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Moscow Restaurants: Bao & Bar Arrives on the Ring

Bao & Bar

Fair warning: You’re going to get through a lot of napkins at Bao & Bar. The new restaurant, situated a stone’s throw from Patriarch’s Ponds, celebrates the popular Asian street food in all its sticky, delicious incarnations.

Masterminded by chef Timur Abuzyarov and his partner Roman Vorotnikov, the eatery is an ode to the humble pillowy steamed buns popular across Asia. Originating in the third century A.D., the savory-sweet bao dough provides the perfect velvety blanket for your filling of choice. The restaurant boasts seven varieties: from the classics (braised pork belly with cucumber, peanut powder and coriander), to those with a bit of a kick (fish bao with cod and prawn cakes, tomato salsa and sweet chili sauce), to the downright audacious. Bao with matcha green tea ice-cream anyone?

The bao come in small portions and are priced very reasonably, at between 160 and 200 rubles. As such, it would be rude — and a crying shame — not to order several. The highlight has to be pork belly bao with kimchi, crispy onion and hoisin sauce — you could happily spend the night feasting on them if you didn’t catch sight of one of the other dishes.

Ramen comes in three varieties — from chicken and tempura squid to pork belly or baked eggplant. The hearty noodle soups are the perfect antidote to the autumn chill. Tofu-lovers will enjoy its deep-fried variant served with broccoli, peanut and sweet and sour sauce, while the Bryansk beef teriyaki with sweet potato puree is rich, delicious and inviting.

If you struggled to pick your food order you might have even greater trouble with choosing your beer. Over 150 varieties of bottled beer and 16 drafts, including a mixture of craft and well-known European brands, jostle for room with a more modest wine list.

If you’re grabbing a quick lunch, perch on one of the window bar stools and watch the crowds passing on the Garden Ring or jostle elbow-to-elbow with your friends at a table overlooking the open kitchen. An abundance of hanging plants, pale wood furnishing and attractive murals make this an Instagram-addicts dream. Just wipe those hoisin-covered fingers first.  

 +7 (499) 347 3001 32 Sadovaya-Kudrinskaya Ulitsa, Bldg. 1 Metro Mayakovskaya facebook.com/baobarmoscow

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