Weibo Bar (围脖酒吧 Weibo Jiu Ba)

💙 American hip hop and R&B greet you as you walk into this dark, eclectically decorated haunt, whose name means “scarf bar”–no relation to the Weibo that was China’s answer to Facebook before Tencent’s Wechat took over the entire Chinese ether.

Weibo Bar features a periodic one-man live music show at the keyboard/mic station in the midst of things, but the real highlight of the interior is the movie screen, which plays comedies with their soundtracks pumped through the excellent sound system by day and serves as a visual accompaniment to the live and canned tunes by night.

A set-menu lunch features Western dishes like steak. The cocktail selection is standard, but there’s unspoiled Chilean Cabernet Sauvignon on offer, and a Tiger beer tap is coming soon. In the meantime you’ll have to settle for bottled Tsingtao, Bud, or Heineken. Amongst the bar snacks, don’t miss the cucumbers with a wasabi-soy dipping sauce (芥末青瓜, jie mo qing gua), which will clear out your sinuses in short order, thus enabling you to stay until the bar’s 2am closing time before resting up for the next morning’s 9:30am opening time.

For more Kulangsu (Gulangyu) travel ideas, see the new Kulangsu Island Visitor’s Guide.

💙 The One Place In The Life, Kulangsu (Gulangyu)

This recent addition to the island took over a large swath of outdoor-bar territory just a few blocks down the waterfront. If you turn right as you’re stepping off the Lun Du ferry, it’ll be the biggest bar garden in sight. If you come to the Global Bowen Bear Hotel, you’ve gone too far. The most notable thing about this spot is its live music stage and expansive garden with bay views, complete with a kitschy white digital baby grand piano. Live music is mostly Chinese pop, and performances are of highly variable quality. There’s also an unremarkable, medium-to-high-priced menu of Western dishes. T-bone steaks with black-pepper gravy are thin but tasty, french fries are decent, and potato skins and other appetizers will help satisfy homesickness for Westerners. Torches warm things up in the garden on cold evenings in winter. Service is slow and indifferent.

For more Kulangsu (Gulangyu) travel ideas, see the new Kulangsu Island Visitor’s Guide.