Shanghai, China, the Oriental Paris, is the largest and most cosmopolitan city in China, and the most populous city proper not only in Asia but in the world as well. The city rivals New York or Paris in terms of modernity with a blended culture of the East and West. It is also a “showpiece” of the booming economy of mainland China.
Shanghai is also the largest economic and trade center in China, with the world’s busiest container port. About 60% of the world’s cheap consumable goods with “Made in China” come from a city called Yiwu, Zhejiang.
In Shanghai there is a famous and infamous commodities wholesale mall called Qipu Road (七浦路). The mall consists of 3 buildings (with 1 dedicated mostly to Korean fashion) where you can find real bargains. But this is not a place for the faint-hearted as the scene can be chaotic. Best to visit during weekday mornings to avoid crowds and for better bargaining power. The higher floor you go the better quality it gets. Keep an eye for the export bound goods, locals call them waimao (外贸) meaning for export. And also most vendors do not allow trying out their clothing, a common practice there.
133 Qipu Road, Hongkou Qu
Shanghai cuisine, or Shanghainese food, is known to be sweet and greasy. And if you are around any of the tourist spots with food (as a matter of fact any tourist spots in China!) you will surely come across and probably be overwhelmed by the stinky tofu aroma.
One of the famous local dishes is called “three yellow chicken” (三黄鸡), served with a gingery sauce. Definitely avoid going during lunch time as the wait time can be over an hour! For your convenience Zhending Chicken 振鼎鸡 have a chain of restaurants across Shanghai.
456 Wujin Road, Hongkou Qu
For snacks we head down to a shop known locally for their fresh home-made pastries, which are not greasy and not too sweet. They offer a variety of filling: rose flower (玫瑰饼), sesame (芝麻), peanut (花生), red beans (豆沙) etc:Address:
33 Shouning Road, Huangpu District
Chinese kebab (also called “chuan chuan” 串串 in China) in Xinjiang style. There is a little block in Huangpu district where the Xinjiang meat market resides, also where the freshly grilled kebabs can be found. The meat comes from the highlands of Xinjiang, better tasting and without the strong gamey taste. While there take a peek at the butcher shops where the local restaurants get their fresh top grade beef and mutton.
Zhejiang Middle Road, Guangdong Road, Huangpu Qu
Looking forward to further discoveries of the local Shanghai scene….