Knowing what a big bread lover I am, my friend decided to bring me to this place that is located in Puxi, at An-fu Road (徐汇区安福路322号, 近武康路). We took a cab there from Pudong, and it wasn’t a short ride but definitely below 30 minutes. From what I heard my friend telling the cab-driver it is near the Drama Building. As its name already suggests, this is the place to go if you are into flour like I am. Check out the abundance of flour in and all over the display racks!
Besides bread, they do sell and serve other things too; there is another huge display case containing very delectable-looking cakes and pastries, so if you have a sweeter tooth and crave cakes or macarons, there is also something available for you. It being a weekend when we visited, the cafe was packed and abuzz with the brunch crowd. We were eyeing what other people were having, and all this while our tummies were growling with hunger, which we satiated with the samplers of walnut bread and brownies near the entrance. How thoughtful! In my mind, I was raging a war what to order because if I could, I would just order all the bread rolls and loaves that I possibly could, but of course that isn’t possible because they were huge! How could I finish them and it isn’t like I needed to get breakfast which is already provided at the hotel.
It was a pretty long wait for a free table, even though the cafe is not small; seating was a little cramped so it was a little like elbow-to-elbow kind of proximity that we share with the other patrons. When we finally got seated and made our orders, it didn’t take too long for everything to be served. Or at least not that I was aware of. The coffee came first, and check out this wonderful art I got on the froth!
We ordered their recommended brunch item to share, which was a couple of poached eggs with parma ham on their signature French walnut bread. I love the bread, it almost compares to the Pain aux Noix from Maison Kayser that I am totally addicted to currently. A pity though, that I didn’t know how to properly eat the poached egg and ended up soaking the entire slice of bread with the yolk, thereby making it a little soggy but nevertheless still very yummy and chewy.
On top of that, we ordered another roast chicken sandwich on baguette that comes with a variant of potato salad (sin alert!) drenched in some creamy sauce. Of course this is my plate with my share of the egg and bread without the parma ham, the sandwich and the potatoes. We got a fairly generous serving of parma ham, and I don’t know if they had started to run out of it subsequently because the table next to us had a significantly smaller piece of ham when their order arrived much later.
The poached egg and bread is a winner for me, with the complementary taste of the nicely-done egg (flowy golden yellow yolk oozing out is the best!) on the crisp yet moist bread with added texture from the walnut pieces within. The baguette is a bit iffy for me though, because I was already a little full at that point; it is still not too bad but the bread already turned a bit tough by the time I got to eating it so it got a bit difficult for me to eat.
We saw many people in the shop ordering their croissants, the table next to us even ordering a second helping, and thought it must be really good. Based on the online reviews I have read, the croissants are much raved about. Unfortunately I let my calorie-conscious mind take over and decided to skip it so it was a pity. Don’t know how it would compare to say… TBB’s almond croissant, which I thought was extremely good but another friend felt was overrated and overhyped.
Here is the review by TimeOut Shanghai, but as with good, there are also bad things. Some people commented about the poor and tardy service of the place, but with high crowd numbers, it is almost expected that service standards tend to slip anyhow. Perhaps the next time I visit Shanghai, I will return and try the croissant, or their other bread types. I have never been to Shanghai for vacation before, so probably that is something that I can consider, though everyone I know who lives and works there tells me there is nothing in the city. But there are plenty of such nice, little F&B outlets around, how can there be nothing? Till the next time maybe.