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Shanghai Speakeasy

July 07, 2014


Picture the scene at Parlor: a dark, atmospheric den of aged wood counters and exposed brickwork, scattered with lush leather chesterfields and antique mahogany tables, all hidden behind a pair of big, bronze, secret-guarding gilded doors. Yes, it is indeed Beijing’s latest speakeasy-inspired sipper, but instead of culling inspiration from the American Prohibition era, it pays homage to the indulgent, bygone era of ‘20s Shanghai.

From mix master Jeff Ji (of Mai Bar fame), a succinct and sublime list of western classics are imbued with an eastern edge – the Passion Pisco zings with fresh passionfruit, lemon syrup and bitters, while the aromatic Jasmine Sour arrives topped with floral-scented foam. If you’re feeling peckish, try the inventive, edible strawberry and basil mojito, served as a gleaming jellified gem, or there’s an intriguing frozen mix of Kahlua, vodka and blended durian fruit for the more daring. The ground floor of the two-storey bar is open to all, but gain access to the upstairs private members area, and you’ll be handsomely rewarded with a swish black bar offering a smart line-up of long-aged whiskeys, cigar humidor, private KTV rooms, mahjong tables, and a baby grand for those inclined to tickle the ivories. This is one Parlor we’d sure like in our home…

39-9 Xingfuercun / Chaoyang / +86 10 8444 4135 / 6pm-2am daily