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December 1, 2019

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A game-changer in Shanghai cuisine at Y’s Kitchen

Jinxian Road has been famous for playing host to two or three authentic Shanghainese eateries for years but, since the recent addition of Y’s Kitchen, that could all change.

The decor is bright and modern, with earthy-colored seating and floral prints decorating the wall. The decoration and lighting might not be everyone’s cup of tea but it’s evident to see that the owner is trying to add some sparkle to the proceedings.

Some good wine bottles are lined up along the wall showing the place’s friendliness to wine lovers. Wines appear on most tables and the food is great for pairing.

The dishes show the complexity of chef Yang Wen’s imagination. He takes a refined, creative approach to some familiar dishes and adds a strong personal touch.

A good first impression was made with the first appetizer, foie gras terrine (128 yuan). Unlike the French version, this pate is a specially made terrine marinated in a signature sauce.

A bite of foie gras terrine together with some crispy, boiled green beans gave a refreshing sensation to the mouth.

I also tried the signature drunken crab with green tea sauce (68 yuan/piece). The chef gave a twist to the traditional local drunken crab by adding a green tea sauce. However, the green tea aroma was well hidden and didn’t overpower the original taste. It certainly tantalized my appetite for later dishes.

Highly recommended mains are pork neck with goose liver paste, fried eel, stew stinky tofu with pork mince and Australia’s wagyu beef with ginger and pineapple. Each dish reflected the chef’s creative imagination.

The chef loves to integrate Western, or foreign, ingredients and sauces into the Chinese cooking, such as the use of Italian balsamic vinegar, truffle sauce, French goose liver paste and Malaysian durian.

It usually gives an interesting layer and taste to a rather common dish. The menu does show Shanghai’s integration to foreign cultures.

There are also a few more authentic local dishes to choose from, such as stir-fried sliced eel with ginger and white pepper powder, braised pork with soy sauce, and shrimp with hairy crab meat. The dishes at Y’s Kitchen may not appeal to everyone, but if you love to try out new things and embrace new ideas, the cozy eatery is worth a visit.


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