Shanghai can be a gourmet delight or culinary disaster, depending on where you decide to eat. So we reached out to a few Shanghai F&B folks who really have a handle on the scene to Spill the Beans on their favorite spots, from hole-in-the-wall local eats to high-end venues, from late night drunk grub to date night treat yo’ self splurges.
Image courtesy of Camden Hauge
Name: Camden Hauge
Hometown: Morristown, NJ
Occupation: Owner-Operator, Happy Place Hospitality Group (Egg, Bird, Bitter, Lucky Mart, Lucky Diner, Maiya, LA MATCHA; KIN Urban Thai Kitchen with Camel Group
Where does your love for food stem from?
My mother and grandmother are amazing cooks and would always bring us around the table for meals, so I associate food with family and the feeling of being cared for.
Favorite restaurant in Shanghai that serves American food?
I don’t think ‘American food’ is really a type of food, but a mash-up of different references, so I would say that anything Austin does over at Heritage is the best representation of what ‘American food’ can be – a gathering of references, traditions and food memories all smashed up into tasty dishes.
Image by Sophie Steiner/That's
Favorite local eats spot?
The noodle shop on Changle Lu by the Fumin Lu triangle park – I lived above it for a year and would eat there five to seven days a week. Their cucumber cold dish, tomato scrambled eggs (fanqie chao dan 番茄炒蛋), zhu pai 主拍，and suancai lamian 酸菜拉面 are life.
Favorite high end restaurant?
Right now, High Yaki – it’s not fine dining or fancy but the service (and average check) elevates it to a ‘high end’ standard with an edge of fun. The boys are fantastic hosts and the food is great – well-prepared without a hint of pretention.
What’s your go-to date night spot and why?
SOiF! Franc nailed that sexy lighting.
One restaurant in Shanghai that you couldn’t live without?
The noodle shop on Changle Lu. I love you forever.
Any restaurants that closed that you really miss?
Pirata at Columbia Circle is fantastic but I miss the one that used to be next to my house/restaurants on Xinle Lu! Dropping by for a drink and gougeres with Ling after service was my favorite way to end a day.
Favorite dish in Shanghai?
Pint Club pistachio ice cream at home on my couch.
What advice would you give to budding foodies in Shanghai?
Learn how to stretch your stomach and liver, because this city isn’t here to play. The amount of options available at any time of day is absurd and only keeps growing.
For more Camden Hauge foodie adventures, follow her on Instagram @camdenhauge