True Foodies know this one is a big deal! Nan Xiang Xiao Long Bao today has opened a beautiful new restaurant location in Cherry Hill NJ , which is located in Garden State Park complex (off Haddonfield Rd)
Their core menu item is a very traditional soup dumpling. They are so authentic to Chinese mainland style that their New York City locations are the place to eat for Chinese immigrants looking for a taste of home, as well as all food lovers.
If you aren’t familiar with the Chinese style of dumpling, the soup is INSIDE of each dumpling. You eat them by putting one dumpling on a spoon, biting the pouch of the dumpling so that the internal soup broth flows into the spoon… and then you drink! And then eat!
The name really isn’t as long as it appears. It breaks down as:
- Nan Xiang : the actual name of the restaurant
- Xiao Kong Bao: Soup Dumpling
The professional accolades bestowed on Nan Xiang Xiao Long Bao are countless. From their website:
Nan Xiang Xiao Long Bao has been selected as Michelin-recommended Shanghainese food for 9 consecutive years since 2007 and has been featured on various media and websites such as New York Magazine, Eater, Gothamist, Grub Street, Serious Eats and many more as “The City’s Best Soup Dumplings”.Nan Xiang Xiao Long Bao website
The restaurant property itself? I don’t think its an exaggeration to describe the interior of the Cherry Hill location as… beautiful. When I showed my images to my daughter she went a step further “that is absolutely gorgeous”!
The added bonus to this unique and high-quality meal in a gorgeous setting? They are reasonably priced! While the Cherry Hill online menu doesn’t list prices, looking at their New York locations the signature soups start around $10 for most varieties including chicken, Crab Meat & Pork, and the signature Nan Xiang Pork! (which is only $8.75)
Add in that they do not have a liquor license… so bringing your own favorite beverage further keeps the pricing down.
I stopped in today just hours after opening but could not stop to eat today. But I will be back to try out their delicious dumplings… maybe you’ll see that experience on the 42Freeway Instagram or TikTok!
Further adding to the excitement of this opening, the other two locations are in New York. When they went out of state they skipped over Philadelphia and went to Cherry Hill!
Normally us South Jersey residents are traveling to Philadelphia for unique, high-end food experiences, but I think for Nan Xiang Xiao Long Bao we may see a lot of Pennsylvania tags start appearing in the Cherry Hill Parking lot.
As mentioned the new restaurant is located in the Garden State Park development (Towne Place Section). They are directly next to Brio and very close to the recently opened Sugar Factory restaurant.
What is Xiao Long Bao (Soup Dumplings)?
Honestly the restaurant’s website maintains a really nice explanation page of what their soup dumplings are, how they are prepared, and even how to eat them!
The dumplings are shaped like a slightly flattened tear-drop, like if you let a small ball of dough hang from your fingers a few seconds and then let it fall to the table.
But with Xiao Long Bao the dumplings are filled with a delicious soup and filling. There are options such as Crab Meat & Pork, Truffle Pork, Nan Xiang Pork and more
That’s a really important distinction as I think in America we are most accustomed to the dumpling itself being in the soup… but with Xiao Long Bao is the other way around! The soup is in the dumpling.
So to make they do start as a small ball of dough but in preparation are flattened out into a circle (like a really small pizza). A filling is placed in the middle and then the edges are brought up and over.
Finally they twist the top to seal it all in.
The skin of Nan Xiang Xiao Long Bao is made with bread flour without fermentation. After steaming, you can see the beautiful shape of our soup dumplings and the transparency from the super thin skin.Nan Xiang Xiao Long Bao website
While traditionally they are a light-beige dough color, their website is highlighting a new line of colorful dumplings!
How to Eat Soup Dumplings
There is a very specific way to eat the dumplings which would not be apparent just sitting down the first time to eat./
Nan Xiang Xiao Long Bao’s instructions for eating the soup and dumplings describes picking the dumplings up with chopsticks, but grab from the top as that is the stronger part.
Then you transfer the dumpling to a spoon.
To let out some of the internal steam you take a small bite from the top. Be careful not to burn your lips!
The soup should come out of the dumpling and into the surrounding spoon, where you drink the soup.
They then suggest dipping the dumpling into their house made vinegar and ginger sauce for another delicious taste!
Oh and be careful as the filling and dumpling are likely to be very hot!
Nan Xiang Xiao Long Bao: Additional Menu Items
While soup dumplings are the star of the show, they offer variety of items in their menu.
A variety of fresh cold dishes (salads, tofu and more). 11 different Noodle Soups.
There are 16 styles of fried noodles and rice cakes with a variety of ingredients like shredded chicken or beef, pork and vegetable.
They also offer dim sum.
Well check out the menu page to learn more!
Link and Location
Nan Xiang Xiao Long Bao – Cherry Hill
Towne Place at Garden State Park
Cherry Hill, NJ 08002