Second Moment

71 Wuyuan Lu
If you were over speakeasies, don’t be quite yet. Hidden behind Spicy Moment on Wuyuan Lu, this new spot from Eddy Yang of Tailor Bar is a chilled-out, unpretentious neighbourhood bar with great drinks. Well, it’s hardly even a speakeasy – just an obscure location in the back of a Hunan joint.

It’s a relaxed atmosphere – polished but minimalist in décor – with a handful of seats at the small bar, a few tables and two low, curved banquettes. There are two menus: ‘From Shangri-La’, focused on floral flavours and tiki drinks, and ‘Behind the Curtain’ – name riffing of The Curtain Club at the Ritz-Carlton Berlin – which are classic, ‘forgotten’ drinks.

The cocktails are very good or great. The Far East Sour (78RMB) is a light blend of vodka and sake splashed with floral overtones from peach bitters and osmanthus; the Bramble (78RMB) hits all the right notes a Bramble should – perfectly balanced, sour with a touch of sweetness. For great, suck down a Tiki Time (88RMB) or two – white rum and London dry gin are brought alive with lime leaves, smoothed out with coconut puree and set off with a bit of spice. It’s tom kha gai cocktail-ified.

The brown spirit drinks pull their weight equally. The Bobby Burns (88RMB) is a heady, delicious mix of Scotch whisky, sweet vermouth and DOM Benedictine. Not a showstopper, just an expertly executed classic, which seems to be what Second Moment is all about – classic, sometimes forgotten drinks done well. And oddly, that’s a novelty in Shanghai.

By Cat Nelson

Venue name: Second Moment
Opening hours: 5pm to 2am daily
Metro: Changshu Lu
English address: 71 Wuyuan Lu, near Changshu Lu, Jingan district
Chinese address: 静安区五原路71号, 近常熟路