9 to try... again: Beijing's comeback restaurants and bars of 2018

The drinking and dining stalwarts that made their return in 2018

Pachapapi
It takes a fair amount of gumption to run a restaurant or bar in Beijing, and these are just some of the places who've managed to emerge out of the ashes (or bricks) and find second homes, or make the bold move to completely revamp themselves. Whatever it is, we're glad to have them back.

El Nido at The Other Place

After its unceremonious expulsion from Fangjia Hutong in 2017, El Nido's found a second home at Beiluoguxiang, swapping its ramshackle, yet charming, former digs in Andingmen for The Other Place's light-filled, roomy courtyard. Grab a beer from its extensive selection and settle in to while away an afternoon.

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1 Langjia Hutong (Gulou, Dongcheng)

Transit (渡金湖)

Transit made waves on the Beijing dining scene back in 2012 when it first opened, serving up sleek renditions of classic Sichuan dishes. Returning at the start of 2018 after a length hiatus and remodelling, the dishes are just as sleek, and splashed with not-so-traditional flavours that elevate traditional Sichuanese classics into something more modern.

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Sanlitun Lu (Sanlitun, Chaoyang)

The Georg

Critics' pick

Back in March last year, the closure of Danish design house Georg Jensen's flagship restaurant left a sizeable hole in a Beijing F&B scene that's already somewhat scant on fine dining options – not to say anything of Nordic cuisine itself. Fortunately, The Georg made its triumphant return in August thanks to new management, unveiling refurbished interiors, a new head chef and revamped menu.

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45 Dongbuyaqiao Hutong (Nanluoguxiang, Dongcheng)

Saveurs de Corée (韩香馆)

Formerly of Xiang'er Hutong (and before that Nanluoguxiang), Korean bistro Saveurs de Corée re-emerged in March after a six-month spell away, this time in Dongzhimen. Despite its slightly rogue location in the rather incongruous and barren Rum Coabana Hotel, Saveurs is still a reliable go-to for low-key, traditional Korean bites (get the bulgogi).

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22 Dongzhimen Bei Xiaojie (Miyun county)

Rollbox

Critics' pick

One of our favourite sandwich slingers closed its doors in 2017, but thankfully Rollbox returned the following April, just around the corner from its original location in a more modern, sleek and polished second edition. The sandwiches are as toothsome as ever, but don't skip any of the new additions, including cocktails and pho.

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39 Xingfu'ercun (Sanlitun, Chaoyang)

Zhang Mama (Gulou)

A tried and true stalwart, Zhang Mama has long been one of our favourite Sichuan restaurants in Beijing – maybe even just one of our favourite restaurants full stop – so the closure of its shoebox-sized outlet at Fensiting Hutong was a huge loss for our longing, grumbling stomachs. Now located just north of Guloudajie subway stop, we're frankly just glad to see it back.

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100 Ande Lu (Gulou, Dongcheng)

Pachapapi

Having lived a life of pop-ups and temporary permanence, Beijing's premier purveyor of Peruvian cuisine Pachakutiq returned in 2018 in the bold form of Pachapapi, setting up shop in Xinyuanli's ever-expanding epicentre. Owner Francisco Chía makes the bold claim that Peruvians make the best ceviche, and having tried Pachapapi's, we're now true believers.

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20 Xinyuanli Xi (Chaoyang, Chaoyang)

Botany

After an abrupt October closure, former apartment bar Botany returned the following month, having made the long trek from Yoolee Plaza's second floor to its first floor. Fans of Botany's unique, ingredient-driven cocktails will be relieved to know that the menu remains unchanged, and still features a full gamut of big-boy scotches, whiskies and bourbons. What has changed, however, is its charming new digs, complete with a soaring ceiling and comfortable array of mismatched furniture. 

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21 Gongti Bei Lu (Sanlitun, Chaoyang)

Red Rose

After beloved Xinjiang restaurant Red Rose closed its doors in early 2018, this new gastropub would go on to take its place, keeping its predecessor's name but serving up an entirely different menu, including burgers, waffles, avocado toast, beer and cocktails. Not a conventional comeback, to be sure, but we'll take it.

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1 Xingfuyicun 7th Alley

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