Latin Eats, Beats and Beach Vibes at LatinLand

By Sophie Steiner, June 16, 2021

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The Place

The second floor of Shanghai Brew House in Wheelock Square has been converted into LatinLand – a collaboration between Bourbon Group and LatinLand festival and events company. The space used to be 10 Corso Como, a hip multi-level bookstore, but now it’s all things dedicated to Latin America – from Peruvian lomo salatado to Colombian empanadas to Chilean Pisco sours, all flowing out of the kitchen and bar to the beats of reggaetón, salsa, bachata and merengue. 

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Image by Sophie Steiner/That's

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Image by Sophie Steiner/That's

The atmosphere screams beach vacay – something all of us need right about now – with custom projectors creating visuals of moving waves that lead up to the ‘swim-up’ Besame Mucho-branded bar. Lounge ‘beachside’ under a straw umbrella, sipping on any of the 20 holiday-inspired cocktails created by Head Bartender Artëm Zuev, and as evening turns into night, prepare to bust out your best dance moves as the restaurant is transformed into a full on discoteca

The Food 

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Image by Sophie Steiner/That's

The kitchen is manned by the two Hugos – consulting Chef Hugo Rodriguez (Funkadeli, Heat) and Head Chef Hugo Sazón, churning out South and Central American comfort eats like it’s their job. Oh wait, it is. 

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Image by Sophie Steiner/That's

Starting with something fresh, the Nikkei Ceviche (RMB68) is a heaping portion of roughly chopped raw tuna, soaked in leche de tigre – a Peruvian marinade of fresh citrus juices, chili oil and seasonings spanning turmeric and cinnamon to chili and coriander – drizzled with sesame oil and topped with chili flakes. Fried wonton crisps adorn the top, while a bed of purple potato purée grounds the myriad of flavors. 

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Image by Sophie Steiner/That's

Every South American country has their version of an empanada, but the traditional masarepa cornmeal used in the Empanada de Colombia (RMB62/chicken, RMB68/beef) results in a crispy, flavor-packed morsel, stuffed to the gills with shredded chicken or ground beef. The aji verde salsa on the side adds an addictingly spicy kick that will compel you to order another set of four.

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Image by Sophie Steiner/That's

Classics, like the Quesadillas (RMB62/chicken, RMB68/beef) – served with sour cream and pico de gallo – and Tacos (RMB45/fish, RMB52/pulled pork) grace the menu, but the real pull is the grill section, loaded with picanha, steaks, chicken, fish, sausage and vegetables. 

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Image by Sophie Steiner/That's

A dish made for sharing, the Picada (RMB188) is the perfect sampler of some of LatinLand’s favorite grilled items – a hot grill plate loaded with chorizo, Colombian blood sausage, grilled steak, grilled chicken, chicharron, smashed baby potatoes and a sweet cornmeal arepa stuffed with cheese. 

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The spiced chorizo sports that signature snap while the jet-black Colombian morcillas, or blood sausage, are soft and savory, with bits of pork and rice interspersed throughout. 

DSC03031.jpgArepas (RMB35), Image by Sophie Steiner/That's

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Image by Sophie Steiner/That's

Enjoy the picada plate with a variety of classic sides, like Arroz Caribeno con Leche de Coco (RMB42) – a turmeric and coconut milk sautéed rice – and Red Beans (RMB32) stewed in South American spices. 

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For dessert, double down on those starchy carbs with raisin-studded Rice Pudding (RMB40) – creamy and lightly sweetened with shreds of coconut and a dusting of cinnamon. 

Lunch kick-starts this week along with brunch plus specials on weekends. 

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On the drinks front, the beachy creations lean towards refreshing and fruity, using a variety of South American spirits. The Cucumba (RMB68) screams beachside lounging with a mix of gin, passion fruit purée and cucumber, while the Fifty-Fifty (RMB78) is a cinnamon-spiced sip of half pisco-half gin plus lemon and egg white. 

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Extra-National (RMB78), Image by Sophie Steiner/That's

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Spice up your salsa-filled night with a Día de Los Muertos-inspired glass filled to the brim with the piquant Mamacita (RMB78) – a blend of tequila, mezcal, pomegranate, pineapple and passion fruit purée. 

The Vibe 

It’s hard to not feel the music here. The state-of-the-art sound system is always blasting something Shakira-esque, and, like her, our hips don’t lie. Good thing the kitchen closes fairly early, tables are moved aside and the space becomes the hottest beach club to grace Shanghai’s not-so-naturally beachy vibe.  

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Image by Sophie Steiner/That's

Fridays will have guest DJs, Saturday is all about the salsa and other nights start out with bachata and merengue around 10pm, and glide into Latin pop and reggaetón after midnight. You come here to snack, drink and then, really, to shake it. 

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LatinLand restaurant is also a precursor to LatinLand District, an event space with food trucks, live music, lifestyle brands and entertainment in A La Town that aims to launch by August. To help kick off the space, food and lifestyle concept, swing by June 18-20 to see what it’s all about while crushing Latin American and International eats from vendors like Bourbon Cookhouse, Grill Republik, Latina, La Coyota, Royal Patat, Brothers Kebab, Tacos, Pochos and, of course, Shanghai Brew House and Los Hugos Kitchen by LatinLand.

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More into craft beer? LatinLand in A La Town is hosting Beernations, a craft and international beer festival, on June 25-27 and July 2-4, featuring a mix of local and imported brews, international food, DJs and live entertainment. 

Price: RMB200-300
Who’s Going: Anyone with even an ounce of Latin American blood, Reggaetón fanatics, those craving a beach vibe without enough dinero to fly to Sanya
Good For: Grilled meat consumption, beach-inspired sips, shaking your moneymaker 


See a listing for LatinLand. Read more Shanghai Restaurant Reviews.

[Cover Image by Sophie Steiner/That’s]

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