The return of Eddy Yang. The man behind troubled cocktail landmark Tailor Bar dropped out of the spotlight for a bit when that finally closed early this year. Seems this was what he was working on; he and Carson Xie have teamed up to build a small, thoughtfully decorated cocktail lounge on the sixth floor of a nondescript building overlooking United Valley. It looks like one of those cave hotel rooms carved out of white marble on Santorini.
The drinks on offer are mostly high-brow (with the price tag to match), and, from the handful we tried, pretty damn good. I'm especially guilty of overusing the term "cozy," but that's what I'd call this. The low ceiling, the deep chairs and couches and the nostalgia-heavy soundtrack. Feels like a living room. They've also got a fully-stocked kitchen. Not to mention a balcony!
The latest on Donghu Lu. The culmination of many combined manhours spent schmoozing and boozing with the F&B crowd in Shanghai, Havana Chino Latino has covered the 5th floor of the same building that Le Baron is in with pastel colors, tiles from your abuela's kitchen and hacienda shutters. In case the name didn't make it clear, it's name-checking Havana. It's spacious, something like 1,000sqm spread over two floors. Mix of high and low lounge seating, two separate bars, and a mezcal and rum-heavy drinks menu.
You can get your mojito in five-levels of complexity, capping out in booze that's been barrel aged in white oak casks right there by their uuuuuuber-chic cabinet of curios and the neon piping that reads "Havana Nights." It's the kind of place Hemingway would drink if he was a Shanghainese KOL. The food menu follows the name: South American cuisine with Chinese and Japanese twists, like ceviche with a rice vinegar, tacos with a seaweed shell, etc.
And one for the very near future...
TBD is Geo's first whack in Shanghai at going solo. The name stands for "The Broken Dagger," which is very clever and probably has some sort of symbolism, but I forgot to ask because there're like fifty other symbolic elements littered around the place. Looks like a Masonic lodge in there. Looks like they conduct rituals involving virgins, chalices and opera masks. It's so very, very close to being in soft open. Hell, you could probably nudge the door set in the giant Orangeblowfish mural on Xiangyang Bei Lu and see if it gives.