13 Places to Eat in Shanghai

Other than being a vibrant cosmopolitan city with lots of fun activities, you can find plenty of delicious food in Shanghai as well. Below is a list of 13 great places to eat in Shanghai, categorized into 7 main locations: Century Avenue, LuJiaZui, YuYuan Garden, People’s Square, the French Concession area, Jing’an Temple, and ZhuJiaJiao. I hope you find this list helpful! If you have any questions, please feel free to ask them in the comments section below.

Century Avenue

1. QuanJuDe (全聚德)
Quanjude Shanghai 4Quanjude Shanghai Peking Duck 1Peking Roast Duck

How could we go China and not try Peking Roast Duck? We got our roast duck fix at QuanJuDe (全聚德), located inside Purple Mountain Hotel (紫金山大酒店). This Chinese restaurant has a longstanding culinary heritage, with its first branch opened in Beijing in 1864. It is world-famous for its signature Peking Roast Duck dish.

We ordered half a Peking Roast Duck for RMB 128. A Chinese chef used his immaculate knife skills to carve the roast duck into fine slices right beside our table. It was like watching a live culinary performance! First, he gave us the thin and crispy duck skins, and told us we could eat it with the sugar provided. After a short while, he finished slicing the entire duck and the meat slices were served to us neatly on a plate. In true Beijing-style, we wrapped the meat with scallion and cucumber sticks in the crisp pancake skins, and dipped it in sweet bean sauce.

It tasted great! The meat was fresh and tender, and we slowly savoured it in our mouth, relishing the wonderful flavour. The vegetables added a refreshing taste.

We also enjoyed the Stewed Bullfrog (RMB 78). The meat was succulent and tasty with no fishy smell at all. It went nicely with the spicy sauce. After the heavy meal, we each had a glass of Westlake Longjing Tea (RMB 16) to cleanse our palates and stomachs.

QuanJuDe (全聚德)
Address: Purple Mountain Hotel, 778 DongFang Lu (紫金山大酒店, 778 东方路)
Phone Number: +8621 51017070
Opening Hours: Daily 11am to 2pm, 5pm to 9pm

Directions to QuanJuDe (全聚德)
To reach QuanJuDe, just take the metro to Century Avenue metro station on green line 2, and walk about 10 minutes to Purple Mountain Hotel (紫金山大酒店). The restaurant is located on the third level of the hotel. Click here for directions.


2. South Beauty (俏江南)
South Beauty InteriorSouth Beauty FoodFrom top: Sliced Pork with Homemade Sauce, Fried cowpea with sambal sauce, Sichuan sour & spicy soup, Diced chicken in Sichuan style, Sliced pork with mashed garlic

South Beauty is a classy Sichuan restaurant located on the top floor of Super Brand Mall. This is one of the most popular restaurants in Shanghai, frequented by both locals and tourists alike.

I especially loved the signature dish, Sliced Pork with Homemade Sauce (78RMB). It was served with the pork slices hanging tantalizingly from a wooden stand. I wrapped the pork slices around the vegetables sticks, dipped it with the savoury sauce, and put it into my gaping mouth. The meat had a rich and savoury taste, with the vegetables providing a refreshing touch. I loved it! We enjoyed the other feisty Sichuan dishes as well: Sichuan sour & spicy soup (58RMB), Diced chicken in sichuan style (68RMB), Sliced pork with mashed garlic (48RMB) and Fried cowpea with sambal sauce (58RMB). South Beauty is a must-try if you are in Shanghai!

South Beauty (俏江南)
Address: Super Brand Mall 10th Floor, 168 LuJiaZuiXi Lu (正大广场10楼, 168 陆家嘴西路)
Opening Hours: Daily 11am to 10pm
Phone Number: +8621 50471817

Directions to South Beauty (俏江南)
South Beauty is located on the 10th floor of Super Brand Mall. This mall is located just opposite LuJiaZui metro station on line 2 (green line). You will see the mall once you exit the station. Click here to see the map.

3. Riverside Promenade (滨江大道)
Riverside Promenade

Apart from The Bund, the Riverside Promenade is another popular riverside attraction along the majestic Huangpu River. It is located directly opposite The Bund. There is a chain of cafes and bistros here, and it is a great experience to simply chill in one of the cafes and enjoy the stunning skyline of Shanghai.

Directions to Riverside Promenade (滨江大道)
The promenade is a short 7-minute walk from Lujiazui metro station. Click here for directions.

YuYuan Garden

4. NanXiang Steamed Bun Restaurant (南翔馒头店)
Nanxiang Steamed Bun Restaurant 1Nanxiang Xiao Long Bao

NanXiang Steamed Bun Restaurant is a famous Chinese restaurant at Yuyuan Garden (豫园) that serves soup dumplings. The restaurant has three levels: Level one is for take-aways only, the queues are the longest, you can only order soup dumplings, and the dumplings are the cheapest. Level two is for dining in, but you can only order soup dumplings, and they are slightly more expensive than level one. Level three is for dining in, you can order a variety of food, the dumplings are the most expensive among the three levels, and there is a minimum charge of RMB80 per person.

We decided to go for level two as we did not want to join the super long queue (about 70 people??) on level one. We ordered a set of ten dumplings for 26 RMB, as compared to 22RMB for twelve dumplings on level one. The dumplings tasted decent, but it could be more savoury and juicy.

We also ordered the giant crab meat soup dumpling. Every giant dumpling comes with a straw for you to drink the stock within the dumpling. It was an interesting experience, but like the soup dumplings, the taste was slightly bland and boring.

Verdict: these are decent dumplings but I’ve had better. However, this is just my opinion and I know of many other people who truly enjoy the dumplings. And the restaurant is extremely popular so it might be worth visiting for the hype.

NanXiang Steamed Bun Restaurant (南翔馒头店)
Address: YuYuan Garden, 85 YuYuan Lu (豫园, 85 豫园路)
Opening Hours: Daily 7am to 9pm
Phone Number: + 8621 63554206

Directions to NanXiang Steamed Bun Restaurant (南翔馒头店)
The restaurant is located at YuYuan Garden (豫园) inside the City God Temple (上海城隍庙). To get here, simply take the metro to Yuyuan Garden metro station on line 10 (light purple line). From the station, just walk 7 minutes to reach the restaurant. Click here for directions.

People’s Square

5. Hai Di Lao (海底捞火锅)
Hai Di Lao InteriorHai Di Lao 2Szechuan-style “yuanyang” hotpot

For our dinner on one of the days, we decided to eat at Hai Di Lao at Shanghai No. 1 Department Store. This is one of the most popular hotpot restaurants in China!

And it was not hard to see why.

We went at about 10pm without making reservations and had to wait in the holding lounge area for about fifteen minutes. There was a large screen playing a movie here, and we were served with drinks and snacks. There were even board games to keep us occupied. This was top-notch service even before the actual meal – I wouldn’t mind spending more time in the comfortable lounge!

Our queue number was called out and we were promptly escorted to a table. From this point, we had an amazing dining experience. Our orders came fast, the staff were all friendly and helpful, I was given a lens-cleansing cloth for my glasses, and Raevian was given an elastic band to tie up her hair. Furthermore, we were served with complimentary tea and given warm towels multiple times during the meal to clean our hands. It felt like we were VIP customers!

We ordered the Szechuan style “yuanyang” soup base, which consisted of a spicy soup base and a herbal soup base. For food, we ordered pork slices, shrimp/fish paste, the popular “Kungfu noodles”, shrimp noodles, scallops, and chicken/pork balls. All of them tasted great and went perfectly with both soup bases.

But the best thing was perhaps the price – we only paid 210RMB for all the food we ordered!

And did I mention the restaurant has squeaky clean Five-Star-hotel standard washrooms, and free shoe-polishing and manicure services?

This is definitely our favourite restaurant in Shanghai!!

Hai Di Lao (海底捞火锅)
Address: Shanghai No.1 Department Store 5th Floor, 830 NanJing Lu (第一百货商店5层, 830 南京东路)
Opening Hours: Daily 10am to 3am
Phone Number: +8621 63617188, +8621 63617189

Directions to Hai Di Lao (海底捞火锅)
This Hai Di Lao branch is located at Shanghai No. 1 Department Store, which is a short three-minute walk from People’s Square metro station. Click here for directions.

6. Jia Jia Tang Bao (佳家汤包)Jia Jia Tang Bao DumplingJia Jia Tang Bao Shanghai

Jia Jia Tang Bao is a modest restaurant located along an unassuming street in Shanghai that serves AWESOME soup dumplings. While waiting for our dumplings, we had a bowl of Seaweed Soup (紫菜蛋皮汤) for a very affordable 4 RMB. It felt really good to drink a bowl of savoury hot soup in the cold November weather!

The piece de resistance was, of course, the dumplings. We ordered 12 pieces of the Crab Roe and Pork Dumpling (蟹粉鲜肉汤包) for 27 RMB. These arrived 15 minutes after the soup. As I sank my teeth into the smooth dumpling skin, the savoury juices within the dumpling spurted out and filled my mouth with its wonderful flavour. It tasted GREAT. These were easily the best dumplings I had ever tasted in my life! Yes they are THAT good! The stock was rich and bursting with flavour, and just simply tasted perfect. I could have easily finished all 12 lumps of perfection by myself.

You would be doing yourself a grave injustice if you did not visit this dumpling restaurant while in Shanghai!

Jia Jia Tang Bao (佳家汤包)
Address: 90 HuangHe Lu (90 黄河路)
Phone Number: +8621 63276878
Opening Hours: Daily 7am to 7.30pm

Directions to Jia Jia Tang Bao (佳家汤包)
This dumpling store is just a short ten-minute walk from People’s Square metro station. Click here for directions.

7. Yang’s Dumpling (小杨生煎)
Yang's Dumpling ShanghaiYang's Dumpling Shanghai 3
Yang’s Dumpling is famous for its pan-fried dumplings. It is just across the street from Jia Jia Tang Bao. We ordered one plate of the pan-fried dumplings (铁板生煎包). The fried skin was crisp and crunchy to the bite, and the stock within the dumpling had a delicious savoury flavour. This is a must-try if you are in Shanghai!

Yang’s Dumpling (小杨生煎)
Address: 97 HuangHe Lu (97 黄河路)
Phone Number: +8621 53751793
Opening Hours: Daily 6.30am to 8.30pm

Directions to Yang’s Dumpling (小杨生煎)
This fried-dumpling store is a short ten-minute walk from People’s Square metro station. Click here for directions.

French Concession Area

8. Simply Thai (天泰餐厅)
Shanghai XinTianDi Simply Thai RestaurantSimply Thai Tom Yam Seafood SoupTom Yam Seafood Soup

Simply Thai is a Thai restaurant located at Xintiandi (新天地) in the Shanghai French Concession area. It is extremely popular with the Chinese elites as well as foreign executive expatriates. The restaurant serves scrumptious Thai food in a convivial environment. The menu offers a variety of perennial Thai favourites such as Tom Yam Seafood Soup (50RMB), Wok Fried Squid with Tom Yum Paste (68RMB), and Soft Shell Crab with Pork Floss (RMB68). Our favourite dish was the Tom Yam soup! The soup base was rich and feisty, and the seafood was fresh and delicious. Service was prompt too, despite the restaurant being fully packed.

Simply Thai (天泰餐厅)
Address: 159 MaDang Lu (159 马当路)
Opening Hours: | Sun to Thurs 11am to 12am | Fri and Sat 11am to 1am |
Phone Number: +8621 64311134
Email: enquiry@simplythegroup.com
To see the locations of other Simply Thai branches in Shanghai, visit www.simplythegroup.com

Directions to Simply Thai (天泰餐厅)
From exit 6 of XinTianDi metro station on line 10 (purple line), walk for about five minutes along Madang Road 马当路. Click here to see the map.

9. Tianzifang (田子坊)
Shanghai TianzifangTianzifang Street Food豆腐花 (literally translated as ‘beancurd flower’)

Tianzifang Street Food 2Pan-fried Squids with Chilli Sauce

This place is a must-visit if you are looking for some top-notch street food! Tianzifang is a vibrant enclave in the French Concession area that has managed to retain the rustic charm of old-Shanghai with its shikumen buildings and other traditional architectural structures. You will find MANY great street food here. We tried the famous 豆腐花 (literally translated as ‘beancurd flower’). This Chinese snack is essentially beancurd served with soy sauce, sesame oil, acetes, seaweeds and spring onions. The ingredients combined perfectly to form a savoury and delicious snack that had us swooning from the first mouthful. Another street food that we loved was the Pan-fried Squids with Chilli Sauce. We were drawn to this delicious snack from afar by its alluring smell. Not only did it smell good, this feisty snack was chewy, savoury, and delicious too! It was also really spicy, so please exercise discretion if you are not a fan of spicy food!

Other than street food, there are a number of bistros and cafes here that serve really good food as well. You should spend at least half a day exploring this area!

Directions to Tianzifang (田子坊)
Tianzifang (田子坊) is a short 10-minute walk from Dapuqiao metro station. Click here for directions.

10. Mr. Choi Patisserie (蔡嘉法式甜品)
Mr. Choi Patisserie Shanghai InteriorMr. Choi Patisserie Shanghai - Hazelnut AngelsHazelnut Angels

Mr. Choi Patisserie ShanghaiHazelnut Angels, Earl Grey Tea, Opera Cake

Mr. Choi Patisserie is a classy pastry cafe located on the second floor of SML Center (日月光店). We ordered the House Special 1 + Tea (RMB 60), which consists of the Hazelnut Angels and a pot of tea. The Hazelnut Angels was an adorable little dessert that looked extremely tantalizing. The shell was crispy and slightly sweet, and the velvety smoothness of the sweet hazelnut meringue was punctuated by the crunch of tasty hazelnut bits. For our tea, we chose the Earl Grey flavour. The tea was light, refreshing, and aromatic. Served with the exquisite silver-plated teapot, it made the experience even more enjoyable.

We also indulged on the popular Opera Cake (RMB 30). This French dessert is made with layers of almond sponge cake soaked in coffee syrup and covered in a chocolate glaze. The delicate sweetness of the dessert romances your taste buds and leaves you wanting more.

The great service, comfortable ambience, and delicious desserts make this café a MUST-TRY if you are visiting Shanghai!

Mr. Choi Patisserie (蔡嘉法式甜品)
Address: SML Center Second Floor 2F-XJH01-02, 618 XuJiaHui Lu (日月光中心, 618 徐家汇路)
Opening Hours: | Mon to Sat 12pm to 9.30pm | Sun 12pm to 7pm |
Phone Number: +8621 64372780
Website: www.thechois.cc

Directions to Mr. Choi Patisserie (蔡嘉法式甜品)
The cafe is located on the second floor of SML Center (日月光中心). To get here, simply take the metro to Dapuqiao station on line 9 (light blue line), and go out from exit 3. From there, it is a one-minute walk to SML Center. Click here for directions.

11. Vienna Café
Vienna Cafe ShanghaiVienna Cafe Brunch ShanghaiScrambled Eggs and Ham, and Chocolate Banana Cake

Vienna Café was one cafe we had very much looked forward to visiting in Shanghai, as we had read many positive online reviews about it. This Viennese-inspired cafe is located along the peaceful Shaoxing Road and it serves European/ Viennese style mains and desserts. We ordered the Scrambled Eggs and Ham (RMB 38) and Chocolate Banana Cake (RMB 35). The Scrambled Eggs and Ham was definitely a satisfying brunch item, and we also loved the luscious banana slices and velvety texture of the Chocolate Banana Cake.

Vienna Café
Address: 25 ShaoXing Lu (25 绍兴路)
Opening Hours: Daily 8am to 8pm
Phone Number: +8621 64452131

Directions to Vienna Cafe
Vienna Cafe is a 15-minute walk from South Shanxi Road metro station. Click here for directions.

Directions to French Concession Area
Click here to see all four locations of Simply Thai (天泰餐厅), TianZiFang (田子坊), Vienna Café and Mr. Choi Patisserie (蔡嘉法式甜品). You will have a clearer idea of how to plan your food hunt 🙂

Jing’an Temple

12. Mr Nice Café (好好先生西餐厅)
Mr Nice Cafe Shanghai - Strawberry Napoleon Cake 2Strawberry Napolean Cake

Mr Nice Cafe Shanghai - Smoked Salmon Shrimp SpaghettiSmoked Salmon Shrimp Spaghetti 

Mr Nice Café is a bistro that is very popular with the youngsters in Shanghai. It serves Western food and desserts in a chic setting. For our main, we had the Smoked Salmon Shrimp Spaghetti (RMB 58). This was a decent dish – the pasta was nicely al dente and the salmon and shrimp tasted fresh and palatable.

For desserts, we ordered the cafe’s signature dessert, the super-popular Strawberry Napolean Cake (RMB 38). The dessert boasts three layers of golden-brown puff pastry alternating with two layers of luxurious pastry cream. The flaky pastry turned into a pleasant mush in my mouth as I chewed, while the pastry cream provided a delicately sweet taste. Service was a little inconsistent here, but the Napolean cake saved the day!

Mr Nice Café (好好先生西餐厅)
Address: 280 YuYuan Lu (280 愚园路)
Phone Number: +8621 52921520
Opening Hours: | Mon and Tue: 11am to 9pm | Wed to Sun: 11am to 10pm |

Directions to Mr Nice Café (好好先生西餐厅)
The cafe is a short walk from Jing’an Temple metro station. Click here for directions.

ZhuJiaJiao (朱家角)

13. Street Food and Cafe-Hopping at ZhuJiaJiao (朱家角)
ZhuJiaJiao River 1ZhuJiaJiao Onion Pancakeonion pancakes

ZhuJiaJiao is a 1700-year old ancient water town located on the outskirts of Shanghai. Literally translated, the name of the town means “Zhu’s family corner”. We loved the street food here! We bought onion pancakes from a random street vendor. These were warm, crispy, and not too oily. And it only cost us 1.50RMB! We also tried the famous pig trotters of Zhujiajiao. The meat was tender and fresh, and the fats seemed to melt in my mouth.

Zhujiajiao is a great place to cafe-hop too! There are many quaint cafes and it is a great experience to chill out in one of the cafes along the riverbank. This place definitely has a much more rustic vibe compared to bustling downtown Shanghai!

Directions to ZhuJiaJiao (朱家角)
Click here for exact directions on how to go Zhujiajiao.

Below is the list of 13 places to eat in Shanghai again:

Century Avenue
1. QuanJuDe (全聚德)

2. South Beauty  (俏江南)
3. Riverside Promenade  (滨江大道)

YuYuan Garden
4. NanXiang Steamed Bun Restaurant (南翔馒头店)

People’s Square
5. Hai Di Lao (海底捞火锅)
6. Jia Jia Tang Bao (佳家汤包)
7. Yang’s Dumpling (小杨生煎)

French Concession Area
8. Simply Thai (天泰餐厅)
9. TianZiFang (田子坊)
10. Vienna Café
11. Mr. Choi Patisserie (蔡嘉法式甜品)

Jing’an Temple
12. Mr Nice Café (好好先生西餐厅)

13. Street Food and Cafe-Hopping at ZhuJiaJiao (朱家角)

Click here to see the map of the first six locations. Click here to see the location of Zhujiajiao.

And that’s a wrap! These are 13 great places to eat in Shanghai and I hope you will enjoy the food as much as we did. Please feel free to leave any questions in the comments section below!

This article is part of our completely free and fantastic Ultimate Shanghai Travel Guide. Why spend days researching when all your holiday information is simply a click away? 🙂

About Evan

Evan is an idealist who is deeply passionate about life. He loves good food, travelling, reading philosophy, writing, playing music, exercising, and hanging out with loved ones. He is the co-founder of Eat and Travel With Us, a Food and Travel website based in Singapore. The philosophy is simple - to provide the best Food and Travel Guides!

2 Responses to 13 Places to Eat in Shanghai

  1. Wai says:

    Hi Evan,

    Next time you guys are in Shanghai, Hong Kong or Guangzhou you should try out one of our food tours!


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