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A relaxed vibe, complete with a leafy park
By Chehui Peh

Xiangyang Road is an area still waiting to blossom amidst heavy construction work on the site of the former Xiangyang goods market. With a park right in the middle of Xiangyang Road, you can shop, stop for pizza or Vietnamese sandwiches before resting in the nicely shaded park and play with the cheery dogs enjoying a brisk walk. The little boutique shops and relaxed vibe may prove an irresistible combination when you find yourself holding a glass of wine at noon.

Fossette Wine Bar & Restaurant

Fossette Wine Bar & Restaurant on Xiangyang Road N. brings a refreshing wine and food concept to the area. It's all about a casual but tasteful setting, good value wine and great southern Italian treats. Among its wine selection, more than 50 percent are Italian, representing each wine region of the country. Fossette offers a great wine deal: a choice of six glasses from around 20 of its 280 yuan (US$43.9) bottles is only charged at 280 yuan. It's a great way to share a passion for wine among friends. Most of the bottles are priced at 188 yuan and 280 yuan. For the food, Fossette offers tasteful southern Italian fare with a focus on seafood, such as spaghetti with crab in creamy tomato sauce (85 yuan), linguine with a bouquet of stewed various seafood (180 yuan for two) and sauteed Norway salmon with creamy mushroom sauce (100 yuan). The lunch menu is popular, with the 48 yuan set including salad, a choice of pasta or sandwich plus a drink. An additional drink costs 20 yuan, with a choice from selected wines, soft drinks, coffee and beer.

Opening hours: 11am-2pm, 6pm-2am (Monday to Friday); 11:30am-4pm, 6pm-2am (Saturday); 11:30am-4pm (Sunday)

Address: 93-3, Xiangyang Rd N.

Tel: 6418-1138



Open only two months, this little sandwich shop with a cute logo is the brainchild of a Vietnamese owner who wanted to bring delicious, authentic Vietnamese food to Shanghai. With a home kitchen, several recipes like the shiu mai (meatballs) and the skin pork terrine are from the owner's mother, and have the sweet taste of home. The selection is small, but the five sandwiches offered seem to be representative of popular Vietnamese sides. Banh-Mi also has a Vietnamese roll (30 yuan) that can be paired with a Vietnamese white or black coffee to make a full meal. Imported Vietnamese beer is also sold, at 32 yuan a bottle, but the drinks that scream to be tasted are the lychee ice slush (25 yuan) and Sam Bo Luong ice slush (18 yuan), the names of which give you a taste of southeast Asia before the first sip.

Opening hours: 9:30am-8pm (weekdays); 10am-8pm (weekends)

Address: 93-C Xiangyang Rd N.

Tel: 6417-9928


Ello Amici's

An American east coast pizzeria, Ello Amici's aims to recreate authentic Brooklyn pizzas, plus it's also a bar. American chefs were brought over to train the in-house chefs for the opening in February in order to recreate the flavor in Shanghai. The pizzas are cooked in special brick ovens and you can choose the type of crust - Brooklyn style or thin crust - you prefer. There are eleven varieties and four sizes of pizza to choose from, but the New Haven white clam (from 65 to 155 yuan) is recommended. With a generous helping of clams and a fragrant combination of garlic and cheese, it is surprisingly light on the stomach. Perhaps the best deal is the business set lunch at 68 yuan, with soup, a mini pizza and drink. Doubling as a bar at night, the one-for-one happy hour for beers and cocktails runs from 4 to 6:30pm daily, with a large selection of alcoholic drinks are on the menu. Large screen televisions above the bar make it a perfect spot for watching sport, accompanied by a beer and a pizza.

Opening hours: 11am till late

Address: 102 Xiangyang Rd S.

Tel: 6433-7778


Chloe Chen

Taiwanese designer Chloe Chen opened her first boutique in Taipei in 2000 and has since created a reputation as a celebrity favorite in Taiwan. With three shops in Shanghai, Chen's combination of mid-range pricing and Parisian-style chic has found a loyal clientele attracted by the soft silhouettes and clever designs of her clothes. Her clothing line, however, takes a backseat to Chen's real expertise - shoes. Aiming to create vintage-looking, aesthetically pleasing and yet comfortable shoes, Chen succeeds consistently. There are also accessories and bags in Chen's range, all aimed at her target group of the fashionable working woman seeking to stand out from the crowd.

Opening hours: 10am-10pm

Address: 1/F, 174 Xiangyang Rd S.Tel: 5465-7275



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