Home > shanghai vegetarian > Shanghai Xintiandi + Xin Ji Shi + Vegetarian authentic chinese food

Shanghai Xintiandi + Xin Ji Shi + Vegetarian authentic chinese food


After staying in Shanghai with Charan for a week & complaining to Jack daily about how we didn’t get any authentic Chinese food as we were vegetarians, Jack & Lulu took pity on us and took us out to Xintiandi and gave us a tour of the place, the french architecture.

If you don’t have the luxury of a chinese speaking friend, don’t despair. Xintiandi (pronounced Shin-tendi) is well-known with the cab drivers & the hotel concierge can easily send you off there. It is on the Puxi side of the river. However, this area is designed for the tourists & especially packed with american/ european fare. There are steakhouses, breweries, cafes and a few authentic chinese restaurants as well. I have heard good things about another Chinese restaurant in Xintiandi called “Southern Beauty” which I haven’t been to yet.

Jack & Lulu said this was one of the good places to go to & so we did. They made us believe that Chinese food is truly vegetarian, at its heart. Historically, meat was only sparsely available and was consumed only by the rich. Hence, the average daily fare consisted of rice and vegetables – it isn’t true anymore.

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One of the things I find immensely useful in Chinese restaurants is the picture menu. Xin Ji Shi does have a few pictures in their menu .. but, unfortunately, not all of the above are well represented in the menu. From left to right, we had a tofu dish with mushrooms in a sweet sauce and garnished with salty peanuts, a tofu dish with coriander leaves & spices (not my favorite), lotus root stuffed with sticky rice, steamed and sliced – this was just wonderful and then, a stir fry of a combination of different vegetables including bamboo shoots that was mildly spicy and very tasty. Not represented in the photographs, Xin Ji Shi serve an “onion bread” that is oozing with oil (as most shanghainese foods are), but is just simply fabulous.

Chinese foods are served family style, as in the bowl is set in the center of the table and each person starts poking at it with their chopsticks – the ability to use chopsticks helps. If not, good luck asking for forks. A good idea would be to ask your concierge to write down the above menu in chinese and also to write down how to ask for forks in chinese.

would certainly recommend Xin Ji Shi for a taste of authentic Chinese food, yet very vegetarian. Let me know if you find it.

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