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This Is What That Big Red Building South of Xintiandi Is

Why is it called The Roof though? Sorry, no idea.
2021-05-10 19:00:00
Photos: Angela Leung
"Mallcore" is a series of columns in which SmSh writers explore the many gigantic and baffling shopping malls and complexes in this gigantic and baffling city, and then let us know about the fantastic, wondrous and / or shocking and terrible things in them, preferably from a Ballardian, dystopian, existentialist quagmire sort of perspective that cries out in agony about the disenfranchisement of the modern human condition.

Another week, another new F&B hub in Shanghai.

The Roof opened over the May holiday just a few blocks south of Xintiandi, right opposite to another cultural hub Uni Elite. Walking down from Xintiandi it's hard to miss because of its plant covered, bold red exterior, courtesy of French architect Jean Nouvel (who also did Museum of Art Pudong).

It's a mixed use kind of space, top floors are for offices, and the first few floors are for food and retail. From our first visit The Roof appears to be adding a few new names and concepts to Shanghai's F&B scene. It's still work in progress, but some of the places have already opened up to make it worth the trek down.  If you're looking for something new to eat and drink, this is what's there right now.

Witchcraft, a bar serving local craft beer and western food; Moofin, a floral French bakery and café with simple brunch dishes on whole-wheat muffins; Gentle by the artist, a fusion restaurant featuring Japanese and western cuisines, led by Chef Hirofumi Tsukino from Tokyo. Besides that, en Vie cellar and bar is soft opening from 10am at this point.

Popular chains like Brut Eatery, a stylish lunch spot, have also left their footprints in the landmark; this branch comes with a bar setting in the evening. Additionally, Mr. Shaker’s group has brought a cosy and compact bar Shaker Logic next to Toyou Books - a bookshop that offers alcoholic drinks.

Coffee brands Algebraist and warming. have set their locations here, together with Chocday for chocolate and fresh ice-cream.

A few more restaurants are opening soon, including: Caminetto, an Italian bistro by the ex-head chef from Mercato and known for their woodfired pizzas; Yuzu, a Japanese bar and restaurant with seats around the kitchen; Soupublic, which specializes in - believe it or not - soups; Socii, where western-Asian style food is served with a selection of wines; as well as Rich & Light, which focuses on comparatively healthy food like salads.

Currently still under construction are Spice Bazaar Bistro and X Space - an exhibition venue dedicated to arts, music, plays and more.

So there they are, many new options to fill your stomach. You can see a full listing of everything at The Roof as it develops here. And for more of Shanghai's F&B hubs click here.