Heatwolves on 291 Madang Lu, near Fuxing Zhong Lu 138 1655 7579 Qianlixiang Wontons (Madang Lu) Price per Person: 15 Rmb
Atmosphere: A friend and I always argue over which is the better Xiantiandi wonton, Qian Li Xiang Huntun or Er Guang Huntun. They say Qian Li Xiang have better xiao huntun and the shop has that inspiring morning vibe of bosses eating wontons in a cloud of steam (wontons are the boss breakfast because only bosses have time to really sit down and enjoy breakfast, instead of scarfing baozi on the run, says this friend).
I say Er Guang wins because it's cleaner and the meat tastes better, and they have pork chops, greens, and drinks. And because one morning one of the cooks from Qian Li Xiang was cooking his own breakfast in a wok on the sidewalk (they don't eat wontons everyday), and in a jet-lag haze I stepped outside of the restaurant and nearly walked right into the flame.
But even though I'm way off topic and Er Guang is definitely better, Qian Li Xiang is still a decent option for a cheap meal in the Madang Lu area. They charge 13rmb for a bowl of ten big jicai xian rou wontons or you can add 1rmb to get them dry with the peanut sauce. I've never seen anyone order the more expensive wontons with shrimp. Overall, their flavors rely too much on spices rather than high quality ingredients, but you could do much, much worse for in this area. They stay rolling up pork and cai in the middle of the shop all day every day and the place is never empty.
SmartReviews is SmartShanghai’s crack squad of amateur reviewers, eating their way around the city and writing about it. They have been chosen from a large pool of applicants and given a set of strict guidelines to follow to make sure their reviews are honest, informed and fair to both potential customers and the restaurants themselves.