Stir is a brand new, hidden-away gem of a cocktail lounge in Liangmaqiao that has the potential to become your new favorite date spot. Tucked inside the FX Hotel, it can prove somewhat difficult to find, with no sign declaring its presence until you physically enter the hotel.
The entrance features a sleek logo and, incongruous to the interior aesthetic, a palm tree. The rest of the bar wants to feel like a poets’ den a la 1920s Paris – and it’s trying a bit too hard with all the kitschy French art prints for our tastes. Wall decor aside, the bar itself is made of a gorgeous wood and their alcohol stock is to be admired (and sampled).
The drinks are varied and, frankly, delicious. As the summer approaches we particularly recommend the Florodora (RMB70), a variation on a Moscow mule consisting of gin, muddled raspberries, fresh lime juice and ginger beer. It proves superbly refreshing, with all the flavor notes one starts to crave as the Beijing winter begins to thaw.
During our stay, one of the co-owners doubles as the lead bartender, offering hospitable conversation and fully open to any and all feedback. His partner in this venture also owns another date night favorite, Vin Vino, and the same degree of class and good atmosphere one can expect there are on display at Stir.
The bar is dimly lit (so don’t expect that perfect selfie – it’s not that kind of bar) and the soundtrack exclusively features jazz.
Despite not having an actual happy hour, it’s a great spot for after-work drinks with colleagues. Better yet, impress your Tinder dates this summer by snagging a table for two in the corner, paired perfectly with a romantic post-cocktail stroll along the river. However you choose to patronize this new establishment, we recommend you do.
[Images via Andrew Braun/That's]