The country of China is unique in that it’s a cultural blend in and of itself. Although Mandarin unites the country as a language, there are fifty-plus dialects, each with its own regional customs, traditions, and styles. Food is no different here. From tasty cheap street kabobs to the scrumptious high-class dishes offered in Michelin-star restaurants, China has it all. However, its prevalence of high-quality, luxury restaurants is definitely noteworthy. Featuring traditional Chinese cuisine as well as an intriguing mix from around the world, you can bring your taste buds on the journey of a lifetime. Today, we’ll be looking at ten of the best and priciest restaurants found in China.
10 ULTRAVIOLET By Paul Pairet
The most expensive restaurant in China could also be described as one of the most innovative. In fact, ULTRAVIOLET by Paul Pairet has made it onto the world’s top fifty restaurants multiple years in a row! The eatery has won three Michelin stars, and each meal costs about $550-$850 per person for 22 courses.
Although guests love the taste of their signature sashimi steak Frites, black cod Tupperware, and chicken in a jar, the true attraction here is the setup. Each private room is completely surrounded by floor to ceiling screens, stimulating all five senses for the guests who are lucky enough to score a seat.
9 Bo Shanghai
Bo Shanghai is part of an innovative restaurant chain that features a delightful mix of cuisines from different areas of China as well as other countries. Guests are able to enjoy the spicy traditions of Sichuan, the savory delights of Zhejiang, and the sweet and salty surprises of Jiangsu.
Depending on the day, the dishes served will also have a hint of styles from other countries, such as Italy or France. The average price for one to dine at Bo Shanghai is about $236, but it could be worth your every cent, depending on your preferences. Guests have loved the Hokkaido sea urchin with Italian olives, century egg with foie gras parfait, and bluefin tuna with veal sauce.
8 Sushi Oyama
It turns out that you don’t have to be in Japan to enjoy some of the best omakase sushi in the world. Located in Shanghai, Sushi Oyama presents a traditional chef’s choice multi-course meal at $180 per person. The restaurant is famous for its quality of ingredients, as the fish and other seafood are always flown in directly from the notoriously fresh fish markets of Japan. If you make a reservation at the bar, you’ll get to enjoy the experience of watching the skilled chefs carve up your sushi! Some of their signature dishes include black tuna, bluefin tuna, Argentine red shrimp tempura, uni with salmon, as well as a caramel milk pudding for dessert!
7 Taian Table
Although it’s nestled in the crevices of a large, unremarkable office compound, Taian Table is not your ordinary restaurant. Created by a German chef by the name of Stefan Stiller, the eatery brings a refreshing change to the Asian cuisines of China. To keep things lively, the restaurant changes their menus frequently, and has had seventeen successful tasting menus to date!
Depending on whether you opt for the 10, 12, or 14-course meal options, you’ll be charged roughly $150-$200 per person. Primarily focused around seafood, Tainan Table offers limited-time delicacies such as trout roe over the fresh cucumber, bouchot mussels on a poached fillet, and uni with butter and sourdough.
6 Fu 1015
Fu 1015 is the most luxurious and expensive restaurant within the Fu series, and it features traditional Shanghainese dishes in this modernized era. On the outside, Fu 1015 is the image of nostalgia, with an old, featureless building disguising all of its luxury. Achieving a spot in the top twenty list of the best Asian restaurants, it’s not a big surprise that Fu 1015 charges around $115-$215 per person. All the dishes offered at this restaurant are old time favorites for anyone familiar with Shanghai, but unique in both appearance and refined ingredients. For example, guests love the lotus root with sticky rice, foie gras with jelly, and soy milk with fried dough for dessert.
Yet another wonderful Japanese restaurant is UTSUSEMI, located in Shanghai. Aside from Sushi Oyama, UTSUSEMI is the best place to get a traditional Kaiseki (multi-course) meal. Featuring four private rooms and a calm, relaxing atmosphere, UTSUSEMI is quite the popular attraction for both locals and tourists alike.
At roughly $110-$550 per person, the sushi at this eatery is quite expensive. However, every bite of rare bluefin tuna sashimi and purple uni is said to be worth it. The quality of the ingredients is comparable to the best sushi places in Japan and fresh fish and produce is flown in straight from the market three times a week.
4 L’Atelier De Joel Robuchon
If you’re a serious foodie, perhaps you’ve heard of the famous Chef Robuchon, who’s responsible for over 30 Michelin stars at restaurants throughout the world. The establishment in Shanghai under his name was inspired by his travels all over the Asian continent. As a result, both locals and tourists can enjoy the delectable French cuisine developed by this world famous chef. Starting at $90-$210 per person, guests can enjoy dishes such as pommes puree, brik pastry with sous-vide eggs, and foie gras with black truffle and caviar. In addition to the refined dish options, the aesthetics of the entire restaurant is also unique, featuring an open kitchen surrounded by bar seats and three private rooms.
3 Faigo Hotpot
A wonderful aspect of Chinese cuisine is the traditional hot pot style dining, where thin slices of raw meat, fish, and various vegetables are dipped in a soup base to be cooked by the guests themselves.
Faigo Hotpot takes the traditional dining to a whole new level, with savory broth options and countless fresh ingredients for you to choose from. Averaging at around $100 per person, this hot pot joint is quite expensive indeed. However, the fresh seafood and other selections they offer are well worth your money. Some guest favorites include the fragrant pork, the lobster seafood plate, as well as fresh oysters.
2 Oyster Talks
Like the name suggests, Oyster Talks in Beijing focuses primarily on showing guests how to enjoy delicious morsels of oysters. Costing around $105 per person, Oyster Talks features plenty of specialties, including mussels imported from all over the world, including unique locations such as France, Australia, and New Zealand.
A helpful wait staff is nearby at all times to help you with shucking, as well as showing you the best way to enjoy each variety of oyster. In addition to oysters, the restaurant also offers a variety of lovely pastas as a main dish and various scallops, fish, and prawns for guests to feast upon.
1 NOBU Beijing
Last but not least, we’ll be focusing on one branch of the infamous NOBU restaurants. NOBU Beijing is one of the many delectable Japanese restaurants located in China, offering a variety of traditional cuisine options and refreshing mixers with South American twists. At an average of $152 per person, NOBU is quite pricey but definitely worth it for their innovative inventions. Some unique dishes include King Crab tacos, whitefish sashimi, Wagyu beef with foie gras, as well as seared seabass with jalapenos. The interesting mixing of South American cuisine and Japanese delicacies is certainly not seen anywhere else in the world!