Bao Bei

A nostalgic yet modern restaurant in historic Chinatown. Working closely with Bao Bei Chinese Brasserie owner/co-conspirator/muse, we endeavored to create a cozy, informal and intimate dining experience, while subverting the conventions of the traditional Chinese restaurant. The room exudes warmth with rich woods, pastels and chalky colours under soft lights, replacing typical Chinese eatery elements (banquet style seating, fluorescent lighting, big round Lazy Susans)–the space is decidedly un-polished, in keeping with a mix of pastoral Shanghainese and distinctly feminine French Colonial. Just as the menu incorporates elements of the cuisine she ate growing up, the intermingling of past and present–vintage curios and family memorabilia, such as a massive, old photo of her dad’s teenage rock band–add to the sense of experiencing the owner’s playfulness and personal history.

Photography by Christopher Flett, Peter Bagi and Glasfurd & Walker. Brand by Glasfurd & Walker.