Sunday, May 20, 2012

Aniseed 大茴香

Another semi-successful lunch at Aniseed Kerry Parkside.  Like I said before consistency seems to be an issue there but I like Vietnamese food so much I keep going back hoping for the best.  Luckily this time my well-cooked beef pho (RMB360 came out rather nice and piping hot.
I was not as happy with my curry beef stew (RMB48) on the other hand.  The curry sauce lacked complexity and themeat was not tender.  It didn't come with any side dish like baguette or rice which made it a bit awkward.
Bánh cuốn (RMB32).  The rice pastry split here and there once again.  Not that it affected the taste (which was rather good) but it was a lot less appetizing to look at that's all.
Aniseed 大茴香
L1115, Kerry Parkside, 1378 HuaMu Rd. (nr. FangDang Rd.), Pudong, Shanghai.  Tel: 6190-8006

Baker and Spice

A quick lunch at Baker and Spice. Chicken and mushroom sandwich (RMB45).  It was slightly better than what you would get from Pret A Manger but at this priceI would expect a bit more.
Nasi Goreng (RMB58).  I had to try it as most other customers were ordering it that day.  It's definitely better value than the sandwich and although the rice could use more flavours it wasn'y bad overall.
Deluxe carrot cake (RMB16).  Another popular item and it didn't disappoint.
Baker and Spice
LG1, IFC Mall, 8 Century Ave., Pudong. Tel: 5015 2375

Jean Georges

Another excellent lunch at Jean Georges. Crispy crab cake, pink peppercorn mustard and exotic fruits.  I wish there was more crab cakes!
Sea scallops with caramelised cauliflower, caper-raisin emulsion.
Parmesan crusted organic chicken, artichokes, basil and lemon butter.  I was told by my friend that the dish was so good it's all she would pick from the list of main courses.
Baked salmon with black truffle crust, smooth and crispy parsnips.  Salmon was a bit overcooked but I was happy.
Strawberry calamansi tart, lemongrass sorbet.
Jean Georges chocolate cake, vanilla ice cream.
At RMB238/person I seriously think it's the best lunch in town.
Jean Georges
4/F, Three On the Bund, Shanghai.  Tel: 6321-7733

Friday, May 04, 2012

Frankie's Place

I had major cravings for Singapore noodles for a while and headed to Frankie's.  It was a smart choice as Frankie's probably has the best Singapore noodles (RMB24) in town!  Packed full of flavours it was reasonably spicy as well,  just like a good Singapore noodles should be.  If I have to nitpick then perhaps they could use fresh prawns?  It is an unreasonable request given the price they are charging.
Fish ball soup (RMB25).  Good fish balls and I LOVED the chili soy dip.
Sambal fish cakes (RMB20).  I enjoyed them very much and I particularly loved the texture of the cakes.  I suspect it was the sambal sauce which made me very thirsty afterwards. Perhaps I will try plain fish cakes next time.
Frankie's Place
546 Huang Hua Rd. (nr. Hong Jing Rd.), Shanghai.  Tel: 5476-1068


It must have been at least 7 years since I visited Watami in Hong Kong and I was more than surprise to see a very similar menu in Shanghai after all these years!

Pork cutlet in pot (RMB33).  It came with a raw egg which you cook in the pot.  It's like katsu don without the rice.  It tasted exactly like the one I had in Hong Kong.  How do they do that?
Tuna sashimi (RMB49).  It didn't taste of tuna at all.  It could be any fish but at least it was clean and I didn't get a tummy ache after.
Sapporo miso ramen (RMB39).  It didn't remind me of the ramen I had in Sapporo as the soup base was nowhere creamy and buttery enough.  Yet it was more enjoyable than the one I had in Wagamama.
Basement 1, Kerry Parkside, 1378 Hua Mu Rd., Pudong, Shanghai. Tel: 3372-7988

Jujube Vegetarian Lifestyle 枣子树

My vegetarian girlfriend had cravings for Chinese vegetarian dishes aka fake meats and Jujube was the perfect place to go.  A very clean and busy eatery and a menu with pictures, we decided to pig out.

Vegetarian char siu pork (RMB22) made out of tofu skin.  It's got a thick sweet soy based sauce on top to make this semi crunchy "pork" really tasty.  It's probably extremely unhealthy for you!
Stir-fried green beans (RMB30).  Great dish and we liked how dry it came out.
Sweet and sour fake chicken (RMB45).  The "chicken" is some kind of soy product dipped in batter and fried.  It didn't taste like chicken but it had a nice texture.  The sweet and sour sauce was excellent and it was actually more satisfying then the real thing, as I felt very wholesome eating soy protein!
Steamed dumplings (RMB12).  Excellent dumplings with chopped veggies.
Fried "chicken" ding in hot and spicy sauce (RMB42).  It didn't resemble chicken at all and the pieces of soy product were too dry.  The sauce was nice though.
Vegetarian pad Thai (RMB28).  A bit bland in taste and too greasy.  Will stick with plain brown rice (RMB4) next time.
Braised lion's head (RMB44).  Dough and vegetable balls made to look and taste like the meat version.  It was way too doughy and the sauce on the outside did not penetrate the dough balls at all.  In any case the sauce was not very nice to begin with so we took a bite and left the rest.
Jujube Vegetarian Lifestyle 枣子树
258 Feng Xian Rd. (nr. Jiang Ning Rd.), Shanghai.  Tel: 6215-7566

The Food Central

I found myself back to Food Central again even though I was never very impressed with the food. I guess the idea of having a menu with food from different regions works when you are with friends and no one seems to know what he or she wants to eat.

Ben Gazara pizza with peppers, eggplant, mushroom, mozzarella and goats cheese, olive poached crushed tomatoes and fried herbs (RMB95).  The descriptions looked so good but it came out really wet and soggy. Let's say there are cheaper and nicer pizzas in own.
Grilled hamburger (RMB95).  I added a fried egg for an extra RMB10.  It was tasty alright but way too much salt in the patty and on the fries!  I suffered the whole afternoon afterwards.
The Food Central
308 Anfu Rd. (nr. Wukand Rd.), Shanghai.  Tel: 3461-9071

Alla Torre

We wanted pizza all of a sudden and instead of getting the usual pizza delivery we thought we might as well try Alla Torre, which is a stone throw from where we live.  Weekend brunch seemed like a good deal:  starters and desserts were buffet styled, and you get to choose from a big list of pasta, pizza or risotto for RMB88, or main courses for RMB118.  And if you are really hungry and can have both pasta/pizza/risotto and a main course for RMB138. 

A few of the items from the buffet starters.  Mortadella was a big hit with my kids.
Rigatoni alla Puttanesca.  It was actually outstanding!  The sauce was rich and very flavourful with a nice hint of anchovies.
Breaded pork lion.  I ordered the dish for my kids but they were to busy eating other things.  Pork loin was lean and well seasoned.  It exceeded my expectation totally (as the place wasn't very busy).
Pizza with cooked ham and champignon mushrooms.  We liked the thin-crust pizza but it was probably the weaker dish amongst the rest. 
Desserts were simple with fruit and cakes.  With its reasonable-priced menu and more than OK food  it's not a bad spot to be if you are in the area.

Alla Torre
165 Lujiazui Huan Rd. (nr. Hua Yuan Shi Qiao Rd.), Pudong, Shanghai.  Tel: 3383-0577

Aniseed 大茴香

I admit it was way past lunch hours when I got to Aniseed at 2pm. Still I felt very frustrated at the slip of quality of the food. The food at the Kerry location was never as good as SWFC but still the inconsistency is unacceptable.

The well-cooked beef pho (RMB36) which was really good on my previous visit turned out to be very chewy and it wasn't even hot enough.
My spring rolls (RMB22) were so dry they must have been cooked a while ago and left there and reheated. 
Bánh cuốn (RMB32).  I could not work out why all the rice pastry had big holes on it (they are cleverly covered by the sliced sausages.  
Aniseed 大茴香
L1115, Kerry Parkside, 1378 HuaMu Rd. (nr. FangDang Rd.), Pudong, Shanghai.  Tel: 6190-8006

Golden Bull Vietnamese Restaurant 金牛苑

Lunch at Golden Bull with a friend. Appetizer platter for two (RMB96).  Very expensive for the few pieces of regular Vietnamese fried things.
Saigon pork ribs (RMB56).   We were not sure what was so Saigon about the ribs, as the marinate  tasted more like Chinese cuisine.  Pork was quite fatty and pretty greasy.

 The signature dish pho in curry broth (RMB48) was quite a disappointment.  The curry broth lacked complexity which a good curry sauce should have.  Anybody can mix turmeric with water and cook noodles in it.
Stir-fried morning glory with belacan sauce (RMB38).  A fairly standard Malaysian dish ad it was probably the one we enjoyed most.
Golden Bull Vietnamese Restaurant 金牛苑
3/F,  IFC Mall, 8 Century Ave.. Pudong, Shanghai.  Tel: 6190-8170

Shook! Shanghai

With a big menu consists of dishes around the world Shook is not a bad option if you are out on the Bund and want somewhere comfortable to sit and dine.The set lunch menu was a really good deal too with 3 courses at around RMB200.

Greek salad.
Red curry chicken with crispy rice cakes to start. 
Pastrami sandwich.
Sea bass.
Pad Thai.
Ice cream dessert.  Every tasted reasonably well especially the South East Asian dishes.
Shook! Shanghai
The Swatch Art Peace Hotel, 23 Nanjing Rd. East, Shanghai. Tel: 2329-8522

Wednesday, May 02, 2012

Paulaner @ Binjiang

Dinner at Paulaner turned out to be a bit of a disaster when the cocky waiter, who insisted he didn't have to write down our orders, missed my husband's main course. And we had to actually had to suggest to him that perhaps some fries would be nice for the poor guy. 

Beef goulash soup (RMB45).  Thick and creamy it was good for the cold winter night.
Sausage salad with gherkins, oinion and Emmental (RMB68).  Loved the acidic dressing and gherkins.  I can have this everyday.
Mixed salad plate with cabbage, cucumber, carrots and topped with potato salad (RMB48).  Box-standard salad.
Pork sausages with sauteed potatoes (RMB98).  Nice pork sausages and good gravy.
Pork schnitzel (RMB118).  A solid dish.
Grilled pork knuckle (RMB168).  Tender meat and crispy crackling.  Portion seems a little small?
Paulaner @ Binjiang
Riverside Promenade, Binjiang Dadao, Pudong, Shanghai.  Tel: 6888-3935