You’ll be glad to know that ‘Downstairs with David Laris’, and the other 2 food & beverage outlets at the URBN hotel in Shanghai all have access to 100% fresh water. This means that all the food is washed and cooked using 100% pure water, free of heavy metals and bacteria. URBN claims that their drinking water will be more pure and better tasting than standard bottled water in Shanghai.
The food at the Downstairs restaurant changes seasonally and can be classed as country-house posh, but none of the pretentious nonsense to hike up the prices. The big URBN breakfast is the mother of all cooked breakfasts- tempting red roasted tomatoes topped with sea-salt, two rashes of bacon, house made baked beans, hideously delicious chorizo sausages and thick farmhouse bread. Right, that should fill you up then! The ‘Downstairs’ menu features products that are traceable back to the farm where they are sometimes handpicked personally by the chef.
Try the mouth-watering ‘Moules marinies with French fries’. Huge platter of lovely mussels, one of the best selections in town. It is so good that it somewhat reminded me of the infamous Mussel Inn in Edinburgh back in the U.K. Sheer sensation for the tongue. Equally tempting is the cured salmon and golden trout pate with soda bread. The perfection, design, and freshness of the food is of upmost quality.
The chef, Ms. Siobhan Gough, is from Kilkenny in Ireland, and has been resident in Shanghai for over 6 years has put her heart and mind into making sure that the creativity of the food is kept as authentically fresh, green, healthy, and organic as possible. The food philosophy is rooted heavily on the concept of presenting a simple and honest bistro fare that manages to excite and surprise the taste buds. The URBN offers many special packages that allow you to combine the dining experience with your stay. Breakfast is a la carte; lunch is separated into smaller or larger portions, while the desserts are to die for.
During the weekdays, the restaurant also runs a 2-for-1 happy hour deals on all beers, house wines, house spirits, and cocktails of the day.