But back to its drinks. MO Bar has an extensive list of wines and spirits but its attraction is its cocktails –crafted by a bar team trained by Guangzhou-based Hope & Sesame (now number 35 on Asia’s Top 50). The menu is a precursor to the creativity of the concoctions it lists, with a beautifully designed book that visually guides drinkers through its city-inspired cocktails.
The first cocktail on the list, eurasian (128RMB) is a pleasing balance of bitter and sweet. Using English D1 Potato Vodka as the base, the drink is mixed with refreshing Beijing white pear, fennel-infused Mancino Bianco Ambrato, whey and tangy lemon juice. The added Chinese baijiu, Jingye Erguotou aids in cutting through any overt sweetness, adding an interesting flavour to the mix.
Inspired by the restoration of historic architecture in Beijing, the aptly named mint condition (108RMB) is a sweet and familiar mix akin to After Eight chocolate, using mint, decadent Valrhona chocolate redistilled Amaro liqueur with Lillet Blanc and earthy thyme oil. If you’re there at dusk, try sunset hunter (118RMB), made with Flor de Caña rum, Fernet Hunter bitters, lime juice and syrup. With aromatic and tropical flavours, it’s the perfect light drink to complement a gorgeous orange sunset glow.
MO Bar’s only drawback might be its prices. Adding another 15 percent to the listed prices makes it quite possibly the most expensive cocktail bar in the city. But what you’ll be paying for are expertly prepared drinks, stellar bar service and an unrivalled view of The Forbidden City from its terrace.
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