I hands down loved Little Alley! The second I walked in and saw what looked like a wooden version of the iconic London phone booths with Chinese writing scrawled across its front—aka. something I've never seen before—I was excited for the experience that laid ahead of me. Before I delve deeper into the meal, my understanding of the namesake of the restaurant really helps to paint a picture. So, indulge me.
The words "Little Alley" translate in Chinese to “弄堂” or “long tang”. Long Tang is a network of Shanghai's narrow alleyways that form intimate neighborhoods that uphold an old world charm. This is where Executive Chef Yuchun Cheung was born and raised. He, alongside his kitchen staff comprised of solely Shanghainese locals, are cooking up traditional dishes to give New Yorkers a sense of what it feels like to be at home in our own little alley.
From killer dim sum, including one of my new favorite indulgences Crab Soup Dumplings, to a heavily focused seafood menu, there is so much to love. I chose to go the small plate and tapas route and had the best time grazing (well, demolishing) everything in arms reach. Even the simplest of dishes like the Marinated Cucumbers were exciting. The dumplings had that perfect dough-to-filling ratio—there's so much to love!