Bao Down Now to Chinatown’s newest bar and eatery | The Gourmand & Gourmet

Bao Down Now to Chinatown’s newest bar and eatery

Squeezed into the strip of Chinese, Thai and Korean restaurants on Wickham Street in the Valley, new Bao Down Now is part dive bar, part Asian street food spot. Providing an alternative to the usual late night kebabs and cheeseburgers, this new eatery is about eats and beats, with all day feeds and late night tunes. From 10am until late, you can stop in and grab a fluffy bao bun stuffed with all manner of delicious fillings, to eat in the graffiti-adorned dining area or to takeaway. Fillings include karaage chicken with Asian slaw, sriracha chilli mayo, pickled ginger and crisp chicken skin and crispy hot and sour crab with cucumber daikon, tamarind chilli jam and watermelon rind pickle. Vegetarian? Chow down on Yuzu tofu, with shitake mushrooms and lotus root. bao down now 2The open kitchen with a window out onto bustling Wickham Street provides a view of the chefs pumping out the delicious bao, with everything from the fresh, hot bao buns to the 18-hour slow-cooked pork belly made in-house. After 10pm, things get a little rowdy, as the tables and chairs are cleared from the dining area to make space for a very chilled out nightclub, complete with a DJ booth and psychedelic lighting. The bao buns keep coming, but now you can pair them with teapot cocktails, with boozy drinks like Korea Sangria and a Vietnamese Coffee that involves a hefty amount of coffee liqueur for an Asian inspired espresso martini. If all the drinking leaves you hungry again, just grab another bao on the way home – the kitchen stays open until 2am. You’ll find Bao Down Now at 187 Wickham Street, open 7 days a week. Words by Ranyhyn Akui