On the sixth floor of the stratified Shanghai-elite incubator that is Bund-3, resides Laris. Head-to-toe in white marble and a killer skyline peeking through the window, it has the appearance (and probably spaciousness) of Jay-Z’s bathroom.
Something we’re growing used to in China, the five-star feeling dissipates when the front desk glares at the computer, tells you no reservation exists, then argues on the phone before leading you to a table leaving you hanging with your jacket. Not exactly Mandarin Oriental standard.
The pleasure rebounds, however, as the amouse bouche arrives (more specifically: immediately after the waiter has described what an amouse bouche is – necessary?) a micro froth adorned chilled cucumber soup. On to a well-sourced and simply dressed beef carpaccio. We know we’re in David Laris’ reputedly safe hands.
A Foie Gras stuffed Squab of silken tenderness confirms why Laris has a reputation topping the list of Shanghai’s best. Apricot Panacotta, my favourite, topped the run down, crowned by a selection of chocolates made on-site in their cute chocolatier – the window of which smartly beckons for attention as you visit the bathrooms on the way out - "a box to go sir?".