Thursday, May 26, 2011

Good on you, MaoMaoChong!

Stephen Rocard of hutong haven MaoMaoChong texted me last night that they'd won the City Weekend readers' poll for 'Bar of the Year'.

There doesn't seem to be any confirmation yet on CW's (woefully unsearchable) website [ah, finally available here], but I think Stephen can be trusted on this. Many congratulations to him and wife Stephanie and tireless 'additional barman' Sean for making such a success of their cosy little spot on the Banchang Hutong in only 16 months or so. This is one of those rare "deserved success" stories that encourages us to think that there might just be hope for the world, after all.

I'm bummed that I wasn't able to join them for the offer of "free drinks all night" last night... but I imagine the celebrations will be repeated/ongoing for a while yet.

[While I love the place to bits, I wouldn't have given them that accolade myself. MMC is primarily a pizza restaurant, NOT a bar. It is secondarily a cocktail bar, NOT a bar bar. Although its cocktails are indeed very good, its other offerings of spirits, beers, and wines are relatively limited, and they have nothing on draught - so, it's just NOT a 'bar', in my book. However, I would happily have given it top honours in a number of other categories. And I'm content to see it scoop 'Best Bar' from the rest of the mostly just-as-dubiously-eligible but far-less-meritorious field.

While I disapprove of the lack of (any, or any appropriate) definitions for the categories in most awards of this kind, and am seldom likely to find myself in tune with 'mass tastes', I do somehow find the CW awards much more credible than The Beijinger ones. The latter just seem to become more of a fiasco each year (huge numbers of votes lost or discarded because of their insanely complicated and glitchy poll widget; and egregious influence of PR lobbying evident in the prominence of "also ran" venues like Mesh, Punk, Blue Frog, and Stumble Inn amongst the winners and nominees). CW's winners - even if I don't agree with them myself - at least seem like the product of rational human choice.]

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