In need of a date night? Call the ayi, leave the kids at home for a night and enjoy some much needed one-on-one time with your significant other.
The Place & Vibe
Established in 2007, Napa Wine Bar & Kitchen is a fine dining restaurant that is not to be missed by anyone who enjoys a superb glass of wine and intricately prepared dishes. It has recently relocated to the beautiful Bund 22, where its new venue elegantly accommodates the quality of both their service and food. The space has a chic rustic interior with white wooden carved beams throughout the restaurant. It is complete with a red brick patio that provides stunning views of the Bund. In the winter this area is closed off by full wall-sized glass panes, while in the summer, it’s opened up to the liveliness of the area.
The menu changes every season and shows off the creativity Chef Francisco Araya has to offer in his dishes. The menu includes both set menus (Introduction Menu RMB398 and Gourmet ExperienceRMB728) and items a la carte. To say that they have an extensive wine list would be an understatement. With over 700 labels to choose from, this is simply a wine lover’s heaven.
We decided to order a la carte and began with the Dungeness Crab & Avocado Roll (RMB88), which was an excellent cold and fresh starter to the meal to come. The yogurt and cray fish stalk, which was so neatly drizzled around the roll, was a perfect light pairing with the crab. Next we tried theHokkaido Scallops (RMB128), which were a personal favorite. Boasting a distinct, sophisticated taste without being overwhelming, they were beautifully plated with shaved asparagus hovering over the tops. The Australian Beef Tenderloin Tataki (RMB115) was perfectly cooked to a medium rare with a hint of sesame and a side of wasabi.
For the mains we tried the Angus Beef Short Rib (RMB288) and the 7 Spice Baked Cod (RMB218). The beef was sat on top a small bed of cauliflower couscous and was cooked in a divine red wine sauce. With a light coconut milk and herb sauce, the cod was another favorite of ours – every bite seemed to melt in our mouths. The Porcini Ravioli (RMB138) had a thin creamy sauce, but is only to be tried by mushroom lovers.
For dessert we opted first for the Mango Sorbet (RMB68) but it was a tad too sweet for our taste. However, next came the exquisitely presented Crystal Ball (RMB98) – light, fluffy whipped cream, strawberry sorbet and fresh fruit housed in a translucent white chocolate ball. We definitely preferred the latter to the former.
Date Night Approved
If you are looking for a romantic, charming place to spend some time with your significant other, this is it. While it may be more on the pricey end, this is the ideal place to celebrate a special occasion or just have a romantic evening. The patio in particular offers a more private dining experience that is paired with the magical lights of Shanghai. This restaurant provides a professional and hassle-free experience with top-notch service. Napa is a hidden gem in Shanghai and we were delighted to discover it for ourselves.
Price: RMB500-1000 per person
Who’s Going: Wine lovers & small parties
Good for: Date night dinner, wine
> Napa Wine Bar & Kitchen, South Bund 22, 2/F, 22 Zhongshan Dong Lu, by Jinling Lu 中山东二路22号2楼近新永安路. (6318 0057, www.napawinebarandkitchen.com/)