Two words that come to mind as we enter Stream Bar: oh, lord. The three-month old establishment is set in the burgeoning, yet sleepy, Sanyuanli area. We’re first greeted by a blindfolded Roman statue and welcomed into an interior that would make Austin Powers proud – it’s groovy, baby. With a long tunnel painted in deep red, shag carpets on the seats, another statue (with scattered statue heads about) and an expansive bar, it’s definitely a provoking space.
Oh, and there’s a slide, too, though we can’t actually use it. (Really, there’s a sign saying you might die on the way down – challenge accepted?) The second floor boasts a pretty sweet outdoor patio, with comfy seats in the same red hue, but the real sell here are the igloo-like cabins. Reminiscent of the spherical rooms you can rent up in the arctic to watch the Northern Lights in relative comfort, these kitsch bubbles are decorated with Christmas lights to add even more razzle dazzle. There’s also a party room that we’ll leave for you to experience yourself, as it’s a trip. And bring your camera – your Instagram is going to have a workout here.
OK, now the real deal: the drinks. A great judge of a bartender is how they make the classics and the Old Fashioned (RMB80) doesn’t disappoint. Next in line is the rumbased Native 2.0 (RMB98) – the spectacle of the drink being served is pretty incredible as they use dry ice to create a fog underneath a dumpling basket, and the drink itself certainly delivers.
Currently, the drinks are all based with sweet alcohol and a fresh juice mix, with added sugar or syrup, making them all sweet on sweet, though we’re told a new menu is soon to arrive that’ll feature a couple smoky variants of the classics, like the Smoky Negroni (RMB98). This twist on the classic cocktail is served in a Beauty and the Beast-esque rose case pumped with smoke inside to give it a toasty flavor.
From the bar’s decor to drink presentation, Stream Bar can be a bit gimmicky. But it’s an experience that diverges from the usual Beijing bar scene nonetheless, and will certainly dial up any night out.
[Images via Andrew Braun for That’s]