Paper Lantern - A New Cocktail Bar in Chinatown

It’s so exciting that the weather has finally warmed up here in Calgary. We’re getting some crazy storms but I like to tell myself that the rain will only make everything more lush and green. With the warmer weather people are starting to wander outside again and I'm glad to see that some establishments have reopened.

Here in Calgary more restaurants have opened up and it’s great to see people being able to enjoy the patios and lounges again. There have been some new places that recently opened their doors, one being the new Chinatown cocktail bar Paper Lantern! I was extremely excited to hear that they would be serving Vietnamese inspired drinks and food in a cozy and contemporary space. Since most of us aren’t able to travel right now, it’s like they took a bit of Vietnam and brought it here to Calgary.

Previous to their opening I was able to sample some of their take home cocktail kits (these cocktails are now part of their menu) featuring house made mixes and even making their own hand carved ice. We ordered the Pandan Pina Colada, a play on the traditional pina colada

made with a special house made pandan coconut cream. If you’ve never had pandan before, it’s an amazing herb used in a lot of Vietnamese dishes. It has a very mild vanilla like flavour with hints of almond. It is one of my all-time favorite dessert flavours and I was extremely intrigued by the addition of it in a cocktail. It tasted exactly like a pina colada with hints of vanilla. Definitely refreshing and when we enjoyed it on our patio, it felt – for a moment, like we were on the beaches of South East Asia for a tropical vacation.

Another cocktail we ordered was the Tiger’s Tale. This one was darker using whiskey as a base along with their house made spiced syrup. It reminded me of a cross between an old fashioned and a manhattan. My husband really enjoyed it since those are exactly the type of drinks he would order when we’re out. This one transported us to one of the classy and sophisticated rooftop lounges we visited while on vacation.

We had a lot of fun tasting each of their cocktail kits and really can’t wait to try a couple more. Now that they’re open, we’re hoping to swing by and visit sometime (anyone want to babysit?). I am excited to sample some of their food offerings as well as the other cocktails on their menu. This is a great new addition to our Chinatown and since most of us are not traveling for the near future, this is a great way to experience something exotic without leaving town!

Please keep an eye on their Instagram and facebook page for operating hours and visit their website for the latest food and cocktail offerings.

Paper Lantern Cocktail Bar
Basement – 115 2 Avenue SE
Calgary, AB
(403) 457-7765
Instagram: @paperlaternyyc
Facebook: Paper Lantern