After almost two weeks of lamb and noodles in northern China, it was a nice change to sit down to something different in Shanghai.

We had a great lunch at the very elegant Ruijin Hotel. The estate was built by the Morriss family who owned the oldest English newspaper in China. The colonial buildings and gorgeous gardens fill a city block, and its elegant gates filter out Shanghai’s noise and traffic.

Ruijin’s most notable fame of late is the fact President Bill Clinton ate lunch here. I dunno. My parents thought it was a big deal.

Our meal began with a choice of freshly squeezed orange or grapefruit juice. Believe me, after the lukewarm pop and beer in Xinjiang and Gansu, the juice was heavenly. The service was impeccable, and the food fabulous.

The chefs here are famous for their pastries. I guess that’s why three different sweets were served during lunch. This one was filled with ground nuts, and detailed to look like a walnut. Cool eh?

Ruijin Hotel, Shanghai