Best of...

Dining Shanghai

Foreign influences were so prevalent in Shanghai in the early 1900s that the city considers borscht and baguettes local fare. In recent years, international cuisine has returned to the city with a vengeance. Here’s a cheat sheet for navigating the culinary scene.

If You Have 1 Night in Town:

M on the Bund

for glam meal on the Bund with amazing Pudong views (western food); or reserve a private dining room at the Park Hyatt Shanghai for amazing views and a special setting (pick from several menus, western, Japanese, Chinese); or eat at Lost Heaven, in a French Concession villa, for an intimate setting and interesting cuisine (from Yunan province, so lots of vegetarian options, some spice, but something for everyone).

If You Have 2 Nights in Town:

El Efante

for Spanish tapas in a French Concession villa with exterior patio; or Shanghainese cuisine in a modern, Philippe Starck-inspired dining room at Chinoise Story.

Chic Lunch:

Shanghai Tang Café

: now presided over by the ex-chef from hot spot Wampoah Club, who prepares a mix of Western and Chinese cuisine.

Authentic Lunch: Jishi, a hole in the wall with delicious traditional Shanghai cuisine and a local scene

Best Dumplings:

Din Tai Fun

, a chain that specializes in Shanghainese dumplings; with branches all over town.

Best for Families:

La Strada

, a cozy thin-crust pizza place; or dumpling place Din Tai Fun or Lost Heaven, for the more adventurous eaters, with wait staff in traditional costumes, colorful decor and Chinese cuisine.

Best Cocktails

For a chic scene, head to one of the lofty lounges of the Park Hyatt Shanghai. For best views, take a taxi to Vue. And for a hip mix of locals, ex-pats and visitors, go to People 7.

Indagare Tip: The Chinese eat on the early side, with even the best restaurants opening at 5:30. If you go to an authentic Chinese restaurant, don’t be shocked at fellow diners joining your table.

Published onFebruary 4, 2014

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