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  • Not wishing to venture too far on a mid-week catch up with a couple of friends, we decided to meet halfway, and I suggested The Cannery, which I have since renamed The Smoke House on Yuyuan Lu, more of that later.

    After squeezing through the split glass entrance door, we were seated at the lounge-style dining tables, which I frankly just don’t get, if I would have wanted to be dining at a sofa and coffee table I would have stayed at home and ordered a takeaway, we moved to the high bar type tables, which has four high bar stools with a postage size table that's cluttered with all manner of useless items.

    Ordered a couple of Pilsners and a Classic Margarita to start off with.

    Whilst waiting for the main courses to arrive ordered the following to nibble on

    Salt n Pepa Calamari – like the Holy Grail, my quest continues to find a decent plate of Calamari in Shanghai, and this feeble attempt was not one of them.  My dining partners are from South Africa, where I too have lived for a number of years, and have to say the best Calamari, and they agreed has been from the southern waters off the African Continent, and cooked to perfection, and not difficult to execute either.

    Crab n Shrimp Cake This dish passed muster.

    Seared Scallop & lobster risotto – but with a crayfish rather than actual lobster flesh, the risotto served al dente overall a decent dish and portion size

    Black Angus Flap Meat – both ordered medium rare, and served at the correct temperature as ordered, came with a dish of beans, and thin cut potato fries, the meat was ready sliced and piled up, see image overall no complaints, but call the cut a flank or skirt steak, not flap meat.

    The private room at the back of the restaurant has some sort fire pit inside where wood was being burnt, did not appear to have any food cooked over the pit, as a result, the entire venue was smoky, two days later my clothes still smelled from the smoke.

    The service was friendly and efficient, the music far too loud, and had to raise one’s voice to be heard.

    We ordered several more drinks and sat outside on a regular table and chairs, again squeezing through the split glass entrance door, which is rather nonsensical.

    Damages for 3 pax came to 1,686 or 562 per head.

    Can’t say I would be returning anytime soon, just not my cup of tea.

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SmartReviews is SmartShanghai’s crack squad of amateur reviewers, eating their way around the city and writing about it. They have been chosen from a large pool of applicants and given a set of strict guidelines to follow to make sure their reviews are honest, informed and fair to both potential customers and the restaurants themselves.