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Spring / Summer Festivals Preview: Foodie Fests

We're looking at festivals to wine and dine at today, Shanghai. Here's the big food events coming up in the next little while you can go to if you like.
By Apr 19, 2017 Dining
Festivals! To varying degrees of suckitude and non-suckitude are coming to Shanghai! Festivals to see music at, festivals to eat at, festivals to drink at, festivals to scornfully look at people playing hacky-sack at. They're coming Shanghai. And these are them.

Today, we're looking at food and bev festivals coming up in the next little while. Of course, most of these are providing live bands and DJs as well, along with the usual fun and games, but music isn't the main focus of these ones.

Unless you count like... the China Social Club or whatever. Pfffth. Yeah right.

(Just kidding!)

Come on back tomorrow for everything music related.


Lakeside Weekender

When: April 22, April 23

Where: Taihu Islands, Suzhou (2 hours from Shanghai via their own party bus)

Selling Points: Sack races, sunsets, hammocks, hiking, BBQs, good booze sponsors, boating, blue skies, campfires -- and a black light roller disco from your buds at Dragon Burn.

Tickets: Early Birds, 480rmb; Regular 580rmb; Flash Buy 280rmb. Flash buys are almost sold out. Get on those quick.

What Is It: It's like a summer camp for adults. A weekend(er) of willful infantalism brought to you by Dragon Adventures: "Get ready for a weekend by the lake with like-minded active travelers, creative minds and entrepreneurs. Camp out under the stars in Changxing, just two hours from Shanghai, and enjoy relaxing in a hammock, playing post-modern games, taking part in workshops, indulging in healthy foods, craft beer and wine, BBQ and bonfire." Sounds alright! Lots of fun, outdoorsy stuff planned for this one. BBQing in the great outdoors. When's the last time you did that? Egg toss! Beer Olympics! Rafting relay! Sunrise yoga! (That last one... eh...)

What to Expect: City-weary Shanghairen looking to escape the concrete jungle by diving headlong into the diversions of their youths. Lots of ins and outs to this thing though. Looks like a good time. Pictures look good anyways.

Feria de Abril

When: April 23, noon till midnight

Where: elefante (a really fun word to say in a huge, exaggerated Spanish accent incidentally)

Selling Points: My Spanish insider tells me this is quote "the party of the year, mang" unquote. He's no amateur either on that sort of thing so trust me that's a pretty solid recommendation.

Tickets: 280rmb in advance; 380rmb at the door.

What Is It: Feria de Abril (trans. "Ferrari of April"), probably some sort of traditional Spanish holiday, is a big daytime party that runs from noon until night with live music, raffles, alcohol, and food, food, food, flowing like an unending tide. It gets real. The food booths are from every Spanish-ey restaurant in town, backed by all the Shanghai Spanish cadre of chefs and booze dealers. They bring all their friends. Which, six degrees of Spanish separation, is everyone in Shanghai. Like 2,000 people showed up to this last year.

What to Expect: Dudes with really, really sweet hair drinking these giant balloon glasses of gin and tonics, talking utter shite.

Hot Sauce Festival

When: May 6, 2pm to 6pm

Where: Jalapeno

Selling Points: "All you can handle hot sauce samples from around the world and from locally produced hot pepper sauce hobbyists and restaurants." Another selling point: free-flow draft beer coming with that entry ticket.

Tickets: 218rmb pre-sales right here.

What Is It: From the makers of your yearly Chili Cook-Off Festival (AKA Ken and crew from Bubba's) comes a hot sauce festival promising to celebrate all things spicy. With their sponsors, Jalapeno, The Hot Box, Olmeca Tequila, and Tito’s Vodka they're serving up hot pepper sauces that are either available in Shanghai via retail or homemade by restaurateurs and chefs. The inaugural event will be held in conjunction with Cinco de Mayo at Jalapeno restaurant and bar. A mariachi band will provide live music and entertainment for the event. Ole.

What to Expect: I was a judge at the last chili fest and I almost got into it with some dude who was a for-real Rand Paul supporter. Also I met this cute, young Texan guy called Cody or Corey or something like that with a big cowboy hat who looked like he starred in gay porn. I'm really expecting both of those dudes to be there.


When: May 6, May 7, 12pm-10pm

Where: The Place

Selling Points: The creme de la creme of Shanghai's F&B community is FEAST'ing again: Kelley Lee and Willy's crews, Beth Cosgrove, and Jenny Gao, as well as new featured cooks Juan Campos (RAW) and Paul Eschbach (Jean Georges group). Kim Melvin will have a dessert-only stall. The bartender line-up: Raphael Holzer, Colin Tait, and Daniel An. There will also be a craft beer garden (Goose Island, Song, Moody Tongue) and "other artisan beverages". (Jaggerbombs? Artisinal jaggerbombs?)

Tickets: Tickets 50rmb per day. 90rmb for two days.

What Is It: Shanghai Supperclub and Social Supply team up to host FEAST, a food festival gathering some of Shanghai's top chefs on the rooftop of The Place. They've already got a few of these successfully in the books, with the main emphasis celebrating Shanghai's talent in the restaurant and bars scene. A select line-up of chefs, restaurateurs and mixology-ists is chosen each time to dish out the summer snacks and libations. They're paired with DJs and live music.

What to Expect: Movers and shakers in the court of Camden-lot. Foodies. People you used to go out all night to after-hours bars with but then they "grew up" and "got careers" and "whatever". They'll be there with their kids.


When: May 12, May 13, May 14

Where: Okura Garden Hotel. Hey, a nice central location. Nice.

Selling Points: They've got beer.

Tickets: Last year, these tickets were flowing freely all over town like so much... yeah, free beer. Look down on your desk, you've probably got like 7 of them from that event. If you can't get yourself sorted for one, click right here to order one. 50rmb to get in. We've also got the 320rmb home brewers course tickets too. (Info on that below.)

What Is it: The 2nd Edition of Beernanza (aka the Shanghai International Beer Festival) organized by Bevex in partnership with the Shanghai Brewers Association, the "event is the perfect opportunity for beer aficionados, beer lovers and the casual beer drinker to speak to company representatives and brewers responsible for some of their favorite brews." Oh, you don't say. The event is three days of beer, food, demos, and live music and DJ entertainment from Friday, May 12 to Sunday, May 15.

Here's an interesting option with this one: "The HomeBrew Classes Pre-Sale ticket includes entry to the event, a beer when you show up, five tokens for games at the event, and one private homebrew class. The class is on-site Saturday and / or Sunday, starting at 12pm. A five-hour class: afterwards, guests can take the beer they made home with them. "

What to Expect: A big expat crowd getting ccccrunk on the beers of the world.

Grande Affaire de Champagne - A Champagne Festival!

When: June 2 to June 4

Where: The Peninsula

Selling Points: "Each day offers a schedule that has been curated to reflect the sophistication, romance, and prestige of the Champagne lifestyle and nuances of traditional French culture."

Tickets: Tickets to the three-day event cost one soul (1) available for purchase 2327 6695 or email

What is it: They're saying it better than I ever could: "Three days of magnificently curated events will showcase Champagne from partner French maisons alongside gastronomic soirées, photography exhibitions, live auctions in rare Champagnes, vintage automobile showcases from Shanghai Auto Museum and more."

Sweet Jesus.

"The Peninsula Shanghai will also welcome special guest Phillipe Mille, a leading French chef with a two Michelin-starred restaurant in France’s Champagne region. In collaboration with the hotel’s very own Michelin star-rated Hans Zahner, Mille will prepare a unique six-course dinner with Champagne pairings is priced at 2,888rmb plus 16.6% surcharge."


"[The Grande Affaire will also include] gourmet Oyster Champagne brunches and themed parties taking place at the Terrace of No.1 Waitanyuan and Salon de Ning respectively. Unique events will include Caviar and Champagne Tasting sponsored by Kaluga Queen and Champagne Masterclass by world-renowned Antoine Gerbelle, leading Champagne journalist for Revue des Vins de France."

Blllalaarrrrrrg! Just want to quote the whole press release!

"The Peninsula Shanghai will partner with leading Champagne brands including Deutz, Duval-Leroy, Henriot, Tattinger and many more."


What to Expect: "The Grande Affaire de Champagne will offer an unrivaled programme to celebrate the extravagance and nostalgic beauty of one of the world’s most legendary appellations."

Chin chin, Shanghai. Never change!

Belgian Beer Weekend

When: May 20, May 21, 12pm to 10pm

Where: Tonglefang AKA The New Factories

Selling Points: They're promising "the largest selection of Belgian beers available" over two days. Taps serving from noon to 10pm.

Tickets: 50rmb entry. Beers on top.

What Is It: A bit of a mystery. It just came in. This one's being hosted by something called "V. Vision" with the support of the Belgian Beer Association. I googled "V. Vision" -- somehow I don't think an optometrist from Bentonville, Arizona is hosting a Belgian Beer Festival in Shanghai. They've got a huge Belgian Beer Weekend in Japan which covers like 6 different cities. Is that one connected to this one? Is this its own thing? Who can say. Some things are just unknowable I guess. Wish there was some technological innovation people could use to convey information about their event... maybe someone will invent one one day.

What to Expect: I guess beer? Seems likely.


Come back tomorrow for the big list of music festival happening in Shanghai and beyond.



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