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Grilling professionals about barbecues
By Ruby Gao

Barbecue season is in full swing. But since the vast majority of Shanghai residents don’t have a backyard, going to a hotel or restaurant makes for a good option.
“Most of us live in big apartment complexes where barbecuing is not allowed and it’s also banned in many public parks, so the most convenient barbecue is in a restaurant or hotel,”says Daniel Leibssle, executive sous chef at Park Hyatt.

John Ding, director of food and beverage at Hilton Shanghai Hongqiao, says barbecues in hotel restaurants also mean there is no mess to clean up and nothing to carry.

Hotel venues also often feature gardens or terraces that serve as sanctuaries from the sun. They also offer the option to pop into the air-conditioned interior while also selling cool treats such as a wide variety of ice creams.

Chefs from five-star hotels say some new trends are developing within the barbecue scene.

“Locally sourced meats are becoming more popular around the world. This is based on understanding where the meat is coming from and that the animal is raised free of antibiotics and hormones,” says Mauricio Cruz, culinary director at Sheraton Shanghai Pudong Hotel.

“In the past meat was the main theme of any barbecue and the side dishes were something you offered to compliment the meat,” Cruz says. “Nowadays the side dishes are just as important.”

Polidori says some chefs are trying a modern barbecue technique known as cold smoking.

A handheld food smoker allows chefs to smoke foods without the presence of heat, which is used to cure meats or impart a smokey flavor to cheese and sausage.

“That opens new ways to create exciting flavors and unexpected combinations,” Polidori says.

Michael James Parker, managing director at Banya Tree Shanghai on the Bund, adds that real charcoal is better than propane for grilling as it creates that authentic barbecue flavor.

The following venues are excellent choices to try the latest trends and enjoy a delicious meal with family or friends.

Family recipe

Sheraton Shanghai Pudong Hotel’s Feast restaurant features a barbecue sauce made from the family recipe of Mauricio Cruz, the property’s culinary director.


All the meats and seafood are displayed on ice to ensure freshness.

Guests select what they want and hand it to chefs for grilling.

Cruz recommends the pork neck, a flavorful meat with nice marbling, and the spicy Argentinean sausages.

He also grills pineapples with chili and Sichuan peppers to create a distinctive sweet-sour-spicy flavor.

His chicken skewers are marinated in a Thai sauce and are worth trying.

A live band belts out some tune.

Guests can either enjoy their food indoors or sit on the terrace.

The barbecue buffet is every Friday and Saturday from 6pm to 10pm until the end of October.

Price: 238 yuan plus 15 percent subcharge

Tel: 5089-9999 ext 2240

Address: 1/F, 38 Pujian Rd

Incredible variety

Pudong City Bistro at Shanghai Marriott Hotel Pudong East has a new barbecue menu with a huge selection of food and free refills of draft beer. Various meats, vegetables and seafood are grilled and served in different ways. Oysters are grilled and seasoned with Chinese spices while grilled sausages are served in a Mexican way with tomato salsa and nachos. Other highlights include German pork knuckle with sauerkraut (fermented cabbage), grilled lamb chops and beef rib-eye steaks.


The buffet also includes a selection of sashimi and salads to diners with light palate. The buffet is available until the end of August.

Price: 268 yuan per person including free flow of draft beer

Tel: 6036-8855

Address: 2/F, 15 Xinjinqiao Rd

Down by the river

Riviera at Banyan Tree Shanghai on the Bund is one of the few restaurants in Shanghai serving a riverside barbecue buffet.


The outdoor dining area is adjacent to the hotel’s private dock, where breezes and nice views of the Lujiazui skyline add to the atmosphere. The buffet includes a selection of salads, meats and seafood entrees fresh off the grill. There’s also a generous amount of desserts and free-flow wines, beer and soft drinks. Highlights include beef from Australia, sausages from Tuttlingen, Germany, lobster from Boston, as well as tiger prawns and sea bass.

The buffet is served every Thursday to Sunday at 6pm. We recommend ordering a seat on Friday or Saturday, when a live band performs.

Price: 428 yuan plus 15 percent subcharge (normal set); 628 yuan plus 15 percent subcharge (including free-flow sparkling wine)

Tel: 2509-1188

Address: 1/F, 19 Haiping Rd

Tastes like homemade

Prime cuts of meat, a wide selection of seafood and barbecue sauce made from local ingredients highlight the dinner buffet at Café Bistro, the all-day-dining restaurant at Sheraton Shanghai Hongqiao hotel. Homemade sausages with a smoky flavor and slow-roasted Texas style brisket are two highlights, which are complemented by the homemade barbecue sauce that features Sichuan peppers.


Cooking stations offer Asian and Japanese flavors such as chirashi (tossed salmon and tuna on sushi rice), pasta and desserts highlighted by panna cotta (a sweetened cream) and tropical fruit sorbet. The buffet is served every Friday, Saturday and Sunday.

Price: 338 yuan plus 15 percent subcharge/person; 169 yuan plus 15 percent subcharge/child

Tel: 6275-8888 ext 4814

Address: 1/F, 5 Zunyi Rd S.

It’s all about the meat

Century 100, the all-day restaurant at Park Hyatt Shanghai, is now offering its summer barbecue menu featuring diverse quality meats that are seasoned with exotic spices and a rich BBQ sauce.


“We can’t use charcoal for safety reasons, but we get that authentic barbecue flavor by marinating first and then grilling them in our ovens,” says Daniel Leibssle, executive sous chef at the hotel.

Highlights include Wagyu beef from Australia, Iberico pork from Spain and lamb from New Zealand.

The grilled lamb skewer is marinated with garlic, cumin and chili. Its served with pickles to cut through the fattiness of the meat. Slow cooked Wagyu beef has a fruity and spicy taste that is created by marinating it in coriander and chili.

Century 100’s barbecue sauce has layers of flavor including bacon, garlic, shallots and whiskey.

Try pairing your food with rose wines from Provence, France, or  one of three mojitos on the drinks menu.

A la carte and family set menus (six courses and one dessert for three to five people) are available to meet different customer requirements.

Price: 2,950 yuan plus 15 percent subcharge (family set)

Tel: 6888-1234

Address: 91/F, 100 Century Avenue

For carnivores

Hilton Shanghai Hongqiao has launched its garden barbecue that clearly has carnivores in mind. A meat platter is served, including two chicken wings, sausages, pork ribs, mini burgers and sweet corn, along with a skewer of lamb. It’s ideal for sharing, but if you feel like pigging out, go for it.


Six different barbecue sauces are offered, highlighted by chili powder, Dijon mustard, ketchup and sweet chili. Potato wedges and onion rings make for nice side dishes.

It’s served daily, starting from 5pm.

Price: 188 yuan plus 15 percent subcharge/platter

Tel: 3323-6579

Address: 1/F, Tower 2, 1116 Hongsong Rd E.

Customer Service: (86-21) 52920164