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 load
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 o
You'll notice that most Chinese restaurants in Shanghai have large, round tables. The reason becomes clear the first tim

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. Cobra Lily

    $$ | Xintiandi | Asian

    From the team behind local craft brewery Boxing Cat and American eatery Liquid Laundry comes this hip Southeast Asian fusion concept. Spread...Read More

  • 2. Coquille Seafood Bistro

    $$$$ | City Center | French

    The scent of butter and brine waft from the kitchen of this lovely French restaurant, the brainchild of Californian banker-turned-restaurateur...Read More

  • 3. Highline

    $$$ | Xintiandi | American

    Perched on the sixth floor of the Ascott Residences, this modern American eatery has a lust-worthy terrace—complete with a sleek firepit—that...Read More

  • 4. Jia Jia Tang Bao

    $ | City Center | Chinese

    The soup dumplings here are arguably the best in town; once the kitchen runs out of them, the restaurant closes for the day. It's a proper local...Read More

  • 5. Nanjing Impressions

    $ | City Center | Chinese

    It feels like old Nanjing at this restaurant—part of a Chinese chain—where glowing bamboo and paper lanterns swing from the ceiling, and food...Read More

  • 6. Sense 8

    $$ | Xintiandi | Chinese

    The black-lacquer woods and hanging red lanterns at this Cantonese restaurant recall old Wong Kar Wai flicks. The setting and the decent dim...Read More

  • 7. Yu Xin Chuan Cai

    $ | City Center | Chinese

    Locals love the spicy Sichuan food at this restaurant inside an office building (take the escalators or elevator to the third floor). Book ahead...Read More

  • 8. The 5 Tables Bistro

    $$$ | City Center | European

    This restaurant is small in size but packs in plenty of personality. The friendly Singaporean owner is the sole waiter, yet no water glass goes...Read More

  • 9. Xin Jishi

    $$ | Xintiandi | Chinese

    New Jesse" is the shiny, clean version of Old Jesse, a popular if slightly run-down Shanghainese restaurant deep in the French Concession. This...Read More

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