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April 2015
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Gourmet Shanghai: from caffs to the most exclusive restaurants

Gourmet Shanghai © Ludovic Bischoff

Shanghai has never claimed the title of China’s gastronomic capital and its residents are the first that “those in the north” make the best pastry, that Canton is the home of the most sumptuous dim sum or that the spicy Yunan cuisine is like no other. But with almost 26 million residents originating from around the country and a strong Western community, the amalgamation of cultures allows for a vast range of restaurants offering different cuisine. Indeed, Lost Heaven serves Yunnan province delicacies, all of which are absolutely delicious and sophisticated. The crazy thing is that in this immense, truly enormous restaurant, you are served carefully crafted dishes in the cosiest atmosphere that you could wish for, proving that you can find a balance between quantity and quality. The Din Tai Fung restaurant offers high-quality ravioli cuisine (known as dim sum). Situated in the cool Xintianding district in the former French concession that gathers trendy, luxury boutiques within its charming little redbrick buildings. It is only logical that the selective chain of Shanghai Tang stores has just opened its first restaurant here, where the brand’s chic modern ethnic vibe exudes from these splendid salons and carefully structured dishes. The area’s little cafes also deserve curiosity and attention, if the super exclusive UltraViolet is anything to go by. Run by Frenchman Paul Pairet, who is also in charge of the reputed Mr & Mrs Bund, this restaurant is a unique experience. Just know that it will take several months and a lot of luck to clinch one of the ten places available at his new generation host table. It also means splashing out at least 800 euros to be able to taste this otherworldly cuisine, served in a room in which walls are covered in screens that immerse you in a universe of previously unseen sensations. Every dish is accompanied by alien, sonorous and visual sensations. It may seem completely mad. But this secret restaurant, which is accessed through a dingy car park, is full every evening. An ultimate testament that establishes rich Shanghai as the economic capital of the Middle Kingdom…


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