Shanghai Food, Restaurants and Cuisine
Shanghai 's international focus can be found back in Shanghai 's cuisine. Besides all regional Chinese food one can find a wide variety of international food anywhere. Shanghai, with so many business people rushing in, is not only China's economic and cultural center, but also a "Grand View Garden" for dinners of all tastes. Different styles of cuisine meet and merge in Shanghai only to create the so-called Shanghai style cuisine, influenced by Beijing cuisine, Yangzhou cuisine, Guangdong cuisine and Sichuan cuisine, together with the foods of Suzhou, Wuxi, Ningbo and Hangzhou flavors, making Shanghai an ideal "gourmet kingdom".
Food from Shanghai itself is mostly known for being sweet and oily. Shanghai also has its own variety of the well-known 'dim sum', try xiao long bao (steamed pork dumplings) or jiaotzi . Since Shanghai is located next to big waters seafood is a must; try river fish or hairy crab. Basically all international food is available, from the Japanese ‘teppanyaki' to the infamous McDonalds.
Shanghai 's street snacks are the city's main culinary claim to
fame. You'll see countless sidewalk stands selling the famed xiao
long bao, as well as shuijiao, (Chinese ravioli) and mantou (steamed
dumplings without any filling).
For the tourist, this means you no longer have to stick to safe hotel dining. While some of Shanghai's top restaurants can be found in hotels, there are scores of well-run private establishments that rival if not surpass the quality of hotel food, and usually at lower prices. Significantly improved hygiene standards should also allay any concerns you may have of eating out. Shanghai offers the unusual opportunity of dining one moment in a traditional teahouse and another in a restored colonial mansion; missing out would be a shame.
The Shanghai Old Restaurant and De Xing Restaurant are famous for their authentic Shanghai style cuisine; Yanyun Lou Restaurant and Beijing Restaurant offer well-known Beijing food; Our top recommendation for Yangzhou cuisine is the Yangzhou Restaurant; The most famous restaurants that provide typical Guangdong food are the Xin Ya Restaurant and the Xin Hua Lou Restaurant.
In addition, there are gourmet streets in the city that international
tourists may never forget--
Yunnan Road Gourmet Street, Zhapu Road Gourmet Street and Old Town Bazaar which are famous
for local snacks, dishes and dim sum.
style restaurants and coffee shops are found all over the city,
among them are French, Russian and German a la Carte restaurants,
American fast food restaurants, Italian Pizza Huts, Japanese Sushi
bars, Korean BBQ houses, as well restaurants of Indian, Vietnamese,
Thai and Mexican flavors
As well, Shanghai has five food streets (meishi jie) lined with Chinese restaurants of every ilk, though few of them have English menus or English-speaking staff. They are: Huang He Lu, northwest of the Park Hotel (Huangpu); Wujiang Lu, just off Nanjing Xi Lu by the Shimen Yi Lu Metro station (Huangpu); Yunnan Lu, east of Xizang Lu and south of Yan'an Dong Lu (Huangpu); Yuyuan Zhi Lu, northwest of Jing An Temple (Jing An); and Zhapu Lu, north of Suzhou Creek and east of Sichuan Bei Lu (Hongkou).
Best Dining Bets in Shanghai
Tackling Hairy Crab: The name says it all. The signature dish of Shanghai is absolutely scrumptious, but it is seasonal (autumn), and it is best enjoyed at a big local restaurant.
Rooftop Dining on the Bund: Whether it's savoring world-class cuisine on the open-air balcony of M on the Bund, or enjoying a romantic dinner for two catered by world-renowned chefs in the cupola atop Three on the Bund, dining high above Asia's most famous street is a heady experience not to be missed.
Eating Xiao Long Bao: Unless you're a vegetarian, not trying Shanghai's favorite (pork) dumpling while you're here is tantamount in some circles to not having been to Shanghai at all. The "little steamed breads" spill broth in your mouth when you bite into them. You can find them everywhere, but Crystal Jade Restaurant serves up the best in the city.
Dining in a Colonial Mansion: These days it's easy to find a restored old mansion for dinner, but two standouts that combine just the right colonial ambiance with delicious food are La Villa Rouge, serving French/fusion delectables in the former EMI Recording Studio; and Lan Na Thai, sitting amidst the sprawling grounds of the Ruijin Hotel.