If you love 70s-inspired nostalgia, get ready to check out Vancouver’s newest cocktail and snack bar, Meo Chinatown. From the team behind Vancouver’s award-winning restaurants Bao Bei and Michelin-starred Kissa Tanto, Meo promises to be equal parts playful and coy.

Located underneath Kissa Tanto, the sibling snack bar will offer 70 seats in a dimly lit dining room featuring romantic pink tones, plush seating, dark wood panelling, and a vintage jukebox. So if you’re looking for a dash of retro vibes on your next date night, it’s worth checking it out!

Cocktail menu

Meo’s drink menu will feature eight reimagined classic cocktails in addition to eight signature cocktails, six of which will be on tap. The concept behind it all? “Fruits are not vegetables”

The bar program will be led by accomplished bar manager Denis Bykov, who most recently worked at Dubai’s renowned Sucre.

“We want to break a stereotype that all fruits are sweet and all vegetables are savoury,” explains Bykov. “Our cocktails will demonstrate how unexpected something can taste on your palate when different approaches are applied to both sweet and savoury organics.”

This includes Bkov’s Golden Divine cocktail, which was recently recognized at the Taste of Chinatown’s cocktail competition earlier this month.

“It’s a cocktail I’ve been working on for years,” Bykov shares in an interview with Curiocity. “I like to play around with the ingredients but keep the formula the same.”

meo vancouver
Photo via Mark Yammine / Meo

The iteration that guests at Meo can sip on consists of Blue Agave Altos Tequila, summer peach, cacao nib, ginseng cordial, Cocchi Americano vermouth, and a peach cacao yogurt crisp.

As for the rest of the cocktail menu, Bykov shares that his biggest inspiration lies in the area in which Meo is located.

“Vancouver’s Chinatown has so many things to offer. There are fresh markets and all these spices that I wanted to bring to the cocktail flavours,” explains Bykov. “Over the summer, we’ll use even more seasonal products, fermenting and preserving them so we can use them for many years to come.”

Mocktails & food

In terms of mocktails, Meo promises the same level of commitment and craft.

“Our mocktails will be made with the same local ingredients, only with de-alcoholized spirits. So you can enjoy the same negroni, Paloma, or high ball-style cocktail, minus the alcohol.”

As for eats, the menu at Meo will be filled with bold, “punchy” plates and snacks. Developed by Chefs Joël Watanabe and Macià Bagur, the final menu is still in the testing stages, but guests can expect Som Tum (green papaya salad), Trinidadian doubles, and Tostadas of the day.

Opening & details

Finally, the building where Meo and Kissa Tanto are located will soon welcome a third business by the same team, according to Co-owner Tannis Ling:

“Meo is the second piece of the puzzle to our tri-level building, where each experience is unique and complements each other. Kissa Tanto is for supper upstairs, Meo for great drinks and snacks downstairs, and there’s a third yet to come.”

Expected to open on March 13th, Meo will be open from Wednesday to Sunday from 4 pm to late.

So there you have it, cocktail lovers!

Meo Chinatown

Where: 265 East Pender Street