A boozy taste of Seoul comes to Shanghai
Ars & Delecto has been attracting an eclectic crowd to sample a well-crafted cocktail menu since it opened in 2018.
The first floor is now Halu Korean Bistro, and the second floor is a world dedicated exclusively to crafted, boozy cocktails. Jeff Kao from Ars & Delecto wanted to provide an experience that can't be found at other bars. A partnership with Alice from Seoul made it all possible, making guests feel like they've been transported beyond Shanghai to the posh neighborhood of Cheongdam-dong in Gangnam, Seoul.
"This is actually a friendship turned into partnership collaboration with Alice's owner Terry Kim, which started back when we first met in 2019 when they came over for a guest shift," Kao said. "From that time, I was very attracted to and adored Alice's style of hospitality and entertainment. In addition, during COVID times when everything was slow and when we all had some time to plan and think, we started the conversation of working together in the Shanghai market, and the first step was to bring Alice's menu and experience to A&D."
Alice, the cocktail bar inspired by the classic Lewis Carroll story "Alice in Wonderland," is ranked No. 41 on the list of top 50 Asian Bars, and its cocktails are awash with creativity. "Something I always love about any cocktail is the personal touch, stories and concept. Food and drinks are very perceptional and personal things when it comes to preference and taste. But the thought process and the originality of each unique combination and creation is something that should be true to the creator," Kao said.
He said the cocktail trend in the city is and has been minimalist. However, what you find on Alice's menu is the exact opposite – "maximalist."
Leo Kim, senior bartender from Alice in Cheongdam, is now at A&D bringing the latest cocktail menu inspired by four seasons. Kim and the bartending team here are very friendly and hospitable, making everyone feel at home. Each of the 12 experimental cocktails comes with an eclectic, fun presentation and a story behind them. For example, the Hippity Hoppity (vodka, elder flower and aloe vera) comes in a rabbit-shaped ceramic mug, while the Birds and Bees (basil gin, lemon, IPA foam and pineapple honey) is presented as a bird nest.
The dedication to eclecticism doesn't end there, and the menu is built to foster a fairy tale for souls seeking a bit of fun out of everyday life. The Alice pop-up will continue until mid-October.
Opening hours: 6pm-1am (Tuesday to Thursday, Sunday); 6pm-2am (Friday, Saturday)
Address: 222 Jinxian Rd
Average price: 200 yuan (US$30.93)