Italian food is one of the world’s richest and most varied, with many of its dishes a reflection of how a few simple ingredients can make for a rich dining experience. And indeed the presence of Italian restaurants in almost every corner of the world is proof of its immense popularity and appeal. In fact, here in China Italian cuisine is the one most often associated with Western food, which while obviously a very unjust and uneducated assertion to make in regards to all the other delicious cuisines out there, does again demonstrate the influence Italian food exerts throughout the world. Pizza, pasta, mozzarella – what would we do without them? Fortunately, as western culture incessantly seeps into China more and more, the choices for Italian dining are also multiplying continuously – a fact that is very clear right here in Shenzhen. Below we list some of Shenzhen’s best Italian restaurants.
Restaurant hotels don’t always have the best reputations, since many just cater to hotel guests and infrequent visitors. But that is not so at Sheraton’s Mezzo and Ritz-Carlton’s Paletto. Mezzo Italian Restaurant is set in an elegant and chic setting, its decor simple yet ambient. Mezzo’s primary strength lies in the fact that it prepares its dishes using only the finest, freshest ingredients in a menu that changes according to the seasons. Dishes are prepared in an open-show kitchen for all to see, a sure sign of the restaurant’s confidence in its cooking staff. Mezzo’s wine list is impressive too, with a fine selection of wines from all over the world. Diners who don’t want to buy a full bottle can choose a glass from their extensive “wines of the world” glass list. Since the restaurant’s opening in 2007, it has garnered the highly coveted “Italian Restaurants of Best Style” award three times at the Modern Weekly Best Restaurants Selection Awards.
1) Mezzo Italian Restaurant - Sheraton
Add: 2nd Floor, East Wing, Sheraton Shenzhen Futian Hotel, Great China International Exchange Square, Fuhua Lu, Futian District, Shenzhen
Tel: 0755 8282 6199
Opening times: Monday – Friday 12:00 PM – 2:30 PM; 6:00 PM – 10:30 PM Daily
Paletto is located on the second floor of the five star Ritz-Carlton hotel, and like Mezzo counts as one of Shenzhen’s finest Italian restaurants. Paletto’s focus is on quality and authenticity, with many ingredients imported directly from Italy. Its top quality dishes succeed in embodying traditional flavours whilst incorporating a modern twist. Evening dining is usually accompanied by soft background music which together with its tasteful decor creates an intimate, romantic atmosphere. The menu offers a gourmet selection of anti-pasti, pizza, pasta, grilled seafood and a variety of regional dishes from Italy. Its vast wine selection, top quality Italian fare and excellent service guarantees one of the best dining experiences in the city.
Run by three Italians, Milano’s Italian Restaurant is one of the most authentic in Shenzhen. With a great selection of appetizers, pasta, pizza and many other specialities, Milano’s offers good Italian food at decent prices. The menu has a strong emphasis on Southern Italian dishes, many following the recipes of chef Benedetto Stella’s grandmother. 80% of the ingredients are flown in from Italy and the rest are locally produced, which means that their classic cuisine embodies the authentic flavours of Italy.
Though the food doesn’t come cheap, Trattoria Da Angelo is another Italian favourite in Shenzhen. The restaurant itself is conveniently located next to Coco Park and includes both an inside and outside seating area. Its most popular dishes are the pizzas fresh out of the brick oven. The Italian chef also prepares other Italian favourites with a strong emphasis on fresh seafood. The restaurant’s success has lead to two branches, one in Shekou and the other in Futian.
4) Trattoria Italiana Da Angelo’s (Futian)
Add: 235-236 Northen Park, Shopping Park, Mintian Lu, Futian District, Shenzhen
Tel: 0755 25313842
Serving mainly Italian dishes and some other Western specialities, Grissini Cafe is one of the better choices for those craving Italian food on a lower budget. Located by Shekou Seaworld Plaza, the decor is modern and its servings generous. It’s most popular dishes are the freshly baked pizzas and its large selection of pastas. Its wine menu is also quite decent and a large selection of drinks are available from its bar. However Grissini lags behind the restaurants mentioned above in terms of authenticity.
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