Walking into Steak & Eggs, Shanghaiist was flooded with fond childhood memories of chowing down on big greasy breakfasts at truck-stop diners during family road trips along Interstate 10. Sure, we love Moon River and its classic 1950’s theme, but Steak & Eggs is the first place we’ve eaten at in Shanghai that fits the mold of the no-frills American roadside diner.
The owner is a friendly Canadian named Paul, who opened the first two Steak & Eggs restaurants in Beijing, and has now brought the popular diner to Shanghai. With its prime location (on Xikang Lu right between Plaza 66 and Shanghai Centre) and expansive menu targeting all sorts of appetites (6 a.m. omelettes to 22 RMB all-day cocktails), the place is sure to be popular throughout the entirety of the day.
How’s the food, you ask? Authentic, uncompromising, and gritty. Literally: this is the first place we’ve ever dined at in Shanghai that serves grits (didn’t try yet). We thought that the steak, roast beef, and country ham were all a little on the dry side; perhaps the chef didn’t quite have his timing down. On the plus side, one Shanghaiist claimed that they served the best breakfast sausages he has ever had in China, made with real meat and spices that made the whitish and bland sausages served in many a western restaurant, ahem, pale in comparison. The sausages, corned beef, and ham are all specially made in Beijing and flown in. Paul also knows his potatoes; the home fries and hash browns were delicious. We hear from friends who’ve visited Steak & Eggs in Beijing that the freshly baked breads, cakes and desserts are not to be missed. The dessert selection was certainly enticing, and we locked in on fact that we can now have decent pumpkin pie year all year round.
One area where Steak & Eggs will undoubtedly differentiate itself from its neighboring competition is the quality of the service. Eight staff members from Beijing were actually relocated to Shanghai, and from the efficiency and professionalism with which they took, remembered, and correctly served our orders we could tell they were old hands at western-style service. That is to say, service was not riddled with mistakes and obnoxiousness. Paul himself supervised our orders, and made it clear (without knowing we were elite city bloggers) that he welcomed any criticism and advice in the name of providing the best dining experience for his customers. Sure, we know we’re in the honeymoon phase, but at reasonable prices (55 RMB for a roast beef sandwich, 80 RMB for the steak and eggs, 19 RMB for pie) for straightforward food that reminds us of home, we’re already madly in love with him.
Steak & Eggs – 99 Xi Kang Lu, Bldg. 3 near Nanjing Lu (西康路99号, 近南京西路) – Tel: 6279-2201, 6:00am-midnight
Eric Hu is Shanghaiist’s Food Editor. Email tips, recommendations, and news and gossip about Shanghai’s food scene to food at shanghaiist.com.