New little pizza place called Zozzo opened up earlier this month but we’re just hearing about it. Tiny little counter in the basement floor of Metro City, it serves up sandwiches and pizzas you’ve never seen before. Tiramisu Pizza. Pumpkin Cream Pizza. They come in squares, like a school cafeteria run by Willy Wonka.
In coffee news, that Paras Coffee on Xinle Lu that hadn’t opened last week? Has now. Cool little corner-shop, nowhere to sit but they’ve got free newspapers so you can educate yourself while you get your coffee to go.
This place called FIKA Cafe opened up on Wujiang Lu. Nothing to do with FIKA Sweden, just thought I’d point out that the word “FIKA” is apparently hot now. Go Sweden.
Shanghai Republik has taken over the space next to La Bota on Dagu Lu. It’s a bar serving up your hip and trending cocktails, your Moscow Mules, your Caipivodkas, your Mojtos. They’ve also got some French food trappings, including, yes, rotisserie chicken. They’ll be launching officially later in February, but they were open at 2am Wednesday night and serving drinks.
Trio also opened up, a cozy neighborhood cocktail bar run by Kimi (Heyday, el Ocho). They have a pretty extensive menu: cocktails, single malt, wine and a few draft beers on tap. Cocktails feature Chinese medicine-infused alcohol, as well as some creative takes on classics. They're all created by Kimi, who's got the balance of three elements (sweet, sour and spirit) in mind (hence the name Trio). Nice place to chill with friends. Price's around 88 - 108 for cocktails.
If you thought "wait, the space next to La Bota used to be Nova,” we’ve got bad news; Shanghai Republik’s in and long-time Dagu Lu resident Nova is OUT. No word on why, no updates on their website, our phone calls won't connect.
Captain Rooster looks like this now;
Seems like it’s renovation rather than demolition. We’ll keep you updated.
The Word Around Town
We went to see the Goose Island Brew House on Maoming Bei Lu the other day. It looks nice. It’ll probably be pretty good. We’ll see when it opens in February.
More importantly, though, the Goose Island people told us that their owner AB InBev acquired Kaiba late last year and they’re planning to “resurrect” the brand and expand it. They promised they wouldn’t rip out the taps and install Goose everything, but it’ll be interesting to see what the Chicago brewers do to the Belgian beer bar. Expect new Kaibas anywhere and everywhere.
Word on the street is Dada Bar is undergoing renovations. Seems the Uptown Records store in the back has moved out and they're looking at turning that into new bar space, and maybe even adding a second floor to the venue. Look for some big changes at the storied underground dance venue in the next few months.
The British Kitchen is leaving Shanghai. James Stockdale, who founded the delicious, delicious cake shop back in 2012, is done, leaving Shanghai and taking his toffee with him. You should read the interview with him where he talks shop. Sad cold days, Shanghai.
Hard Rock Cafe has closed till after CNY. We’re putting this one here due to conflicting reports; either it’s because they need to train staff, or it’s because they’re violating safety regulations, or it’s because their license hasn’t actually come through and they’re not legally allowed to sell stuff. Some of them are even saying it's still open. Who knows! Expect them to open back up in February.
Finally, the Ruijin Cajun boys have to move again; the shop on Changde Lu will shut next week Thursday. Something about struggling with government regulations, which comes as a surprise, because Shanghai's F&B scene usually never ever has trouble with those. Their last day for food is January 26 if you want to bash their menu one last time before they pop up somewhere else.
From owner Nate: "We're closing up the current location and scouting for a new one. Pauly (Paul Grey) will stay there and try to run a different concept. We're looking for something with more foot traffic in a populated bar area. Gonna aim to be a bar that serves dope food as opposed to a restaurant where you get drunk."
That's it for now. Check back next week for more scandalous, unsubstantiated F&B gossip.