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In case you missed them: 15 Shanghai restaurants and bars that opened since autumn

Check them out while they’re still fresh

Photograph: courtesy Hundo
It’s easy enough to miss new food and drink spots in a city that moves as fast as Shanghai – but fortunately it’s never too late to catch up. From a smattering of trendy restaurants in the historic villa at 20 Donghu Lu to affable beer bars to a new Chinese fine dining spot from the team formerly behind Bo Shanghai, these are the openings from the tail end of last year that you don’t want to slip through your radar.

Restaurants

Blaz

Blaz comes from the mind of RAC’s Simon Briens who, with the help of chef Chris Zhu (formerly Bird), has taken the winning formula of natural wines and conversable sharing platters to the villa at 20 Donghu Lu and re-implemented it into a dinner-only destination (for now) serving sophisticated French fare with Asian flavours – like the stand-out foie gras mousse with duck breast and apricot chutney.

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20 Donghu Lu

Cellar to Table

A classy new offering from the team behind currently closed Napa Kitchen, Cellar to Table has slotted seamlessly into the ever-growing (and much welcome) list of wine-centric eateries popping up around Shanghai over the past year. It houses an abundance of well-sourced wines at surprisingly affordable price points (from around 40RMB per glass) and serves refined European bistro fare like drunken pigeon and duck confit.

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20 Donghu Lu

Hundo

Another addition to the newly inhabited villa on Donghu Lu. Hundo by Justin Xu (who started the popular High-Yaki on Jianguo Lu) is a hip izakaya and lounge that can seat nearly three digits worth of people. The menu is a medley of modern izakaya classics –think yakiniku, an enviable selection of kushiage, tempura and yakitori – all of which are fantastic.

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20 Donghu Lu

Lucky You Café

This restaurant from the Charlie’s empire pays homage to the sort of soul-warming American-Chinese food you’d expect to find in the middle of one of New York’s Chinatown neighbourhoods. The large diner offers a menu filled with classic Cantonese staples like signature fried noodles, dim sum, Hong Kong milk and bubble teas as well as dishes that hit closer to home like General Tso’s chicken and beef broccoli.

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291 Fumin Lu

Maolago

Can’t stop, won’t stop. The Oha Group have been busy lately (not that we’re complaining) and with this Guizhou-inspired hotpot restaurant, it looks like they’re onto another winner. Set over three floors, the first is centred around a bar serving cocktails and regional snacks, on the second floor the focus shifts to hotpot and things finish up on the third-floor terrace – complete with its own vegetable garden.

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100 Fuxing Xi Lu

404

One more from The Oha Group, here chef Blake Thornley dips into Japanese izakaya culture with the same signature bold style as at the group's other projects (Oha Eatery and Pass Residence) and goes beyond with eye-catching mains like the tonkatsu pork loin sandwich and blue crab cakes – plus plenty of yakitori and small bite options – all to be paired with sake and a long list of highballs.

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122 Wulumuqi Nan Lu

Obscura

The dream team chef duo of DeAille Tam and Simon Wong (previously of Bo Shanghai ) are back and wowing our eyes and taste buds with their latest venture Obscura – an ambitious fine-dining concept that’s out to challenge and change perceptions of what modern Chinese cuisine can be. Be warned, the restaurant is modest in size and high in demand so if you want to nab a seat you’ll have to join a long queue (they also only take reservations on the first and 15th day of the month).

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538-2 Xikang Lu

Smaka Bakery & Bistro

The popular Swedish bakery and café has a shiny new location in Xintiandi that also doubles up as a bistro. You'll find plenty of Scandinavian dishes on the menu like meatballs, Norwegian salmon and räkmacka (open-faced prawn sandwiches) as well as brunch options and booze to go alongside the bakes and coffees. The tiramisu latte (38RMB) has made the trip over from Yuyuan Lu and is a well worth a try.

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388 Madang Lu

Chihuahua

A newcomer on the Shanghai Mexican food map, Chihuahua slings tacos based on old family recipes passed down to owner Estefania Casas. Inside, beach vibes dominate and the space shines with colour from its bright blue and white interior to the single-page menu that backs quality over quantity. Drinks are made up of the usual suspects, tequila-based and packing in punch – we're looking at you margaritas and micheladas.

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1788 Xinzha Lu

Bars

Bandit

Hidden away in a three-story villa on Xinzha Lu, Bandit’s a venue that’s anything but subtle. The quirks start down below with a patio that pumps out customisable coffee options and healthy brunch bites by day. Upstairs the concept turns to night with an industrial lounge, dancefloor and bar slinging a variety of Instagrammable signatures alongside classic party mixes (all priced between 60-70RMB). Get your phone out for the array of quirky decor dotted around before making your way up to a relaxed terrace that completes the third floor.

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1750 Xinzha Lu

BrewDog

Scottish craft brewery BrewDog finally found its first home in Shanghai back in the fall. It’s a sprawling space filled with booths, high tables and two shuffleboards on Chengdu Bei Lu that's received a lot of attention from the after-work crowd it’s generated since opening. All the signature brews are here, both in the fridge and on tap (28 in total) and the food is primarily made up of your typical gut busters like loaded fries, wings, nachos and burgers – including a notable selection of vegetarian and vegan options made using Z-Rou and Beyond Meat patties.

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33 Chengdu Bei Lu

Brewlosophy

A local craft beer bar only a stone’s throw away from Mikkeller, Brewlosophy is a solid, sociable spot for those looking to avoid the hustle and bustle of its noisier Jingan neighbours. The space, covering three floors, isn’t trying to be anything fancy, instead the charm lies inside the taps with a passionately produced rotation of craft beers all presented on a chalkboard menu behind the bar.

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98-1 Yanping Lu

Espiritu

The folks behind French rotisserie Dodu have ventured into the booze game, opening the ‘first mezcaleria bar in China’ which puts the limelight on agave-based spirits like mezcal and tequila – of which they have over 50 variations. The teeny store is made more for standing rather than sitting and sipping on Mexican cocktails like palomas, margaritas and mules. For warmer months, there’s a generously sized and brightly decorated patio that’s certain to fill out.

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337 Yongjia Lu

Gin & Juice

Gin has been having a moment in Shankang Li courtesy of this snazzy bar that stocks its shelves with an impressive collection of big-name premium brand gins – Four Pillars, Nordes and Rutte to name just a few. There are cheaper options as well (priced by tiers, starting from 68RMB) and all can be customised with a tonic of your preference to create the perfect G&T. Don’t sleep on the signature cocktails like the fig negroni mixed by bartender Alex Mill.

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358 Kangding Lu

Glory

Cross Yu’s (EPIC) new venture is a club/bar/café hybrid that’s all about non-stop energy, exciting drinks and a funky playlist. Spread over three floors, the first covers a range of occasions – mainly a casual café but also an event space – while upstairs revolves around a ‘retro-futuristic’ bar and an attic that’s decked out with sleek booths and its own exclusive trolley loaded with top-shelf drinks.

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66 Yuyao Lu

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