A new addition to Changning's renowned Japanese dining scene
Changning District has long been regarded as the place to be to explore some of the best Japanese delicacies in Shanghai
A new addition is Sangou, a premium Japanese restaurant offering three dining experiences ― omakase, tempura and yakitori.
The venue is divided into three sections, each with a different theme. The design of the omakase room is minimalist, a veritable shrine to the art of appreciating excellent sushi. It's an oasis of calm, dominated by wooden decorations.
The yakitori section is ideal for those who enjoy late-night grilled skewers with drinks as it stays open until 2am. There's a DJ booth and the space is suitable for events and parties.
The tempura room, the restaurant's smallest, features a six-seat counter where diners receive their food directly from the chefs.
Leading the tempura experience is Sangou's executive chef Ben Kong, who has honed his Japanese cooking skills for 35 years.
The Japanese have turned frying into an art, and here in Shanghai, Sangou is one of the few places to experience the true art of tempura. Diners sit directly in front of their personal chefs, and because time is of the essence with tempura, the closer you are to the action the better your experience will be. Moreover, an overhead screen lets patrons watch chefs preparing their meals.
The tempura journey at Sangou is based on an approach to seasonality where the produce is served at just the right time at the peak of its flavor.
Chef Kong serves tempura courses one by one, placing each piece in front of diners fresh from his frying pot. With an emphasis on perfect batter thickness and oil temperature, the best possible tempura is served.
Kuruma ebi (Japanese tiger prawn), coral trout, sea urchin and king crab leg are some of the premium ingredients used in Sangou's tempura. One notable course is the Changbai Mountain ginseng from northeast China. I enjoyed every bite of the tempura-style ginseng, with a unique texture and earthy yet sweet flavor that lingered in my mouth.
If you go:
Hours: 5pm-10pm for omakase sushi and tempura, 5pm-2am for yakitori
Address: 2099 Yan'an Rd W. (inside Renaissance Shanghai Yangtze Hotel)
Average price: 1,880 yuan for sushi, 1,380 yuan for tempura, 300 yuan for yakitori