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A glass of complimentary Prosecco is how every restaurant on or near the Bund should welcome their customers. Velluto knows that in order to be brushing shoulders with the top brass in the neighborhood, it's a necessary gesture.

This nice touch is one of many that this classic Italian restaurant offers. The others include some very knowledgeable chefs, a well-formed menu and a drizzle or two of 15-year-old balsamic vinegar, suspended in some high quality extra virgin olive oil. A chunk of doused ciabatta never tasted so good.

With that established, what follows is a fine sojourn through haute cuisine. It’s not all mainstream Italian and we took an opportunity to explore the more curious options on Velluto’s menu. An open faced sandwich of double smoked Scottish salmon, ricotta and poached quail eggs (RMB128) was silky smooth and luxurious in every bite. The fish and cheese were exemplary, complementing one another in an effortless way -- a theme that continued throughout the meal.

A vegetable ragu served with coarse ribbons of durum wheat paccheri (RMB118) raised the bar even higher. Despite the absence of meat, it possessed a robust, almost nutty taste, thanks to a strong cast of full-bodied tomatoes and 24-month aged Parmesan.

It almost -- but not quite -- outshone the lobster bisque (RMB138) which combined prawns, crab tartare and lobster stock in a bowl of supreme and strong indulgence.

It's not all roses, though. An olive crusted salmon served with a daub of buffalo mozzarella cheese fondue (RMB198) was delightfully tender and right on the mark, but the price was a little hard to swallow.

While most dishes were well-executed, their prices could put a dent in your wallet. For a solid, reliable (and expensive) meal, Velluto has just the answer.

  • Velluto
  • 021 6192-0265

  • 3/F, 66 Nanjing Dong Lu (near Zhongshan Dong Yi Lu) [map]
  • 南京东路66号外滩五席3楼(近中山东一路)

  • Italian
  • ★ ★ ★ ☆ ☆
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