Blue Frog Restaurant: Best Burger Place in Shanghai

Blue Frog: Bar and Grill, the best burger restaurant found so far, is only found in Beijing and Shanghai, China. The establishment started in April 2003 and has continued to flourish till now. I stumbled upon it when Alex Bau led an outing to Pudong. A Monday night special of buy 1 burger get 1 free caused a group of 6 to take an hour long subway ride to this magnificent place. Located in the basement of the Financial Center, customers see expensive marble floors and high quality facilities everywhere. Blue Frog is hidden in an inner alcove of the basement. The first thing we see is an awesomely decorated restaurant with a vibrant atmosphere. Not too light but not too dark, Blue Frog is definitely a cool place to hang out. The most surprising yet welcoming thing is the English speaking waiters. They do not speak perfectly, but it is always a pleasure to hear a language I can fully understand in China. I had a Montana burger with curly fries. It was amazing! The burger was juicy and delicious, while the fries were tasty. That experience alone made another group go to Blue Frog for brunch another day. The price on the other hand seemed steep. A currency conversion shows we spent 20 dollars, and because of the deal we only spent 10 dollars not including the drinks. But I believe to a native of China in the middle or lower class, the price of 85 kuai for a burger and 20-50 kuai for a drink is definitely still out of reach or a once a year type of meal. Looking around the restaurant, there were mostly wai-guo ren, or foreigners in Blue Frog. There were some Shanghai locals but at most 9 or 10 in the whole establishment. Blue Grog definitely does not receive a lot of Chinese customers and its market focuses on foreigners. So, China’s GDP may be growing exponentially every year, but the income of its people has not yet reached a level where the majority can affords cosmopolitan food. Modernization is slowly happening. Shanghai is transforming into an advanced and beautiful city. However, the people are far from consuming the products of urbanization. It may happen in a couple of decades but I believe the majority of people will stick to eating their 10-30 kuai meals.

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