2017 Welcomes Beijing’s Trendiest New Addition: Cinker Pictures
Cinker Pictures is a brand new concept that has opened on the fourth floor of North Sanlitun Taikoo Li next to Space Cycle. Part bar, part restaurant, part cinema it is an intriguing idea that actually fills a vacuum left by the efforts to control media here in the middle kingdom.
Given the paucity of film choices – The Great Wall anyone? - Cinker are planning on showing classic films that you will relish the chance to go and see. Over the month of February 2017, you can expect to see films like “One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest”, “Forrest Gump”, “Wall Street”, “Lolita” and “Fight Club”.
Combine the plush, wide leather chairs with some classic cocktails featured in film favorites (French 75 from Casablanca, Highball from The Great Gatsby (1974) and White Russian from The Big Lebowski) and you may well have an ideal date location. With a cinema that has 30 available seats per film showing, it’s perfect to grab a drink, see a classic film and talk it over a dinner together for an all-in-one date place that covers all the bases. While it’s normally RMB 150 for a ticket + your drink of choice, they have a soft opening promo now where each show ticket is RMB 105 (which also includes a drink).
For birthday parties or just for fun, it’s also quite tempting to book out the entire cinema for just you and your cool film friends who appreciate the chance to watch film classics again on the big screen while sipping on fancy beverages. Depending on how many friends you have, there is a private lounge cinema that has 10-15 seats and space for dinner that can be booked for about RMB 3,000 for up to 120 min and the larger cinema is RMB 6,000 for up to 120 minutes (and both are subject to availability).
Decked out like a 50′s style cinema, it is a throwback to days of tailored glamour from Audrey Hepburn to Marilyn Monroe, stepping into Cinker Pictures can make you feel like you’re stepping into a different era, and forget you’re in Beijing entirely.
“Inspired by the classic picture houses in New York and London, CINKER PICTURES brings you a whole new experience of dining and movie screening combined. Our collection of vintage and independent movies in foreign languages will ensure you a wonderful journey in time; our casual dining restaurant with contemporary decor and ‘retro glam’ cocktail lounge will surely serve to extend your enjoyment of the evening/day.
CINKER PICTURES – taking you on a unique journey through frames and moments.”
LDS Snapshots of Cinker Pictures:
Welcome to Cinker Pictures
Cinker Pictures Opened its Doors at the Start of 2017
Cinker Picture’s Main Bar
Serving Up Movie-Inspired Classic Cocktails
Mary Pickford (from Coquette 1928) with Diplomatico Blanco Rum, Apricot Brandy, Maraschino, Pomegranate, Clove Bitters (RMB 90)
Cinker Pictures’ Luxurious & Plush Cinema
Sit Back, Have a Cocktail & Watch Film Classics
Main Dining Room with Open Kitchen
The menu features dishes that are a mix of styles that would probably be categorised as contemporary American, with a good selection of small plates, sharing options and sides that all encourage communal eating.
Still in soft opening, we have found inconsistencies with some dishes that sparkle and stand out as some of the best in Beijing and some that seem to be more of an afterthought.
The veal short rib is particularly good, really tender but with a delightfully crispy crust and the roast suckling pig was also fantastic. Perfectly tender while preserving a thick and crispy skin. The steak tartare cuts the mustard, and the hen egg, bacon jam, brioche and avocado combo tastes like your ideal breakfast.
On the other end of the spectrum, the chicken and chorizo baked rice was really bland and desserts were underwhelming. Other dishes that didn’t quite reach their potential include the Mac & Cheese with Wild Mushrooms, Slow Cooked with Ox Cheek which sounds amazing and was very tasty but I think they forgot the cheese. And while the whole sea bass and rib-eye steak were both very tender, we had to ask for some salt to sprinkle over both of these dishes as the presence of memorable flavors was lacking.
I would also cite the lack of vegetarian options as a slight problem. The tomato salad is there, but RMB 48 is a high price tag for something that is essentially a variety of tomatoes with bits of Mozzarella cheese and a few sprigs of basil. Aside from that, there is very little else other than a few other “Sides” including the mashed potato, grilled corn and fries with brava sauce.
LDS Snapshots of Cinker Pictures’ Dishes:
Glamorous Plateware Paired with Gold Utensils
Grilled Romaine Lettuce, Anchovy, Parmesan Dressing (RMB 58)
Blackened Prawns, Lime Butter, Grilled Corn (RMB 68)
DIY Steak Tartare (RMB 88)
Lobster, Shaved Fennel, Mussels, Apple Leaf Salad (RMB 138)
Pan-Fried Hen Egg, Bacon Jam, Brioche, Avocado (RMB 48)
Confit Tomato, Mozzarella, Charred Onions, Basil (RMB 48)
Mac & Cheese with Wild Mushrooms, Slow Cooked Ox Cheek (RMB 78)
Browned Butter Mash Potato with Garlic Parmesan (RMB 38)
Chicken & Chorizo Baked Rice (RMB 138)
BBQ Veal Short Ribs, Charred Sweet Corn, Horseradish Cream (RMB 208)
Pan-Roasted Whole Striped Sea Bass with Caramelized Cauliflower, Smoked Cucumber (RMB 228)
Roast Suckling Pig with Apple, Celeriac, Pistachio Vinaigrette (RMB 218)
Grilled Rib-Eye with Globe Artichoke, Cavolo Nero, Seaweed Butter (RMB 238)
Yoghurt Panna Cotta with Wine Jelly, Fig Jam, Walnut, Lavender (RMB 58)
Toasted Marshmallow, Lemon Curd, Mango, Passionfruit, Vanilla Sablé (RMB 58)
Birthday Dessert with Chocolate Cake (RMB 58) and Santiago Tart (RMB 48)
Two Birthday Celebrations in 2 Weeks at Cinker Pictures
Overall, Cinker is one of the most exciting new openings Beijing has seen in awhile. It’s got cool points through the roof and for both nights I dined here (a Monday night and a Thursday evening), the restaurant has been packed. It’s no wonder people all want to celebrate their birthday here (2 birthday dinners in 2 weeks!). Cinker Pictures is full with an unusually large proportion of stylish and trending-looking diners who often look like they should be on the big screen themselves.
Still new, still kinks to iron out, but this is a place that I’m sure is going to take off this 2017 and Year of the Rooster and I am definitely looking forward to returning not only for a meal, but also for a ticket to a film showing so I can settle into one of those plush leather seats that really takes the whole cinema experience to another level.
Cinker Pictures Contact Details:
Address: Next to Space Cycle and above Transit Sichuan Restaurant on the 4th Floor of North Sanlitun Taikooli, N4-40B Sanlitun Lu, Chaoyang District 100027
Chinese Address: 北京市朝阳区三里屯太古里北区N4-40B
Tel: 6409 4577
Opening Hours: Films are Screened at 17:30, 20:00 and 22:00, Restaurant is open from 15:00-22:00 and Bar until 01:00.