Once known as a city of faded foreign glamour and decadence, a notorious hive of opium dens, brothels and cabaret, today’s Shanghai has rapidly developed into one of modern China’s greatest achievements. A high-speed, multicultural whirlwind of construction sites, cultural heritage and economic growth, the city boasts a number of high-class dining establishments as well as local eateries, and a buzzing art and culture scene. We take a look at ten of the best brunch and late breakfast spots in buzzing Shanghai.
1. Nepali Kitchen
One of the tastiest Indian brunches in Shanghai is also one of the most reasonably prices. ¥55 gets you a vegetarian set (two curries, rice, lentil soup, dessert, coffee or tea), while the meat version goes for ¥70. Sat – Sun 11am-2pm.
Add: 819 Julu Road
Tel: 0086 021 5404 6281
This fresh restaurant with a vintage touch opened in 2007 and serves food Tuesday to Sunday, from lunchtime onwards. Napa offers diners a ‘Vintage Lunch’ that includes classic, home-style cuisine. Diners can make the most of Eurasian cooking, with British, French and Italian flavours all featuring on the menu; the innovative dishes are prepared by Chef Patrick Dang. Delights including house cured salmon and beef carpaccio with parmesan and Champagne will certainly whet appetites, and can be accompanied by a handpicked bottle from the extensive wine list. One of the main draws of Napa are its excellent views of the Huangpu River.
Add: South Bund 22, 2nd Floor, 22 Zhongshan Dong Er Road
Tel: 0086 021 6318 0057
This stylish, modern restaurant serves contemporary American-style cuisine and delicious brunches. Madison was created with the intention of showcasing high-quality American cuisine, prepared in China by Chef Austin Hu. Diners can enjoy breakfast treats including carefully poached eggs, melt-in-the-mouth brioche French toast with caramelised bananas, and moreish refried potato pancake sticks. As well as the delicious food, the restaurant also serves a host of refreshing drinks at the bar, including the refreshing orange and ginger-based drink, the Madison Mimosa, and the dreamy Spiced Hot Chocolate, a warming mixture of cacao, ginger, cinnamon, nutmeg and chili. There is also a well sourced wine list, for those seeking a quiet lunchtime drink.
Add: 3 Fenyang Road, Xuhui District
Tel: 0086 021 6437 0136
4. Jean Georges
For diners seeking to enjoy a French-style breakfast, Jean Georges offers a classic selection of breakfast treats and charming window views of the Bund. Western pastries, pancakes and juices feature prominently, but there are also savoury alternatives, including smoked salmon, eggs Benedict and French toast. The restaurant has been open since 2004, and is Jean Georges Vongerichten’s first signature restaurant outside of the United States. When describing the concept behind the restaurant, Jean Georges reveals, ‘the French cuisine at Jean Georges is very light and uses mainly locally grown organic produce and the freshest seafood.’
Add: 3 Zhongshan East 1st Road
Tel: 0086 021 6321 7733
Get two mimosas or two Carlsberg drafts and one brunch dish from Cotton’s menu all for ¥99 (¥75 with coffee or tea instead). Sat – Sun 11am-4pm.
Add: 294 Xinhua Road
Tel: 0086 021 6282 6897
6. Mr. Pancake House
The perfect place to visit for those with a passion for pancakes, Mr. Pancake House prepares great-tasting pancakes, waffles and crepes. Omelettes, burgers, sandwiches and salads are also available as delicious brunch-time alternatives. This venue, located in the Jing’an area of Shanghai, is popular with both tourists and locals. Featuring indoor and outdoor seating, the décor is simple, fresh and clean. The prices are also very reasonable, which is another great reason to drop by and take advantage of the great Western-style brunches being served.
Add: 877 Wuding Road, Jing’an Temple
Tel: 0086 021 6255 1648
For those seeking slightly more upmarket contemporary American and French brunch cuisines, this restaurant is a great place to visit. Dakota is best described as an American bistro and sits comfortably next to other popular restaurants in the area, on the edge of the Old French Concession area. Open from 11 a.m., the brunch menu features many Western favourites and classics including variously prepared egg dishes (omelettes and eggs Benedict, among others), waffles, toasts and seafood. Diners will find the experience elegant and sophisticated, with classic wood and leather highlighted by lamp lit relaxing hues. Dakota has its own on-site bakery and an in-house DJ, creating a dining ambience that fuses music with food.
Add: 38 Donghu Road
Tel: 0086 021 5403 8906
8. Grand Café and Cloud 9
The Grand Café at Grand Hyatt Shanghai is regarded as one of the best restaurants in the city for scenic urban views, and is very popular with visitors. Housed within the impressive Jin Mao Tower, with its bamboo-influenced facade, the interior of the restaurant is fittingly art deco in style. The restaurant caters to many different tastes, but the freshly baked breads and other bakery items adorn the two-tier island bar in the kitchen central area. The lunch buffet opens at 11:30 a.m. and offers diners the chance to enjoy high quality food in luxurious surroundings, with spectacular views of the Shanghai skyline. Later on, diners can take advantage of the city views and stunning cocktails by travelling to the ‘Sky Lounge’ bar, Cloud 9, a glamorous venue in the Tower often labelled as one of ‘The World’s Great Gathering Places.’ No visit to Shanghai is complete without a trip to this impressive skyscraper.
Add: Jin Mao Tower, 88 Century Avenue, Pudong
Tel: 0086 021 5049 1234
9. Boxing Cat Brewery
Breweries might not typically be associated with brunch, yet that’s exactly what makes this venue extra special on Sundays. An award-winning microbrewery, in modern style, the Boxing Cat Brewery supplies great beers and serves mouth-watering brunches. The style of the food served here covers traditional and modern American cuisine, with a focus on Southern USA-style cooking. With Creole and Cajun influences felt within the dishes. The brunch menu is rich and diverse, and is broken down into exciting categories including ‘Big N Easy Brunch’, ‘Snacks on Steroids’, ‘The Lighter Side of Things (Soups & Salads)’, ‘BCB Sandwiches & Burgers’ and ‘Desserts’.
Add: Unit 26A 519-521 Fu Xing Road Central
Tel: 0086 021 6426 0360
10. Kebabs On The Grille
This all-you-can-eat buffet of curries, tandoori meats, biryani, naan, and desserts happens every Sunday down at the Cool Docks, with unlimited beer, house wine, and soft drinks – all for 140rmb. Sat – Sun 11.30am-4pm.
Add: The Cool Docks, 505 Zhongshan South Road
Tel: 0086 021 6152 6567