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Book now Give as a gift  US $75/adult
  • Max 8 people  Xiangyang Lu  ~3 hours 8am 
    -> Nanchang Lu  (Wednesdays and Sundays)

Quick bite: We’ll mingle with water calligraphers and tai chi masters, taste Chinese breakfast dishes made right in front of your eyes at local street stalls and learn the true meaning of fresh at a wet market.

Wake up with the city to taste the Chinese breakfast of champions. We’ll mingle with water calligraphers and tai chi masters, taste Chinese breakfast dishes made right in front of your eyes at local street stalls and learn the true meaning of fresh at a wet market.

Wake up with the city to taste the Chinese breakfast of champions.

On this tour, developed by Culinary Backstreets and our partner in China, UnTour, you will sample freshly-pulled noodles, fried dumplings straight out of the wok, Shanghai’s famous xiaolongbao (soup dumplings), savoury breakfast pancakes and much more. It’s also vegetarian- and kid-friendly. Come hungry!

Fee includes everything consumed on the walk.  Some special features:

Suitable for vegetarians Children welcome
Cannot accommodate a gluten-free diet Includes market visits
Vegan substitutions available at only some stops Terrain fairly flat/ Stroller – friendly

How long are the Shanghai culinary tours?

Culinary tours last approximately 3 hours, with minimal walking between sampling spots.

How much do culinary tours cost & when do they run?

Our culinary walk costs US$75 inclusive of all tastings stops and non-alcoholic beverages. With public tours scheduled almost every day of the week, there is sure to be one that fits your schedule.

How many people are generally on your culinary tours?

Our maximum capacity is 8-10 people for most of our walks. If your group is larger, send us an email at walks@culinarybackstreets.com and we’ll work to accommodate your whole party.

What types of places do you visit?

From jam-packed hole-in-the-wall noodle joints to queue-worthy street stalls, we lead you through a culinary world that is nearly impossible to navigate without a Mandarin speaking guide at your side. Your bilingual, native-English speaking guide is on hand to help translate, advise and answer any questions you have about life in China – and they’ll also fill you in on Chinese food traditions, local history and make recommendations for your time in Shanghai.

Is the food in China safe?

We only work with trusted vendors whom we’ve been frequenting for years. These stops are our absolute favorite places to eat – the same places we take our family and friends.

Is the Street Eats Breakfast walk suitable for vegetarians?

Yes, we definitely recommend this walk for vegeterians.  Vegans will have a very limited selection, but we can try to make substitutions where possible.

What if I have allergies?  Nut and shellfish allergies have not been a problem in the past, however we cannot guarantee that the utensils and other cooking tools have not touched any of the food tour ingredients. Please bring your epi pen or other meds to the tour if you choose to participate.  Please note on most tours we make a stop to a wet market that showcases live and butchered animals in various states of food prep

Are your walks gluten-free?  We are not able to make substitutions for those with celiacs disease as soy sauce is very prevalent in our tour stops.

What languages are available for the tours?

All of our public weekly tours are held in English. If you have a special request for a private tour, please send us a note to walks@culinarybackstreets.com and we will do our best to accommodate.

What type of payment do you accept?

Once you have selected an available walk route and date, you will be directed to pay the fee or deposit for the walk. If you are registering for a walk that requires approval, your reservation request will need to be approved by an administrator before it is finalized and your card will not be charged until the walk is approved.

Our credit card processor, Stripe, is certified to PCI Service Provider Level 1, the most stringent level of certification. None of your sensitive data ever hits Culinary Backstreets servers. It is all captured, processed, and housed on Stripes servers. Our booking system, Bookeo, also meets both Daily PCI Security Scanning and Security Verified Requirements.


Godly Vegetarian, photo by Jamie Barys

Godly Vegetarian

If you hadn’t read the flyer closely before heading to Shanghai’s first ever MeatFest last month, you might have been a bit disappointed upon arrival. The sounds and smells of sizzling meat might have seemed like a carnivore’s dream come true, but the name was tongue in cheek; the event was thrown by Vegans of Shanghai for “eco-conscious meat lovers” and served only domestically sourced plant-based “meat” products. May 25, 2017 Atila del Sur Comedor (0) Posted in OaxacaAugust 5, 2014 Shanghai’s Top 5 Vegetarian Eateries (0)   Posted in ShanghaiMay 24, 2017 Tonkatsu Hamachan (0) Posted in Shanghai

Local Spirit

The recent loss of the world’s first baijiu-themed bar, Beijing’s Capital Spirits, to hutong landlord issues has refocused the spirit’s lens on Shanghai, where bars are incorporating the grain alcohol into their drinks program. Baijiu may be the most-consumed spirit in the world – thanks mostly to China’s massive population. May 10, 2013 Baijiu: China’s Firewater (1) Posted in ShanghaiJune 12, 2017 Goat Cheese and Fried Honeybees (0) Posted in ShanghaiMay 4, 2017 Fly By Jing (0) Posted in Shanghai

Wenxiang Manchurian Dumpling House

When it comes to Chinese dumplings, fish is likely not the first filling that springs to mind. But that’s probably because you haven’t had the chance to try Liaoning province’s specialty: boiled mackerel dumplings. May 4, 2017 Fly By Jing (0) Posted in ShanghaiJune 12, 2017 Goat Cheese and Fried Honeybees (0) Posted in ShanghaiMay 24, 2017 Tonkatsu Hamachan (0) Posted in Shanghai

Breakfast On-The-Go in Shanghai

On our “Street Eats Breakfast” walk in Shanghai, we stop for jiānbǐng (煎饼), sometimes called Chinese crepes, flapjacks or burritos. Served up streetside on flat griddles, these millet flour pancakes are topped with scrambled eggs, cilantro, green onions and pickled mustard tubers and then slathered in umami-laden soybean paste and spicy chili flakes. May 4, 2017 Fly By Jing (0) Posted in ShanghaiJune 8, 2017 The Freshest Catch at an Athens Taverna (0) Kolias Taverna proudly displays its fresh fish and seafood offerings. Tavernas and […] Posted in AthensMay 26, 2017 Sightly Seafood at a Tokyo Fish Market (0) Wonderful spreads of the freshest catches are among the swirling array of visual […] Posted in Tokyo

“Warming” Yellow Wine in Shanghai

Legend has it that huangjiu, or yellow wine, was invented by Du Kang, the god of Chinese alcohol. Because huangjiu is fermented, the Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM) benefits of the drink are legion, and include “invigorating the blood.” You can see for yourself if that’s the case on our Night Eats tour in Shanghai. May 26, 2017 Sightly Seafood at a Tokyo Fish Market (0) Wonderful spreads of the freshest catches are among the swirling array of visual […] Posted in TokyoJune 8, 2017 The Freshest Catch at an Athens Taverna (0) Kolias Taverna proudly displays its fresh fish and seafood offerings. Tavernas and […] Posted in AthensMay 2, 2017 Seasonal Strawberries in Tbilisi (0) Flashback to the end of March, when we encountered the first strawberries of the season […] Posted in Tbilisi

Steamed Buns in Shanghai

Bāozi (包子), or steamed buns, are a basic, on-the-go meal. Yeast is added to wheat dough, which is allowed to rise. The dough is then stuffed with a raw filling (everything plain pork to egg custard), wrapped by hand using a pinching style until closed and placed on top of boiling water in towers of giant bamboo steamers. May 8, 2017 Tackling Mexico City’s Top Tacos (0) One of our brand new walks in the Mexican capital stops at our favorite taquerias in the […] Posted in Mexico CityJune 8, 2017 The Freshest Catch at an Athens Taverna (0) Kolias Taverna proudly displays its fresh fish and seafood offerings. Tavernas and […] Posted in AthensMay 26, 2017 Sightly Seafood at a Tokyo Fish Market (0) Wonderful spreads of the freshest catches are among the swirling array of visual […] Posted in Tokyo

Shanghai’s Top Five Late Night Dining Spots

The vast country of China has just one time zone, so Shanghai’s East Coast location means darkness comes early and most residents usually eat by nightfall, with restaurants often closing their kitchens around 9 p.m. But for those who keep late hours, there are a few late night supper spots around town. May 4, 2017 Fly By Jing (0) Posted in ShanghaiJune 12, 2017 Goat Cheese and Fried Honeybees (0) Posted in ShanghaiJune 14, 2017 Friggitoria Masardona (0) Posted in Naples

The Ultimate Bar Snack in Shanghai

Spicy rabbit’s head is the ultimate bar snack in Sichuan province. The demand for rabbit’s head is so high in Chengdu that 20 percent are imported from Europe (mostly France and Italy). We crack open rabbit’s head (the cheek and the brain are the best meat) and pair it with a frosty bottle of Snow Pijiu beer on our Shanghai night eats walk. May 4, 2017 Fly By Jing (0) Posted in ShanghaiMay 26, 2017 Sightly Seafood at a Tokyo Fish Market (0) Wonderful spreads of the freshest catches are among the swirling array of visual […] Posted in TokyoMay 16, 2017 Mornings in Barcelona (0) Mornings in Barcelona start with a strong “tallat” coffee and “pa amb tomàquet” (bread […] Posted in Barcelona

Lunar New Year Preparations in Shanghai

As Shanghai prepares to welcome the Year of the Dog, preserved poultry, fish and, as pictured here, the conger pike, a species of eel, can be spotted hanging in quiet laneways and bustling markets, ready to be purchased for traditional holiday dishes. The Lunar New Year begins on Friday, February 16, this year. May 26, 2017 Sightly Seafood at a Tokyo Fish Market (0) Wonderful spreads of the freshest catches are among the swirling array of visual […] Posted in TokyoJune 8, 2017 The Freshest Catch at an Athens Taverna (0) Kolias Taverna proudly displays its fresh fish and seafood offerings. Tavernas and […] Posted in AthensMay 16, 2017 Mornings in Barcelona (0) Mornings in Barcelona start with a strong “tallat” coffee and “pa amb tomàquet” (bread […] Posted in Barcelona

Best Bites 2017

Shanghai’s dining scene still contains its share of neighborhood dumpling and noodle shops, but the overall trend is marching towards mall dining and chain stores in the ever-changing downtown, historic and suburban areas. A silver lining: At least a handful of our favorite street stalls have also taken the plunge into new digs, with the same dishes, but shiny (read: soulless) interiors. May 4, 2017 Fly By Jing (0) Posted in ShanghaiJune 12, 2017 Goat Cheese and Fried Honeybees (0) Posted in ShanghaiMay 24, 2017 Tonkatsu Hamachan (0) Posted in Shanghai

A Da Cong You Bing

In September of last year, Shanghai eaters were shocked when Mr. Wu shuttered A Da Cong You Bing, the city’s best scallion pancake shop. The only explanation for the abrupt closure was a worn sign on the door that read: “My family has a problem. The stall will be closed for a few days.” But this wasn’t the whole truth. July 27, 2012 A Da Cong You Bing (0) Posted in ShanghaiMay 15, 2017 Biscoito Globo (0) Posted in RioJanuary 3, 2013 Da Hu Chun (0) Posted in Shanghai

Fly By Jing

Whether we’re heading to Sichuan province for a little culinary vacation or just looking for the best bowl of dan dan mian in the city, there’s one person we call for dining recommendations: Jenny Gao. May 24, 2017 Tonkatsu Hamachan (0) Posted in ShanghaiJune 12, 2017 Goat Cheese and Fried Honeybees (0) Posted in ShanghaiAugust 27, 2014 Deng Ji Chuan Cai (0)   Posted in Shanghai

Night Dumplings in Shanghai

This is the dumpling station of a popular spot on our Street Eats Night Markets tour in Shanghai, where we investigate two markets for the best after-hours snacks. May 26, 2017 Sightly Seafood at a Tokyo Fish Market (0) Wonderful spreads of the freshest catches are among the swirling array of visual […] Posted in TokyoJune 5, 2017 Queens: A Street Food Paradise (0) On our culinary walk in the borough, you’ll quickly realize that Queens is not just a […] Posted in QueensMay 21, 2017 Cutting Loose at the Mouraria Street Party (0) A snapshot from our Mouraria Street Party in Lisbon, which was held earlier this month […] Posted in Lisbon

Best Bites 2016

Shanghai’s dining scene was abuzz with controversy this fall as the Michelin Guide landed in the city for the first time ever. You can’t please everyone, but no one seemed happy with the disproportionate number of Cantonese restaurants that were recognized. May 4, 2017 Fly By Jing (0) Posted in ShanghaiMay 24, 2017 Tonkatsu Hamachan (0) Posted in ShanghaiJune 14, 2017 Friggitoria Masardona (0) Posted in Naples

Liu Family Harbin Dumplings

[Editor’s note: We’re sorry to report that Harbin Dumplings has closed.] Walk along just about any street in Shanghai these days, and you’ll see an ever-encroaching range of Western brands, standardized brand signage and food franchises. May 4, 2017 Fly By Jing (0) Posted in ShanghaiSeptember 17, 2014 Liu Family Harbin Dumplings (0)   Posted in ShanghaiJune 12, 2017 Goat Cheese and Fried Honeybees (0) Posted in Shanghai

Pepper-Powdered Enoki Mushrooms at Shanghai’s A Jun

A Jun grills up more than just seafood at their Shouning Lu shop. These enoki mushrooms are powdered with four types of pepper before being thrown on the fire. May 26, 2017 Sightly Seafood at a Tokyo Fish Market (0) Wonderful spreads of the freshest catches are among the swirling array of visual […] Posted in TokyoJune 8, 2017 The Freshest Catch at an Athens Taverna (0) Kolias Taverna proudly displays its fresh fish and seafood offerings. Tavernas and […] Posted in AthensJune 5, 2017 Queens: A Street Food Paradise (0) On our culinary walk in the borough, you’ll quickly realize that Queens is not just a […] Posted in Queens

Steaming Wontons Served Late at Night in Shanghai

Er Guang Wontons serves up steaming wontons well into the evening every night. The pork-stuffed dumplings come slathered in peanut chili sauce, as all late-night snacks should be. May 4, 2017 Fly By Jing (0) Posted in ShanghaiJune 8, 2017 The Freshest Catch at an Athens Taverna (0) Kolias Taverna proudly displays its fresh fish and seafood offerings. Tavernas and […] Posted in AthensMay 26, 2017 Sightly Seafood at a Tokyo Fish Market (0) Wonderful spreads of the freshest catches are among the swirling array of visual […] Posted in Tokyo

Shanghai Night Eats

Quick bite: As the the sun sets, we’ll explore the best local and regional cuisines Shanghai has to offer, in one of the few authentic working-class neighborhoods in the city to escape the wrecking ball. May 4, 2017 Fly By Jing (0) Posted in ShanghaiJune 12, 2017 Goat Cheese and Fried Honeybees (0) Posted in ShanghaiMay 24, 2017 Tonkatsu Hamachan (0) Posted in Shanghai

Hands-On Dumpling Delights

Quick bite: You’ll get to try your hand at making your own intricate steamed dumplings, and leave armed with a detailed recipe so you can make them when you get home. June 12, 2017 Goat Cheese and Fried Honeybees (0) Posted in ShanghaiMay 24, 2017 Tonkatsu Hamachan (0) Posted in ShanghaiJanuary 26, 2016 Street Eats Breakfast (0) Posted in Shanghai

Street Eats Breakfast

Top Buns

Bāozi (包子), or steamed buns, are a basic, on-the-go meal. It’s rare to come across a shop selling these buns for more than 1.5 RMB (US$0.25), and yet, the past five years have seen a dramatic rise in the stature of this humble dish – thanks mostly to celebrity chef David Chang, whose Momofuku pork bun has become world-famous. February 22, 2013 Tangyuan: All Hail the Rice Ball (0) Posted in ShanghaiDecember 16, 2013 Best Bites 2013 (0) Posted in ShanghaiMay 24, 2017 Tonkatsu Hamachan (0) Posted in Shanghai

Best Bites 2015

Editor’s note: To cap off the year, we’re taking a look back at all the best eating experiences we had in 2015, and in Shanghai, that means everything from fried pork buns to shakshuka made with local ingredients. May 24, 2017 Tonkatsu Hamachan (0) Posted in ShanghaiMay 4, 2017 Fly By Jing (0) Posted in ShanghaiAugust 17, 2012 Soup Dumplings (0) Posted in Shanghai

Yang Yang’s Dumplings

Search online for Shanghai’s best fried dumplings, and you’ll come up with hundreds of results extolling Yang’s Fried Dumplings. May 4, 2017 Fly By Jing (0) Posted in ShanghaiJune 12, 2017 Goat Cheese and Fried Honeybees (0) Posted in ShanghaiMay 10, 2014 First Stop (0) Editor’s note: In the latest installment of our recurring feature, First Stop, we asked […] Posted in Shanghai

The Shanghai Soup Dumpling Index

Back in 2012 when Culinary Backstreets still had that new car smell, we wrote our first article on xiaolongbao. The investigative report detailed the bun’s regional variations – Shanghai versus Nanjing – and called out our two favorite places to eat each city’s specialty soup dumplings. May 4, 2017 Fly By Jing (0) Posted in ShanghaiMay 24, 2017 Tonkatsu Hamachan (0) Posted in ShanghaiDecember 17, 2015 Best Bites 2015 (0) Posted in Shanghai

Muslim Market

Food lovers mourned the loss of Shanghai’s Muslim market when it packed up its stalls a couple of years back, but the closure wasn’t too unexpected. September 3, 2013 Muslim Market: Western Exposure (5)   Posted in ShanghaiMay 24, 2017 Tonkatsu Hamachan (0) Posted in ShanghaiMay 18, 2017 El Bisaura (0) Posted in Barcelona

Zifantuan

One of the seven necessities of Chinese daily life, rice is eaten in many forms throughout the day, including – and especially – at breakfast. Congee is undoubtedly China’s best-known breakfast food, but less famous globally, and wildly popular locally, is the unassuming rice ball (饭团, fàn tuán). August 26, 2013 Zifantuan (1)   Posted in ShanghaiMay 24, 2017 Tonkatsu Hamachan (0) Posted in ShanghaiJune 14, 2017 Friggitoria Masardona (0) Posted in Naples

Shanghai’s Top 5 Street Foods

Shanghai is a street food lovers’ paradise, with carts slinging dumplings, pancakes, noodles, buns and grilled meats on sidewalks across the city, morning, noon and night. These are a few of our favorites. May 20, 2013 Shanghai’s Top 5 Street Foods (1)   Posted in ShanghaiJune 12, 2017 Goat Cheese and Fried Honeybees (0) Posted in ShanghaiMay 15, 2017 Biscoito Globo (0) Posted in Rio

Guang Ming Cun

On one of Shanghai’s busiest shopping streets, amidst the glittering Tiffany & Co, Piaget and Apple stores, Guang Ming Cun is housed in a nondescript four-story building. February 12, 2013 Guang Ming Cun (0)   Posted in ShanghaiMay 4, 2017 Fly By Jing (0) Posted in ShanghaiFebruary 22, 2013 Tangyuan: All Hail the Rice Ball (0) Posted in Shanghai

Dwarf’s Pastries

Shouning Lu is known as Crawfish Street, with street food vendors often stewing, grilling and frying up the same seafood dishes up and down the one-block stretch. But there’s one land-lubbing vendor that has carved out a niche for itself: Ǎizi Xiànbǐng (矮子馅饼), or Dwarf’s Pastries. May 26, 2017 Taralli (0) Posted in NaplesJune 14, 2017 Friggitoria Masardona (0) Posted in NaplesMay 15, 2017 Biscoito Globo (0) Posted in Rio

Ask CB: Warming Up with Traditional Chinese Fare?

Dear Culinary Backstreets, I’ve heard that Traditional Chinese Medicine dictates that you should alter your diet according to the season to stay healthy. What are some of the foods that Chinese doctors recommend when the temperature drops?  May 24, 2017 Tonkatsu Hamachan (0) Posted in ShanghaiJune 14, 2017 Friggitoria Masardona (0) Posted in NaplesMay 15, 2017 Biscoito Globo (0) Posted in Rio

Go Short or Long

Anyone looking for a bit of entertainment or foodie satisfaction while on a layover in Shanghai will need to look well beyond the confines of the airport. June 14, 2017 Friggitoria Masardona (0) Posted in NaplesMay 15, 2017 Biscoito Globo (0) Posted in RioMay 24, 2017 Tonkatsu Hamachan (0) Posted in Shanghai

Liu Family Harbin Dumplings

[Editor’s note: We’re sorry to report that Harbin Dumplings has closed.] Walk along just about any street in Shanghai these days, and you’ll see an ever-encroaching range of Western brands, standardized brand signage and food franchises. As in other rapidly developing countries, the battle for consumer dollars and brand loyalty has meant more chains and mass-produced food. May 4, 2017 Fly By Jing (0) Posted in ShanghaiSeptember 5, 2016 Liu Family Harbin Dumplings (0)   Posted in ShanghaiFebruary 19, 2015 Guang Ming Cun (0)   Posted in Shanghai

Ask CB

Editor’s note: In light of the latest food safety scandals in China, we thought it was time to rerun our story on how to stay safe while eating adventurously in that country. June 7, 2017 Queens International Night Market (0) Posted in QueensMay 18, 2017 El Bisaura (0) Posted in BarcelonaJune 14, 2017 Friggitoria Masardona (0) Posted in Naples

Fangbang Lu

[Editor’s note: We’re sorry to report that the vendors and restaurants at Sipalou Lu and Fangbang Lu have suffered the same fate as those on Wujiang Lu and have been shut down. For street food, head to the area around Er Guang.]  April 12, 2013 Fangbang Lu: Street Food Heaven’s Gate (0) Posted in ShanghaiMay 15, 2017 Biscoito Globo (0) Posted in RioMay 4, 2017 Fly By Jing (0) Posted in Shanghai

Fengyu

At noon, the line stretches out the door and there’s a noisy rumble of loud voices inside the Ruijin Erlu and Nanchang Lu branch of Fengyu (丰裕), a neighborhood staple that has fed locals for decades deep in the heart of the former French Concession. May 4, 2017 Fly By Jing (0) Posted in ShanghaiFebruary 22, 2013 Tangyuan: All Hail the Rice Ball (0) Posted in ShanghaiAugust 28, 2012 Lao Difang (0) Posted in Shanghai

Thousand Mile Fragrant Wontons

One of China’s most successful franchise stories comes from Putian, a coastal city in Fujian with a population of about 3 million. The province is probably known best for the many who leave it, especially those who have been smuggled into the United States by snakeheads, and including domestic emigrants who move to hub cities, bringing their culinary traditions along with them. May 4, 2017 Fly By Jing (0) Posted in ShanghaiJune 12, 2017 Goat Cheese and Fried Honeybees (0) Posted in ShanghaiJanuary 21, 2015 Tea in China (0) Posted in Shanghai

Zhaojialou water town, photo by UnTour Shanghai

Zhaojialou Water Town

For visitors looking to get beyond Shanghai’s urban core, among the main attractions are the plentiful water towns that ring the outer suburbs in just about every direction. The name refers to the bygone reliance of these towns on water for irrigation and transport, especially in the form of canals. May 4, 2017 Fly By Jing (0) Posted in ShanghaiJune 12, 2017 Goat Cheese and Fried Honeybees (0) Posted in ShanghaiMay 24, 2017 Tonkatsu Hamachan (0) Posted in Shanghai

Step Away from the Buffet

Editor’s note: It’s Breakfast Week here at CB, and to kick off the series, we first head to a street corner in the heart of Shanghai that offers a remarkable variety of breakfast foods. Stay tuned all this week for more morning dispatches from other CB cities. June 14, 2017 Friggitoria Masardona (0) Posted in NaplesMay 15, 2017 Biscoito Globo (0) Posted in RioJuly 27, 2012 A Da Cong You Bing (0) Posted in Shanghai

Lao Beijing Shuan Guo

The hotpot’s storied history stretches back over a millennium in China. The cooking method originated in Mongolia, where legend has it that warriors used their helmets as makeshift pots, boiling strips of horse and lamb meat over campfires to sustain them as they made their way south to breach the Great Wall. As hotpot cooking proliferated, regional variations took their toll on the meal’s simplicity, earning it the nickname of “Chinese fondue” among some Westerners. May 4, 2017 Fly By Jing (0) Posted in ShanghaiJune 13, 2017 Out of Sight (0) Posted in AthensJune 12, 2017 Goat Cheese and Fried Honeybees (0) Posted in Shanghai

Best Bites 2013

Editor’s note: This post is the first installment of “Best Bites of 2013,” a roundup of our top culinary experiences over the last year. Stay tuned for “Best Bites” from all of the cities Culinary Backstreets covers. Deng Ji Chuan Cai Culinary bucket lists are some of the best ways to discover our friends’ hidden gems: expat foodies are only willing to give up their proprietary favorites when they’re heading home. May 4, 2017 Fly By Jing (0) Posted in ShanghaiMay 24, 2017 Tonkatsu Hamachan (0) Posted in ShanghaiDecember 24, 2012 Best Bites of 2012: Shanghai (0) Posted in Shanghai

A Po’s Cong You Bing

Here at CB Shanghai, we’ve already confessed our undying affection for the scallion oil pancakes (葱油饼, cōngyóubǐng) at A Da. Mr. Wu’s are so beautifully crafted that they take on the aura of art with their precision and flair, but we’re also a little in love with the slapdash, unconventional version fried up by an elderly couple at A Po, just a couple of blocks away. June 14, 2017 Friggitoria Masardona (0) Posted in NaplesMay 15, 2017 Biscoito Globo (0) Posted in RioJuly 27, 2012 A Da Cong You Bing (0) Posted in Shanghai

Lao Shaoxing Doujiang

Editor’s note: We’re sorry to report that Lao Shaoxing Doujiang has closed. June 13, 2017 Out of Sight (0) Posted in AthensJune 12, 2017 Goat Cheese and Fried Honeybees (0) Posted in ShanghaiMay 22, 2015 Shanghai’s Top 5 Street Foods (0) Posted in Shanghai

Muslim Market: Western Exposure

Food lovers mourned the loss of Shanghai’s Muslim market when it packed up its stalls back in May, but the closure wasn’t too unexpected. Street food is always in a state of flux in Shanghai, and add to that the ethnic tensions that have developed between the Chinese majority Han and the Muslim minorities that butchered whole lambs outside Putuo’s Huxi Mosque each Friday, and it seemed like a matter of time before the weekly event was closed. July 10, 2015 Muslim Market (0) Posted in ShanghaiMay 24, 2017 Tonkatsu Hamachan (0) Posted in ShanghaiMay 18, 2017 El Bisaura (0) Posted in Barcelona

Zifantuan

One of the seven necessities of Chinese daily life, rice is eaten in many forms throughout the day, including – and especially – at breakfast. Congee is undoubtedly China’s best-known breakfast food, but less famous globally, and wildly popular locally, is the unassuming rice ball (饭团, fàn tuán). May 28, 2015 Zifantuan (0)   Posted in Shanghai, Street Food MastersMay 24, 2017 Tonkatsu Hamachan (0) Posted in ShanghaiJune 14, 2017 Friggitoria Masardona (0) Posted in Naples

Ask CB: What is Stinky Tofu and Do I Dare Eat It?

Dear Culinary Backstreets, I keep hearing about something in Chinese cuisine called “stinky tofu.” Does it really smell that bad to earn such an offensive moniker? May 15, 2017 Biscoito Globo (0) Posted in RioFebruary 26, 2013 Ask CB: Shanghai Wet Markets? (3) Posted in ShanghaiMay 18, 2017 El Bisaura (0) Posted in Barcelona

Shanghai’s Top 5 Late-Night Dining Spots

The vast country of China has just one time zone, so Shanghai’s East Coast location means darkness comes early and most residents usually eat by nightfall, with restaurants often closing their kitchens around 9 p.m. But for those who keep late hours, nighttime brings out a chorus of pushcart woks and mini grill stands to street corners around the city. June 12, 2017 Goat Cheese and Fried Honeybees (0) Posted in ShanghaiMay 4, 2017 Fly By Jing (0) Posted in ShanghaiMay 24, 2017 Tonkatsu Hamachan (0) Posted in Shanghai

Shanghai’s Top 5 Street Foods

Editor’s note: This week we are celebrating street food, in all its fascinating, delicious and sometimes offbeat forms. Each day, we’ll take a look at the top street foods in a different city that Culinary Backstreets covers. This feature from Shanghai is the first installment. May 22, 2015 Shanghai’s Top 5 Street Foods (0) Posted in ShanghaiJune 12, 2017 Goat Cheese and Fried Honeybees (0) Posted in ShanghaiMay 15, 2017 Biscoito Globo (0) Posted in Rio

Chenghuang Miao Tese Xiaochi

On the diner intimidation scale, Shanghai’s Chenghuang Miao Tese Xiaochi – which can be loosely translated as “City God Temple Snack Shop” – ranks pretty high, with aggressive lunchtime crowds and nothing but Chinese character-laden menus for guidance. But the payoff, a baptism by fire in authentic Chinese eating, is worth it. The hungry masses that congregate here have discovered a simple truth: the food here is quick, tasty and cheap – a gastronaut’s holy trinity. May 4, 2017 Fly By Jing (0) Posted in ShanghaiFebruary 22, 2013 Tangyuan: All Hail the Rice Ball (0) Posted in ShanghaiFebruary 19, 2015 Guang Ming Cun (0)   Posted in Shanghai

Fangbang Lu: Street Food Heaven’s Gate

[Editor’s note: We’re sorry to report that the vendors and restaurants at Sipalou Lu and Fangbang Lu have suffered the same fate as those on Wujiang Lu and have been shut down. For street food, head to the area around Er Guang.]  July 18, 2014 Fangbang Lu (0) Posted in ShanghaiMay 15, 2017 Biscoito Globo (0) Posted in RioMay 4, 2017 Fly By Jing (0) Posted in Shanghai

Tangyuan: All Hail the Rice Ball

Lantern Festival (元宵, yuánxiāo, or “first night”) is the fifteenth day of the Chinese New Year, and marks the last day of Spring Festival. This “first night” is actually the first full moon of the lunar new year, and in the Year of the Snake it lands on February 24. On this holiday, it’s customary for revelers to light red lanterns and eat sweet stuffed dumplings called tāngyuán (汤圆). May 4, 2017 Fly By Jing (0) Posted in ShanghaiFebruary 19, 2015 Guang Ming Cun (0)   Posted in ShanghaiFebruary 12, 2013 Guang Ming Cun (0)   Posted in Shanghai

Guang Ming Cun

On one of Shanghai’s busiest shopping streets, amidst the glittering Tiffany & Co, Piaget and Apple stores, Guang Ming Cun is housed in a nondescript four-story building. Glass displays in front offer a glimpse of the braised and dried meats for sale, and around the side you can peek in to watch flaky meat pastries being flipped in a flat wok. But it’s the long lines of middle-aged shoppers patiently waiting outside the building that make Guang Ming Cun unmistakable. During Chinese New Year and Mid-Autumn Festival, these lines can reach up to five hours long. February 19, 2015 Guang Ming Cun (0)   Posted in ShanghaiMay 4, 2017 Fly By Jing (0) Posted in ShanghaiFebruary 22, 2013 Tangyuan: All Hail the Rice Ball (0) Posted in Shanghai

Enter the Snake: Eating Your Way to a Happy New Year

As the moon starts to wane each January, people throughout China frantically snatch up train and bus tickets, eager to start the return journey to their hometown to celebrate the Lunar New Year (春节, chūnjié) with their family. One of the major draws for migrant workers heading home is the chance to eat traditional, home-cooked meals. May 18, 2017 El Bisaura (0) Posted in BarcelonaJanuary 27, 2014 Auspicious Eating (0) As the moon starts to wane each January, people throughout China frantically snatch up […] Posted in ShanghaiMay 4, 2017 Fly By Jing (0) Posted in Shanghai

Da Hu Chun

To qualify as a Chinese Time-Honored Brand (老字号, lǎozìhào), shops must prove that they’ve been a profitable business since 1956. Only about 1,000 brands across the country have achieved this honor, an impressive number considering the tumult of the last 60 years in China and the damage to hundreds of historical national treasures. Among these government-endorsed venues is Da Hu Chun (大壶春), one of Shanghai’s oldest fried pork bun shops, which first opened in the 1930s, less than a decade after its specialty dish, shēngjiān mántou (生煎馒头), was created. May 15, 2017 Biscoito Globo (0) Posted in RioMay 4, 2017 Fly By Jing (0) Posted in ShanghaiMay 22, 2015 Shanghai’s Top 5 Street Foods (0) Posted in Shanghai

Best Bites of 2012: Shanghai

Editor’s note: This post is the first installment of “Best Bites of 2012,” a roundup of our top culinary experiences over the last year. Stay tuned throughout this week for “Best Bites” from all of the cities Culinary Backstreets covers. Hai Di Lao Hot Pot Restaurant We’re usually loathe to mention a restaurant that has locations all around China, but we were blown away by the dedication to customer service here – something that is sorely lacking in China. Too often, it’s a choice between authentic flavors or service. Not at Hai Di Lao. May 4, 2017 Fly By Jing (0) Posted in ShanghaiFebruary 26, 2013 Ask CB: Shanghai Wet Markets? (3) Posted in ShanghaiDecember 16, 2013 Best Bites 2013 (0) Posted in Shanghai

Ji Xiang Cao – Lucky Zen

From a country that maintains a “national strategic pork reserve” – vast bunkers of frozen meat that can be released when the price of the commodity gets too high – one might not expect to find an impressive number of traditional vegetarian restaurants, but you’d be surprised. May 4, 2017 Fly By Jing (0) Posted in ShanghaiAugust 5, 2014 Shanghai’s Top 5 Vegetarian Eateries (0)   Posted in ShanghaiMay 25, 2017 Atila del Sur Comedor (0) Posted in Oaxaca

Lao Shanghai Sanxian Xiao Huntun

There is often some confusion when it comes to the many varieties of dumplings in Shanghai. The city’s most famous snack, xiǎolóngbāo, is a soup dumpling that neatly encases its broth inside a thin dumpling skin. It is not, as many first-time visitors assume, a dumpling floating in soup. For that, we turn to the humble wonton soup. May 4, 2017 Fly By Jing (0) Posted in ShanghaiMay 29, 2017 Suju Dining Rokkaku (0) Posted in TokyoMay 12, 2017 La Gaspacheria (0) Posted in Mexico City

Dongbei Siji Jiaozi Wang

With a menu from the frigid provinces that border Korea, Dongbei Siji Jiaozi Wang – literally, “The Four Season Dumpling King from the Northeast” – is all about hearty dishes to warm you up from the inside out. May 4, 2017 Fly By Jing (0) Posted in ShanghaiNovember 9, 2017 Cha’s (0) Posted in ShanghaiAugust 2, 2012 Cha’s (0) Posted in Shanghai

Soup Dumplings

Any Shanghai denizen who has lived in the city for longer than a few months worships at the altar of xiǎolóngbāo (小笼包). These steamed buns of goodness – tiny pork dumplings with a slurp of soup wrapped up in a wonton wrapper – provide delicious fodder for debates among Shanghai’s fiercest foodies. May 24, 2017 Tonkatsu Hamachan (0) Posted in ShanghaiMay 4, 2017 Fly By Jing (0) Posted in ShanghaiJanuary 3, 2013 Da Hu Chun (0) Posted in Shanghai

A Da Cong You Bing

Editor’s note: We’re sorry to report that A Da Cong You Bing has closed. In China, where queuing isn’t part of the culture, a long line of hungry diners patiently waiting for their food is just about the highest compliment a restaurant can receive. By those standards, Mr. Wu’s scallion oil pancakes are, hands down, one of the most sought-after breakfast treats in Shanghai. July 11, 2017 A Da Cong You Bing (1) Posted in ShanghaiMay 15, 2017 Biscoito Globo (0) Posted in RioJanuary 28, 2013 Jian Guo 328 (0)   Posted in Shanghai

Shouning Lu

You know you’ve picked a good spot to eat when you give the taxi driver the address and he knows exactly what you’re up to. “The place to eat crayfish!” he’s likely to say enthusiastically. June 7, 2017 Queens International Night Market (0) Posted in QueensJune 13, 2017 Out of Sight (0) Posted in AthensMay 18, 2017 El Bisaura (0) Posted in Barcelona


Untitled-34  Yet Shanghai food is a good baby step toward eating in the nearby provinces. Take the most famous Shanghai export, soup dumplings called xiao long bao, comfort food even for nonlovers of Chinese cuisine. Read more

Untitled-46 A foodie’s dream, their tours—which invite guests to gorge themselves on traditional street foods from breakfast bites to hearty dumplings—give visitors an unforgettable taste of Shanghai’s culinary underbelly. Read more

Untitled-47China’s Best Food Blogs: Culinary Backstreets Join this food tour group as they show you all the hidden gems and best kept secrets of Shanghai’s food scene. They offer half-day culinary tours of the city, and write about local cuisine for Culinary Backstreets, the global guide to local eats. Read more

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