Guiding Light: Billing itself as Asia’s “first truly independent restaurant guide,” the folks behind the Miele Guide are ostensibly aiming to be the guide of record when it comes to Asia-only establishments. Evaluating restaurants in 16 Asian countries, the selection process will include four rounds, the second of which is the public voting portion and is currently under way. From their website:
Unlike most guides, there will be no arbitrary, secretive selection procedures, and your vote plays a big part. Now’s your chance to shape and mold culinary history. A shortlist has been drawn from the region’s top food critics and we want you to vote now and tell us which restaurants you think are the best. And if your favorite restaurant is not on the shortlist, you’ll have the option to nominate and vote for it too. From these results, a list of Asia’s top restaurants will be drawn. We will rank and profile in detail the top 20 in Asia. The rest will be categorized by country, city and cuisine.
And who is leading the team of Shanghai’s top food critics? Why, it’s Jarrett Wrisley, the recipient of a previous suck-up and whom we also consider part of the Shanghaiist family. SH Magazine’s Chris St. Cavish (another victim of many a suck-up here) and Amy Fabris-Shi from that’s shanghai are also part of the shortlist panel. With this kind of pedigree, we’re expecting results to burrow substantially deeper than another guide that recently passed through the city.
Joy stick: A recommendation led us to Yoshizoh (吉藏烧烤), a delightful yakitori joint across the street from the Nanjing Lu West Metro stop. Chicken skewers (3 RMB for one), salted or marinated, kick off the low end of the menu, with the wonderfully greasy bacon-wrapped asparagus rounding out the top (12 RMB for one). They have other snacks too: the kimchi rice and miso cucumbers were tasty, and the 15 RMB draft Asahis didn’t hurt, either. Well worth a visit.
More on Food Names 2.0: A few days ago we mentioned that the Chinese government has issued a booklet of around 2,000 translated titles for Chinese dishes, part of the effort to alleviate confusion amongst foreigners during the Olympics. Jennifer 8. Lee from the New York Times (and who we mentioned a few months ago here for her writing on Americanized Chinese food) does a deeper dive into some of the translations. Definitely an interesting read. Our favorite line from her piece, directed at folks that may find the original Chinese names strange: “Before people snicker, stop and think about “pigs in a blanket.”
Yoshizoh (吉藏烧烤) – No. 19 Shimen No. 2 Lu, close to Nanjing Lu (石门二路19号,近南京路) Tel: 6215-0985, Hours: 12:00pm-2:00pm, 6:00pm-12:30am
Eric Hu is Shanghaiist’s Food Editor. Email tips, recommendations, and news and gossip about Shanghai’s food scene to food at shanghaiist.com.