You are exactly where you need to be.
At first, the uplifting words hanging boldly on the walls of Jin Bao PIK might seem like they are more suited to be displayed in a Pinterest board. When put into context, some might even use the word vain. How good is the food at Jin Bao that one would take a bite, lift their heads, see the quote, and feel inclined to agree wholeheartedly? Having tasted some of the signature baos, we’ve come to understand how some people would do just that.
First must-try dish is the Shanghai-style sheng jian bao. Think of it as the pan-fried sister of the steamed xiao long bao. Although offering the same meaty and soupy goodness inside, sheng jian bao comes with a slightly thicker skin and a charred bottom due to the way it is cooked. Currently sheng jian bao at Jin Bao PIK only comes with juicy pork filling, which we can say live up to its name. It’s greasy, meaty, soupy, and hot—everything a good Chinese street food should be.
The handmade baos are intriguing as well. There are nine options to choose from, some pretty out of the ordinary, such as fried chicken with kimchi slaw, and pan fried foie gras with plum and mandarin jam. The latter, as one would expect, is the most expensive menu available. Out of those nine options, two are sweet baos served with ice cream. One can choose to enjoy the baos either toasted or fried.
Our pick falls to the most traditional one out of the bunch, Hong Shao Bao. We’re sold by the explanation on the menu: Succulent caramel pork belly, red onion pickle, peanut powder, and fresh coriander. The pork belly is succulent with sinful fatty flesh in it, while the onion sweet and crunchy. Complemented with toasted bao and sweet potato fries on the side, this dish is a texture win. Hong Shao Bao’s overall taste profile is sweet, so those who prefer savory food might want to try something else.
Let’s go back to the first question. Is Jin Bao PIK where you are exactly where you need to be? If you like Chinese delicacies, particularly baos, then the answer is yes. The place is simple and nothing showy, but food takes the center stage. Skip the gimmicky cheese teas and the kitschy color-changing Galaxy Tea, go straight for the baos. And don’t forget to order 5 Star Lotus Chips while you’re there—those vegan-friendly chips are absolutely addicting.