Hot dogs and mojitos were two trends passing in the night.
Gung Ho has rolled and tossed its last pizza in the Wangjing branch — for now. GHP’s Rich Akers says things were not developing as fast as the team liked, so Wangjing is being put on hold for six to twelve months while the focus shifts to planning other new sites. No worries for Gung Ho fans in Wangjing as the Lido branch — 5135-8557 — will handle deliveries, including of the new thicker-crust pizzas.
Tavalin Bagels and Andy’s Craft Sausages — known informally as T&A among some — have been teaming up on events and sales. Now they are taking the relationship one step closer by sharing a kitchen. This makes sense as the kitchen can serve as a bakery in mornings and a sausage factory in afternoons. With boosted capacity, look for more of Andy’s sausages and other meat products around the city.
4corners will simultaneously launch its Jing A taproom and kick off its Mo-vember charity project this Saturday. Register for the Mustaches Vs Evil Badness Charity Drive and get a free beer, starting from 9 PM. 4corners will also hold a Mustaches and Miniskirts party on November 30.
And Harry’s Mini Bar is set to soon open in Beijing and finally merge two late-night specialties — hot dogs and Mojitos. You’ll find this diminutive drinking hole on that strip between Sanlitun Village South and Sanlitun Police Station. We’ll have to get out the measuring tape and see if it is a challenger to The Mini Bar.
“Starting today, no more sambuca.“
With those five words, an era ended. Namely, an era in which virtually every visit to Fubar ended up with owner Kevin Zhang walking over with a grin on his face and a tray of Sambuca shots in his hand. That pungent liquid, those crunchy coffee beans, the sticky texture. I enjoy the occasional shot but it didn’t always go so well with my martini or Hendrick’s tonic or need for a clear head the next morning.
But a few days ago, like a white flag after a contested battle, came those words, “No more Sambuca.” And a visit that night found it to be true. Unfortunately, it looks like he simply switched to tequila.
It looks like a raisin in a shot glass of water. But it’s not.
An example of “Sambuca goggles”
Much healthy options at Fubar.
It looks like tequila is the new sambuca. And that a dancing giraffe — is that the new Jagermeister deer look? — will accompany it.
By the way, the mulled wine is back at Fubar.
(Note: I could be wrong but I think a defining moment in the sambuca war came when a group of us came in a few weeks ago and shared shots of “homemade baijiu“. Always remember, baijiu can be a transformative beverage.)
The deadline for my “Suite Sixteen” contest with Hilton Beijing for this year’s Food & Wine Experience is tomorrow. Grand prize is two tickets, plus lunch or dinner, to the event on November 2, plus an overnight stay in the presidential suite and next-day breakfast. There are also pairs of tickets up for grabs.
This year’s contest: Pick a president and tell us what wine you would drink with him / her. So far, we have Deng Xiaoping, Winston Churchill, Fidel Castro, George Washington, Ueli Maurer, Julia Gillard, Kevin Rudd, Hassan Rouhani, Joseph Blatter, Ian Khama, Martin Codax, Jacques Chirac and more. To enter, or to see the entries so far, click here.
The Food & Wine Experience includes over a thousand wines as well as food, beer and spirit vendors and classes. The event is from 1 PM to 7 PM on November 2. Tickets are rmb190, or rmb280 with buffet lunch (until 2 PM) or dinner (5:30-7 PM). For tickets or info, email shirley.shi1 (at) hilton.com.
Rurik Nystrom and the team at RedBang are working on a funky new map of Sanlitun. The images below are from a basic template that can adjusted for color, elevation or angle. Frankly, I’d turn it around so I don’t have to see that unnecessarily bright Apple logo (it’s a bit much when you’re exiting Aperitivo at three in the morning). The 3-D perspective, the easy-to-read street names and the subway directions are all nice touches. If you want more info on these maps, contact Nystrom at rurik (at) redBANG.com.
Note: He says the team is also planning maps of Wangfujing and of the CBD, including Parkview Green.
Four Seasons will soon be home to a new “mega lounge” and a search is now underway for employees to staff it. Marcus Treamer of Four Seasons says he is hiring for the following positions:
- General manager
- Assistant manager
- PR & marketing manager
- Event and membership sales manager
- Beverage manager
- Bar managers
- Floor captains
- Resident DJ
To apply, send your resume to Treamer at marcus.treamer (at) fourseasons.com.
Four Seasons is on Liangmaqiao Road and includes Italian restaurant Mio, Chinese restaurant Cai Yi Xuan, the two-story Opus Lounge, and Opus Bar. Get more information about the hotel here.
Time to rename that vehicle the Pat-ty Wagon.
The life of a sausage maker is a challenging one. Waking up every morning to face the daily grind. Dealing with a lot of baloney. Handling the wurst. Searching for the missing link.
But it also has perks. Like sharing sausages with NFL cheerleaders.
Andy Horowitz of Andy’s Craft Sausages is living that life. On top of cranking out ground meat in tubular form in his kitchen, he has been heading out to fire up the grill for the city’s movers and shakers, everyone from the staff at the Canadian Embassy staff to members of the Vermont Association of Greater Beijing. That list now includes cheerleaders from NFL team The New England Patriots.
The pep squad not only enjoyed a sausage or two with Horowitz today but also posed in his meatball-shaped delivery vehicle, a replacement for the stolen and much-missed Ham-bulance. And they wrote possibly naughty things on a poster.
Sounds like fun? You can grab one of Andy’s sausages, meet the Patriots cheerleaders and try some NFL-themed drinks tomorrow night at Centro. See the poster below for details..
I’m not a doctor, and I don’t play one on TV, but I’ve been to known to give unsolicited medical advice after a few beers. Like last night, at Home Plate BBQ, when one of the city’s magazine editors found himself on the verge of a full-blown cold.
The prescription: a mug of hot Bourbon, Coke and ginger, with optional slice of lemon.
Fortunately, Home Plate’s Seth Grossman is equally handy at dealing with the front of house and messing about in the kitchen. He worked some magic with the microwave to get that soda and ginger piping hot, then slipped in a generous pour of booze. Did it work? Guy looked OK to me.
This concoction is a riff on a much older practice of adding brown sugar to a kind of ginger soup to make it more palatable, with the cola now playing the part of sweetener. And the Bourbon component?
No one knows for sure. One possibility is that sailor Zheng He picked up the recipe when he discovered Kentucky in the year 1421 to organize the first bluegrass. Or was it 1422? I’m always getting my “Zheng He discovered Kentucky” dates mixed up.
Anyway, Bourbon, Coke and ginger: good for what ails you. The one below is the first I’ve seen this season.
(Note: In related news, it looks like Canada Dry Hot Ginger Ale is officially launching in Asia tomorrow.)
Dr Seth’s smile says, “Also available as a suppository”.
Great Leap Brewery is celebrating its third birthday today. The particularly thirsty can do the All-You-Can-Drink Challenge for rmb300 while the competitive types take part in the Karl Long Challenge, also rmb300, which requires consuming all 13 GLB beers, visiting both GLB locations, and taking off one’s shirt at some point. Complete that mission and you win a T-shirt that, in the true spirit of the event, you should promptly put on and take off. It’s what Karl Long would have wanted. (For those new to town, Long is known in these parts as former manager at GLB, proprietor at Paddy O’Shea’s and star of film short Some Dogs.)
Also happening right now: Tavalin Bagels and Andy’s Craft Sausages are at Cuju for a hutong barbecue. Bagels, brats and Bacardi — and other — rum. It’ll keep you warm.
Meanwhile, with the noted colder weather upon us, wine bar Enoterra is bringing back fondue. You can get the cheese option or the one with Valhrona chocolate and six kinds of fruit. Available from 4 PM daily, rmb180 for two people, rmb320 for four people..
Finally, Mosaic has been open a couple of weeks beside Two Guys and a Pie. Most mixed drinks are in the rmb25 to rmb35 range, with the ‘Mosaic’ a cocktail bit like a Long Island with an extra peninsula, or something like that. Look for a food menu, with Mediterranean and Middle Eastern eats, to soon be available.