On Sunday afternoon a new restaurant/brasserie/bar/lounge officially opened its doors in Shanghai: Hugo, located on Weihai Lu opposite Shanghai Television. During the soft opening I already had lunch here twice, and had enjoyed the food and the atmosphere very much. The place is owned by a Dutch Chinese couple, and serves mainly French and Dutch food. Dutch food? Yes, that exists. Among others pannekoeken (pancakes) and vleeskroketten (meat croquettes) can be found on its menu.
The restaurant is a combination of a brasserie, a cafe and an upscale restaurant. It can also be used for private functions, and the place even has meeting rooms with beamers. Several clubs, including the Dutch club in Shanghai, have made it their meeting place for monthly drinks already. Rumour has it that a former chef of a Dutch Michelin star-rated restaurant (De Hoefslag) is cooking here now, and that the manager hails from Amsterdam’s top hotel the Amstel Hotel. The food is excellent, and the guests could taste some of it during the opening reception.
This party was quite busy, and most people seemed to be from the Netherlands. Even the new Dutch consul could be seen walking around. The finger food was great, and also the drinks on offer were very nice. The waiters served among others champagne, good red and white wines, wodka mixes and of course Heineken beer. Interesting was that at the party a couple asked me whether I was Marc van der Chijs. I said yes, and they told me that they are regular readers of my blog and had recognized me. It happened several times that I met people who turned out to be readers of this blog, but being recognized from my pictures is a new experience 🙂 The couple was Dutch, and have been living as expats outside Holland for Philips for the past 17 years (in China for 2 years now). The husband is general manager for Philips, and is setting up a factory here for automotive playback modules (CD/DVD etc.). Different from my line of business, but facing similar problems as we do.
I think Hugo is a great addition to the restaurant scene in Shanghai. It has top-quality food, but next to that they can also serve simple lunches (kroketten with bread, one of the very few places in China!), and it’s a nice place to unwind with a beer in the evening (on one of the three terraces, or inside in the bar). I did not have dinner here yet, but plan to do this very soon!