Pabst Blue Ribbon “tall boys” for RMB10. You don’t see that every day in Beijing but such is life at The Brick (map) during its happy hour. And one of many things I enjoyed during a six-hour visit to this Shuangjing bar on Saturday night. Nine more:
- Pub grub: The donkey meat pizza (RMB15) is a small crispy tasty six-inch pie (you can alternatively get your donkey in a grilled cheese). I also tried the Tommy Gun chicken burrito with nachos (I liked the paprika) and salsa (RMB40). Good filler.
- Beer: About two dozen choices, including Strongbow Cider, from the aforementioned PBR at RMB15 to big bottles of Franziskaner at RMB45.
- Cocktails: The President Mao–gin, tonic, grenadine–is pleasant. My mates tried the Hard Lemon (good), Nuclear Blue (OK), Jack Coke (g00d), and something with a 151 float (went from “smells like gasoline” to “I like it” over the duration of the drink). Most of the cocktails are ~RMB40.
- Shots: We tried the RMB5 Skittle-infused vodka ones. You know what, I really think my Skittle-infused vodka shot days are behind me…
- Menu: Ample choice in terms of beer, cocktails, and food, but not so much so that you spend half an hour reading the menu. Plus some of the neatest chalkboard writing you will find.
- Layout and decor: Speaking of chalkboards, the second floor has a small school’s worth as well as a pool table. Downstairs is a stand-up bar and several “lounge” seats, with a few tables out front. The faux brick bar facade is a bit meh but the place is comfy enough, has some personal touches (check out the stuff glued to the ceiling), and is clean.
- Video: On Saturday, The Brick screened The Life Aquatic with the sound on, then Fight Club and The Good, The Bad, and The Ugly with sub-titles. That doubles the number of movies I’ve seen this year though I suspect that will soon change given that DJ Chunky left me his DVD player. The music was good.
- Wireless: Being fixed when I arrived, working by the time I left.
- Customers: The kind of place where you can sit by yourself and nurse a beer, strike up a conversation with your neighbor, or get together with friends and get sloppy.
The Brick is run by Ryan and Cici Feng Johnston, bills itself as a neighborhood bar, and lives up to it. As with Mao Mao Chong, I’d spend a lot more time at this place if only I lived closer. I’ll be back soon to try the grilled cheese…
The Brick is open daily from 5 PM to 2 AM. Happy hour, which includes discounts on draft and RMB20 well drinks, is from 5 PM to 8 PM.
(I went to The Brick after spending a full day in Shuangjing, starting with a 9 AM meeting, and will have posts on other spots visited, including Lily’s and Unconditional Love.)
(Thanks to Mr Hao for the photo)