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The Fangjia Hutong Primer

The Fangjia Hutong Primer

Fangjia is right in the middle. Having gone up in the Qing Dynasty, this, the namesake of the Fang family, is now caught between its roots and the type of gentrification that (not so) long ago converted Wudaoying Hutong into a bit of a theme park. Either way, it’s difficult to ignore the embarrassment of wonders on tap here. Indeed, a pass “through” Fangjia Hutong on the way somewhere else has a way of devouring one’s Friday night whole. Luckily for the uninitiated or novice, we’ve got your primer for killing it on Fangjia Hutong. Don’t pretend you’re going anywhere after – just embrace it.

These spots are close together, so feel free to explore, mix and match, and generally pub-crawl as necessary. But we’ve approached our primer as a bit of a food and wine pairing, with one restaurant matched to one bar. Gan bei!

Moxi Moxi + Cellar Door

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Moxi Moxi has only been with us a short while (since Spring) but the place has been thriving since day one. Summer gave this Israeli joint’s standout faire a chance to shine. Now they’ve got this charming (really!) Astroturf terrace thing going on, where you can relax under a fat tree, gnoshing sabih (30 RMB) or primo falafel, surely the best in the capital (35 RMB) and sipping Jaffa coffee.

For its part, Cellar Door is literally right next door (they even share a weird little window thing). This is Fangjia’s standout bottle bar. If you don’t like dives, keep your distance – those among us who worship the filthy foundations of this place don’t need it to be crowded. Possessing all the moxie (see what I did there?) of its beloved proprietor, this spot offers beers from Germany, Belgium, Australia, New Zealand, England, America and more. It’s dark, perennially candle lit, and perennially slightly, well, broken. We wouldn’t fix it if we could.

Moxi Moxi
ADDRESS: 55 Fangjia Hutong, Dongcheng, Beijing
CONTACT: 158 0168 0406

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Cellar Door
ADDRESS: 55 Fangjia Hutong, Dongcheng, Beijing
CONTACT: xingxing729729@163.com

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Ramo + Fang

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Ramo is a strange place. When you graduate from binge drinking and chain smoking outside Cellar Door until all hours (we know what you’re thinking: never going to happen), maybe you’re getting a family or a career or – who knows – both started up. You might consider stopping by Ramo, pound for pound the cleanest, poshest fun to be had on Fangjia. Irony of all ironies: this is primarily a pizza place. They’ve got a John Audubon print on the wall though, so, you know: it’s legit. The pizza and Italian faire are solid and fairly priced (more expensive than the other options on this list, but still). They’ll also fix you an iced coffee if you’re in need.

We’d like to take the opportunity to welcome newcomers Fang to the Fangjia scene. This spot fills a bit of a gap created by the other three (exceptional) bars on this list: primo cocktails. They go for 50 to 60 RMB a lowball: lovingly crafted and correspondingly delicious. Pace yourself. Ambiance is dedicatedly smooth, right down to the contemporary jazz and slow burn house. We prefer the soul tracks occasionally on tap. Ramo, then Fang is a good one-two punch if you want a slice of Margherita before your martini.

Ramo
ADDRESS: 67 Fangjia Hutong, Dongcheng, Beijing
CONTACT: 8403 5004

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The Fang
ADDRESS: 59 Fangjia Hutong, Dongcheng, Beijing
CONTACT: 8402 9495

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Was Park + El Nido

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We know what you, the Fangjia initiated, are thinking: “But these are as far apart as you can get on Fangjia!” Quiet, this article is for beginners! But here us out: the expansive outdoor seating at El Nido, huge selection of dark, dark, dark beers and slightly more moderate selection of cheeses make this place a standout pairing with Was Park, wa-a-a-ay down at the Yonghegong Dajie end.

Was Park is a Chinese-burger slinging operation that doesn’t skimp on volume. What are these? Third-pounders? Hard to be sure, but they’re delicious. They might even have Serbia Burger beat over on Baochao Hutong. Slathered in cheese and all the fixings, we heartily recommend both a meal and a chat with the owner. You can also pair with some of Was Park’s home brew if you need a buzz before El Nido. Don’t be fooled by the tiny hole-in-the-wall vibes, this is the real deal. Why is it called Was Park? No one knows.

Only disclaimer? Maybe skip the El Nido cold cuts. We give them massive props for trying, and there’s even something aesthetically awesome about keeping massive slabs of prosciutto under the counter – but with Jiao right down the street… well, the cold cuts war has been won. But more on that later.

Was Park
ADDRESS: 30 meters from Yonghegong Dajie, Fangjia Hutong, Dongcheng, Beijing
CONTACT: 156 5222 8194

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El Nido
ADDRESS: 59 Fangjia Hutong, Dongcheng, Beijing
CONTACT: 8402 9495

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Aimo + Jiao

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Aimo is your Yunnan fix. This spot specializes in groups, and we wouldn’t necessarily recommend plopping down here all by your lonesome, but with two people you’re good to go. It’s hard to narrow it down but the potato cake is pretty sweet – kind of like a continental shelf of hash browns. You want the brown beans, which are salty and savory. The mint leaves in sesame oil is a great between dishes palate cleanser. We were digging on the smoked pork with wild mushrooms. It’s hard to go wrong.

Then it’s just a short walk to Jiao. Don’t be intimidated by the scene considerations – true, it’s a tightknit crew, but you and your friend or date are going to be more than welcome to crash the party. We’re big fans of their Italian nights, when a guest bartender appears and whips up mean Negronis and other Italian specialty cocktails deep into the evening. The house wines are affordable at 30 RMB, and, where drinkability is concerned, a step above what you might expect at other hutong spots. This is first an foremost an intimate wine and cocktail spot, but bottles are available for the insatiable IPA lovers among us.

Don’t balk: the 80 RMB plate of cold cuts is incredible. You get your prosciutto, salami, ham, ham and ham: you’re good to go. We don’t know where they’re sourcing this stuff, but it’s delicious. Now take a seat on one of the hallowed steps of Jiao and chat the night away.

Aimo
ADDRESS: 6 Fangjia Hutong, Dongcheng, Beijing
CONTACT: 6400 1725

Jiao
ADDRESS: 61 Fangjia Hutong, Dongcheng, Beijing
WECHAT ID: jiao 交把

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