Shenzhen Cafe Review: Brownie Art Photography

By Bryan Grogan, July 5, 2019

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The Place

Set in the basement floor of Nanshan district’s newest MixC World, Brownie Art Photography has separated itself from the glut of new restaurants in the shopping mall by adopting a rather unique concept.

Here, patrons can order up a range of beverages, from cocktails to coffee, and browse a collection of home decor products and accessories, from portraits and photographs to cutlery.

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Image by Bryan Grogan/That’s

Perhaps best enjoyed with a selfie stick and some friends, Brownie has an abundance of adornments to entertain the wandering eye.

The Drinks

While you can grab a cake or bun from Brownie Art Photography, the selection is very limited, with no snacks or other food items available for purchase when we visited. On the other hand, their drinks selection is immediately attractive and covers everything from gin cocktails to drip coffee and fruity juices.

We tried the cafe’s lemongrass milk coffee (RMB38) and a poetically named gin cocktail called ‘Sea’ (RMB68). The lemongrass milk coffee was certainly milky, but we were unable to taste the floral tones of lemongrass mentioned in the description.

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Image by Bryan Grogan/That’s

Sea combines gin, espresso and tonic water, a mixture that we certainly can’t argue with. The piney taste of the gin is the overwhelming flavor, while the espresso provides a little more than a rustic overtone to the whole drink.

The Vibe

Mellow vibes resonate around this stylish cafe slash store, although the open front can be somewhat disconcerting as shoppers file through in an endless stream. While we appreciate the artsy vibe, we also had the strange feeling that we were sitting in a newly renovated house or store, with packing boxes and oddly assorted furniture surrounding us.

Our final verdict: this outlet is more style than substance and probably not worth your while visiting unless to adorn your Xiaohongshu profile with delightful – albeit slightly confusing – photos.

Price: RMB25-70
Who’s going: wanghongren, chic selfie stars
Good for: boozy shopping, caffeinated chats
Nearest metro: Houhai (Exit G), 10 minutes’ walk

Open daily, 10am-10pm; see listing for Brownie Art Photography

[Cover image by Bryan Grogan/That’s]

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