The Best and Worst of Shenzhen F&B in 2018

By That's Shenzhen, December 28, 2018

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201812/year-in-review-20181.jpgIt’s been one hell of a year to say the least, particularly for those of us based in China. We’ve seen ‘The Tweeter in Chief’ launch (and then halt) a trade war between the world’s two leading economic powers, Fan Bingbing disappear and then reappear (with a major fine to pay) and another record-breaking Singles’ Day haul for Alibaba. To wrap up 2018, our editorial team has put together a list of the year’s most unforgettable viral stories, recounting major occurrences that defined the worlds of sports, tech, arts, fashion and food. Here’s to another year of eclectic, weird and wonderful life in China, we wouldn’t have it any other way. 

It’s been a love-hate year for F&B in Shenzhen… These food trends were all the rage in 2018, and while some had us salivating at the mouth, others made our stomachs grumble for all the wrong reasons. Here’s to 2018 and all of its many weird and wonderful F&B developments.

We loved…

Latin Food

Image via Unsplash

We were treated to a bunch of new openings in the city, including Latin outlets Teqo, Orale and Besame Mucho, as well as Cal-Mex shop Tristan’s and, most recently, Spanish tapas outlet, Skina.

Continued Craft Booze Renaissance

Image via Unsplash

While the beer scene may be getting more crowded by the month, craft alcohol enthusiasts are turning their attention to liquors and spirits such as gin for new inspiration.

Experimental Snacking

Screengrab via Taobao

Throughout the past year we had the pleasure of sampling Nutella-flavored ice creamchili snickers, chicken-wing-flavored oreos and, dare we say it, wasabi-flavored Lays chips, most of which were quite the delight.

Rise of the Speakeasy

Image via That's

We saw multiple themed speakeasies rise during the past 12 months, including Barber Shop (guess what their theme is), The Loops and possibly the quirkiest of them all, Ciyuntang Traditional Massage.

We Loathed...

Street Food Going MIA

Image via Unsplash

There’s nothing quite like splurging on a roadside BBQ at 3am, and while our pockets may be happy our stomachs are sad to note the ongoing disappearance of street-food stalls around the city center.

Typhoon Mangkhut’s F&B Destruction

Image via Loop Surf Salon

We won’t soon forget the chaos that Typhoon Mangkhut caused as it tore through the Pearl River Delta, including the damage wrought upon beachside bars like Loop Surf Salon.

Depleting Music Scene

Image via Unsplash

We said goodbye to Dolores Park and Hangover this year with few new music haunts rising up to take their place.

Fast Food Faux Pas

Image via

While we are all for new ideas, and while we have grown fond of such delicacies as sweet potato ice-cream, KFC’s fried chicken tacos were a bit extreme for our liking, not to mention their outrageous attempt at Chizza, which combined chicken and pizza.

Read more of what we loved and loathed in Shenzhen in 2018, click here

For more 2018 Year in Review coverage, click here.

[Cover image via Unsplash]

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