Time Out goes on a taste test across the city to find the best stores, delis and online shops to buy imported cheeses in Shanghai
The Avocado Lady
Known for their fresh and rare fruit, The Avocado Lady also provides cheese at prices far better than the surrounding super markets. The cheese board of dreams can be supplied here from their selection of cured meats (from 30RMB), cheeses, including fresh buffallo mozzarella (18RMB), and a gloriously messy amount of wine (from 45RMB). Amelia’s jams (from 45RMB) and Strictly Cookies are here, too.
Come in the week instead of at weekends though. It's not unheard of to queue for 15 minutes just to get in on a Saturday afternoon.
The Avocado Lady is at 274 Wulumuqi Lu, near Wuyuan Lu, Xuhui district. Open 6am-9pm daily
Of all the mall-based import specialist supermarkets (including Ole' and City Shop), City Super has the widest selection of cheese available. With the large wheels of Manchego (from 44.50RMB/100g), Comte (121RMB/100g) and Gorgonzola (29.80RMB/100g) among those filling a large deli cabinet, as well as a selection of pre-packaged cheeses available, you could comfortably do all of your cheese shopping here. Having racked up a 150RMB charge for a small sliver of Comte on one visit however, we can verify that prices aren't cheao.
City Super is at LG1, IAPM Mall. 999 Huaihai Zhong Lu, near Nanchang Lu, Xuhui District, 5466 1588, open 10am-11pm daily
Quality certainly trumps quantity at Pudong cafe and deli, La Parisienne. A handsome cheese cabinet displays a slection of harder to find quality French cheese at reasonable prices. These include Roquefort (70RMB/100g), Saint Maure (120RMB/piece) and a delicious 18 month aged Comte (80RMB/100g). They also stock Spanish cheese Manchego at the affordable price of 60RMB/100g. While you're there, we recommend you pick up one of their excellent baguettes and French pasteries. Dinner sorted.
La Parisienne is at 88 Zhangyang Lu, near Puming Lu, Pudong (5897 9725). Open 7am-7pm daily.
With a bursting cheese cabinet and some glorious wooden cheese cupboards, Shaanxi Nan Lu delicatessen La Formaggeria offers a decent array of Italian import cheese in their store opposite the Culture Square complex. With tasters laid out in front of the counter, it's easy to pick up a toothpich, try a few varieties and make your selection. In the cabinet, there are options such as Verena (from 20RMB/100g) and Parmigiano Reggiano (upwards of 20RMB/100g), while in the fridges, there's a healthy stash of Mascarpone (60RMB/500g).
La Formaggeria is at 434 Shaanxi Nan Lu, near Yongjia Lu, Xuhui district (5459 1973). Open 10am-9pm daily.
Similar to the layout at City Super, an array of flags displaying country of origin are on show at Ole's deli counter, while pre-packaged cheese sits in the dairy section. English flags feature heavily in the deli (including Double Gloucester for 29.80RMB/100g), with a somewhat suprising;y small selection of French, Swiss and Spanish cheese also represented (including Mancheo for 65.50/100g). In the pre-packed fridge selection, the brands that dominate are Kerrygold (from 35RMB/200g block of Cheddar), President (including grated Emmental from 29.50RMB/70g), Mainland (55RMB/250g of Vintage Cheddar) and The Laughing Cow (27RMB for a 140g box of 8 wedges).
Ole' is at NB2-01, North Area, Kerry Centre Jingan, 1563 Nanjing Xi Lu, near Changde Lu, Jingan district (6067 3067). Open10am-10pm daily. metro:Jingan Temple.
If you love Mozzarella, you'll love Solo Latte. Produced and delivered in Shanghai by Korean Kyeong Joo Lee, you know you're getting fresh products. A 100g ball of mozzarella will cost you 28RMB, while Bocconcini packs (10x25g) cost 62RMB amd a custom made Burrata will set you back 420RMB/KG.www.sololatte.com
open from Monday to Saturday, order via email: email@example.com or call 136 6153 1657.
With a large variety of cheese ranging from Babybell (36RMB for 110g of mini Babybel) to a half wheel of Raclette (1,064RMB for a whopping 3000g), Epermarket's selection is certainly plentiful. There are options to sort by origin (with 11 countries represented ), brand (10 brands and counting) and then type (processed, hard and soft, and blue and goat), which makes buying the cheese pleasingly straightforward. There's also a solid selection of cheese which are cut from large wheels rather just pre-packaged options.
Another wonderful item available is the Fondue Dinner Party Set (from 1,218RMB) and the Swiss Raclette Party Set (from 1,105RMB) with the Raclette grill and everything else you'll beed to cook up (you guessed it) Raclette, to 787RMB without the girll, again. Don't miss the online sale, which is on now. www.epermarket.com
Kate & Kimi
Kate & Kimi have a huge variety of cheese available online. So much so that they've handily separated them into categories, including firm cheese, spreadable cheeses, goats cheese, ricottas and shredded cheeses. Productions from Beijing-based French artisanal cheesemaker 'Le Fromager de Pekin' feature heavily on the digital shelves and are moderately priced (most around the 50RMB mark for 120g), alongside French imports (President Brie at 35RMB for 125g). The mozzarella mostly comes from China and is quite affordable (from 20RMB for two pieces). Italian versions are also available and cash in at around 44RMB for 125g. www.kateandkimi.com
Quality online grocers Fields feature a reasonable, if not overwhelming amount of cheese on their website. There's a suprising amount of different processed slices, snack sticks and spreadable cheeses. Prices start at 16RMB for some Emborg Cheddar cheese slices (100g) and jump up to 148RMB for President Goats cheese. In the middle, there's a variety of Pecorino (from 79RMB for 200g of Ambrosi), Brie (70RMB for 200g of President), blue cheese (50RMB for 125g of Saint Agur) and much more besides. www.fieldschina.com