Best late-night dining

Best late-night dining

It’s late -- or should we say early? -- and you’re famished. But something about club clothes doesn’t go with plastic street stools. Take your late-night dining inside with these selections

Recommended: Mr & Mrs Bund

CNNGo best eats shanghai - Mr & Mrs BundLate-night and high class, Mr & Mrs Bund's Paul Pairet does late-night fare right.

Open until 4 a.m., Mr & Mrs Bund is by far your best option for late-night, high-end Bund dining.

First, there's the almost surreal Alice in Wonderland décor, which manages to look awesome as well as slightly sinister in the wee hours. Plus, they offer good deals on food, so you can have Paul Pairet's delicious boeuf bourguignon, picnic chicken, foie gras crumble and others from the extensive menu in the early morning hours.

Favorite late-night orders include the cheese plates, which come with imported French cheese and a tangy apple jelly and grapes as an accompaniment.

Carnivores, take note: “They have a great steak, served with the bone. The beef has a great fat-to-lean-meat ratio and very good texture,” says food critic Peipei Yang.

As a capper, Pairet's Lemon & Lemon tart could be the best late-night dessert on the Bund.

Mr & Mrs Bund, 6/F, Bund 18, 18 Zhongshan Dong Yi Lu, near Nanjing Dong Lu 中山东一路18号6楼, 近南京东路, +86 21 6323 9898,, hours: Monday to Friday 11:30 a.m. to 2 p.m., Monday and Sunday 6:30 p.m. to 10:30 p.m., Tuesday to Saturday 6:30 p.m to 4 a.m.

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Recommend: Bellagio

CNNGo best eats shanghai - bellagioDon't let its desserts reputation fool you -- Bellagio's food is what late-night munchies are begging for.

This Taiwanese chain has great food and even better desserts. They're the Shanghai version of TGI Fridays (in a good way), and represent salvation for hungry people in the after-after hours.

“Try the tangy pineapple shrimp with youtiao,” says restaurant consultant and chef Anthony Zhao. “Although Bellagio is known more for its desserts than food, this dish is quite good.”

Or, try the Taiwanese minced pork over rice, which comes in a set with decent soup and fruit for dessert. The stewed pork is rich with the flavor of five-spice and tasty as only fatty meat can be. It's total comfort food and correspondingly cheap and delicious.

The Hainan chicken rice is also surprisingly well done. It comes with you fan (rice made with chicken broth and fat), three dipping sauces and soup.

Bellagio's chicken is even better than Orchard CRC’s -- there's more of it and it's slightly more tender. Of course, you can always order Bellagio's famous shaved ice mountains, but only attempt this with two or more people.

Bellagio, multiple locations, 68 Taicang Lu, near Songshan Lu 太仓路68号, 近嵩山路, +86 21 6386 5701, hours: 11 a.m. to 4 a.m.

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Recommend: Fangbang Lu and Shouning Lu

CNNGo best eats shanghai - shouning luHot off the grill and exactly what you're looking for after a night out.

It's the middle of the night, you're hungry, but you have no idea what you want to eat. Your best option is to go to one of Shanghai's late-night food streets, where all options to you are open.

On Fangbang Zhong Lu, near the Old City, vendors congregate, selling mounds of skewers, frog legs and snails (better than they sound) to grill, and flaming woks to stir fry noodles.

At Shouning Lu, near Xintiandi, the star is hai xian (seafood): many vendors offer grilled oysters, scallops, baby abalone with garlic, black bean sauce and chili (each vendor does them slightly differently).

If you're not craving mollusks, try whole barbecued fish, spicy crawfish and roast duck along with your cheap Tsingtao. Food streets are a great way to enjoy fabulous food at equally fabulous prices if you want to test that iron stomach.

Shouning Lu, near Xizang Lu, closest subway is Metro Line 1 Huangpi Nan Lu Station, 寿宁路, 近西藏路, 最近地铁一号线黄陂南路站; Fangbang Zhong Lu, near Sipailou lu Lu 方浜中路, 近四牌楼路

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Winner: Cha's Restaurant

CNNGo best eats shanghai - chaA little taste of late-night Hong Kong in Shanghai.

Cha's Restaurant earns a respectable 21 out of 30 for flavor on for its amazingly accurate replication of the Hong Kong cha canting experience. Unfortunately, there's only one Cha's for a city of 19 million people and that's why it's our pick for best late-night eat: after 10 p.m. on weekdays (the kitchen closes at 1:30 a.m.) is about the only time when you won’t have to queue up to get in.

Tian Xia Mei Shi's Yang agrees. “Cha’s is one of the best options for late-night dining,” she says.

The menu is full of classics we all crave late at night.

Cha does a springy macaroni (ramen) with spam that hundreds of users swear is the real thing transported from Hong Kong. It's authentic down to the watered-down chicken broth.

Yang also recommends the soy sauce chicken, which she assures us will be on every table, and the silky tofu with fresh scallops and black bean sauce.

For those who need late-night sweets, Cha's offers crumbly-on-top pineapple buns that come with a fat pat of butter, and very, very (did we say "very"?) good Hong Kong milk tea among the other delicious offerings.

Cha's Restaurant, 30 Sinan Lu, near Huaihai Zhong Lu 思南路30号, 近淮海中路, +86 21 6093 2062, hours: 11 a.m. to 2 a.m.

Meet the experts who helped us choose Shanghai's Best Eats.

Full Best Eats list and winners
Joanne Yao is a writer and editor based in Shanghai.
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