Our list of the top brunches in Shanghai to help you while away the weekend without making a dent in your bank balance.
45-60RMB a la carteTime
9am-9pm, daily Booking
Not available; go on a weekday or early on a weekend to avoid the rush.
Don’t scoff, IKEA’s Xujiahui cafeteria is a great cheap brunch option. It boasts perhaps the best deal we discovered after trying dozens of brunches: their 10RMB mango juice. This generous serving is deliciously thick, sweet and some of the best fresh juice we’ve had at any price (they also have papaya and watermelon). What isn’t a surprise is that the IKEA cafeteria has some duds, like stony cinnamon buns, tough-as-rope sausages and 5RMB bottomless coffee which tastes like it was pressed from aspirin tablets.
However, IKEA makes our list thanks to the many tasty steals including a salmon platter with dill dressing and a lemon wedge (19.5RMB) which we like to pair with the organic mushroom and cheese stuffed crêpes (14.50RMB). Other good brunch-y dishes are the shrimp sandwich (13.50RMB), and the thin but tender steak (36.50RMB) with a choice of sides. The tables and chairs are utilitarian but the wall of windows and high ceilings create a light filled and surprisingly pleasant brunch spot. IKEA Cafe
, Second Floor, 126 Caoxi Lu, near Zhongshan Xi Lu
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50-70RMB a la carte Time
7.30am-10pm, daily Booking
There’s no fancy brunch deal at Mr Pancake House, just a broad menu of breakfast classics, served simply, but with surprisingly high quality given the prices. Both branches are regularly packed, but there’s a new one opening in Minhang next month. The menu includes Mexican breakfast burritos (48RMB) smothered in sour cream, French toast with scrambled eggs, bacon and home fries (42RMB) and a range of delightfully fluffy pancakes with various toppings (35-40RMB), our favourite of which is the cinnamon apple compote topped option.
Our top pick overall though is the ‘Big House Breakfast’ (45RMB) which comes with two eggs fried or scrambled, a slice of ham, bacon, chicken sausage, crispy fried potato cubes and two pancakes dusted with icing sugar and with maple syrup on the side. Value plates like this keep Mr Pancake ahead of its imitators. Mr Pancake House 901 Julu Lu, near Huashan Lu. See more branches
88RMB-130RMB sets, includes a fresh juice, add 80RMB for free-flow sparkling wine Time
11am-4pm, Sat-Sun Booking
Available, but not essential
Weekend brunch at Enoterra’s relaxed French wine bars is refined, good quality and modestly priced. Four sets are on offer, each an adorable individual tray of continental breakfast fare. Portions are perfectly judged and free from much of the fat and excess at other Shanghai brunches. There's even a 'healthy' option (88RMB) with scrambled eggs, yoghurt and a cheese platter with rye bread and vegetable crudites.
Our favourite set is the signature Enoterra brunch (130RMB), packed with elegant Gallic classics including miniature salmon tartare, dainty egg 'a la coque’ filled with caviar and a buttery quiche, as well as a sizeable cold meat and cheese platter, croissants and homemade yoghurt. Enoterra 53-57 Anfu Lu, near Changshu Lu
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110RMB set, includes coffee and a small juice, or 80-90RMB a la carte Time
10am-4pm, Sat-Sun Booking
Recommended for outside tables
The patio at Abbey Road is prime real estate on a warm autumn Sunday, but what’s most memorable about this casual brunch is the level of service for such an affordable menu. We don’t even ask and everyone is served big glasses of ice water, something one can’t take for granted in this town. A few special requests are served correctly and quickly without fuss. A regular coffee (included with the brunch set), which at most places is drip brewed, here is expressed by machine so it has crema
and it’s even served with warm frothed milk.
The restaurant offers the Chef Breakfast (100RMB). This includes three sausages, three eggs, three rations of bacon and toast. Abbey Road’s owners have a similar menu at Geneva near the Shanghai Zoo, another space with a patio serving the same tasty brunch.Abbey Road 3 Taojiang Lu, near Hengshan Lu
.See full address detailsGeneva Villa 6, Lane 1896, Hami Lu, near Qingxi Lu
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