Hakkasan is one of my favorite Chinese fine dining restaurants when i study in USA. I was really excited to hear its opening in 2014 in the city i grew up – Shanghai. Housed in the heritage Bund 18 building, Hakkasan Shanghai is a stunning example of the brand’s striking design, alluring cuisine and exceptional mixology and sommelier skills, set against Shanghai’s most iconic view of Lujiazui.
I visited Hakkasan almost half year ago before i start writing about it. Because i consider most of my readers from oversea, not those from Shanghai (as i am not sure if my site is available in China). As Hakkasan was positioned at #46 of Asia’s 50 Best Restaurants in 2015, i decided to write up this review.
Similar to Hakkasan in all other cities, Hakkasan Shanghai keeps its traditional Chinese decor with a modern twist – fancy lightings and background music, with a bar that has a stunning view of the bund and skyline.
The menu, devised by Michelin-starred chef Tong Chee Hwee, has a strong Chinese identity which is underpinned by authenticity rather than traditionalism and uses locally sourced ingredients to create Hakkasan’s renowned signature dishes.
沙律香酥鸭 Crispy duck salad with pomelo, pine nut and shallot (￥158 )
AS one of the most popular starters on the menu, it was indeed a very nice starter. The duck has a very crispy deep-fried skin, tender and flavorful meat inside. The greens on the top was very fresh, the combination of the entire dish was very nice balanced and refreshing.
四式点心拼 Dim Sum Platter (￥108)
Another hot pick at Hakkasan. The signature dim sum platter consists of scallop siew mai, har gau, chive dumpling and roast duck mushroom. All the ingredients were high in quality, the whole scallops and prawns were large in size. While the skin could be thinner. Although the ingredients themselves were high in quality, the tastes were actually quite bland without the dipping sauce on the side.
黑松露和牛沙律 Salad of Wagyu tenderloin (M9) with black truffle (￥228)
The beef was very juicy, tender and flavorful. Every single bite of the beef was nicely coated with black pepper and sacue. The portion was not very big for the price.
咖哩汁虾球 Spicy prawn with lily bulb and almond (￥168)
This is my must-order dish when i was in USA. Similar to Hakkasan NYC, the prawns were large in side, very bouncy and juicy, with a sweet twist from themselves. The curry base was very appetizing and coupled well with the prawns and bitterness lily bulb and crunchy almond.
香槟汁焗黑鳕鱼 Roasted silver cod with Champagne and honey (￥298)
As mentioned on Hakkasan’s website as a signature dish, the roasted silver cod was indeed enjoyable. The cod was nicely roasted with a crispy outer-layer and semi-sashimi texture inside, with a lovely twist of champagne and honey, it was definitely an highlight on the menu.
时日蔬菜 Choice of seasonal Chinese vegetable
We found the rice dishes at Hakkasan never suprised us, and we decided to try something new from the starch menu. We picked 鲍汁焖伊面 Braised E-Fu noodle with abalone gravy with a refreshing rouch of green pea, and the local pickles, it was a nice combination but the overall flavor was a bit bland to us. The local noodle dishes at some cheap stalls are definitely much better.
As an opening promotion, we are allowed to choose any macarons we like from the shelf.
We picked Matcha, vanilla and black sesame. Not bad but neither very impressive.
Hakkasan is definitely a top pick for people who prefer Chinesse fine dining experience with a nice ambiance and breathtaking view. But if you are only a traveller to Shanghai, no matter for food or business or leisure, i think there are some better choices – as Hakkasan offers innovated Chinese food with a western twist. I actually prefer more local Shanghainese restaurant and there are a lot fine picks as well. The price is not cheap but hopefully the quality is not bad, while the flavor of the food could be more impressive and more differentiate with Hakkasan in other cities.
Address: 黄浦区 中山东一路18号外滩18号5层