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Mercato offers great bites of Italy

By Xu Junqian in Shanghai | China Daily | Updated: 2013-10-19 08:27

Mercato offers great bites of Italy

Warm seafood salad with avocado is a signature dish served at Mercato. [Photo provided to China Daily]

The Italian restaurant Mercato has quite a lot of attractions: a sweeping and spectacular view of the Bund, the chic rustic interior design created by famous architecture studio Neri & Hu, the beautiful Korean American chef Sandy Yoon, and the second restaurant for Michelin-three-star chef Jean Georges in Shanghai.

But these are just flowers added to the brocade of its purely divine food. Named after the Italian word "market", the restaurant features an unusual variety of ingredients from both West and East, like a fun bazaar. And apparently, the French celebrity chef has been very good at mixing and matching them into nice treats.

Kicking off the dinner is a steamed-bun lookalike, dotted with basil and a slice of lemon. Burrata cheese, the actual name of the dish and an Italian traditional specialty with cheese wrapped in cheese, is a surprising and stimulating appetizer. The secret is the sea-salt seasoning and the light-as-a-cloud homemade mozzarella.

Another surprise as well as the must-have starter is the warm seafood salad, topped with avocado, lemon and parsley. It looks simple: generous chunks of shrimp, lobster and octopus topped with a beautiful swirl of avocado slices. But after the first bite, the creamy, rich taste lingers, arousing your curiosity about the recipe, which includes vegetable broth, white wine, chili powder and dill.

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