While skewers of chuanr have long been a Shanghai street food staple, the city has recently developed a taste for premium beef, too. New steakhouses have opened to provide foodies with imported cuts in clubby carnivore paradises. We rounded up five of Shanghai’s best steakhouses, including three of our Forbes Travel Guide recommended restaurants (announced yesterday with our first-ever Five- and Four-Star hotels and spas in the city).
The scene: Roosevelt Prime Steakhouse is one of the city’s gems for VIP treatment and top-shelf steaks. The opulent restaurant is tucked inside a villa deep in the former French Concession and boasts velvet curtains, leather banquettes and dark wood paneling — a fitting setting for four-course meals complete with wine and cigars.
The steak:The steakhouse serves thick, juicy cuts, including tender filet mignon, rich New York strip, marbled bone-in rib-eye and prime aged porterhouse. Vintage Cohibas and 40-year-old Glenfarclas whiskey in the cigar lounge are the best way to top off your evening.
The scene: This sleek, contemporary restaurant offers up sweeping views and fine dry-aged meats atop the 29th floor of the chic Hotel Indigo Shanghai on the Bund. For special occasions, book the private corner table and gaze out at the brilliant Pudong skyline.
The steak: CHAR stocks several Wagyu steaks, including Australian Blackmore beef — steers are grain-fed for 600 days using traditional Japanese farming techniques, and the result is a great marbled meat that’s ranked among the world’s best. It’s priced accordingly — seven ounces of the beef served with seared foie gras, grilled lobster and truffles sets you back RMB1,888 (about US$300).
The scene: Dark wood booths and masculine, modern décor (featuring gilded horn accents) create the trendy atmosphere at this steakhouse inside the Forbes Travel Guide Four-Star Kerry Hotel, Pudong, Shanghai. A dedicated aging room houses the steaks, while an onsite brewery churns out craft beer to wash it all down.
The steak: The MEET’s signature is the Ningaloo tomahawk — an enormous hunk of prime rib that feeds four. The steak is carved tableside and served with roasted onion, tomatoes and an array of mustards and dipping sauces.
Morton’s The Steakhouse
The scene: The Chicago-founded steakhouse chain arrived in Shanghai in 2010. Its first Chinese outpost and the largest location in the world sits in the city’s financial center. The vibe here is traditional, with white tablecloths, rich wood and a Sinatra soundtrack. The import has surpassed expectations, attracting a crowd to its popular happy hours with “Mortinis” and free steak sandwiches.
The steak: Morton’s offers a sizeable selection of grain-fed aged Australian cuts. Choose the massive 48-ounce porterhouse or a more digestible 16-ounce rib-eye.
Pinnacle Peak Steakhouse
The scene: Stumbling upon this classic American steakhouse is like walking onto the set of a Western. Swinging saloon doors, a vintage mechanical bull and memorable mesquite-seared Australian steaks are the main attractions at this casual local favorite.
The steak: The beef here is raised on pasture grass, including the popular “Big Hoss,” a charred 14-ounce rib-eye. Sides are all-American — order up twice-cooked baby potatoes or corn on the cob.
Photo courtesy of Shangri-La Hotels and Resorts