When you think of Shanghai, what comes to your mind? For us foodie (bae and I), we were so excited on the glorious food that Shanghai has to offer! I’ve compiled TOP 10 Shanghai eats and drinks (not in any order) and hope you get a chance to try them while you pop by Shanghai.
1. Local Delights
Our very first meal was this simple tomato egg noodle soup, that we ate at our hotel area. Now this noodle soup, it’s mind-blowing! Feels so much at home and had this warm fuzzy feel while eating it. One thing to note is that the food portion in Shanghai is really huge. Not to mention this bowl of goodness cost us SGD3 each.
Another gem near our hotel was this Michelin-star Chinese restaurant named 德兴馆 that offers a variety of noodle soup.
We ordered their signature 3 kinds seafood noodle soup and the broth was sweet and the fish was fresh. The bowl of goodness only cost SGD10!
While doing research, we would always like to try the finer stuff and local delights, just to get a taste of both.
2. Mr and Mrs Bund
We made a reservation at Mr and Mrs Bund for their weekend brunch. We were the first customer that arrived even before their doors were opened in the morning. To our advantage, we were given the prime window seat, overlooking The Bund.
Some mandatory shots with The Bund. The brunch for 2 pax cost SGD110 and the food was amazing. The restaurant manager said that their desert of ice cream will be the best ever we’ve tasted. True enough, the sweetness of the ice cream with the toast offered a balance of smooth texture.
They have alfresco seating but probably it’s more for bar area for some evening sips. The view of The Bund was pretty spectacular, considering the fact you don’t have to squeeze many along the river.
3. %Arabica Coffee
This was actually my first stop right after we touched down and had our tomato egg soup. Somehow, I was a tad disappointed with their iced latte, which was a far cry from that in Dubai and Singapore. But then again, perhaps some degree of localization of the drinks contributed to it; very milky taste.
It depends if your country has %ArabicaCoffee outlet (The first store in Singapore was just opened) and why not give this a try while overseas? It’s not everyday you get to drink this coffee like Starbucks or Coffeebean. Even the outlet in Singapore had Long queue to battle with, before you get a sip of it.
4. The Press
I’m pretty sure those who are heading Shanghai would know about this history-rich cafe. The building was used as a publication place for their daily newspaper Shen Bao. To commemorate it, the Press Cafe still retained its look and feel of the vibes.
We were there for breakfast as we realised a lot of places open at a later timing and The Press opens as early as 7-8am. So we settled our breakfast there (ya I know we had heavy breakfast haha). I love their lasagna which had consistent taste throughout. Their seafood pasta was awesome and flavourful. Of course, their coffee was just right and I would say we had a great meal there and well worth SGD50 for it.
5. Nanxiang Steamed Bun Restaurant
If you are heading to Yu Garden, you need to drop by Nanxiang Steamed Bun Restaurant. They are also well known for their soup bao (aka 汤包). We waited for 10 mins in queue and got a seat.
It spans over 3 storeys and offers a comfortable dining experience. We ordered soup, chicken, Xiao Long baos, the mega soup bao, and the cute piglet custard buns (upon my bae request, not mine). Well, the Xiao Long baos and soup bao were the highlight of the meal. You can give the custard buns a miss as it was cold and not tasty at all.
6. Starbucks Reserve Roastery
It used to be the largest Starbucks Reserve Roastery not till the latest Tokyo one has taken over the first spot. Nonetheless, it is still a highly recommend place to visit and fix your caffeine there, while you soak in the atmosphere.
They also give out free freshly brewed expresso to customers, to savour the taste of their coffee. While the price tag can be pretty steep for a cuppa nitro cold brew or Americano, we opted for the complete experience in this Reserve Roastery, just like the ones we had in Singapore and Milan.
7. Jia Jia Tang Bao (佳家汤包）
Another crowd favourite for their cheap and awesome Xiao Long baos, we just had to make our way there.
One tray had 12 Xiao Long baos in it and it cost SGD7! We saw another couple ordered 3 trays and they were struggling to finish their first tray. We always bear in mind not to over order and more so as we plan to cross the road to eat more!
One Tip: Drop by during off peak hour 3pm to avoid the insane queue during the lunch crowd.
8. Tang’s Dumplings (小杨生煎）
I really miss this food. I can’t forget the crispy outer fillings with the tender meat in it. Especially their crab meat version. If anyone asks me what do I miss, I’ll say 小杨生煎 in a heartbeat!
9. Luckin Coffee
Luckin Coffee is the equivalent of Starbucks. Their ambition is to grow and become the next Starbucks in China, or to even take over Starbucks position in China. Of course I needed to taste Luckin and compare it against Starbucks.
It was difficult to locate Luckin. Our first encounter was inside a shopping mall at a very ulu, obscured corner. Second encounter was near Shanghai railway station in a shopping mall. To be honest, their latte was good and the coffeebeans had this fragrant aftertaste. In my opinion, it tasted better than that of Starbucks. However, due to its stores location, size and proximity of its availability, it’s pretty hard to beat Starbucks in China. Hopefully Luckin Coffee will grow its presence locally, but also internationally to have a stronger foothold in the coffee industry.
10. Yi Dian Dian bubble tea（一点点）
The only time you will ever see ya indulge in brown sugar boba tea is when we are overseas! Haha.
Look at our happy faces. 😀
This boba tea shop has many stores in Shanghai and you won’t have any trouble locating it. We went to Xin Tian Di shopping district and walked past it. Their classic boba tea was awesome and had us wanting more, even though we were still full from all the eating.
Additional: Shake Shack
It’s not really unique to Shanghai but still worth a mention – Shake Shack!
Though Singapore has its first store in Jewel Airport, there’s still Long queue and not readily accessible to all due to its location. Everytime we have the chance, we will still go for Shake Shack! That’s the real reason why we go Xin Tian Di. 🙂
I hope this entry won’t make you salivating or hungry. Stay tuned for upcoming blog entries!