The 1515 WEST Chophouse

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  • Western
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  • Steakhouses
Photograph: courtesy Chope
1218 Yanan Zhong Lu

Jingan’s drinking and dining options have been fundamentally elevated with the opening of the Jing An Shangri-La’s new restaurants. Like just about every other fine hotel in town, they’ve got a premium steakhouse but with theirs, they’ve upped the stakes once again. The 1515 WEST Chophouse is a meticulously designed eating and drinking concept running from a stunning leather and dark wood bar down through a raw seafood bar, a cheese and charcuterie room, a bakery using vintage cast iron ovens, an ageing room for their premium beef and finally the main dining room itself, fronted by a spectacular flaming grill in the open kitchen.

Working over that flame is chef de cuisine Jair Gudino Chavez from Mexico. For the Director’s Cut (280RMB, all prices plus 15 per cent), a generous 380g rump steak at least two inches thick, which is seared to a black char on the outside while maintaining a beautifully textured pink interior. It's served with sweet golden beets, grilled asparagus topped with parmesan shavings and a spicy-sweet, dark caramel housemade barbecue sauce. Cut through the fatty edge to the lean interior to get an incredible bite, which combines a balanced firm chew with a fragrant buttery depth.

The story behind this steak’s rich character isn’t simple. While the menu lists a mind-boggling number of beef cuts from five ranches in Australia and Tasmania, the hotel worked with the Stanbroke Ranch in Queensland, Australia for four months to create their own signature 1515 WEST brand of Australian beef. Their cows are raised exclusively for Shangri-La, which oversees each step ‘from ranch to table’ in minute detail from the cattle’s feed (a mix of wheat, sorghum, molasses, hay and minerals) to their 45-day in-house dry ageing of the T-bone steak and porterhouse cuts, which enhances tenderness and richness of flavour.

The cattle are selected one to two years in advance where they live in an open green field for nine months followed by a 12 month feeding period. Despite this being the best way to raise cattle, it is hardly practised anywhere else due to the high cost.

The hotel hasn’t spared expense elsewhere either, showcasing 1515 WEST’s film and pictures theme with stunning lighting fixtures, black tile walls, vintage cameras and a brushed metal and glass show table modelled on a camera lens. Steaks are served on striking artisan ceramic plates from Berlin hand-painted with a stark cow’s skull.

While it may be difficult to save space for dessert after polishing off the rump steak and, ideally, a fistful of the terrific fries with housemade spicy ketchup, don’t leave without a taste of the massive Alma-Jean’s white peach cobbler (easily enough to share, 78RMB), baked so the fruits are still firm to the bite and topped with a super-sized globe of bourbon ice cream.

By Jake Newby

Venue name: The 1515 WEST Chophouse
Opening hours: 11.30am - 2.30pm, 6pm - 11.30pm daily
Metro: Jingan Temple
English address: Fourth Floor, Jingan Shangri-La, 1218, Yanan Zhong Lu, near Tongren Lu, Jingan district
Chinese address: 静安区延安中路1218号静安香格里拉酒店4楼, 近南京西路