Paul Pairet’s Ultra Violet in a “secret location in Shanghai,” is, to put it mildly, not your traditional restaurant. Taking the kind of avant-garde cookery pioneered by El Bulli and its followers to surreal extremes, Pairet adds music, sound, and ultraviolet light to the mix for what he calls “an immersive experience” in a 20-course meal for a single table of 10 people at a time.
There is no wine list to speak of, but wine plays an integral part in what is inevitably described as “the experience,” with each course matched with both a wine (or whisky or Tequila) as well as a piece of music and various lights and mood-altering effects.
Gimmicky? Well, a little maybe, but by all accounts fun, too, and the quality of the short set of wines more than earns Ultra Violet a three-star award: whether it’s Domaine Gauby Vieilles Vignes Rouge Côtes du Roussillon Villages 2009 with a dish of “chicken in a jar” with “vineyard smoke”, or Jean-Marc Biollot Bourgogne Blanc 2011 with “Truffle Burnt Soup Bread.”