Shanghai Restaurant Review: The Arashiyama Breakfast Company

By Cristina Ng, April 30, 2019

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The Place

Restaurant owners in Shanghai will tell you that things do not always go according to plan, as evidenced by the delayed opening of The Arashiyama Breakfast Company early this year – when the sign reads open “since 2018.” Opening date aside, the folks behind this joint named their restaurant after the beautiful mountainous region in Japan where they plan to open one of their next locations, and you have to respect their confidence.

The Food

Located within spitting distance of Wuding Lu’s most boisterous bars, the menu could have easily been dreamed up by a couple of hungry, hungover friends. There are a few choices for people who don’t want breakfast (those monsters), including pasta, salads, quesadillas and a very out of place Wagyu Beef and Foie Gras Burger (RMB98)

You can go the DIY Breakfast Plate route and choose a bread from whole wheat, white, brioche, muffin or baguette (RMB10) with as many toppings as you wish. Eggs are available poached, fried or scrambled (RMB10 for two). Toppings are more expensive (smoked salmon for RMB30) or avocado for RMB22), but if you do the math, the most basic of Avocado Toasts with Two Eggs will only run you RMB42 here – cheaper than many popular brunch spots around the city.

Image by Cristina Ng/That's

Inspired by a full English breakfast, the Full Arashiyama (RMB68) comes with brioche, bacon, beans, eggs, tomato and basil sausage. They make both the decent brioche and the bland-yet-greasy basil sausage in-house. It’s the soft, creamy scrambled eggs that make this plate shine. In fact, if they offered beans as a DIY choice, we’d order toast, eggs and beans and would enjoy it just as much.

Image by Cristina Ng/That's

A delightful order of four fluffy Berries and Cream Pancakes (RMB68) comes decorated with a sprinkle of powdered sugar, strawberries, blueberries, mulberries and a massive scoop of glossy, fresh-whipped cream.

Food Verdict: 1.5/3

The Vibe

There’s nothing trendy about this place. Even their pancakes are traditional, and we actually welcome the break from ubiquitous soufflé variety. The waiters are eager to please, and the place accomplishes what it sets out to do by providing a dependable all-day breakfast. Just keep in mind, the kitchen closes at around 7.30pm.

Vibe Verdict: 1/2

Total Verdict: 2.5/5

Price: RMB50-100 per person
Who's going: mostly expats on lunch breaks
Good for: casual meals, off-hour breakfasts, nursing hangovers

[Cover image by Cristina Ng/That's]

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