Shanghai’s Sensorial Supper
French chef Paul Pairet is hoping to take diners in Shanghai to a place where they haven’t been before with his recently opened restaurant Ultraviolet. Offering a globe-trotting, bold, and somewhat experimental 20-course set menu with sides of multi-sensorial technologies, Ultraviolet hopes to provide a total dining immersion courtesy of lights, images, noise, and, of course, food.
The location of the restaurant is kept secret; diners who make advanced reservations (only 10 people are allowed each night) are given a meeting spot and are picked up by restaurant staff who lead them to Ultraviolet. Then, the lucky few sit down at one table situated in a dining room devoid of décor.
The Spartan white-walled dining room is tricked out with technology like LED floor strips, pin projectors, infrared cameras, and dry scent diffusors meant to pique the senses. Each course is served with its own accompanying lights, sound, music, scents, and visuals effects.
Dishes begin in bite-sized portions and get progressively bigger, like a culinary crescendo before shifting to digestives and sweets of diminishing sizes.
The current set menu, which starts at 2,000 RMB ($314) and includes drink pairings, begins with apple and wasabi ostie served with the sounds of bells in a gothic church setting. Just before the end of dinner, Mario Bros and Rossini are played to put diners in a racing mood as they indulge in a dish called gummies hibernates cola rocks.