China Red is situated in an arcade just off Bourke st in the CBD and is the sister restaurant of the dumpling powerhouse Hutong. China Red cuts out the middle man by using an Ipad ordering system (Engrish captions included). This means that the service, what little of it you have, can seem a bit unfriendly. However, the meals are served quickly – even on a Saturday night, and the Xiao Long Bao are comparable to that of Hutong – if not better.
The ordering system is easy enough to use and the menu items are well priced.
The fried pork buns are delicious. The crisply fried bottom perfectly balances out the soft, doughy top.
Silky Xiao Long Bao are filled with a soupy broth- perhaps even better than Hutongs. These are about $12 for 8.
Whilst we have both got our dumpling fixes at China Red a few times something that does stand out is the lack of consistency with each visit. Sometimes the dumplings will be silky, subtle and fresh and other times they won’t be anything worth raving about. It’s worth the visit for the off-chance the dumplings are extra good that day.