Shanghai Bar Review: Curfew

By Cristina Ng, October 9, 2019

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There are a lot of different types of people in Shanghai, and Curfew strives to be a fluid and welcoming space for all of them. That space presents itself as a boldly-colored yet moody interior with a mix of high tables and comfortable lounge areas on the backside of Fengyang Lu’s Howard Johnson Hotel.

While primarily a cocktail bar, Curfew has already played host to LGBTQIA+ events from Plastic, POP! and Qmmunity, ensuring busy weekends. They aren’t as busy during the week, which might appeal to shyer sorts, although we imagine that situation changing once the food menu is up and running. For now, we suggest popping over to Tiger Bites if you get hungry.

Image by Cristina Ng/That's

Behind the bar is Brian Lu, who spent time as bar manager of Woo Taipei (No.20 on Asia’s Best Bars 2016) and tended bar at Mary Magnate. When it comes to flavor profiles, the sheer variety matches their commitment to appeal to folks of all stripes.

Signature cocktails like the Adult Libre (RMB88) makeover classics with new ingredients. In this case, a rum and Coke meets espresso, winter melon, lime, sugar cane, orange peel and nutmeg. 

Image by Cristina Ng/That's

The Party Loma (RMB88) plays on our favorite tequila-based tipple by adding a dash of red pepper.

Image by Cristina Ng/That's

As part of a small society of licorice lovers, we were fans of the God Damn! G&T (RMB78). You can also rely on more traditional choices such as Pimm’s Cup, Fish House Punch or Penicillin cocktails (all RMB88) to hit the spot. It’s worth noting they aren’t stingy with the pours… at all.

If you are thirsty, make sure to hit them up from 5-8pm daily, when craft beer and wine are buy-one-get-one-free. We like the outdoor patio for relaxed autumn evenings, but more energetic types might want to stay inside and enjoy the trap-heavy playlist.

[Cover image by Cristina Ng/That's]

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