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Yakitori you can bank on

By Matt Hodges ( Shanghai Star ) Updated: 2015-01-18 07:11:04

Yakitori you can bank on

Beef on sizzling skillet [Photo provided to Shanghai Star]

Banker offers much more than just chicken on skewers. For its legion of regulars, it is a welcome lunchtime refuge from fast-paced city life, as Matt Hodges finds out.

As the name suggests, Banker is a classy, well-dressed yakitori restaurant with cedar furnishings, hanging lanterns and a homely vibe that offers terrific lunch sets for around 50 yuan ($8).

While you may not cross town to eat here due to Shanghai’s wealth of Japanese dining options, it is hugely popular with residents and office workers in this wealthy neighborhood just a short walk from Tianzifang.

Among the grilled meat, the succulent ox tongue, grease-free chicken wings and generously peppered streaky pork are must-eats.

As a dining concept, yakitori originally denoted chicken on skewers, so you almost feel obliged to select at least one piece of poultry.

The fresh eel in sweet soy sauce is also superb — if you don’t mind splashing out for it.

Chef Jiang Qianjing from Anhui province has come up with four special sauces, but good luck figuring out what is in them. Most of the grilled food is salted, however — he saves the big guns for the bigger dishes.

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