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night talk:
A Taste of Home

While the available beer selection in Shanghai has gotten better over the past few years, there is still much room for improvement. The geographical spread of imported labels is slowly starting to encompass the globe with new brands added every month. TALK recently spoke with numerous upstanding members of the city’s booze community to ask them what drink they turn to when they want a taste of home.

Pure Blonde (Australia) – Mat Ryan – Founder of

“Pure Blonde is a great tasting, full-strength, full-flavoured, but low carbohydrate beer from Australia. This style of beer is now becoming popular in Australia, in a similar way the American light beers are very popular in the US. With 70 per cent less carbs than a regular beer, you don’t get such a beer gut. Best served very cold, it’s a nice crisp refreshing beer. It doesn’t pretend to have hints of oak or any of that garbage; it’s a session beer, meaning it’s made to be drunk fast. It even has a twist top so you don’t have to waste valuable drinking time looking for an opener.”

Available at:                                                   

Big Bamboo, The Camel, Cuvée, Eager Beaver, Feidan, Kakadu,

König Pilsner (Germany) – Stefan Stiller – Owner of Stiller’s Restaurant

“Being a German comes almost with an obligation to know about good beer and to be able to enjoy it. There are more than one thousand breweries in Germany, almost four times as many as in all other countries of the European Union combined. We Germans are very conscious of distinct beer styles. When ordering a beer, we rarely ask for it by its brand name. Rather we order beer by its style designation, asking for a Pils, an Alt, a Kölsch, a Weissbier, a Helles or a Dunkel, for instance. My preferred style of beer is the Pils. I grew up with König Pilsner and still remember quite a few fun nights with some bad hangovers the next day.”

Available at:

City Shop, Metro, Stiller's Restaurant

Budweiser (United States) – Kenneth Walker – Owner of Bubba’s Texas-Style Bar-B-Que & Saloon

“My go-to beer and all time favourite, believe it or not, is Budweiser. I really appreciate an easy drinking lager, ale, or pilsner and Budweiser is the easiest drinking beer I've ever met. The nose and flavour are both very subtle, with little or no hoppy aftertaste, which for me means it is refreshing, light and easy to drink over a session. I prefer it on draught or bottle to most any beer. Other than that, I do like Brooklyn Lager.”

Available at:

Absolutely everywhere


Strongbow Cider (England) – Paul Granville – Marketing Director of the Malone’s Group

“I am not really a huge beer fan, although I do have a beer belly, but that has been derived not from beer itself but from cider. We English love our cider. The United Kingdom has the highest per capita consumption of cider, producing over 600 million litres of cider each year. That’s a lot of fermented apple juice. It’s also stronger than beer with the average ABV being between 3 and 8.9 per cent. In Shanghai, there are not many places that serve ice cold Stongbow Cider on draught. Don’t bother with buying a bottle as it’s invariably the same price as a pint so go for the draught option when you’re hankering for a thirst quenching cider.”

Available at: Bulldog, Malone’s, Oscars


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