Two more lovely Shanghai restaurants

One of the most interesting streets in Shanghai for nosing around on is Jinxian Road in the French Concession. There's a strange cognitive dissonance in walking around in a place which looks like one of the quieter arondissments but there's a guy slaughtering chickens on the kerbside and the air is filled with the smell of hot peanut oil and soy.


This, I was reliably informed, is the best restaurant on the street, the one-up, one-down Lan Xin (No.130). The New York Times wrote about another place a couple of doors down a while back, apparently, but Lan Xin is superior. It is the closest you can get to eating your Shanghai grandmother's food without having a Shanghai grandmother.

Downstairs was full…


So we were shown upstairs to what appeared to be the owners' living space.


Some of the best food of my trip: top right is a whole pomfret with fermented rice sauce. Delish.


But probably best of all was this steamed clover. Didn't even know clover was a food.


The pork in this hot pot was rather gnarly, but loved the tofu skin and the broth was wonderful.


On a rather different note, I also ate down on the Bund at the Peninsula Hotel.


I had steered clear of the Bund, my trip being more about indigenous, day-to-day Shanghai food than glam ‘fine dining’, but on my final night I succumbed to the high rolling allure of Yi Long Court. Its hushed Art Deco dining room was a world away from my experiences of the previous few days: this was world class haute cuisine, by any measure. Looking out at the great towers of Pudong as I tucked into a dish of spoon-tender braised beef with matsutake mushrooms, I thought to myself: Shanghai really does have it all.


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