Take a Bite into May

By Peter Lee 2019-05-09 15:12:27

Bistro Burger



Bistro Burger started back in 2009 and was one of the very first gourmet burger brands in Shanghai, a sector that is now very well catered for. So how does Bistro Burger stack up against some of the newer competitors? After a recent visit to sample their newly launched menu, it’s clear that Bistro Burger can still hold its own against some of the new boys in town. 

The venue itself is small and was buzzing with office workers dropping in for a quick lunch. Lunch sets are attractively priced with burgers from 58 RMB. All their burgers are made with imported Australian Angus beef, ground in-house. Non-burger options are also available, such as the meat balls spaghetti (78 RMB) and salads from 68 RMB. A standard drink is provided as part of the lunch deal, but more premium drinks such as reassuringly thick milk shakes and fresh juices are available for a 15 RMB supplement. In the evening the full menu is available, including a choice of 19 different burgers from classics to more creative choices like the Si Chuan Spicy burger with Sichuan chili peppers (78 RMB) and non-beef options like the Black Pepper Salmon burger (128 RMB). 

For those who enjoy a tipple with their meals, a wide selection of options is available including beers, wines by the glass and bottle, cocktails and spiked milkshakes. In other words, something for everyone. Happy hour starts from 3pm daily with wines from 35 RMB / glass and Gordons G&Ts and beers from just 25 RMB per glass. 


Address: 291 Fumin Road, Wujin Century Building, 1/F

Reservations: (021) 6170 1315

Price: RMB 100-200 per person

Good for: Casual lunch, outdoor dining and drinking


Han Lin Xuan



Han Lin Xuan is a mid to high-end Cantonese restaurant that has a popular following among well-heeled locals as well as Hong Kong natives who miss the region’s cuisine. There’s an abundance of dim sum options in this city, but surprisingly few offer the level of authenticity and quality as Han Lin Xuan.

Han Lin Xuan serves up classic Cantonese dim sum dishes such as shrimp dumplings: balls of shrimp meat wrapped in translucent rice flour pastry (38.8 RMB) – an essential component of any dim sum lunch, usually the first thing that is ordered. Another must-try option is the steamed rice noodle roll: delicately thin, see-through rice noodle sheets, filled with various fillings; minced beef (28.8 RMB), barbecued pork or shrimp are popular choices. The pan-fried turnip cakes with XO sauce (32.8 RMB) also come highly recommended – soft, mashed turnip, pan-fried to give a light, crisp coating, blended with luxurious spicy seafood sauce. Other popular dishes include steamed glutinous rice with pork in lotus leaf (32.8 RMB) and for the more adventurous, steamed chicken feet in soya bean sauce (28.8 RMB).

English is limited here and reservations may be in order - but Han Lin Xuan is certainly a worthy addition to your weekend brunch rotation.


Address: Times Square, 99 Huaihai Middle Road, 5th Floor

Reservations: (021) 6103 9618

Price: 100 RMB per person for lunch, considerably more for dinner

Good for: Weekend lunch with large groups and families

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Epices & Foie Gras



Epices & Foie Gras is a small, cozy, modern French bistro run by a husband and wife team, returning to Asia via Paris. The restaurant has a ground floor and upper level as well as a small terrace and is simply but tastefully designed. Launched 5 years ago, they have steadily built up a loyal following of customers.

The menu here is fairly simple and includes many classic French dishes such as duck leg confit (168 RMB), snails in parsley and garlic butter (98 RMB), Australian beef tartar (180 RMB). And of course, there are also several foie gras dishes such as the pan seared foie gras with Iberian ham (180 RMB) and the foie gras terrine (168 RMB). Considering the size of the venue, the wine list is fairly large, consisting mainly of thoughtfully selected French wines that should satisfy most tastes. 

For the cost conscious, lunch sets are available during the week and brunch sets at the weekends. The lunch set is available for 128 RMB for 2 courses or 158 RMB for 3 courses with the option of a glass of Rosé for an additional 43 RMB. There’s a choice of around 3-4 appetizers and 3-4 main courses. For appetizer, we recommend the pickled Spanish sardine which had the perfect level of vinegary tartness. From the main menu, we suggest the seafood risotto with cuttlefish ink, which comes with shrimp, mussels, clams and cuttlefish. The weekend brunch menu (218 RMB) includes a main dish, 2 side dishes and a beverage. As you’d expect with a weekend brunch, it features a few more egg-based dishes such as omelets and eggs Benedict-type variations, which can also be ordered a la carte (eggs Benedict with salmon, 78 RMB).

What we liked most about Epices & Foie Gras is the attention to detail and the very personal level of service that only comes with owner-run businesses such as this, making it a real hidden gem that will have you coming back repeatedly, soon after your first visit.


Address: 309 Hankou Road (near Shandong Road)

Reservations: 150 2157 7519

Price: RMB 200-300 per person

Good for: Casual family brunch or business lunch