Restaurant Review: Christmas Special at Cucina

Merry Christmas!!! Happy Holidays!!! So last night was Christmas Eve, and in my family, we alway make a point of going somewhere special to celebrate. This year was no exception. After a long and rather arduous search, we decided on the Christmas special in Cucina, an Italian restaurant in the Grand Hyatt


The Grand Hyatt is located in the JinMao Tower, the third highest building in Shanghai. The actual hotel starts on the 54th floor and Cucina is on the 58th. The Hyatt has 5 other restaurants a cafe and a bar. For more information click here

View from the Cafe
View from the Cafe. It looks all the way to the top of the building

The dinner cost 688RMB(106.46USD) and requires patrons to prebuy tickets, so my expectations were pretty high.


We were at one of the best hotels in Shanghai, so need less to say, the environment was AMAZING!!!!! We arrived a bit early so we just hung out in the Cafe. Everything was very fancy, well decorated and despite being in China, full of Christmas spirit. However, the Cafe’s offerings were overpriced to the max so we skipped


A short half-hour later, we were led into the restaurant itself. I must say, I was impressed. It was simply decorated and had the feel of an elegant Italian villa decked out for Christmas. Best of all, the kitchen was open so patrons could watch the cooking. To make things even better, we got a window side table with full view of the bund. Sadly, it was raining so none of the pictures came out good. 😦



Since it was a Christmas special, the menu was set and to be honest, I was initially underwhelmed by the lack of choice. 1 Appetizer, 2 entree choices and dessert wasn’t even mentioned. I soon found out why.20151224_180756_resized 20151224_180729_resized

The dinner was a semi buffet. Essentially, it was a free for all selection of seafood, traditional italian eats, cheeses, salad and toasted bread. It was absolutely amazing, especially the seafood. There was even free flow drinks and sparkling wine.Totally worth the price.

I got 2 more plates of this stuff afterwards
I got 2 more plates of this stuff afterwards

Aside from the buffet, they also served us some pasta and a delicious house made thin crusted pepperoni pizza. The pizza was good but I didn’t like the sauce for the pasta, although the noodles were well done


Despite all the good things about the appetizer buffet, the entree was sub-par. We had 2 choices: Baked cod with potato cake, mushrooms, brussel sprouts and sauce or Slow cooked beef tenderloin with potato cake, mushrooms, brussel sprouts and sauce. My parents and I ordered the fish and my brother ordered the beef


The fish was well cooked but lacked seasoning and the sauce was pretty gross. Everything on the plate had a greasy feel and wasn’t really that appetizing. I was especially pissed that I only got 4 mushrooms and 3 brussel sprouts. One thing I do commend them on is the small portions and my brother said the beef was delicious. Who knows? Anyways, the entree wasn’t worth it.

What about dessert?

20151224_191321_resized 20151224_191254_resized

Enough said. By the way, it was unlimited.


The service charge was 15%, but if it were up to me, I would give them at least 20. The waiters were absolutely phenomenal. They were quick, attentive and very nice. There was this one French waiter who joked around with us and even tried to teach my dad how to pour wine. Aside from the waiters, the head chef would also appear from time to time and ask how was the food

Overall Impression

Overall, I thought the dinner was amazing and so was the restaurant. While it was expensive, I’m pretty sure I ate well over my share of seafood, so definitely worth it. I would like to return at a different time and try out some of the other entrees and pizzas. For more information, Check out this link:

Until next time, Happy Holidays!!!!!!!!!!!!


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