At Hotel Indigo's contemporary bar and grill, CHAR, superlatives are justified: the flavours are not only some of the boldest in Shanghai, the views will impress even the most worldly of travellers.
If there's one thing Shanghai foodies have come to know, it's that you can't always get a good meal to go along with panoramic views of this 21st century, straight-out-of-Bladerunner city. At CHAR, however, the food not only holds its own against the glittery backdrop, you might forget the restaurant has windows at all.
The focus at CHAR, located on the top floor of Hotel Indigo Shanghai on the Bund, is on simplicity of flavour and playfulness in presentation. In the kitchen, Executive Chef Vincent Song prides himself on only using the freshest of ingredients both local and international produce, which is sourced from Shanghai's finest providores and the menu is constantly changing according to the season.
The restaurant doesn't cut corners when it comes to quality, either. CHAR is the only place in town serving Wagyu eye-fillet beef from David Blackmore's award-winning, environmentally sustainable ranch in Australia. The Fullblood Wagyu cattle have bloodlines that can be traced back more than 70 years and are fed for 600 days using traditional Japanese farming methods—so you know your beef is going to be pretty amazing. The beef is served with grilled lobster, seared foie gras, black truffles and wild mushrooms. It's over-the-top indulgence for an over-the-top city.
The fun doesn't stop there—we like to keep things light and whimsical at the table, too. The Black Cod is served with star anise and lime syrup on the side and a paintbrush so budding Picassos can adorn their fish with extra flavour if they like. (Sorry, though, we can't provide you with an easel...) Beef-lovers will be able to choose from among six different hand-crafted steak knives imported from around the world—as well as five varieties of mustards and flavoured sea salts—presented to you at your table as if you are royalty. And the Banana Cheesecake? Just to mix things up a bit more, we serve it in a traditional Brie cheese box from France.