going to shanghai for me always means visiting family. and with that comes a lot of family meetings, restaurant hopping, visiting all of the favourite places, street food and shopping. but mostly food. lots of it.
when eating out, chinese like to throw a feast. literally. there is mostly one person, the one who organised it or the eldest one (or the bossiest one haha), who chooses and orders the food for everyone. the food in china is very diverse, so there will be many different dishes, something for all that are present.
the tables are mostly round with a round “lazy susan” in the middle (a rotating food tray), where all the food is placed and can be easily accessed from all parts of the table!
another thing to note is that there isn’t really a particular order of serving food, meaning dessert could come right at the beginning, if it’s the one that is done first, because everything has to be served fresh.
if there are some elder family members that are present, they should be the ones that start eating first. although this custom is not as strict nowadays, it is still considered polite. also, the jungest family member (which is somehow aaaaalways me!) should pour the tea for everyone, which also shows respect.
in the end, when everyone is done with eating there is – paying the bill – which always looks like a fight :) it is not really, but there will always be two people who will want to pay, resulting in shouting and running around with credit cards trying to get to the waiter first. don’t be shocked, it’s just the way chinese do it :)
some of my favourite restaurants in shanghai are:
tang’s cuisine (amazing for a dim sum brunch/lunch)
simply thai (great views from the terrace)
paradise dynasty (everything is sooo goood – try the colourful 8 flavours xiao long bao)
but definitely don’t forget about street food. it is the best. thing. ever. and you can get it on almost every corner! try whatever they have to offer, it’s probably going to be goood ^^
also, try these – juicy meat dumplings, they are my dad’s favourite, right on the east nanjing road:
and when on east nanjing road, a definite must visit in shanghai is the FOOD MALL. yes, you read correctly, food mall. there are 4 stories of only food! and you can get anything your heart desires there.
i think you already noticed, but shanghai is a definite food paradise. but not only for asian food, there is some european food that you can’t even find in europe haha ;) i am always amazed by the bakeries that keep popping up – i’ll just leave you with photos, there are no words to describe it. ^^