Shanghai Restaurants

You'll notice that most Chinese restaurants in Shanghai have large, round tables. The reason becomes clear the first time you eat a late dinner at a local restaurant and are surrounded by jovial, laughing groups of people toasting and topping off from communal bottles of beer, sharing cigarettes, and spinning the lazy Susan loaded with food. Whether feting guests or demonstrating their wealth, hosts will order massive, showy spreads.

Shanghai's standing as China's most international city is reflected in its dining scene. You can enjoy xiaolongbao (soup dumplings) for breakfast, foie gras for lunch, and Korean barbecue for dinner. In many restaurants, it’s traditional to order several dishes to share among your party for family-style dining. Tipping is not expected, but more upmarket restaurants will tack on a 10%–15% service charge. Although you can eat at Chinese restaurants for less than Y50 per person, Western meals go for Western prices.

Some restaurants in Shanghai offer set lunches at a fraction of the dinner price. Check out the dining section of Time Out Shanghai, That's Shanghai or Smartshanghai.com, all of which list dining discounts and promotions around town.

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  • 1. Sui Tang Li

    $$$ | Jing'an | Chinese

    On the second floor of The Middle House Residences, this polished restaurant delivers excellent contemporary renditions of regional Chinese...Read More

  • 2. Blackbird

    $$ | Changning | Chinese

    Part of the renovated Columbia Circle complex, the carousing spot for American expats in the 1930s, Blackbird features different spaces on three...Read More

  • 3. Fuchun Xiaolong

    $ | Jing'an | Chinese

    Outfitted to evoke 1920s Shanghai, Fuchan regularly appears on lists of the city's best soup-dumpling restaurants. This branch was renovated...Read More

  • 4. Madam Zhu's Kitchen

    $ | Hongqiao | Chinese

    Mall shoppers appreciate this mid-range, sit-down Chinese chain for its expansive menu of excellent contemporary dishes inspired by flavors...Read More

  • 5. Raw Eatery and Wood Grill

    $$$ | Jing'an | International

    If you've tired yourself out on the city's excellent Chinese food and just want a steak, head to this often-packed but laid-back Spanish eatery...Read More

  • 6. Sumerian Specialty Coffee

    $ | Jing'an | Café

    As the bags of beans sitting out, the variety of offerings, and the high prices indicate, coffee is serious business here. But the expertly...Read More

  • 7. Taian Table

    $$$$ | Changning | International

    For a treat, head to Stefan Stiller's Michelin-starred Taian Table, where most seating is at a bar that wraps around a truly open and impressively...Read More

  • 8. Together

    $$$ | Jing'an | French

    Helmed by Bina Yu, a young Korean chef who trained under Jean-Georges Vongerichten, Together typifies Shanghai's contemporary dining scene—a...Read More

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