of many new Italians in our pages this month, Binjiang Avenue’s Acquolina is
helmed by a Japanese chef creating Southern Italian-style dishes such as
handmade pappardelle in an Iberian pork and porcini sauce (138RMB) and a
superb garoupa (228RMB) with clams bathed in an umami-rich broth. Set on
the same strip as TGI Friday’s, the restaurant’s excellent cooking is
unfortunately not matched by its design, with blue tablecloths and a thick
patterned carpet evoking more of a 1990’s hotel lobby than modern Shanghai,
though the huge anemone-filled fish tank does add some life to the scenery.
’n’ chips shop Angry Fish has joined the fray at 70 Yongkang Lu with a
small, utilitarian shop serving a full platter including tasty flounder, cod,
onion rings, calamari and chips for 98RMB, plus sandwiches (38RMB) and crêpes (40RMB).
CaliBurger, the cult diner modelled after In-N-Out
burger, has expanded from its Hongkou branch to 1818 Nanjing Xi Lu in the new
Eco City Mall. This branch serves an expanded drinks menu including craft
beers, Californian wines and cocktails in a 200sqm dining room and 150sqm
is finally getting its ‘first authentic British restaurant’ according to former
UK banker Harry Spencer who moved to Shanghai last year expressly to launch Mr
Harry. Opening late this month on the fifth floor at 819 Nanjing Xi Lu, Mr
Harry’s will serve mainstays like fish ’n’ chips, Sunday roasts, bangers ’n’
mash, Eton Mess and bread and butter pudding. Spencer says that ‘when dining at
Mr Harry, clients will feel like they are in Britain.’
Jean Georges Vongerichten’s third Three on the Bund
restaurant is set to open later this year. He and his Korean-American wife
Marja are collaborating on an upscale Korean restaurant which will take over
the defunct Evian spa space. Says Vongerichten, ‘The design is crazy, it’s
going to be a very zen restaurant.’ The cuisine will be ‘semi authentic’, he
says, with kimchee, stews, soups, noodles and an in-table charcoal grill
where diners can cook veggies, chicken and pork as well as wagyu beef, scallop
and lobster. He also reveals that they will undertake a full renovation of Jean
Georges restaurant in time for its 10th anniversary next year. See www.timeoutshanghai.com
for the full interview.
Hotel’s Issimo, part of the successful Salvatore Cuomo Group, has a new
chef and concept offering lower costs and more casual cuisine. With new
breakfast, lunch, an early bird dinner and an à la carte menu, 26-year-old chef
Roby Barazzutti is serving dishes like a brilliant creamy mint, asparagus and
goat cheese risotto (98RMB) and crispy calamari with slivers of zucchini and a
bright rocket salad (78RMB).
has launched a second branch at 207 Mengzi Lu
serving French wines, cocktails and a simple menu like an excellent 188RMB
cheese and cold cuts platter, fluffy pizzas and luxurious waffles. Their third
branch on Dagu Lu, a two-story 320sqm space with a terrace, is also opening
soon offering a kids’ playroom where parents can drop off their children
upstairs while they enjoy dining on the first floor. Childcare runs 50RMB/hour
which includes a kid’s meal, and 150RMB for the whole day.
Bund 22’s European restaurant Red Door (formerly German brauhaus Brix before
that) has transformed into modern Thai restaurant Lotus Red, and a new
Vietnamese joint, Pho Co, has opened in a handsome former Concession
villa with a generous terrace on Changle Lu.