Monday, March 11, 2013


Last week was my birthday, or birthweek as it turned out! It coincided with Shanghai restaurant week, hence the over indulgence. I love birthdays, not always the number involved, but it is a great time to celebrate with no guilt feelings.

So what is restaurant week? It happens twice a year when restaurants in the city all do a 248rmb, around £25 a head menu. Lots of high end, ie: very expensive places take part, giving you the opportunity to test them out. It is difficult to secure bookings, but luckily I have a few friend who managed between them to make sure my birthday was very special.
First night we went to Kafer. This is a modern German restaurant sitting on the Huangpu river. The views across to the Bund were amazing, the staff were excellent and the food matched both of them.

A starter of Foie Gras Brulee sparked my imagination and was a must. It did not disappoint. A delicious  piece of Foie Gras topped with spun sugar arrived. It was so good. As was the seafood stew, and dessert of Brie de Meaux with honey and shaved truffle. When my husband commented that his apple mash was delicious an extra side was brought. A nice touch.This was not what we had expected of a "Cheap Deal"It will certainly now be on our special restaurant list.

The following night saw us in Flair. This has the highest outdoor terrace in Shanghai. Wow, views to die for. Felt as if I could have reached out and touched The Pearl Tower.

Here we ate sushi/tapas selection. Everything tasted good. I liked the fact that they serve small plate, tapas style, but will keep them coming as long as you order. A very dry martini helped wash everything down nicely. It was served in a lounge bar, on nice comfy sofas. I was so happy. It was just my husband and myself tonight. This was not one of the restaurants participating in the offer, but as this was the actual date of my birthday, we had to celebrate. This was an ideal place to do it. They do offer a set price menu, including drinks all the year round.

Next night there was a hiatus in the celebrations. A quiet supper of poached eggs on toast, eaten from a tray watching TV. Bliss. We weren't exactly in pj's and slippers but relaxed at home. A light supper was the order of the day as we still had a couple of night in front of us.

This was the night I was really looking forward to. Jason Atherton, a British chef, has recently opened here in Shanghai and I have been waiting to try it out. Table NO.1 has been getting great reviews. Could it live up to them?

This is a stylish hip restaurant, decorated with lots of concrete and steel. Lots of iconic pieces of furniture are dotted round. I really loved the decor.
We were a party of six and were shown to a private room. With the large glass doors we didn't feel at all cut off from the main dining room, in fact we felt a bit special. 
We all ordered from a tempting array of dishes and they all proved successful. I started with a grits and  shredded duck, topped with poached egg and shavings of truffle. Mmm! Sea bass for mains was perfectly cooked and the piece de resistance was the cookies and cream dessert. A great fun end to what had been a great night. Food, wine and company first class. What more can you ask for.

A trip back across the river on the ferry made a wonderful end to a wonderful night.

Last night of celebrations saw us heading with 2 good friends to The Grill Room. A restaurant in the Jumeirah Hotel. 
This was probably the least favourite of the week. Food was good, not excellent, but company fantastic so it didn't matter quite as much. Service was also slow and had to repeatedly ask for wine. Our starters were served before the wine arrived.
As it is a grill room famous for it's steaks that was the choice of three of us. But I am not really a steak eater so I ordered the cod. It was cooked well and I enjoyed it. Steaks for some reason has been flattened out, why? There is no need to do this to a good steak. Everything was eaten and deemed average. Desserts too not what we expected. So not a disaster but below our expectations.
But as I said we were with great company so the night out was not at all spoiled.

A fantastic birthday week, and a big thanks to all who thought of me and included us in their discovery of new places for us to eat in Shanghai.

This week? Well salads and water. lol. Well worth it though. I so enjoyed the experience. 

Thankfully birthdays come once a year, however restaurant week happens twice a year. think I should get into training for next round in October.


  1. What a wonderful way to spend your birthday week. The food sounds so good.

  2. Happy belated birthday Jackie! Looks like you guys had a brilliant birthday week!

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