I am going in June and am unaware of the eating possibilities. I will be there for a week and am open to ANY suggestions- high and lower end. I want to eat my way through the city. Suggestions of additional resources would be appreciated as well.
So much has changed since I was there 12 years ago (like the other half of the city, across the river, being built)that the only sure thing I can offer, assuming it's still there, is that famous xiaolongbao place in a park. I can't remember the name, but it's surely listed in every guide book, and if Gary Soup checks in I'm sure he has all the details.
The restaurant at the Peace Hotel was very good, especially for cold dishes, when I was there.
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I just returned from some days in Shanghai. I used a post from Gary Soup about old-line Shanghainese restaurants, which I found very helpful. (Gary, if you're reading this please contact me. I have something to send you.) I found the following four places all interesing and worth visiting and revisiting:
600 Fuzhou Lu
This place is not nearly as spiffy as the three that follow, which could be good or bad. I couldn't resist the dofu and preserved egg dish.
556 Fuzhou Lu
Not as good as the following two, but worth visiting for a look at some serious Shanghainese eaters and some good dumplings.
603 Fuzhou Lu
Excellent crab dishes. The service was spotty--some nights excellent, other nights laughably inattentive. Go for the food, expecially the river shrimp and crab leg meat dish.
255 Dalian Xi Lu (Hongkou)
4. No. 240 Lane, Beijing Xi Lu
18 Xizang Zhong Lu (newest branch)
Excellent food and excellent service. I visited the branch on Xizang Lu (second floor).
All these places have either English or picture menus, but knowing a little Chinese can make the meal go much more smoothly.
re: Michael Rodriguez
Hey Michael, glad you liked my recco's. I missed parts of this thread because I was preparing for my own Shanghai trip on 5/16 and am just now catching up on some of the older Int'l stuff.
As you noticed, Lao Banzhai is a great old place because you can run the gamut there from just ordering some dumplings to ordering a full banquet style meal and feel at home in either instance.
I've emailed you some details of my last trip.
Just back and I did okay with Shanghai street food - that was hot and cooked in front of me. Cheap and delicious and the dumpling place off Nanking Road west of the Peace Hotel lives up to its legendary repuation.