Possibly the only thing worth leaving your bed for on Saturday or Sunday, brunch is just one of those things that Shanghai just can't seem to get enough of.
Here's a roundup of 12 of our favorites from around the city; from RMB148 for free-flow hotel buffet goodness to RMB298 for one of the best French restaurants in town, we've got your weekend covered.
Partake in the Bull & Claw's brunch, an extravagant affair of eggs, booze, lobster and more. The brunch is set so that you have three choices, one course for RMB85, two courses for RMB145, or three courses for RMB165. We recommend three courses, one savory dish, one sweet/light dish, and any of their drinks.
2. The Nest
The Nest's brunch menu has range of tasty Scandinavian and Northern European-inspired eats for carnivores, vegetarians and cocktail drinkers, plus the comfy couches and armchairs lend themselves to mid-brunch naps for the truly hungover. Book early to avoid disappointment, and bear in mind the menu is apparently set to change every few weeks.
3. blue frog
Undoubtedly the most classic American brunch dish, we could write an entire book dedicated to our love of eggs benedict. One of our favorites hails from blue frog, and it features delicately poached eggs and a drizzle of rich hollandaise sauce on smoky shaved ham, all on top of multigrain toast. Gotta get that fibre from somewhere, people.
Saturday and Sunday, plus all public holidays, 10-4pm, starting at RMB88. See listings for blue frog.
Cooked by French head chef Michael Wendling the morning after doing Cuivre's busy friday night dinner service, this brunch marries Gallic elements with comfort food, serving up foie gras, eggs Benedict, grilled sandwiches, salads and French toast. Go for the three course deal for RMB198 if you're hungry, or go à la carte if you're thrifty. Either way, you win.
The perfect brunch choice for those amongst us that prefer unrestrained access to healthier fare. This is the finest of natural and organic choices for brunch, and its French Concession location is even equipped with an advanced air filtration system which filters PM2.5 particles down to 0.002-um. Food just tastes better when you are breathing clean air.
Sat-Sun, 11.30am-3pm, RMB258 per person (includes salad bar). See a listing for Thought for Food.
As perhaps Shanghai’s most French restaurant, we were surprised when Franck Bistrot started doing brunch again. The French, after all, are known for breaking fast in style – namely with black coffee, croissants and cigarettes. Nevertheless, brunch at Franck is a hearty affair.
RMB298 gets you three plates: chef’s selection of starters (on our visit, deviled eggs, cold cuts and tuna rillette) a main course of your choosing plus a selection of desserts. Of the mains, the duck foie gras frittata is as decadent as it sounds, and a sweet flourish of dark chocolate mousse and French toast were a great finish. Snag a table outside on the patio when the sun’s out.
Brunch served Sat-Sun, 11.30am-3pm, RMB298 per person. See a listing for Franck Bistrot
KABB’s brunch is almost too pretty to eat, namely the salmon eggs benedict with two lightly poached eggs and slices of smoked salmon carefully presented on toasted rye bread smothered with traditional hollandaise sauce. It comes with a healthy side of asparagus and grilled tomato, and a more mischievous side of home fries with bacon.
Saturday and Sunday, plus all public holidays, 10-4pm, RMB105. See listings for KABB.
8. Table No.1
There's rarely a time when Table No.1 isn't a good idea, and we particularly like their decadent brunch menu that rolls around every weekend. Try their excellent rentition of avocado toast with poached eggs on top, tart housemade yoghurt with granola, proper English scones with jam and clotted cream, and last but not least: pancakes with poached apricot, blueberries and créme anglaise (add RMB30 for seared foie gras!).
Probably the best value semi-buffet brunch in town, the Pentalounge's Sunday brunch has been popular for many years and with good reason. Situated inside the casual Pentahotel near Zhongshan Park, here RMB108 per person (RMB148 on Sunday) buys you unfettered access to a European-style buffet, and one selected à la carte dish cooked to order. The buffet includes cold cuts, cheese, fruit, cereals and desserts, and it's pretty damn good – especially for the price.
There's also plenty of comfy seating, a pool table and board games like Connect Four and chess to pass the time between your many, many trips to the buffet. Booking recommended.
Saturday and Sunday, 11.30am-4pm. RMB108-148 per person, RMB48-68 per child (12 years or younger). See a listing for Pentalounge.
10. Mr and Mrs Bund
Paul Pairet's classy Bund eatery made a big splash when they launched last year, particularly that caramelized French toast. Served à la carte, their extensive brunch menu is broken into sections: egg dishes from RMB75 and up, appetizers RMB100 and up, main courses starting at RMB130, sides priced at RMB60 each and desserts priced at RMB80 apiece.
Saturday and Sunday, 11.30-2.30pm, dishes from RMB75. See a listing for Mr and Mrs Bund.
With a cozy atmosphere inside and a beautiful al fresco terrace overlooking a neighboring park, there's a lot to like about Ginger by the Park. The brunch menu here is an eclectic mixture of conventional favorites like fluffy ricotta pancakes with fresh fruit, pistachio and honey (RMB80), or dishes from further afield, like their popular shakshouka (baked Middle-Eastern-style eggs with tomato, sweet pepper, spinach and Egyptian Dukkah spices, RMB80). The new menu even features a riff on a classic Chinese breakfast crêpe: jianbing with green curry chicken (RMB78).
Sat-Sun and all public holidays, 10.30-3pm, main dishes from RMB80. Reservation necessary. See a listing for Ginger By the Park.
With interiors decked out in the classic blue and white theme, Milos brings a taste of Greece to Shanghai with their traditional offerings of mousaka and homemade sausages in a brunch that will have you bursting at the seams. Other simple Greek pasta and salad dishes, breads, desserts and free-flow wine are also available.
Sun, 11-3pm, RMB215 per person, see listings for Milos.
More of a dim sum devotee? Read our guide to Shanghai's yum cha spots here.
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