Shang Palace isn’t the most striking of restaurants at first sight, perched as it is on a ledge above the lobby of the Shangri-La. But space has been used cleverly here, with high-backed chairs and alcoves providing a sense of seclusion, while the stereotypical red lanterns and ornamental vases manage to avoid cliché and instead add a cosy element to the decor. It’s not a large restaurant, and feels calm even when busy, helped along by discreet staff who always appear to be on hand when needed. Those unsure about Chinese cuisine will be pleased to see plenty of the classics on the menu, and even happier when they get the chance to try them. Light and fresh dim sum, such as the scallop siew mai, make the perfect starters, before moving on to richer and more substantial mains. The crispy Peking duck is served ceremoniously, with a chef and waiter working together to carve up the meat and make pancake rolls. It’s worth the wait as every parcel is perfectly balanced, with just the right amount of hoisin sauce. Deep-fried slices of battered chicken come with a tangy lemon sauce, while the Mongolian lamb is saltier and a good alternative, perfect alongside a helping of Shang Palace’s special fried rice. And don’t worry about the final bill, you’ll be pleasantly surprised and planning your return visit.
Shang Palace, Sheikh Zayed Road
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