It’s nice having visitors. Take that with a grain of salt because I’m very new here (Shanghai) myself, but regardless, out-of-towners tend to lead to worthy, if not extravagant, meals. We all had to hustle a bit for this one – the kitchen was closing soon, and I had just gotten in from Changsha in Hunan province, and Myra and her sister and brother were heading over from a visit to the fabric market for tailored clothes and to a *ahem* very reputable forum for *ahem* very authentic handbags, sneakers, and the like. But our collective hunger was probably a good thing, and it’s nice that Myra and her family are fairly adventurous food lovers.
With prime location on the sixth floor of an upscale shopping center in the middle of the Bund, facing out across the river at Pudong’s skyscrapers, the restaurant is home to long-time Shanghai-based French chef Paul Pairet. I’ve never looked at the regular food menu, but I imagine it can be rather daunting, since the lunch prix fixe listing was already tough to manage (in a good way). Relative to the a-la-carte menu, Mr. and Mrs. Bund’s lunch set is a deal (200RMB for two courses, 250RMB for three), without sacrificing the a-la-carte menu’s broad selection of appetizers and entrees.
The meal started with an airy, lemony can of tuna mousse and a basket of various warm breads (not pictured), a good initial sign of the restaurant”s sophistication. We ordered with sharing in mind: beef carpaccio venise, steamed asparagus, arugula mushroom truffle salad, and foie gras mousse with raisin hazelnut crumble (the last one mine).
The mousse was good, rich and flavorful – but the raisin hazelnut crumble was too distracting, almost dessert-like. Despite its simplicity, the steamed asparagus (with the can of olive oil supplied by the waiter) was my favorite.
For the mains: black cod in a bag (mine), scallops lemon-ginger, and long short rib teriyaki, again all to share.
The black cod was delicious, tender and well-marinated in Cantonese sauce. I’m not sure how different this “heat-proof bag” the cod was supposedly simmered in was from cooking sous vide, but I’d mainly wanted relatively lighter fare than the short ribs, which Myra and I had really enjoyed the last time we were here.
For dessert, I got the rum raisin vanilla milk rice. In contrast to the foie gras mousse, I really liked the difference in texture from top to bottom, and also that the dessert wasn’t overly sweet. I guess rice pudding generally isn’t, but with the toppings, it could’ve been overdone.
Hopefully, we’ll catch the lunch set on a day with better weather. We agreed to a table indoors and without a view (there are both outdoor seating and window-side tables) mostly because of the dreary rain, but I imagine there are some days when the view can actually be cheerful.
Mr. and Mrs. Bund
Bund 18, 6/F, 18 Zhongshan Dong Yi Lu (near Nanjing Dong Lu)
(1) Asparagus XL Bearnaise, (2) Black Cod in a Bag, (3) Long Short Rib Teriyaki, and (4) Rum Raisin Vanilla Milk Rice Pudding