[Shanghai] Jianguo 328 建国328小官
Jianguo 328 建国328小官 | Dianping
Address: 建国西路328号(近襄阳南路) – 328 Jianguo West Rd near Xiangyang South Rd (徐汇区 Xuhui District)
Date visited: 2014.03
Total bill: RMB¥112 for two people
Will return: Maybe
What to get:
– Noodles in scallion, oil and soy sauce 开洋葱油拌面
Jianguo 328 / 建国328小官, named after its address, is a tiny Shanghainese restaurant on Jianguo Road. This place has been around but something made this pop up on the expat radar again. I think this place is just okay and I think I may be the only person who thinks that.
In terms of the food, my expectations were not met; I was underwhelmed given the buzz and queue around this place. I think people are really into the fact that this is a local restaurant that is clean and serves decent food, which it is–but the taste was not quite Shanghainese enough for me. I don’t think this is Shanghainese food for Shanghainese people. I think this is Shanghainese food for people who come from other countries or other parts of China.
The space is two floors with small tables downstairs and large round tables upstairs. Space is very limited (even with the expansion into next door) and they require table sharing if you are seated at one of the larger tables. My friend and I basically ended up sitting at a round table with three other pairs of strangers. Odd arrangement but everyone at the table was luckily very courteous so it was pleasant for what it was. The restaurant takes reservations but I don’t know why because even people who showed up with reservations had to wait.
My friend and I both got the house ice tea 小馆冰柠檬红茶 (RMB¥8), which was way too sweet.
Baby yellow croakers spring rolls 黄鱼春卷 (RMB¥18)
The spring roll was mostly vegetables with bits of yellow croaker. I didn’t quite get that yellow croaker umami taste 鲜味. The best yellow croaker I have had so far was at the People’s Square Shanghai Ren Jia 上海人家 branch.
Deep fried duck legs, Shanghai style 特色香酥鸭腿 (RMB¥38)
Conceptually this sounded good but in reality the duck meat was a little dry and had too much salt seasoning. Maybe the kitchen had an off day because this really had potential.
Deep fried spare ribs with spices 椒盐排条 (RMB¥22)
Topped with the same onion and scallion garnishes as the duck legs but on the contrary didn’t have enough salt and pepper seasoning. Similar to the duck legs, there was just something slightly off with execution for a nice dish on paper.
Noodles in scallion, oil and soy sauce 开洋葱油拌面 (RMB¥18)
This was the one dish I wholeheartedly liked. There were caramelized onions mixed in with the scallions to give it an extra sweetness. I wouldn’t come here especially for this because my 6 kuai scallion oil noodles at Lao Sheng Chang 老盛昌 are perfectly fine for me but if you are here, this is a must-get.