An American in Shanghai – Disneytown Eats!

The best place to eat in Shanghai Disneyland is right outside.

It’s highly convenient that there are quite a few table service restaurants in Disneytown which unlike any other park is situated directly adjacent to Shanghai Disneyland with easy access in and out. Disneytown has contemporary and traditional Chinese cuisine, Japanese cuisine, and even a Cheesecake Factory to suit your needs.  There are lots of options with table service and cafeteria style restaurants up and down the various streets.

Cheesecake Factory! The most popular restaurant in Disneytown

Spice Alley in Disneytown features a collection of really good looking places to eat. DONDONYA, a Japanese donburi restaurant (mostly rice bowls) and IPPUDO, a Japanese ramen noodle house were both busy and looked delicious. Food Republic was a collection of many food stalls serving different kinds of mostly Asian fare. The Dining Room specialized in dim sum. The blue frog bar & grill (not a typo – they don’t use capitals in their name) featured mainly western dishes as did Cheesecake Factory and Wolfgang Puck Kitchen and Bar.

My favorite dish at Shanghai Min in Disneytown – meatball soup!

With a limited amount of time, we didn’t get to sample everything but we did eat at two restaurants which I really enjoyed – Shanghai Min and Crystal Jade. Both serve different but authentic Chinese food and after all we did come to China. Shanghai Min featured authentic Shanghainese food and it was incredibly flavorful. Our friend Tony took us to the one near the Bund and that one was far more fancy and beautiful. This one felt RUSHED. That’s the best way I can describe it, but we had a blast trying different things. And the food was good. Some of it better than others. The spring rolls were yummy (as always), the fried rice cake was tasty and reminded me a lot of hash brown potatoes from McDonald’s. The wonton soup was only okay. I was hoping it would be more flavorful but it was pretty dull. The pork belly with peppers was really tasty. But my favorite was the meatball soup – which is not what it sounds like. It was a huge pork meatball in a chicken broth served in a stone bowl which kept it hot throughout the meal. You just would dig into the meatball a little at a time and scoop it into your bowl. So good.

My favorite was Crystal Jade which advertises itself as authentic modern Cantonese cuisine. This place was SO good. We had the crispy pork belly, roasted duck, green beans with minced pork, and xiao long bao but unlike any I’d had before. The crispy pork belly was cooked to perfection with the top layer just perfectly crunchy without being chewy. The roasted duck was like heaven with skin that was crispy and tender at the same time while the pieces were cooked to perfection and served on a bed of shrimp chips and Chinese thin pancakes on the side. The green beans were tasty with lots of savory flavor. But the best for me was the xiao long bao. It is a steamed dumpling with a tasty “gravy” (more like soup) and a hearty chunk of pork in the middle, but then they pan fry the bottom third of it until it’s just crispy enough to flake in your mouth. SO GOOD!

If you go and are looking for a place to sit down and eat, try Disneytown!  There will be surely something to whet your appetite no matter what you’re craving.

  • TIP: You don’t need to.  Tipping is not expected for any services in Shanghai Disneyland – including table service restaurants.  Also, servers don’t come and check on you like they do in America.  You simply flag down a server (any server) when you need something and they will be happy to help you.
  • Did you read our Sweet Treats and Things To Eat post yet? Find out more about food inside the park!

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