There’s a growing number of reasons to pay a visit to Yangji, with gin bars, siu mei slash cocktail lounges and more opening up around the neighborhood in recent months. The newest tenant: A craft beer-focused bar that serves quality suds at relatively low prices.
Image via Xiang Zhan bar
Xiang Zhan bar (which roughly translates to ‘Enjoy Station/Standing’) is all about beer. In fact, on our most recent visit, one of the partners tells us they don’t even sell food, just ice-cold brews. (Future plans do include adding bar snacks, however.) The brand is franchise-owned and boasts locations from Hangzhou and Wuhan to Shenzhen and now, Guangzhou.
While craft beer bars have become more prevalent throughout Canton, Xiang Zhan stands out – to us, anyway – due to its price point. The menu offers medium (330 milliliters) and large-sized (650 milliliters) glasses of brew for as low as RMB12, including Tsingtao, Belgian-style ales, as well as several craft beers from Chinese breweries. We test out the Lizard ‘Mouth Water’ IPA (RMB19/36) and a personal favorite – Fat Dolma (RMB28/52) from Shangri-La Highland Craft Brewery. The IPA has a pleasant citrusy taste while the Fat Dolma on draft provides the same malt and honey aroma with hints of banana and mango that we’ve come to love.
Images via Xiang Zhan bar
Although the bar is compact and narrow, seating is plentiful throughout the inside of the venue and outdoor tables are available for those who wish to take in the sights and sounds of the neighborhood.
Another unique feature of the establishment: takeaway booze. Though we didn’t take any beer for the road on our visit, it really is the ultimate bang for your buck, as you can fill up a 1-liter container of your preferred brew for the same price as a large glass of beer. Massive containers are attached next to each of the bar’s taps, ready to be taken away for a night of debauchery.
We see Xiang Zhan bar as a prime place to go if you’re running low on kuai but still want to socialize with Karen and the gang.
Who’s going: Yangjites, craft beer fans, penny pinchers
Good for: reasonably priced suds, takeaway beer
Nearest metro: Yangji (Exit B), 10 minutes’ walk
Open daily, 11-2am. See listing for Xiang Zhan Bar.