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Modernista European Style Café, Restaurant & Bar

Overall
Editor
Editor Rating (Review): 
4
Average: 4 (1 vote)
Address:
44 Baochao Hutong
Address in Chinese:
宝钞胡同44号
Nearest Metro Station:
Lines 2 & 8: Gulou
Opening Hours:
Daily, 4pm-3am; Kitchen open, 6pm-2am; Weekend brunch: Sundays, 12pm-5pm
Phone:
136-9142-5744
Price range:
¥100-199
WeChat-ID:
Modernista_BJ
Neighborhood:
Posted by:

Description

Expect this tiny art deco bar to be swinging, with a prominent place in Gulou down the hutong from some of the area's best haunts. The expanded digs host everything from live music to swing dancing, Djs, stand-up comedy, cabaret acts, live drawing, films, exhibitions, and more. Next door is a restaurant, featuring pan-European cuisine.

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Phone:
136-9142-5744

Comments

Comments

rockingdahouse

Cool little place but they need to sort out their issues with the neighbors. I was there this past weekend having a good time until i walked outside for a fag. i got an earful from some older lady in the street telling me that foreigners don't respect China and shit like that. It got borderline to harassment levels and all i did was really stand outside on the corner smoking. I ignored that lady and moved on but then saw her harrassing some of the other customers. The bar staff, a few of which were outside smoking themselves, didn't even try to smooth things down. It's too much hassle
Service: 
2
Average: 2 (1 vote)
Value: 
3.5
Average: 3.5 (1 vote)
Quality: 
2.5
Average: 2.5 (1 vote)

hkgaelic

love how this place always seems to have something going on. live music, movie screenings, organic market. does an amazing value deal buffet from time to time incl. all you can drink sangria which more than gets the job done. drinks reasonable priced. food simple but fresh and tasty. nice atmosphere. good place for simple sunday brunch. really comes to life at night. pick up their schedule of events for the month.
Service: 
4
Average: 4 (1 vote)
Value: 
4
Average: 4 (1 vote)
Quality: 
4
Average: 4 (1 vote)

juno_

My favourite time in Modernista is when Mademoiselle et Son Orchestre are performing. With French gypsy jazz in the air and people happily dancing along, improvising swing moves as they go - I think that's the essence and the soul of that place. Carefree with a twist. The only problem is that people keep coming and coming, and no one seems to be leaving, so you'll be lucky if you can find a place to stand, let alone sit. And even if you do, some cheerful drunk person with no control of their motor skills might fall on your table and spill your drinks, or walk all over your feet, or hit you in the face while dancing, making the night really unforgettable. Still, I would definitely recommend going there, the place has a very special insouciante vibe that I've hardly seen anywhere else in Beijing. But if you do go, hold on to your drinks. And learn how to dodge :P
Service: 
3
Average: 3 (1 vote)
Value: 
3
Average: 3 (1 vote)
Quality: 
3
Average: 3 (1 vote)

katystack

Cool hutong bar with reasonably priced drinks. Get there early on a Saturday if you want a seat
Service: 
3
Average: 3 (1 vote)
Value: 
4
Average: 4 (1 vote)
Quality: 
4
Average: 4 (1 vote)
sudden's picture

sudden

A nice place, though I dont know what the all the fuzz is about. It is nice to sit, the music is not too bad, the atmosphere is ok. Can go for a drink there, but do not have to either
Service: 
3
Average: 3 (1 vote)
Value: 
3
Average: 3 (1 vote)
Quality: 
3
Average: 3 (1 vote)
helgatiger's picture

helgatiger

There are many reasons to spend an evening at Modernista. Their staff is friendly and English-speaking, which can make some sensitive expats cry happy tears. The place is cosy, vintage ads hung on the walls, black-and-white movies playing mute on the background, draft Yanjing pouring into glasses. For drinkers, it's great deals on shots and absinthe, for non-drinkers — homemade lemonade, for those with sweet tooth — authentic Spanish churros with thick hot chocolate. I won't even start on cinema lovers, jazz addicts, swing dancers, stand-up comedians and every single laowai in this city. Just go there once and wonder how is that you didn't discover this place earlier.
Service: 
5
Average: 5 (1 vote)
Value: 
5
Average: 5 (1 vote)
Quality: 
5
Average: 5 (1 vote)
nikitab's picture

nikitab

One of the easiest places to make new friends in Beijing. The music is good although when a live band is playing it gets very crowded. The drinks selection is impressive and the 10 kuai shots from 12-2 AM are a big selling point! The food is also pretty good but more than anything I would come here for the atmosphere.
Service: 
4
Average: 4 (1 vote)
Value: 
4
Average: 4 (1 vote)
Quality: 
4
Average: 4 (1 vote)
andreapark's picture

andreapark

I love coming here to catch up with friends. It's cozy and intimate but spacious enough, and the decor is very cute - Parisian Jazz Age with black and white tiles and vintage posters. Drinks here are a bargain and a giant (I mean filled to the brim!) glass of wine is only 30 kuai or so. Actually, sometimes it's a little too easy to go overboard with the wine here and I may have broken a glass or two ...
Service: 
4
Average: 4 (1 vote)
Value: 
5
Average: 5 (1 vote)
Quality: 
4
Average: 4 (1 vote)

fullricebowl

In one word- pretentious. When I dropped by this bar there were no Chinese people and I really felt like I'd stepped into some sort of exculsive club where everyone knew everyone else and if you weren't part of that group you weren't welcome. I think it's nice that they offer events like swing dancing- but the space is so small that if you aren't dancing there really isn't room for anything else.
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tostam's picture

tostam

I visit Modernista every Wednesday for their swing class. I think it's amazing that a group of young people started this very characteristic bar in the middle of a hutong. It's a place you can dress up for, but it doesn't have a "be and be seen" atmosphere. It draws a nice mix of foreigners and Chinese. The staff is very sympathetic and in control even when it's crowded. Their service is fast but not rushed. I always feel very welcome as they take their time for a short chat with guests. The decor is lovely - black and white tiles with red accents everywhere. On Wednesday evenings they have a swing band The Hot Club of Beijing playing with lots of people dancing. Their food is fine but it would not make me go especially to Modernista. Portions are not very big and the taste sometimes a little bland (eg their tortilla). I've once tried their tiramisu, which tasted home-made and very Italian (contrary to most tiramisu's in Beijing)! The drinks are reasonably priced and they have a lot of variety. In winter, try their hot wine and in summer their sangria - both stand out compared to other bars in Beijing.
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mikalafreasbeck's picture

mikalafreasbeck

Order the sweet rice when they have it, skip the vegetable lasagna (unless you've brought your own spice rack or seasonings.. or just need something to soak up all the absinthe pooling in your belly). Their weekend buffet of small eats is a commendable effort, indeed.
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hwimsley

Great place to hang out, the owners were very nice to me and the shots were righteous. Once they get the menu ironed out this place will be awesome.
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