Shang Palace is Shangri-La hotel‘s signature restaurant and Shangri-La’s culinary introduction to Istanbul. It’s the best Chinese restaurant you can find in the city. Open for lunch and dinner daily; their elegant dining area is inviting diners in this fabulous city to experience the best of Chinese-Cantonese cuisine. You can also read their reviews on Tripadvisor!
Exclusively for lunch every day from noon to 3 pm, Shang Palace offers unlimited dim sum.
Location: Lower Lobby Level, Shangri-La Bosphorus, Sinanpasa Mah, Hayrettin Iskelesi Sok, No.1, Besiktas, Istanbul, 34353, Turkey
It’s an elegant dining place with traditional and contemporary Chinese ornaments. The couch, pillows, chairs, and tables scream luxury and details of local Chinese tradition. You are surrounded by elegant, colorful and contemporary decorations. I did not miss a familiar piece on the top of the table, the Lazy Susan; it rotates so you can enjoy sharing your food without lifting the plates. It is commonly found at dining tables of every Asian family’s home. There’s a private dining area for celebrations and gatherings.
I visited the restaurant during lunch at non-peak hours though I missed it, you can experience and watch the unique Kung Fu tea master’s show, which acrobatically displays the fine art of the Chinese tea ceremony with an elongated pot. I have seen one back in Singapore, and it was amazing!
There’s a wide selection of traditional Cantonese dishes from varieties of savory meat, seafood and vegetables to soup, noodles, and dumplings. I’ve ordered my personal favorite, Siu Mai – steamed chicken and shrimp dumplings with flying fish roe and Chaozhou style Steamed Dumplings with chicken, shrimp and cashew nuts for starters. I mixed soy sauce and black vinegar and chili for a dip. The size of the dumplings is smaller than what we used to get to any place in Singapore but still has that taste that I was craving for. It’s light and delicious!
For a perfect experience of authentic Chinese-Cantonese cuisine, I ordered a glass of Bollinger, Special Cuvée Champagne. They have a wide selection of Turkish and International wines, which have been specially selected by their Mimolette-trained head sommelier. I had three glasses of wine throughout my meal.
After my delicious dumpling starters, the server suggested to me to try their Pan-fried Diced Beef with black pepper sauce. This is one of their recommended dishes aside from their Roasted Pecking Duck, Braised Seafood with ginger and spring onions in a Clay pot, Hand-drawn Beef Soup Noodles and the authentic Deep-fried Shrimp Rolls wrapped with Kataifi. The meat was cut in thick cube sizes, and it was very tender and moist. I wanted fried rice for a side, but he suggested that plain rice was better as it compliments the dish. I agreed, and it didn’t disappoint! The delicious black pepper sauce infused inside the tender meat.
Though it’s not common, I asked for something off the menu, and he delightfully suggested steamed sea bass with soy sauce and spices. The dish arrived steaming hot, and I poked on the bloated aluminum foil. It’s a surprise, a filleted whole fresh sea bass! Even just the smoke smelled delicious, so I immediately dig in and enjoyed it. The fish is perfectly cooked; it’s super white meat is soft and melts in your mouth.
For dessert, I did not pass on my personal favorite, Chilled Mango Sago. It’s a contemporary Cantonese dessert, famous in Hong Kong and also popular in Singapore. It’s simply made of sago, coconut milk, evaporated milk and fresh sliced mangoes, served cold. It’s so good that I could finish another bowl!
The Service and Staff
I’m impressed by the service! The sea bass dish that the chef prepared for me that is off the menu is simple yet flavorful. Going an extra mile for your customers is remarkable. Servers are professional, and they genuinely smile all the time. They happily poured another glass of champagne even before I ask. They knew I wanted more, and it just shows how dedicated they are with their service, deserves a good tip!
It was a privilege to be invited as a guest in Istanbul‘s best Chinese restaurant. This has been the beginning of my culinary journey in Istanbul, and it’s an excellent introduction to Turkish hospitality. I’m living in Asia all my life, and it is great to experience the best Chinese restaurant in this European side of the city. It’s not your typical Asian restaurant where you “eat and go,” it’s a nice place to hang out and enjoy with family, friends, loved ones.
Check out Shang Palace’s website for more information, promotions, and reservation.
Note: This amazing food story experience was made possible in partnership with Shang Palace, Shangri-La, Istanbul, although all thoughts, ideas, and opinions are entirely my own.
About the Writer
Jaypee Licudan is a Filipino Expat based in Singapore. He’s a traveler and writer for Two Monkeys Travel Group – Community Travel Blog and has been to over 30 countries across four continents. He’s major long term goal is to go back to the Philippines for a long time travel to discover the hidden gems of his home country. Follow his blog: The Rustic Nomad
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