Tuesday, November 23, 2010

Day 3: Shanghai (Part I)

Getting Around

Traveling around in Shanghai city was an extremely easy thing to do, as long as you have this...

Shanghai metro map.

There were altogether 11 routes in Shanghai metro. We could get to a route 2 and a route 7 station within walking distance from where my brother stayed. Isn't it convenient?

豫园 (Yuyuan Garden)

小笼包 (xiao long bao) is the most famous Shanghai cuisine. If you've been to Shanghai but never tasted it, it's like you've never been there before. And the most well-known restaurant that specialize in this dish is none other than...

 NanXiang Mantou Dian, located in Yuyuan Garden.

This restaurant was very status-oriented. I didn't like its operating principle very much. On the ground floor, there was the place to order take-aways. On the first floor to the left was for dine-in without minimum spending; to the right was for minimum spending of RMB30 (which was where we went). 

My brother said he always go to the highest floor, with minimum spending of RMB200, simply for the reason that less people go there thus he didn't have to wait. It was quite understandable once you had seen the length of the queue. When we reached there it was not full, but the moment we seated ourselves (we took the last table available) the queue had started to build up and that was as early as 8:45am.

 Two dishes came up to RMB88 and that was only breakfast. =.=|||

 This was how xiao long bao looked like.

The right way to eat this was to first take a small bite on the skin - tiny weeny bite, just enough for the fluid to escape. Then suck the soup out... Yum!!! Savor the fresh, sweet soup in your mouth a little, before finally sinking your teeth into the meat.

 Adding ginger and vinegar, to me, was optional.

九曲桥 The Bridge of Nine Turnings.

Yuyuan Garden was a private garden built by Pan Yunduan (潘允端) - some filthy rich guy.
Entrance fees RMB40 per head.

 The living room, where the master of the mansion meet his guests - San Sui Hall.

 They need to cross this to get into the house.

 This lion was trying to kills his own kid!!!

 Nah I'm kidding. All the lions were like that. It actually meant something.

 Yeah the filthy rich Chinese like that, for some unknown reason.

They like to build a room and make it look like the interior of a boat, and pretend that they were sailing.

 Does this even look like a boat to you?

 And they had nothing better to do, than to admire rocks and man-made streams...

... like this guy over there.

The dragon wall. Magnificent architecture. Notice the fine dragon beard 龙须.

 Some trade mark belongings of the 小刀会 Xiao Dao Society - some anti-government society.

 People fighting in a war, on the roof.

 Slim appearance, penetration, wrinkle and leakage of water? That was the 4 main criteria they used to judge a rock - HAHAHA!!!

This rock matches all 4 of the criteria. Looks ugly to me.

This performance stage was the best stage in southern part of China. The display were various types of Chinese instruments.

 This was the inner part of the roof. It was designed to focus the sound wave. Some kind of surround sound effect, I think.

Mr. Chin said this was a crystal - raw and unpolished.

Outside of Yuyuan Garden, I found the most delicious food I had in Shanghai...

 钓钟烧 Diao Zhong Shao.

 Looked cute too.

 Milky, creamy, yummy.

This was the shop.

 I also bought this. This was nice too.

Also went 城隍庙 Chenghuang Temple - RMB10 per head. There was nothing special inside. Wasted my money.

 Disturbingly weird.