BARS AND PUBS

1. Janes and Hooch

prac_info Courtyard 4, Gongti Bei Lu • 6503 2757 • Subway: Tuanjiehu

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Cocktails, bourbons, and ales are served at this split-level speakeasy bar and lounge to the accompaniment of smooth jazz and blues music.

TopTen

Ingredients for cocktails at Manhattan-style bar Janes and Hooch

2. Botany Bar

prac_info 1209 Unit 2, Yonglee Plaza, Gongti Bei Lu • 6463 6091

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Swanky yet homey apartment bar with work-of-art cocktails such as Amortentia, infused with rosemary sprigs and toasted sesame seeds.

3. La Social

prac_info 3rd Floor, Nali Patio, 81 Sanlitun Lu • 5208 6030

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This is a Columbian bar with serious food options, including arepas (corn flatbreads with varied fillings), and excellent cocktails. The eclectic decor includes a picture of Jesus framed by yellow bulbs, velvet lampshades, and neon busts of Mao. It is closed on Sundays.

TopTen

Fried arepas at La Social

4. Mai

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This smartly designed cocktail bar, Mai, has outdoor seating in a narrow courtyard, plus a giant silver sofa and bar chairs inside. It draws a cool hutong crowd, especially at weekends.

TopTen

Pina colada cocktail

5. Migas

prac_info 6/F Nali Patio, 81 Sanlitun Bei Lu • 5208 6061 • Subway: Tuanjiehu

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This chic Spanish restaurant and rooftop terrace bar is always packed with a hip cocktail-drinking crowd that comes here for the DJs and great alfresco views. Try the chargrilled octopus.

6. Hidden House

prac_info 39 Xin Dong Lu, Chaoyang District • 8418 5718

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The cozy alcoves at this utterly charming speakeasy are perfect for quiet conversation and the cocktails are new takes on old favorites.

7. Slow Boat Brewery

prac_info 6 Sanlitun Nan Lu • 6592 5388 • Subway: Tuanjiehu

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A seasonally updated selection of delicious beers and award-winning burgers are served at this smart but laid-back bar, run by two American expats.

TopTen

Craft beers at Slow Boat Brewery

8. Amilal

prac_info 48 Shoubi Hutong, Dongcheng District • 8404 1416

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This Mongolian-owned whiskey bar in a tiny hutong has it all – a mishmash of comfortable furniture, random cultural artifacts, tiny tables, hushed conversation, and a number of roaming cats.

9. Centro

prac_info Kerry Center Hotel, 1 Guanghua Lu • 8565 2398 • Subway: Guomao

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Set in the lobby of one of the city’s swankiest hotels, Centro boasts live music and the last word in cocktails.

10. Mesh

prac_info B1, The Opposite House, 11 Sanlitun Bei Lu • 6410 5220 • Subway: Tuanjiehu

Google Map

Ultra-trendy lounge bar Mesh features a cool outdoor deck terrace and bamboo garden. It’s a popular spot for after-work cocktails and evening drinks on weekends.

TopTen

Tables on the deck terrace at Mesh

TOP 10 MUSIC BARS

1. Dusk Dawn Club

prac_info 14 Shanlao Hutong, Dongcheng District • 6407 8969

Courtyard venue with trees growing through tables and regular live shows.

2. School Live Bar

prac_info 53 Wudaoying Hutong, Dongcheng District • 6402 8881

This hutong venue is one of the city’s best music spots.

3. Yugong Yishan

prac_info 3-2 Zhangzizhong Lu • 6404 2711

The city’s most satisfying music venue, with an eclectic booking policy.

4. Blue Note

prac_info 23 Qian Men Dong Dajie • 170 0000 0288

The jazz club’s first branch in China.

5. Dada

prac_info 183 1108 0818 • 206 Gulou Dong Dajie

Super-hip DJ lounge and mini club import from Shanghai.

6. Hot Cat Club

prac_info 6400 7868 • 46 Fangjia Hutong

This compact pub is the mainstay of Beijing's live Indie music scene.

7. Modernista

A 1920s-themed jazz and piano bar (see Modernista) that also serves Spanish tapas.

8. Temple Bar

prac_info 206 Gulou Dong Dajie • 131 6107 0713

This institution has live shows, a wide drink selection and late-night pub food.

9. East Shore Live Jazz Cafe

A classic pure jazz venue (see East Shore Live Jazz Café) with terrific views over Hou Hai.

10. Jianghu Bar

prac_info 7 Dongmianhua Hutong, Jiaodaokou Nan Dajie • 6401 5269

Cozy courtyard bar hosting jam sessions.

TopTen

Jianghu Bar’s rustic interior

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