New Menu Alert! D.O.C. & Urban Café

By Sophie Steiner, September 10, 2021

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We are in that weird seasonal in between time, when it’s too early to start popping those pumpkin spice latte bottles (mugs?), but we’ve had our fill already of summer eats. To combat the food slump, a handful of reliable institutions have recently launched new menus, some for a themed-month, some for a regionally-focused promotion and others to kick-off a new offering on certain days. Here’s a few of our not-to-be-missed.

D.O.C. Gastronomia Italiana September Pasta Month

D.O.C. offers Italian specialties deemed exquisite by the legally binding, namesake term: Denominazione di Origine Controllata.

In plain English, this translates to artisanal Italian foods grown in a specified region using defined methods and meeting high quality standards. (Think Champagne labels, but with more fingertip kissing and rolling Rs).

These ingredients, stamped with Italy’s seal of approval, are inevitably turned into tasty dishes. 

For the month of September, D.O.C. is offering five pasta specials, all made with love by Chef Gino. The pasta is made from scratch in the traditional Italian way right in the D.O.C. kitchen using nothing but the finest imported Italian Caputo flour.

From now until the end of the month, enjoy D.O.C.’s best-selling pasta dishes using fresh house-made pasta.

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Simple, authentic Italian flavors are where D.O.C. shines. Point in case – the Pappardelle al Ragu (RMB130). Wide, homemade pappardelle strips are cooked fresh to order, topped with melt-in-your-mouth chunks of 24-hour marinated and braised Uruguayan oxtail.

The zippy tomato sauce is made from pizza oven-roasted vegetables that are slow-cooked down for hours into a rich stew-like ragu of sorts, topped with parmesan cheese and fresh herbs. 

Another classic, the Pappardelle Bolognese (RMB148) sees the same springy, rope-like noodles, this time smothered in a thick Bolognese sauce made from minced pork and beef. 

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Or there’s the identical Bolognese base nestled between sheets of fresh pasta, underneath *roughly* a metric ton of cheese as the Lasagna Emiliana Style (RMB140). These are the kind of pasta dishes you need in your life when carbs on the couch are the only answer. 

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Equally indulgent, and oh-so-creamy, the Fettuccini Carbonara (RMB148) had us dancing in our seats, with peppered and air-cured pork cheek, gooey egg yolk and a sauce made from grana Padano cheese that melts into a slick coating, sticking to each noodle strand.

More twerking for the slurping. 

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On the lighter end of the pasta spectrum, the Spaghetto Alla Marinara (RMB178) sees a hefty portion of chewy spaghetti bedazzled with ocean jewels – shrimp, scallops, cod, mussels, clams, squid and octopus, plus spring chives, garlic and chilis in a buttery extra virgin olive oil sauce. 

Portions are limited, so make sure to book a table ahead of time!

See a listing for D.O.C.

Chef Rosarin’s Urban Café Menu at The Sukhothai 

The Sukhothai Shanghai provides an unexpected escape to southeast Asia with Urban Café’s new Thai-leaning menu, created and executed by chef Rosarin Sriprathum, the head chef from the Sukhothai Bangkok. 

On her third visit to Urban Café, chef Rosarin is balancing the distinctly spicy, sour, salty and sweet flavors of Thailand to bring diners a journey through the nation’s diverse cuisine. The new menu will run through the end of November, with both a six-course chef’s tasting menu for RMB598 (minimum six people) and la carte options available.

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Like the most elevated version of a grab-and-go snack, the Smoked and Pan Seared Tuna (RMB158) is topped with mixed herbs, shallots and fresh chilis all resting on a bitter leaf. Just roll it up and take it down taco style, allowing the fresh cube of tuna's flavor to dominte. 

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Aiming for a Thai take on cheung fun, Chef Rosarin uses taro and sticky rice flour to form the Steamed Rice Dumpling's (RMB178) outer shell, which hugs together garlic-marinated crab meat, all sitting in a pond of sweet soy sauce. 

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Mimicking the texture of a filet of fish, dense Thai pomelo segments are coated in shredded coconut and chopped peanuts and served alongside Grilled King Crab (RMB178) legs. Tart with a hint of bitterness from the fruit's rind is balanced by the seafood's ocean-like sweetness.

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Fall-off-the-bone Chicken Confit (RMB188) is slow cooked in a sticky tamarind glaze while springy chunks of Sous Vide Beef Cheek (RMB198) are swaddled in an aromatic red curry with garlic chips. Thick and rich, the curry packs a sleight of sweet piquancy that is best enjoyed by the spoonful, ladled over rice. 

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The Thai menu's pièce de résistance is a Grilled Lobster (RMB348), served whole, in a luscious fresh tumeric spiced yellow curry with crunchy long beans.

Evoking memories of eating similarly punchy dishes beach side on [fill in the blank] Thai island, we forgot for just a second that we weren't sporting a swimsuit, digging our toes into the sand at sunset, and that second of escape made the dish all the more worth it. 

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The most famous of the Thai desserts, Mango Sticky Rice (RMB118) is served with juice-oozing spheres of ripe mango alongside a scoop of mango sorbet. The coconut milk-soaked sticky rice is flecked with fried mung bean crisps for added crunch with a hint of salt. 

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Like a grainier version of flan, the Taro Custard (RMB98) is bruleéd on top, coated in jags of crisped coconut meat, while the Pandan Bean Puff (RMB98) is slightly salty from the encased mung beans, surrounded by coconut foam with a drizzle of longan honey.

See a listing for Urban Café

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