What: Modern Italian restaurant on the eighth floor of Le Royale Meridien hotel, Shanghai’s towering new five star whose antennas face People’s Square.
Look: Contemporary simplicity. Favola has lots of wood, stone ovens and crusty breads spread across the counters as you enter; there’s even a rotisserie with thick veal chops and legs of lamb turning in the corner. The smell is intoxicating, and reminds you why you’re here.
Food: Simple Italian salads, pizzas, a few seafood dishes and roasted meats. They serve moist, sweet hunks of Parmesano Reggiano with foccacia, and good olive oil and balsamic to start (very nice touch). And everything we tried, from a generous margherita pizza to perfect pockets of sheep’s cheese and rucula pesto with cherry tomatoes, to the roasted lamb leg was delicious. One minor quibble – there is a lack of Italian wines (although plenty from elsewhere) to match the food.
People: Hotel guests at the moment; although you should check it out too. The food and service are fantastic.
Bill: ¥300-400 per person with a glass of wine.