TapStar Taproom is one of those great spots hidden just off the main paths of downtown Guiyang. The brews are well-chosen, and new ones are introduced regularly. It’s a nice place to have a beer and talk with friends. The atmosphere is relaxing and friendly. The owners, George and Cissy, got their start in Shanghai, and now they’ve returned to Guiyang to share their love of tasty beer with George’s hometown. They are always ready to answer questions about anything they have on tap (in English, if you prefer). Unlike many local bars or restaurants, they don’t just recommend the most expensive thing on the menu; they listen to what you like and recommend brews that you’ll come back for again and again.
TapStar has a perfect environment for people who just want a pint and the company of friends. Because it’s below a residential building, they don’t blast their music or encourage wild parties. They keep it chill, keep the beer flowing, and help you shake off the stresses of the day. The layout of the bar keeps the atmosphere relaxed and quiet. Rather than large rooms, the bar is apartment-style, with a table or three in each room.
If you’re not sure of which you’d prefer, you can purchase a flight to try four at once. The flight has a base price of 70 RMB, but the price goes up for some of the more expensive beers, so expect it to be somewhere between 70-90 RMB. It’s nice to be able to sample and compare, though, so it’s a worthwhile purchase. If you already know what you like, however, most beers are available in 330 or 500 mL sizes (a few exeptions, as marked), with prices marked on the board.
Along with their draft beer, there is a small selection of canned or bottled beer (displayed above the taps) that is available to drink there or take home. TapStar also offers their draft beer to go, so if you’ve found a brew you love, don’t hesitate to ask for it to be canned. They have a machine to quickly can up the brews in-house, so you can be certain you’re getting only the freshest. The draft cans are not pictured here; they are simple silver cans with a hand-written label so that you can tell them apart. They’re priced at the glass price plus 1 RMB container fee.
To give you an idea of the variety of styles and origins of the beer, I’ve included the a sample menu below. The menu at TapStar is regularly changed and updated, so these images are for reference only. There is no guarantee that you’ll be able to find exactly the same offerings when you come in, but there will always be something for everyone.
To complement their wide selection of draft beer, TapStar offers between 4-8 of their own brews at a time. George has been brewing for about nine years, and started brewing commercially in 2016.
TapStar Taproom is located in a residential community just off Wenchang Bei Lu. The community’s name is Wenchang Dasha Xiao Qu. From Hunter Mall, walk up the hill, against traffic. The alley to get into this community should be the first big alley on your right after you pass Dongxin Lu. It slopes downhill and has a convenience store booth to the right of the alley’s entrance. Walk into the alley and you should spot TapStar on the right hand side, on the ground floor of one of the apartment buildings.
If you’re on WeChat locations or Baidu Maps, type in TapStar Taproom and the only location that comes up is the right one.