2/F Qianhai Nanyan, Xicheng district
/ +86 10 8403-2131
And All That
East Shore Jazz Café
The words ‘jazz’ and ‘Chinese’ may not exactly roll off the tongue, but in China’s rapidly developing live music scene jazz is already a firm fixture, and nowhere more so than in Beijing. When Liu Yuan partnered with childhood friend Li Yongxian to open the East Shore Jazz Cafe in 2006, he was already something of a local legend, having been saxophonist to one of China’s first ‘rock stars’ Cui Jian, in addition to having cut his teeth managing the popular CD Jazz Cafe where he also played with his own Liu Yuan Jazz Quartet.
Located in ‘love it or hate it’ bustling nightlife district Houhai, with its many souvenir sellers and serried bars and restaurants, East Shore boasts an enviable lake view through its plate glass windows and cute as a button rooftop terrace. With a local and international line-up of live jazz and swing playing Thursday through Sunday, this 30-seat bar boasts velvet drapes, candles, vintage instruments and sepia photos of musicians adorning the walls, along with real cigar smoke and a generous supporting cast of spirits, beers and wines. If it all becomes too much, retire to the rooftop terrace in summer for sips under the stars (you’ll need to book ahead at weekends to reserve a perch) and let the zip-babba-dooby wash over you.