There are few things in life that give one the same level of satisfaction as cutting into a nice, juicy steak. Plump, marbled, medium-rare beef is the preferred meal of many who are celebrating an occasion, trying to impress clients, or simply treating themselves after a long week. Couple this with a glass of red wine, maybe a side of steamed vegetables and mashed potatoes, and you have one of the finest meals the world has to offer.
With the largest expatriate community in China, Shanghai’s selection of places to enjoy a great steak is growing by the month. New restaurants are importing world-class beef cuts while offering them at competitive prices. Some of the best steaks you’ll find in Shanghai look and taste no different than one you’ll find in, say, Dallas, Texas.
ShanghaiExpat knows the importance of giving our readers what they want, and we know you want red meat. So ShanghaiExpat has scoured the city in search of the Best Steaks in Shanghai, and here are the steakhouses that made the cut.
Hidden discreetly in the back of Sinan Mansions on Fuxing Road is a place you will find the Best Steak in Shanghai. Shanghai Slims was founded two years ago by the same owners of NY Style Steak & Burger, and the surf and turf menu has several selections of the finest North American beef you’ll find in China.
Shanghai Slims’ “Rule of the House #2” recommends that all of their steaks be cooked to no more than medium, and you should take their advice. When prepared at medium, the 18oz PRIME Angus Beef Ribeye comes out so tender you could cut through the meat with a dull spoon. You could complete the experience by pairing this slice of heaven with a glass of Italian red, but you might be better of trying something from Shanghai Slims’ fantastic Bourbon menu. The price for the PRIME Angus Ribeye 338RMB, and we think that is a very fair price for this phenomenal cut of beef.
Another noteworthy cut to try at Shanghai Slim’s is their Petite Filet Mignon wrapped in Applewood smoked bacon, served with a red potato pancake and Béarnaise.
Shanghai Slim’s 523 Fuxing Zhong Lu, near Sinan Lu Bldg 26D, Sinan Mansions, Average cost per person: CNY 300 - 500 +86 021 6426 0171
Morton’s The Steakhouse ropriately located in Shanghai’s financial district, Lujiazui, Morton’s The Steakhouse is without question a place you can get one of the Best Steaks in Shanghai, in fact throughout the world. Singaporean Executive Chef Corwin Leong is passionate about fishing, but he loves beef even more. So with Frank Sinatra echoing in the background, we cut into Morton’s signature steak.
The Chicago Style Bone-in Ribeye is 24-ozs of Australian imported beef, cooked in Morton’s top-down broiler that is designed to lock in juices and enhance the taste. In general, ribeyes have the richest flavor of all steak cuts, but when they’re cooked with the bone in the richness of the meat is intensified even more. Chef Leong doesn’t add much when preparing this slice of goodness, just a little salt and pepper topped with splash of Au Jus, but nothing else is really needed. A béarnaise dipping sauce is served with the a la carte steak, which is nice but also unnecessary.
It’s a standard steak, which should not be confused with being average. Rather, Morton’s sets their standard very high and each of their restaurants are nearly identical in terms of their products and services. Consistency is the key, and anyone having a Morton’s steak in San Francisco, for example, can come to Shanghai and get the exact same standard.
Items at Morton’s are sold a la carte, which makes things expensive, yes, but it’s a meal you probably won’t forget. Having said that, think about ordering a few sides to go with the Chicago Style Bone-in Ribeye, like the Sour Cream Mashed Potatoes and Jumbo Green Asparagus. Because it’s an extremely rich steak, a full-bodied, acidic wine is recommended. The Napa Valley Duckhorn Decoy Cabernet Sauvignon is an excellent choice because the ciders, raspberry and other red fruit characteristics tie the entire plate together (i.e., steak, potatoes, and asparagus). It’s a relatively unknown wine that is standard, so standard in fact that they serve it as the house wine at The White House.
Morton’s The Steakhouse Shop 15-16, 4/F, Shanghai ifc mall 8 Century Avenue Pudong New Area Shanghai 200120, China Average cost per person: CNY 1000 - 1200 Phone: (86 21) 6075 8888
Kabb Bistro Bar The gorgeous colors of KABB's Filet Mignon is sure to make this steak a favorite among food-picture takers. Their dinner-portioned steak, which was cooked perfectly at Medium as requested, looked like it came straight out of a high-end restaurant commercial, with its perfectly aesthetic charcoal black lines on top and soft pink center. KABB’s well portioned Filet Mignon at less than 300 RMB seems to be a decent deal considering that the chefs do not skimp on quality at the least. Mouthwateringly juicy, the steak's elements really do meld together nicely. The bacon that is wrapped around the steak adds another dimension of savoriness and is decently flavored when consumed separately from the steak. The thickness of the cut was also perfect.
One thing that really is praise-worthy about KABB’s Filet Mignon is the seasoning of the meat. Some venues obscure the original flavoring and freshness of their beef by adding MSG or other heavy flavorings to their dish, but Chef Ling really showcases the quality of the cut by keeping the seasoning simple: just salt and pepper.
If you’re looking to consume a quality steak at a reasonable price, KABB is highly recommended – its good service, classy but unpretentious settings and ample seating makes it a great choice for meat lovers who just want a decent steak, without all of the financial and atmospheric baggage. If you’re in the mood, pair it with a glass of Leeuwin Estate Siblings Shiraz…
Kabb Bistro Bar Xintiandi North Block, House 5, Lane 181, Taicang road Xintiandi, Shanghai Average cost per person: CNY 300 - 400 (86 21) 3307 0798
Manhattan Steakhouse As one of the oldest steakhouses in Shanghai, Manhattan Steakhouse has a solid, 13-year reputation inside the Shanghai Marriott Hotel Hongqiao. The picturesque New York-style setting is the perfect place to enjoy a good steak.
Rene Oskam, the newly appointed Executive Chef at the Shanghai Marriott Hotel Hongqiao, has over 13 years of experience in the industry and has worked with other 5-star hotel groups such as InterContinental and Anantara. Mr. Oskam has a new menu rolling out this week that includes a number of organic and exotic ingredients, such as Nastutium, Iberico Pork, and Yuzu. The new menu promises to spice things up a bit, but we went for the beef.
Far closer than downtown New York, Manhattan Steakhouse affords the same standards of service and food as in the Big Apple. They take a lot of pride in their beef, serving long grain fed Angus and Wagyu beef that is free of hormone growth promotants, antibiotics, animal byproducts or genetically modified feedstuffs. The establishment follows a simple motto, “when it comes to beef, classic is best.”
The Manhattan’s Signature is a 2kg portion of Tomahawk Prime Rib on the Bone. Unless you’re a professional eater or Yao Ming, you’ll need at least one friend to help you finish this massive steak. The Tomahawk cuts are taken from 250-day grain-fed stockyard Angus beef and needs at least 30 minutes for grilling and resting. The finished product comes out on a hot plate and is served with several side dishes, ours included White Seasonal Asparagus, homemade French fries, sautéed tomatoes on the vine, organic salad, béarnaise sauce and an excellent Café de Paris Butter that melts onto the steak. Fat content in the Tomahawk is quite high, but the high acidity offered by a glass of Robert Mondavi Private Selection Cabernet Sauvignon 2009 helps to break it down and is a nice compliment to the dish.
Manhattan Steakhouse 2270号 Hongqiao Road Changning, Shanghai, China Average cost per person: CNY 1000 - 1200 021-62376000 x6633
Moon's Steakhouse Awarded the "Best Restaurant" by Shanghai Tatler Magazine for three consecutive years (2007-09), Moon's Steakhouse is considered by many ShanghaiExpat forum users to be the Best Steak in Shanghai. The restaurant is just inside the Swissotel Grand 5-star hotel and the dining room has an up-scale, trendy vibe. Moon's Steakhouse has been serving quality cuts of beef since way back in 2005.
All of Moons' steaks are imported from Australia and the Grilled Ribeye is their signature cut. Slabs are cut from between the 6th and 12th rib bone. Moon's then takes these slabs and puts them through a 15-day dry-aging process in-house where customers can readily see at the restaurant's entrance. The dry-aging process further increases the tenderness of the meat while simultaneously intensifying flavor and enhancing color. This costly process is reflected in the 368RMB price tag. Unlike many ribeyes, however, Moon's serves a leaner cut, which some people prefer over the high-in-cholesterol fat marbled throughout a common ribeye -- something that may be attractive to all of you health nuts. The steak comes served with a small portion of grilled mushrooms, and your choice of Béarnaise, Bordelaise, Mushroom cream or green peppercorn sauce. Mmmm.
Although it is a sizeable portion, you'll probably need to order some trimmings to complete the experience. Try the king-size Katafi Prawns as an appetizer -- deep fried and served on a bed of cabbage slaw, tomato chutney and chili orange mayonnaise. The dish is light enough to leave room for your steak but has enough flavor to tame your hunger. The recommended wine for the Grilled Ribeye Steak is a glass of Australian Terroir Barrosa Shiraz.
Moon's Steakhouse 1 Yuyuan Road (near Changde Road) Jing'an District Shanghai, China Average cost per person: CNY 400 - 500 Phone: (86 21) 6288-9984
Bubba's Texas Saloon Everything about Bubba's is very, very Texan, to the huge platters to the walls of the Bubba’s location at Hongqiao, which are plastered with football paraphernalia and 2 stag heads (all of which were donated by customers over the years). It’s a very casual and fun atmosphere – the very antithesis of the high-end Western/semi-European venues that are scattered across town.
In regards to bang for buck, Bubba’s is a decent deal; on their Tuesday steak nights, steaks are only 200 RMB. The dry rub seasoning that owner Ken Walker uses on the Australian beef (which is chilled, never frozen) gives it that special kick that sets this steak apart from its competitors. This may sound a bit sacrilegious to steak-lovers, but try dipping the outer rims of the ribeye in Bubba’s signature barbeque sauce – the sauce actually is an excellent compliment with the dry rub.
The only complaint about Bubba’s Medium rare ribeye was that the steak served for the review was a little dark on the outside and tough-ish around the edges. The center of the steak though, was nicely done, with its tender pink texture and juiciness. All in all, Bubba’s steak may not leave you raving about its quality, but it definitely is one of the better steaks in Shanghai for its price.
Bubba's Expo Village Suite 101, 1101 Xue Ye Rd Phone: 021-22060338
Recommended Barbecue Restaurants:
Brasil Steak House 巴犀烧烤屋 (bā xī shāo kǎo wū) Specialties: It is a Latin American style barbecue restaurant popular with foreigners. Beefsteak, mutton chop, grilled beef, mutton, bacon, chicken wings, and bananas are recommended. Operating Hours: 11:00 - 15:00, 17:00 - 23:00 Average cost per person: CNY 70 - 100
Jing'an Branch: No. 1649, West Nanjing Road, Jing'an District (inside Jing'an Park) Xuhui Branch: No. 100, North Coaxi Road, Xuhui District
Dagama Barbecue Bar 达加马巴西烤肉 (dá jiā mǎ bā xī kǎo ròu) Specialties: Dagama offers buffet dinner of Latin American barbecue. Fillet steak, barbecued pork, beef, chicken wings, bacon, eels, sleeve-fish, bananas and pineapples are worth trying. Operating Hours: 11:00 - 14:00, 17:00 - 23:00 Average cost per person: CNY 70 - 100
Metro City Branch: 8F, Metro City, No. 1111, Zhaojiabang Road, Xuhui District (near North Caoxi Road) West Nanjing Road Branch: No. 555, West Nanjing Road, Jing'an District (near North Chengdu Road)
Yeeha Texas BBQ & Sports Bar Specialties: Yeeha is opened by Yao Ming, an excellent Chinese NBA player. The restaurant offers Chinese food on the first floor and western food on the second floor. There are TV sets inside the restaurant broadcasting various sports games. Address: 1F, China Enterprise Building, No. 2, Huashan Road, Jing'an District (near Yuyuan Road) Operating Hours: 11:00 - 24:00 Average cost per person: CNY 70 - 120
latina It’s the first one that started the bbq style in Shanghai. It’s still good and the service is good. It’s always full especially on the weekend. Book ahead. The food is good and the service is good. It’s a all you can eat place.
barbecue buffet price: 128 CNY per person at noon time 198 CNY per person at night time the greatest band show will being at night time ! the foreigner barbecue kitcheners will welcome you! Add: Unit 5, House 101, Sorth Block Xintiandi, Lane 123 Xingye Lu, by Sorth huangpi Lu
Boxing Cat Brewery The Boxing Cat Brewery has long specialised in doing a variety of foods decently well. And so they succeed with their barbeque pulled pork sandwich, largely due to the in-house made barbecue beer sauce. While the bread leaves something to be desired (as a general rule, barbeque should never be served on “fresh calzone bread”), the meat is what shines here – which is good, because that is really all that matters when talking about barbeque. Another bonus is the portion size, which is certainly generous, and pretty much guarantees that you will never walk away feeling hungry! Add: 82 Fuxing Xi Lu (near Yongfu Lu), Shanghai Tel: 021 6431 2091 Opening hours: Mon-Thurs, 17:00-2:00; Fri, 15:00-2:00; Sat-Sun, 11:00-2:00