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 Wine Bar & Restaurant in the CEDZ

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pirx
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PostSubject: Wine Bar & Restaurant in the CEDZ   Sun Oct 16, 2011 2:36 pm

Recently I met the owner of a large steel trading group, who also owns Kingrace Hotel. Among other activities, he imports wine (currently 200,000 bottles on stock in Changshu). He plans to open a wine bar in a park in the CEDZ (the one by the river). Once open, I will report back, if it is worth the 30 minute ride from downtown.
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Toshiechan
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PostSubject: Re: Wine Bar & Restaurant in the CEDZ   Mon Oct 31, 2011 12:29 pm

I am looking forward to your findings!
We need a decent bar in this city!
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pirx
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PostSubject: Re: Wine Bar & Restaurant in the CEDZ   Mon Oct 31, 2011 9:31 pm

A wine bar in the CEDZ 25 km from town is not really the dream of our sleepless nights, I guess.

Sorry for being blunt:

If you guys are ready and able to support a new bar/cafe/restaurant in Changshu City center as patrons, then I could make it happen. What do you prefer: cocktail bar, sports bar, Shanghai bar, European restaurant, South East Asian, Art Deco Cafe with sumptuous food, true organic food, all run by owners who can actually cook, one with chef degree from Le Cordon Bleu?

Mixed drinks like Gin & Tonic at RMB 30/35 like in existing bars won't fly, if you want something new and nice. You would rather be looking at RMB 50 plus. And that is the real issue: Everybody wants it good and is happily complaining, but nobody wants to pay the price.

I co-own a hospitality company in Shanghai with several outlets, and having had a long and hard, frustrating look on 2 occasions at Changshu for several days, we are extremely hesitant to open a top quality, premium cafe/restaurant/bar here, because we would need at least 2000 pax a month to make it worth the while. For comparison, in Shanghai we need close to 4000 pax to break-even in a 20 millioon city.

We just don't see the potential here, all we see is people going for the cheap. Investing into a brighter future with lofty projections we leave to others, we prefer brick and mortar based business with a feasible business plan.

If you have an eye-opener for Changshu, let me know.

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Toshiechan
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PostSubject: Re: Wine Bar & Restaurant in the CEDZ   Mon Oct 31, 2011 9:57 pm

I have been here for 3 month and the major thing I spotted is that this place doesn't have a cafe the only places are SB and the hotels. SB is terrible hotels don't offer value. I also spotted that the local Chinese in this area love coffee and pack SB in the evenings and weekends. I think that if you looked at getting something in the complex where Casa mia is located (Horrible restaurant!!!) and have a Cafe during the day/bar at night with a quality menu (pasta, burgers, schnitzel, chinese snacks) you would find that it might be worth your while. Changshu has not only foreigners that are looking for western options but also many wealthy Chinese that are quit "worldly" and need a place to spend their money.

As for being willing to pay the money I would be willing to pay for a decent coffee and a nice place to sit on the weekend with my husband to have a drink.

I hope it was helpful
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mattcoq
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PostSubject: Re: Wine Bar & Restaurant in the CEDZ   Wed Nov 02, 2011 9:38 am

I do agree with Toshiechan ... No problem spending the money if the quality is there ... Many of us put great hopes in Casamia when it open, but unfortunately doesn't seem that there is a will and a desire to listen to the customers opinion ...

No competition around doesn't seem to be motivating them to go forward ... Unfortunately, it should be the hen laying golden eggs but managed as it is, ..... no comment ...

Pirx : I might know a person that could be helpful for you ...
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Toshiechan
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PostSubject: Re: Wine Bar & Restaurant in the CEDZ   Wed Nov 02, 2011 11:02 am

I also remembered this morning a restaurant in zjg called Le blue (I think) they are doing french fusion but also offered pizza and the likes. very nice setting the owners Chinese Japanese couple the chef (husband) studied in france at cordon blue. The point of the story is they first opened in zjg and after a while did well enough to open in suzhou. So I think you should check them out and also I think it goes to show that there is a place to bring good quality western restaurants to the small cities.
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mattcoq
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PostSubject: Re: Wine Bar & Restaurant in the CEDZ   Wed Nov 02, 2011 11:06 am

I have also another example which is the "Captains Bar" in Nantong ...

Opened since 1997, offers a large selection of food ... Mexican, Italian, Asian, German ... Etc ...

In a very cosy place, feel at home and service is always on the top ...

Every time I pass by Nantong, I stop there ...

For me it is a reference, prooving that in small cities, such kind of places can work, like Toshieshan just mentioned ...
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spiderboenz
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PostSubject: Re: Wine Bar & Restaurant in the CEDZ   Mon Oct 13, 2014 12:59 am

50+ RMB for a cocktail? When I can get all of the ingredients to make plenty of my own for the low low cost of only 4 drinks? No thanks. Especially if you are going to be using Chinese bartenders. I am convinced that no one in this country knows how to make a proper cocktail.
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mattcoq
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PostSubject: Re: Wine Bar & Restaurant in the CEDZ   Mon Oct 13, 2014 9:43 am

spiderboenz wrote:
50+ RMB for a cocktail?  When I can get all of the ingredients to make plenty of my own for the low low cost of only 4 drinks?  No thanks.  Especially if you are going to be using Chinese bartenders.  I am convinced that no one in this country knows how to make a proper cocktail.

Maybe you just haven't been in the right places lol!

Never say never in this country ...

I have found some excellent cocktails makers in China, but not in Changshu ...
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spiderboenz
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PostSubject: Re: Wine Bar & Restaurant in the CEDZ   Mon Oct 13, 2014 1:11 pm

Fortunately, I am a very good bartender, so I don't have to worry about it too much if I feel like drinking alone.
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PostSubject: Re: Wine Bar & Restaurant in the CEDZ   Mon Oct 13, 2014 1:16 pm

spiderboenz wrote:
Fortunately, I am a very good bartender,

Cool, after 10 years you have finally arrived ...

If we meet in Casamia or elsewhere, I'll ask the owner to put you behind the bar when I order a drink ...
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spiderboenz
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PostSubject: Re: Wine Bar & Restaurant in the CEDZ   Mon Oct 13, 2014 1:31 pm

My drinks are mostly individual creations.
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