And so another restaurant week ends. I managed to have a great meal on day one at Sir Elly’s at The Peninsula Hotel. The crispy risotto with broiled squab was really an excellent as a starter, while the meringue raspberry cream pavlova dessert was a nice way to end the meal. The main course for me was probably the least impressive (braised short rib with longan) and overall, I think some people might have found the amount of food to be slightly inadequate, although I’m quite a small eater so for me, it was fine.
I also had dinner at the Waldorf Astoria’s Grand Brasserie and have to say the food this time wasn’t quite as good as the last time – the salad was a little too acidic for my taste (the “slow poached” egg was also cold, but I am not sure if it was meant to be) while the duck breast which I had as a main course was a touch too chewy. I absolutely LOVED the mushroom risotto they did last September, so it was a bit disappointing. And if you look on the Dining City website, almost every review rates the service higher than the food and my own experience was consistent with this.
The venue and service were both excellent. It was nice to be asked if we were ready for them to serve the appetiser and I especially appreciated (and was somewhat surprised by) the complimentary glass of Champagne offered before the meal – which I happily accepted – as well as the glass of dessert wine offered at the end of the meal which I politely declined, as I am not fond of sweet wines. And while I don’t like sweet wines, I have nothing against sweet food – the dessert was for me the only saving grace in the food department.
I only booked two restaurant week dinners but a friend of mine booked restaurant week lunch at El Willy – which is actually one of my favourite restaurants in Shanghai – and kindly invited me to fill one of the seats. I was especially excited to see their new Bund location since their former location on Dong Hu lu is now closed. Both the new location (great views) and the restaurant week lunch didn’t disappoint. Every customer gets to choose a soup, a salad, a slow cooked egg dish and a main course, and the meal was concluded with a dessert, although there were no choices offered here. Everything was small, but for a lunch, it was perfect. Each course was served very quickly which is what you want at lunch time during a weekday. The only blot on the otherwise perfect service was the length of time we had to wait for our change and receipt, despite asking two different people to chase it. But at 118 RMB per person, I’m not complaining. And in fact, out of the 3 meals I’ve had this week, El Willy wins the prize in terms of value for money by a long way.
So all in all, a very pleasant restaurant week has come and gone and I’m already looking forward to the next one this summer. In the mean time, there are some very good deals to be had around the city which I’ll be sharing with you all very soon. Stay tuned!