New Burger Shop in Shanghai Draws Huge Crowds for Its Crumbling Decor

Designed in American vintage industrial style — sometimes called ‘Syrian style’ in China, new takeaway joint Cheers Burger is all the rage in Shanghai right now

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10:49 AM HKT, Tue October 25, 2022 1 mins read

It may have only opened at the beginning of this month, but Cheers Burger is arguably the most popular burger shop in Shanghai. Even before takeaway officially started, its vintage industrial storefront drew tastemakers and influencers to pause and pose for the ’Gram.


The burger joint offers cushions for takeaway customers to sit on the road

Run by three young female founders, the takeaway eatery only operates six hours a day during lunch and dinner, and it often runs out of supplies. Nevertheless, that doesn’t stop people from lining up and devouring the burgers on the street.

Cheers Burger sells American-style beef burgers in nine varieties, with prices ranging from 48 to 115 RMB (about 7 to 16 USD). The most expensive one reportedly includes a whopping 80 grams of foie gras. Beyond Meat is also available for vegetarians.

cheers burger shanghai

Orders from Cheers Burger

The hype, however, is primarily due to its architectural style. With wooden boards and weathered cement bricks, Cheers Burger is designed in American vintage industrial style, or, as some in China call it, ‘Syrian style.’

The so-called ‘Syrian style’ first blew up on the internet in 2020 and features brick walls, shades of gray, faded paint, and cracked concrete — design elements that some in China associate with war-torn Syria. It has since been seen in many internet-famous cafes nationwide, as industrial style and minimalist fashion have become trendy in China.

cheers burger shanghai

Influencers pose in front of Cheers Burger

Some netizens have rightly criticized the term ‘Syrian style’ as it problematically capitalizes on the tragedy of war.

“Imagine foreigners labeling a building as ‘the burning of the Old Summer Palace style.’ War is cruelty; it should never become fashionable,” wrote a user on Xiaohongshu, China’s equivalent of Instagram.

However, with the term going viral and gaining wider recognition, ‘Syrian style’ is still seen in ad campaigns and influencer marketing. And while it appears Cheers Burger is not active on social media, there is no shortage of influencers, bloggers, and media outlets promoting the new burger purveyor using the problematic ‘Syrian style’ label.

All images via Xiaohongshu

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