Address: G/F, 31 Amoy Street, Wan Chai
Popular all over Japan,with branches convering much visited Osaka, Kyoto, Hokkaido and Okinawa is known as the Chinese dumpling specialist in Japan. Pround of its freshly made dumplings and said to be ‘a cut above the rest’, this dumpling joint has the typical ramen or dumpling house vibe and an open kitchen that sends smells across the room. Chao Chao Gyoza is definitely a contender as the poster child for dumpling culture, or at least the one in Japan.
As the first overseas branch in Hong Kong, long queues are often seen outside, showing our longstanding appreciation for all things Japanese. Does this reflect the quality and taste of its Japanese counterparts? Its menu certainly has a good selection of dumplings, from vegetarian, seafood to the popular and signature pork dumplings. Its taste and vibe though, has unfortunately been localised to fit local customs. Freshness for the dumplings can also be in question, as staff take out trays of what seem to be frozen and pre-made dumplings out of a cooler, despite claims of ‘freshly-made’ dumplings.
What are your thoughts on Chao Chao gyoza? Please feel free to share your thoughts and comment!
What We Ate:
Chao Chao Signature Gyoza
- Much smaller than photo presented on the menu.
- Very crispy thin dumpling skin and well seasoned filling, with spring onion and pork.
(Mixed dumpling platter) Mushroom, awajishima onion, kujo spring onion and puri puri shrimp dumpling
- Served with seaweed salt.
- Mushroom dumplings (far right), tasteless.
- Onion dumplings (left of mushroom) had dood crispy skin and lots of onion flavor. A slightly thicker skin and generous spring onion filling.
- Spring onion dumpling (green)- similar to onion dumpling with a thicker wrapping and good amount of filling. Good but nothing impressive.
- Prawn dumpling (pink)- Generous bouncy shrimp filling with sesame oil and thin skin.
- An entire crab leg wrapped inside dumpling skin.
- Good seasoning thin wrapping and good crab flavors. No shrimp flavor.
- But again, no “wow” factor. Simply dumpling skin wrapped around a crab leg. No technique involved and minimal innovation.
Iberico pork gyoza/dumpling (left)
- Good ginger and spring onion flavors.
- Didnt seem like they were freshly made. All very oily and tasted like frozen dumplings.
Mentako and potato gyoza
- potato made dumplings too heavy and didnt have much taste.
- Mentako or spicy fish roe was overcooked.
- Overall was not tasty or enjoyble and had a mushy texture.