The Purple Onion [Shanghai] – closed

Where did the Thirsty Pig Go?
The Purple Onion, part of famed Shanghai restauranteur David Laris empire, nice little European bistro. Though it is tucked away in a small alley, it is still conveniently located in the heart of the Shanghai French Concession. I thought we made a wrong turn somewhere, as we continued down the dark small alley of Shanghai old houses. Opened just a year ago, the Purple Onion is a favorite among my friends. Immediately as we walked in, I could see why this quaint little restaurant has regulars. The spacious outdoor al fresco area looked inviting, for the pleasant weather months, but not on this December night. The main dining area, with barely 10 tables, allows for intimate dining. Good for small groups and dates.

What did the Thirsty Pig Eat?
We decided on the Christmas menu, since we were in the mood. If you choose a starter, a main, and dessert the combination is 300 RMB. Unfortunately, they were out of the their chestnut and truffle soup, but they had their regular Artichoke Soup – which was pretty good. But I have say, I kinda like the sound of the chestnut and truffle for a soup. We also had the Soft Boiled Duck Egg, with Pancetta and Mustard Fruits for 78 RMB. I liked this salad – for the runny yolk and crunchy pancetta. Next up were the mains, the Roasted Pork, Stuffed with Apricots and Pistachios served with Parsnip Puree and Fennel for 168 RMB and Roasted Turkey stuffed with Prunes and Armagnac served with Caramelised Witlof for 168 RMB. I wasn’t sure what Witlof was, but I now know that I like it. The turkey and pork, both are notoriously dry, and unfortunately, Purple Onion’s was a bit dry as well. But I think they understood this and made sure that the sweet accompanied sauce blended the dryness to produce a nice meld. I was fine with this. I liked the turkey much more than the pork. (And I usually go for pork, regardless of the menu) Lastly, we had the Christmas Mince Pies for 48 RMB and Christmas Pudding with Brandy Cream for 78 RMB. The mince pies were these bite sized baked goodies. But they kind of reminded me of a holiday fruitcake (not a good thing). The Christmas Pudding was really tasty and moist – nice way to finish the meal.

Final Words
Since we tried the Christmas menu, I nary a look at their regular menu. I do intend to return try their regular menu.

What to Order: I have heard their Pizzas as really good
What not to Order:

2 Pigs
Price Range 2 $/¥/NT

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The Purple Onion
No 16, Lane 351 Huashan Lu, near Changshu Lu
+86 21 6248 8747

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