3 New Spring Menus: Sober Company, Highline & HIYA

By Sophie Steiner, March 18, 2022

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Winter has passed, spring has sprung, patio season is upon us and Shanghai has heeded the call with new menus aplenty. It’s time to wake those taste buds up from hibernation and say ‘screw it’ to the approach of swimsuit season... we’ve got new dishes to try! 

Sober Company 

One of Shanghai’s top-rated bars and #39 on the 2021 World’s 50 Best Bar List, Sober Company is a multi-concept venue by Shingo Gokan (of Speak Low, The Odd Couple fame) housing a café on the ground floor, a modern Chinese restaurant on the second and a cocktail bar on the third. 

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Earthed (RMB120), Image by Sophie Steiner/That's

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Washed (RMB 100), Image by Sophie Steiner/That's

Shanghai legendary chef Carlos Sotomayor (Blue Plate Consulting) has recently revamped Sober Company’s menu with a Chifa twist – Peruvian-Chinese hybrid cuisine.

Lima boasts a surprisingly prevalent Cantonese population, one that has made a mark on the neighborhood casual food scene. Every corner has its go-to roasted chicken restaurant, bodega and Chifa spot – that serve as the backbone of casual dining and delivery cuisine within the city.

Carlos draws upon his memories of growing up in this environment as inspiration for Sober Company’s menu, with hints of Nikkei flare and nods to New York Chinatown vibes.

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That chifa trace first weaves its way into the Saltado Rice Croquette (RMB88), an amalgamation of lomo saltado – stir-fried strips of sirloin with onion and tomatoes, served with rice – rolled into arancini-like balls and fried to a crisp.

A crown of torched Wagyu and a sprinkled of Japanese shichimi togarashi spice augment the juicy licks of beef that seep into each individual kernel of rice, giving way into a succulent molten center. 

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Like a deconstructed spicy tuna roll, the Nikkei-centric Ahi Poke (RMB78) presents alternating chunks of avocado and marinated, raw tuna, all resting atop an emulsified spicy mayo made from roasted shallot, garlic, chili and rice vinegar.

Crunchy wonton strips, pickled ginger shoots and what some may qualify as ‘too much coriander’ (no such thing in our humble opinion) are liberally sprinkled on top. 

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Crisped (RMB110), Image by Sophie Steiner/That's

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Image by Sophie Steiner/That's

The Seafood Wontons (RMB78) see a Peruvian-style ceviche rolled into a wonton wrapper, flash-fried and speckled with a bright mango salsa and a leche de tigre dipping sauce – the citrus-based spicy marinade used originally to cure said fish in the classic Peruvian dish.

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Chijaukay is one of Chifa cuisine’s most popular offerings, a stir-fried chicken dish dribbled with a sticky soy and sesame sauce. At Sober Company, they take it a step further with the Stuffed Chicken ‘Chijaukay’ (RMB78), encircling wild mushrooms and leafy green kalian on a bed of puffed fensi noodles.

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Smothered in a smoky pepper gravy and sweet corn kernels, the 18-hour Slow Cooked Lamb Shoulder (RMB98) is flanked by roasted potatoes and a scattering of Asian dukkah made of mixed nuts and pistachios, plus cumin and coriander seed for added crunch.

Each earthy forkful of meat is scorched with embrittled edges, yet it tears away delicately, melting on the tongue with a lingering heat. 

DSC00864.jpgBrewed (RMB110), Image by Sophie Steiner/That's

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Image by Sophie Steiner/That's

A tip of the hat to Cantonese diner cuisine, the Lima Cruyoc (RMB118) sees battered and fried strips of sweet and sour pork shoulder tossed in a tamarind glaze with pineapple and peppers, plus a colorful mix of homemade pickled daikon, carrots and peppers. 

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Image by Sophie Steiner/That's

Lush doubanjiang béchamel cream drowns a lemon butter-baked Scallop 'Chifa' (RMB98/2 pieces), contrasted by a tart shallot, lemongrass and lime leaf relish. The entire shell is topped with shaved parmesan cheese for the ultimate bite of salty, sour, spicy and umami in one. 

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Flame-licked tentacles of Grilled Octopus (RMB158) adorn inky sweet rice spiced with piquant Hainan yellow chili and an Asian chimichurri. 

DSC00894.jpgTruffled ‘Chaufa’ Aeropuerto (RMB188), Image by Sophie Steiner/That's

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Refreshed (RMB100), Image by Sophie Steiner/That's

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Dessert brings Asian-inspired offerings, like Almond Pannacotta (RMB58) studded with seasonal fruit and a refreshing lychee granita and a dense cakey Hojicha Tiramisu (RMB58) interspersed with tonka bean cream, dark chocolate shavings and almond slivers. 

Sober Company will also soon be launching a Six Course Six Cocktails Pairing Menu (reservation only, twelve people maximum, split between two seatings of six) focusing on their new dishes and cocktails. This will give anyone who books the pairing menu direct access to Tipsy, the hidden omakase bar beside the restaurant on the second floor. 

See a listing for Sober Company.

Highline 

Aside from boasting one of Shanghai’s best terraces, Highline has now got a new lunch lineup that can be enjoyed while basking in the sun on said terrace. On weekdays from 11am-2.30pm, swing through for a Lunch Set (RMB158) of a starter and main, with an option to add on dessert for RMB48, coffee, tea or a soft drink for RMB28, or selected house wine for RMB58. 

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Image by Sophie Steiner/That's

A spring garden on a plate, the Roasted Beet & Apple Salad is a cornucopia of fresh fennel, walnuts, dates, manchego cheese and sourdough croutons in a zippy orange sherry vinaigrette.

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Image by Sophie Steiner/That's

Lusciously buttery Cauliflower & Corn Cheddar Soup is sprinkled with smoky caramelized lardon bacon bits and a lashing of scallion oil.

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Three squid ink-tinted Shrimp Ravioli envelope a blend of shrimp and ricotta cheese, baked in a tangy tomato, mint and dill sauce, dusted with brown butter bread crumbs. 

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A charred crust forms on the expertly seared Pan Roasted Salmon, resting on a succotash of diced eggplant, zucchini, tomato and lentils. But the spring vibes go a step further with fresh herbs, candied almonds and velvety dollops of herb yogurt. 

DSC02242.jpgIcelandic Cod & Baby Squid, Image by Sophie Steiner/That's

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Image by Sophie Steiner/That's

A scorching cast iron skillet of Grilled Beef & Shrimp sees a bed of tomato rice, singed balsamic red onions and pickled pepper-corn relish, all serving as a backdrop to a skewer of succulent bites of beef and blistered vegetables, along with three plump shrimp.

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Image by Sophie Steiner/That's

So much more crave-worthy than your standard pasta lunch, the Corn, Asparagus & Smoked Mushroom Linguine is bathed in a lemon cream sauce with pecorino romano – refreshing yet carb-ladenly filling. 

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Image by Sophie Steiner/That's

Vanilla Ice Cream Profiteroles require no introduction – dark chocolate drizzle; hazelnut sea salt brittle – utter satisfaction, even for those who deem themselves ‘non-dessert eaters.’ 


DSC06193.jpgStrawberry Eton Mess, Image by Sophie Steiner/That's

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Image by Sophie Steiner/That's

A taste of Thailand, the Mango Royale houses coconut ice cream stuffed inside a thousand-layered puff pastry, bordered by diced mango and fresh raspberries in a five spice-rum syrup.  

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Image by Sophie Steiner/That's

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Aside from the set menu, there are steak frites sets that include your choice of meat – 300 grams of Ranger’s Valley Australian 150 days grain fed Angus Ribeye (RMB248) or 200 grams of Australian Angus M3 Bavette (RMB188) – served with arugula salad, rosemary garlic French fries and black pepper gravy. 

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Lunch also offers a la carte selections, with main menu favorites like Smoked Trout Wedge Salad (RMB128) liberally garnished with yolk-oozing, soft-boiled quail eggs, bacon, cubed beetroot, tomato and a soupy buttermilk dressing. 

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One of our go-tos regardless of day or time is the Pork Belly Honey Rolls (RMB98) stacked tall with thick cut, slow roasted slabs of BBQ pork belly – glazed with sweet soy marinade – and a crisp apple-kimchi slaw.

As for March specials, Highline has the whole lot of them – a free lemon chiffon cake for all birthday celebrators in March (for dinner with six friends, an RMB488 value); a prime rib dinner set for RMB398/person featuring six-hour slow-roasted Australian Angus M3, charred spring onion mashed potatoes, creamed spinach and leeks and brown butter mushrooms; and an upcoming cocktail week to launch their new Michael Chen curated libations. 

See a listing for Highline.

HIYA

High up in the chic Shanghai EDITION Hotel, HIYA is Jason Atherton’s Japanese-inspired restaurant, with a modern fusion thread running through the entire menu. Slick, sophisticated and glamorous, the eatery is modeled after Atherton's London restaurant, Sosharu, and has become a nighttime destination for Shanghai's elite.

HIYA recently brought Japanese chef, Terada Yohei (previously of Nobu in Tokyo) on board for a modern Japanese izakaya revamp. 

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Image by Sophie Steiner/That's

Chef Terada is breaking the ice with a selection of bento box lunch sets adapted from the menu mainstays, like the Beef Gyudon Bento Box (RMB328), a smaller portion of one of the restaurant’s flagship dishes.

Slow-cooked steamed rice is cooked in an aromatic chicken soup, studded with shitake mushrooms and garlic chips, capped with a fan of thinly sliced Wagyu beef. A globular raw egg yolk sits in the middle, calling out to be mixed in, creating a sticky coating on each individual rice kernel.

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Image by Sophie Steiner/That's

The beef gyudon is paired with a spinach salad – tossed with tangy tosazu dressing, nori and kombu seaweed bergamot – plus seasonal homemade pickles – like cucumber with plum sauce, daikon with mustard and carrots with sweet chili sauce, plus kimchi rounds.

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Image by Sophie Steiner/That's

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Image by Sophie Steiner/That's

For the seafarers, the Halibut Teriyaki Bento Box (RMB268) highlights seared halibut atop glazed eggplant, swimming in a teriyaki gravy. Furikake crispies are liberally strewn to enhance that necessary chomp factor. 

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A Kyoto style chirashi bowl comes alongside, with marinated cubes of tuna and salmon, edamame, egg threads, beads of roe and wasabi cream. 

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The sets also include a spinach salad and seasonal homemade pickles.

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The new menu also showcases a more extensive spread of a la carte options, like the King Crab and Hokkaido Scallop (RMB268) with wasabi soy dressing and caviar – a standout plate that delivers its utter hegemony as described; and the Black Cod Tempura (RMB168) – a delicately flaky nugget lined with shiso leaf hidden below the most brittle of tempura shoestring crusts.

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Image by Sophie Steiner/That's

Fried morsels of firm yet juicy Chicken Karaage (RMB128) are immaculately crispy, ideal for dunking in the accompanying spicy ketchup.

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A Warm Mushroom Salad (RMB138) proffers a smattering of four different kinds of mushroom, marinated artichoke and fried lotus root chips, all drizzled in a savory red miso dressing.

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And for a Japanese take on the French chocolate fondant, the Matcha Chocolate Lava Cake (RMB100), when pierced, reveals a torrent of liquid matcha magma that trickles from the molten center, juxtaposed against sour cherry sorbet.

See a listing for HIYA


Got an F&B company you would like to promote? Contact us by email on billyxian@thatsmags.com and by WeChat through the ID: billyjunior317 or by scanning the QR code below:

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[Cover image by Sophie Steiner/That's]

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