Mignon 9 – Parisian Eatery Offering Timeless French Fare

The Place 

Mignon 9 – a trendy Parisian style restaurant – opened on Wuyuan Lu last fall, lending even more of a Paris backstreet feel to the already leafy-green, tree-lined roads of the former French Concession. 

Image by Sophie Steiner/That’s

Image by Sophie Steiner/That’s

The space is a tribute to the classic wine bistros of France, backed by restaurateurs Alin Zhu and Celia Wang, who opened Xinle Lu café O’Delice together back in 2011, after attending French school of fashion ESMOD’s Beijing campus together.

Image by Sophie Steiner/That’s

Image by Sophie Steiner/That’s

The unpretentious yet classy interior is curated by Shanghai and Bangkok-based design studio MTM Design (responsible for Tomatito, High Yaki the Sea, Bella Vita Bistro, and so many more), and features playful textured surfaces that contrast polished mirrors, wine bottle displays and handwritten chalkboard menus – transporting diners to the European eateries of yesteryear.

The Food 

Image by Sophie Steiner/That’s

The menu is designed by Singapore-trained chef Hank Li (previously of L’Atelier Chic Choc) and packed with Parisian-influenced fare – roasted chicken, duck foie gras, grilled steaks, pan-fried seafood, pastas and the like – plus apéritif cocktails and wine.

The dinner menu sees a smattering of small plates for sharing, as well as heartier mains, while the lunch menu focuses on nibbles and casual bites – like sandwiches and brunch plates. 

Image by Sophie Steiner/That’s

Bright for spring, the Sweet Shrimp (RMB98) are flanked by grapefruit and orange segments, sprinkled with an icy pineapple granita and a lashing of lemon oil. 

Image by Sophie Steiner/That’s

Velvety whipped Foie Gras Mousse (RMB138) perimeters a tart blackberry port sauce, studded with demurely sweet honey jellies and crunchy candied nut brittle – a welcomed lighter rendition of the thick foie slabs that are customarily served at French venues around the city. 

READ MORE: Bargain, Balanced, Ballin’: 20 Foie Gras Dishes For All Budgets

DSC05733.jpgPate de Campagne (RMB98). Image by Sophie Steiner/That’s

Image by Sophie Steiner/That’s

Sheathed by potato and cheese crisps, this classic take on Beef Tartar (RMB98) consists of M3 flap mixed tableside with a cured yolk and pickled shallots. 

Image by Sophie Steiner/That’s

Supple chunks of one-minute seared Charcoal Grilled Yellow Croaker (RMB98) flake away with the mere nudge of a fork.

Swaddled in a fresh celery salsa of dill and coriander, the fish is enhanced by a subtle pop of citrus from lemon vinaigrette.

Image by Sophie Steiner/That’s

First marinated overnight in a secret blend of seasonings, the juicy spring Chicken with Sichuan Peppercorn (RMB188) boasts a robust spice owed to the bird being stuffed with whole Sichuan and green peppercorns.

Image by Sophie Steiner/That’s

Next roasted, the fowl is served atop a bed of aromatic rosemary fronds.

Image by Sophie Steiner/That’s

A katsu-style breaded Iberico Pork Chop (RMB168) is prepared in the style of chicken cordon bleu and deep fried, anchored to the plate by a creamy fennel sauerkraut, dribbled with fennel oil. 

Image by Sophie Steiner/That’s

Rosy pink M7 Wagyu Flap (RMB268/180 grams) is grilled to a delicate medium rare, slathered in a soy caramel and crusted with fiery er jing tiao chili, crushed cashew, and sesame seeds.

An unctuous beef jus and garlic purée acts as the ideal swiping fodder, augmenting each succulent morsel of beef. 

DSC06180.jpgUni Pot Rice (RMB288) Sea urchin, salmon roe, pork belly chips, French chives, pickled radish, Wuchang rice. Image by Sophie Steiner/That’s

Image by Sophie Steiner/That’s

Comfort food bliss is a warm bowl of Beef Cheek Pasta (RMB108) – whorls of handmade daily pappardelle ribbons slick with a thick ragu of 12-hour stewed beef cheek, tomatoes and a mirepoix of diced carrots, onions and celery sautéed in butter.

Image by Sophie Steiner/That’s

A liberal shaving of parmesan cheese liquefies into an added layer of creamy indulgence.

Image by Sophie Steiner/That’s

An ambrosial salty-sweet blend of Mascarpone Ice Cream (RMB68) acts as a moat that encircles herbaceously inky shiso syrup, dusted in a dehydrated strawberry powder.

Image by Sophie Steiner/That’s

A plump quenelle of dark chocolate and Black Truffle Ice Cream (RMB78) rests atop crushed sablé cookies and toasted nuts crumble, a must-order for chocolate fiends that enjoy a savory punch.

Image by Sophie Steiner/That’s

The wine program is a central focus at Mignon 9 – as if it could be any other way in a Parisian resto – with over 50 unique wine varietals, mostly sourced from France.

There’s also a fair selection of China-sourced wines, with choices rotated for seasonality. 

Most bottles fall in the RMB500-1,200 range, while wine by the glass goes for RMB60-90, with eight options to choose from, spanning red to white, sparkling to rosé. 

DSC06334.jpgFig Iced Tea (RMB35) and Litchi Sparkling Ice Tea (RMB35). Image by Sophie Steiner/That’s

Aside from the nectar of the gods, diners can sip on Coffee Beverages (RMB18-35), both Hot and Cold Teas (RMB33-35), and Soft Drinks (RMB25-50).

The Vibe 

The cozy atmosphere evolves from casual café vibes during the day into a hip wine bar atmosphere by night, accented by exposed antique brick, unfinished industrial chic concrete walls, alternating marble and bleached wood tables, and a plush cushioned banquette lining the western wall.

Image by Sophie Steiner/That’s

Image by Sophie Steiner/That’s

The space also offers a semi-private backroom. With seating for eight, the walls are lined by a floor-to-ceiling wine bottle display, evoking a sense of dining inside an actual winery. 

Image by Sophie Steiner/That’s

The main dining area spills out onto the street – ideal for people watching – with dog-friendly terrace seating for 16 adding to the already 40 seats inside.

Organized around a central station for wine chilling and a cantilevered wine rack, the addition of an action-packed open kitchen provides a theatrical backdrop for diners.

Price: RMB200-400
Who’s Going: The trendy Wuyuan Lu shopping crowd, wine lovers, daytime loungers taking ‘working from home’ to the next level
Good For: Daytime meetups, casual date nights, approachable Parisian dining

Mignon 9, No.71 Wuyuan Lu, by Wulumuqi Lu, 五原路71号, 近乌鲁木齐路.

Read more Shanghai Restaurant Reviews.

[Cover image by Sophie Steiner/That’s]

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