked to be moved to a booth for more privacy. The staff said the booth might be too small; we should have listened.
Pros: the service. Granted, we were the only diners for most of the evening, but our waiters were attentive and helpful. The food was served at a good pace.
Cons: two dishes - the spare ribs in plum sauce (HK$98) and huadiao wine-marinated drunken pork knuckle (HK$78) were far too sweet to the point of tasting saccharine. Wuxi crispy eel (HK$108) had good flavour, but the texture was slightly tough.
Recommended dishes: stir-fried shredded bean curd with pork and chillies (HK$178) had a rich sauce that didn't have too much cornstarch, so it just lightly coated the ingredients. The first dish that really made us sit up and take notice was the sauteed prawns with egg yolk paste (HK$168). It was a generous serving of eight large, sweet, perfectly cooked prawns thickly coated in salted egg yolk. Our waiter recommended the whole duck stuffed with glutinous rice and vegetables (HK$488), which normally needs two days' notice to order, but the kitchen had an extra one. The duck had been steamed before being fried, so the meat and flavourful stuffing were moist, while the thin, delicate skin was crisp, and there was hardly any extraneous fat.
What else? Shanghai Lo is in a building that houses bars and other restaurants, including Tonno Kitchen and Tonno Bar.