My short bio: Hi all, I’m the owner of the bar, Flask, that was on the front page yesterday. I would love to share with you guys my experience as well as answer any other questions you have!

Here is the link from yesterday’s post: Bar Behind Coca Cola Machine

Here are some additional pictures for those of you interested in seeing the interior: Pictures of Flask

Here is how the bar looks from the street: View from outside

My Proof: Photo of our Business Registration

"I edited the post for the links to work"

"Thanks for dropping by and hope to see you at Flask in Shanghai!"

Comments: 1817 • Responses: 79  • Date: 

thatguyuptheroad2300 karma

Has anyone ever been trying to get a coke and been hit by the door as someone was leaving the club?

dakidjacki2243 karma

Not yet, that would be hilarious haha

dakidjacki2908 karma

We did have one customer think it was an entrance to a bathroom and when he entered he was like oh SHIT WHY IS THE BATHROOM SO BIG, while the entire bar went silent and all stared at him for 5 sec haha

CelestialOtter2337 karma

What I don't understand is why someone would come across an old coke machine, and automatically assume there's a bathroom inside.

dashil2007 karma

Because cock tastes like piss.

EDIT: My first gold?? Thanks I guess. Also 63% of my karma can be attributed to a comment about cock. YAY ME!!

dakidjacki205 karma


dakidjacki1521 karma

Our concept for serving bourbon and rye is because everyone else in Shanghai focuses on single malt scotch. I am pretty sure we currently have largest selection of bourbon/rye in China (close to 100). I wanted to do something different, plus bourbon tastes so good!

issue9mm412 karma

And so does rye.

What bourbons do you guys stock? Have you got Pappy? Weller? Angel's Envy?

As for ryes, Thomas Handy?

dakidjacki509 karma

Yes I actually like rye more than bourbon. We dont have pappy, but we have weller and Angel's envy. We carry Thomas Handy as well, and the other 4 rare whiskeys from buffalo trace antique collection

issue9mm395 karma

We dont have pappy

Basically, nobody does. All is forgiven.

dakidjacki357 karma

I've been trying to get it through friends in the US, no luck though

teefour63 karma

What is this pappy? As a man who loves bourbon, I assume I should try to get my hands on some?

issue9mm95 karma

Good luck. You'll need it, and piles and piles of money.

The sticker price is ~$250, but actually getting your hands on a bottle would probably cost quite a ~$2,000 from a reseller.

There are indeed plenty of other fantastic bourbons for sale in the $50-200 range, so don't worry too much about it... I've just been on the hunt for years and have yet to get my hands on it, so I basically ask everybody.

Edit: Fixed price.

Whydidideletemyaccou65 karma

Wow, I didn't realize Pappy's was that popular. I'm in Louisville and i've came across it a couple times, but it was like over 100+ for a shot. Not worth.

dakidjacki65 karma

I've heard its not worth it as well, I really like the Sazerac Rye and Sazerac 17 yr tho

bobsp15 karma

Which Weller? Antique, Special Reserve, 12 year?

dakidjacki41 karma

William Larue Weller

-KhmerBear-53 karma

What are some example bourbons & prices you sell?

dakidjacki100 karma

We carry close to a 100. Example, stuff from Woodford, Four Roses, Buffalo Trace Distillery, etc. It's definitely more expensive than in the States because of import tax

southave33 karma

Do you stock Catoctin Creek's Roundstone Rye? If so, they'd love to hear about that. If not, you should!

dakidjacki34 karma

No, i don't think it's available in China yet

dabeliuteef814 karma

I work in Shanghai actually and checked out your bar a few weeks a ago. Just wanted to say the interior is very unique and definitely one of the classiest speakeasies I've been to. I can see you guys put a lot of work into it and just wanted to say I would definitely go back again! Drinks were well mixed. What was the concept behind them all?

Btw, for the users who don't read Mandarin. Here's a translation on the proof from OP: Title is "Business Registration License". The Business name is Kai An Food and Beverage group registered in the same district his bar is located in. This is a standard business reg. that's required here so it checks out. Cool to see reddit outreach to Shanghai!

dakidjacki501 karma

Thanks for coming, glad to hear you enjoyed our drinks! Our bartenders have creative freedom to experiment with the cocktails, including signature infused drinks, and our own takes on classic cocktails. Some with Asian twists as our bartenders are from Taiwan

theedang179 karma

One of the most creative bars I've ever been to was in Taiwan a few years. I believe it was called Four-play? Really imaginative drinks, like this one that uses rosemary, lemon, and vanilla to mimic the taste of chocolate. If it's anything like that, I'd definitely make a trip!

dakidjacki198 karma

Four-play is awesome! another must go in Taipei is Bar Alchemy

Fucking_Montezuma28 karma

Your bar looks awesome! I've made it my life's mission to hunt out the finest cocktail bar the world has to offer, as a bourbon and rye man I'm definitely visiting yours.

My current number 1 is Black Angels in Prague. You seem you know your trade, anywhere you'd recommend I visit?

dakidjacki54 karma

I reccomend these two in addition in Asia: Tokyo - Bar Benfiddich Taipei - Alchemy

Yomankeenan516 karma

The real question is do you serve coke products?

dakidjacki1522 karma

yeah, we serve coke and diet coke. No PEPSI

xolsiion482 karma

How do people find your bar?

dakidjacki806 karma

Mainly through word of mouth, and I guess reddit now!

vigridarena345 karma

This all makes me want to visit Shanghai.

dakidjacki403 karma


Nigger_on_reddit373 karma

Do you get a lot of customers because of the Coca Cola Machine?

dakidjacki498 karma

Yeah, it's definitely a selling point, a lot of people come check us out for the Coca Cola Machine

thedudethedudegoesto325 karma

If I ever end up in Shanghai, is there a secret Reddit codeword I can use to get a free drink?

dakidjacki554 karma

haha there's no secret Reddit codeword, but if you're in Shanghai, you can hit me up, I'll treat you to a drink

youngnreckless324 karma

If you were to sell a product behind there instead of having a bar, what would you sell?

dakidjacki543 karma

a massage parlor.. hahaa just playing

SamuraiJakkass86256 karma

or ARE you?

dakidjacki384 karma

hahaha only one way to find out

bigbigjoel285 karma

Do you have to put a quarter in the door to get in?

dakidjacki474 karma

Naw, I thought about that. That woulda been cool, but the machine was already busted, and it took a lot of effort just getting it into good shape

shitlord_ofthedance260 karma

Where is this bar located?

dakidjacki532 karma

432 Shaanxi South Road (Near Fuxing Middle Road), Shanghai

johnmongrel222 karma


dakidjacki300 karma

Wow, that would be a tricky one. Maybe we'll carry him/her in haha. Can't say no to business!

stormrunner911214 karma

How old is the machine itself?

dakidjacki339 karma

I think it's at least 30 years. There aren't actually any vintage coca cola machines in China so these were imported by antique collectors. I went searching through the local market here for 3 months until I found this baby

pohatu771449 karma

It's actually a Vendo 49 model, from the early 1950s.

dakidjacki354 karma

Wow, you know your coca cola machines. Didn't know it was that old!

RepossessionMan200 karma

How did you come up with that idea?

dakidjacki368 karma

My friend and I really like drinking cocktails (and whiskey) in general, and we wanted to open our own place here in Shanghai. We loved the speakeasy bars in New York and wanted to do something similar. Our idea was relayed to our designer and he came up with the idea of a coca cola machine as a secret entrance.

jacobsever166 karma

Are you an English businessman living in China, or a Chinese man who can speak perfect English?

dakidjacki291 karma

the second one sir

AlbertEisenstein62 karma

I'm going to have to call you out there. Every one I've ever met in China, when complimented on their English, always says I'm much too kind and their English is terrible. Where's the traditional self-effacement?

dakidjacki223 karma

haha i grew up in canada

aquacell148 karma

How do you go about locking the door? It looks like the Coca Cola machine door can't be locked.

dakidjacki174 karma

It automatically closes but its not locked so customers can enter and exit easily

mason0774 karma

What about when you aren't open? Can you lock it then?

Boolderdash320 karma

From the pictures, it looks like the coca cola machine is in a sandwich shop they also own. Lock up the sandwich shop and people can't get to the bar.

dakidjacki397 karma


growles138 karma

What are the contents of those huge jars?

dakidjacki234 karma

It's whiskey! I originally wanted to put bourbon in there, but it turned out we needed about 300 bottles of whiskey just to fill it up. So in the end, I went on Taobao (Chinese Ebay) to find the cheapest Chinese Whiskey to fill the jars up. Obviously these are not for drinking :)

drthaller79 karma

Eventually, do you plan on expanding to have in house made whiskey in those jugs. As someone who went all out, including a small distillery in the corner may be another interesting show piece.

dakidjacki106 karma

I've thought about making our own bourbon through working with a distillery, but that would be for something in the future

SomeoneCutCarlsHair104 karma

Do you have a pic of what it looks like from the street?

dakidjacki211 karma

Here's what it looks like from the outside From outside

TylerIsI100 karma

When you first established it did you have any problems getting people in the door because of the coke machine?

dakidjacki143 karma

Yeah at first, we didn't get any walk-ins because no one knew there was a bar, but word soon got out

TURBOSLUT42060 karma

Did you show anyone or did you just wait for the first person to discover it?

dakidjacki105 karma

Showed our friends

onocron91 karma

Did the reddit post get you any new customers? Or any patrons mentioning it, at least?

dakidjacki117 karma

Not that I know of yet, well no customer has told us they heard of us through Reddit

pandapaint72 karma

How much did it cost?

dakidjacki123 karma

The coca cola machine cost just over USD $4000 and it took about another thousand to turn it into the entrance

J_Carro1170 karma

Favorite bartender story?

dakidjacki182 karma

A drunk female customer shouts out Daxiong (our bartenders nickname, meaning Big Bear) looking at my Daxiong (same pronunciation, but meaning big tits)!

Alt4657 karma

Are you aware there's another bar with a door almost exactly like this in Guangzhou? I don't have any pictures but I saw it last summer.

dakidjacki156 karma

No, do you know what it's called? We just found out recently someone copied our design exactly in Wenzhou, another city in China. Only in China..

agremeister56 karma

I'm going to be in Shanghai in about a week, I'll definitely come check the place out. Do you find that you get a lot of tourists in the bar or is it mostly locals, or more of an even mix?

dakidjacki63 karma

We get quite a good mix of expats and locals

dpsi49 karma

What's your bars specially drink?

dakidjacki68 karma

We focus on cocktails and American whiskey (bourbon/rye)

The_Capulet25 karma

What's sad is that you probably have a much better selection than any bar actually around Bourbon county. If you get a chance to come over here though, definitely take a trip down the Bourbon Trail.

Seeing where and how these masterful whiskeys are made while sipping some straight out of the barrel is an experience that every man needs to live.

dakidjacki13 karma

That would def be something I would love to do someday. Not bourbon related, but I heard the Yamazaki distillery is an amazing experience too

PrincessMarian45 karma

Have you gotten in trouble with Coca Cola for using that as a door?

Btw cool concept!

dakidjacki62 karma

No, should i be worried?

IamAWorldChampionAMA120 karma

As 2011 World Champion of Internet Keyboard Warrior Lawyers, my answer is no.

dakidjacki52 karma


giga41 karma

I can see how word of mouth would carry you once you get going, but how did it work at first when you were not known? Surely you need to a have decently large amount of people know about it before word of mouth alone brings customers?

In other words, how did you advertise at first?

dakidjacki70 karma

No advertisement. We just brought our friends and they helped spread the word. It went from there!

WhoeverAyaIs40 karma

If your designer hadn't located the Coke machine, what do you think you would have used for the entrance instead?

Your bar is gorgeous and really unique. I haven't seen anything like that here in Texas!

EDIT: evil autocorrect

dakidjacki95 karma

Our backup plan was to use a photobooth, and once you go in to take a picture, you realize its an entrance to a bar

Graphergrapher29 karma

You need to put a photobooth in the bar that leads to a secret sandwich shop.

dakidjacki15 karma


TheGreatGrandy39 karma

I am very impressed by the concept and would live to congratulate you first. How much did it cost you to take it from an idea to existence?

dakidjacki42 karma

That's a secret, but it was more than I expected!

Dubata37 karma

Has anyone ever tried to get a coke and been pleasantly surprised by finding a bar behind?

dakidjacki84 karma

Naw, the coke machine looks to old school. Our bar is right behind a bus stop, so we get alot of elder Chinese men and ladies with a shocked look when they see people entering the bar through the coke machine

cochon101035 karma

Hi! I'm always interested in other people's success and the road that led them to this success. I think I saw further down in the comments that you are Taiwanese? What's your background? What led you to the bar ownership business? Do you have other projects?

dakidjacki63 karma

Yeah Im originally Taiwanese but have lived abroad in Canada, US, and China for most of my life. I originally was in consulting, but was tired of corporate life, plus opening a bar is way funner! Currently this is my only project but I am planning something else in the near future!

whyme42734 karma

Not against the idea, but how many other exits do you have? It seems like it could be a fire hazard

dakidjacki101 karma

We have an emergency exit which is bigger and meets fire safety regulations

Jade_Pornsurge33 karma

how good is japanese whiskey?

dakidjacki48 karma

Japanese whisky is amazing, but we don't serve it. Besides American stuff, we do have a large collection of Kavalan, Taiwan Whiskey

jsmith0808198531 karma

In America old school cocktails such as the old fashioned and Manhattan have made a resurgence thanks to Mad Men. Is the same thing happening in China?

dakidjacki37 karma

Yeah classic cocktails are quite popular here as well. We do an Asian twist on the Manhattan using Osmanthus Wine and Longan.

SlightlyTYPIC4L29 karma

When you close the bar, how do you lock the Coca Cola door?

dakidjacki51 karma

The cola machine is located inside "the press" our front shop so we just lock that up

barbarianjim25 karma

Are you ever worried about the machine getting damaged?

dakidjacki56 karma

YES, whenever some slams it real hard

YorkshireBloke11 karma

Hey dude, I run my own little business doing wedding drinks catering and pop-up cocktails bars and we don't advertise them at all, they just spread through word of mouth and social media. I absolutely love your bar and I swear to all that is good in the world I will visit it, I'm in Asia quite a bit these days and will make time to visit as me and the fiancée love exploring bars around the world, it reminds me of Candelaria in Paris a bit with the entrance within another business thing...

My questions is, how did you go about getting the bar popular in terms of getting the name out there and creating a solid customer base? Did you actually advertise/give out the secret entrance info initially and let it grow or something else?

How do you run the bar? Is the menu solely done by yourself for instance or do the other bartenders get to put stuff on there?

Also what's your favourite non-classic cocktail to make and why?

Love what you're doing and thanks!

dakidjacki16 karma

Hey congrats with your business. We do not advertise. Basically, We just invited our friends to come and they helped spread the word, so it was 100% word of mouth. Our menu is done by our bartenders and I give them 100% freedom to be as creative as possible. My favorite non-classic cocktail is the Taiwan Plum Soup, which is a Rum based cocktail with Infused Longan, Prucia Plum Liqueur, and Sweet Osmanthus Wine topped with Plum powder to give it the Taiwanese touch!

Sangfroid_Sonder8 karma

Do you have any plans to obtain endorsement from Coca Cola for the use of their machine?

dakidjacki13 karma

No plans at the moment

FiletMcShay5 karma

what would you say the demographic of your customers is? Are they mainly Chinese, or foreigners? Young, old, men, women, etc etc

dakidjacki5 karma

We get a good mix of local Chinese, oversea Chinese, and expats. It's mainly a younger crowd

Dubata4 karma

Does the vending machine actually work?

dakidjacki11 karma

Naw, we had to take out the motor and everything inside which was already rusted in order make it into the door.

Alwaysinadaze3 karma

Why not Pepsi tho?

dakidjacki5 karma

If I had found a Pepsi machine, then this thread would be about a Pepsi secret entrance haha

deavyh2 karma

Is that a secret thing or everybody knows it existence?

dakidjacki3 karma

its a secret that i hope more and more people know about haha

quarg19921 karma

How do you get most of your customers? Is it word of mouth? Do you have a sign?

dakidjacki2 karma

Word of mouth, no sign

nowismine1 karma

Love speakeasy bars, and yours looks great! What's your own favorite speakeasy and were there any particular inspirations for your own? And which cocktail is a must-try at your bar?

dakidjacki1 karma

Angel Share in New York. I would definitely recommend the Boulevadier!

TheMetaphysics1 karma

Is your speakeasy fully legitimate with the laws of surrounding areas?

dakidjacki2 karma

Yessir, we have a business license and all that

pgabra461 karma

How did you come up with the idea to have a coke machine act as an entrance? This is one of the most original speak easy ideas I've seen!

dakidjacki1 karma

Our designer came up with the idea of using a coa cola machine!

justVisitingAgain1 karma

Question regarding fire hazard: do you have more than one exits, in the inside bar? I can see this being a huge fire hazards just wondering or are the laws in China pretty lax regarding this.

I love the concept. You did a great job with the interior OP

dakidjacki1 karma

We have an emergency exit as well inside

wildcatoffense1 karma

Where do you see Chinese-Taiwanese relations going in 20 years?

dakidjacki5 karma

Hopefully somewhere peaceful. As a Taiwanese living in China, I got love for both places


Does your establishment sell a Rum and Pepsi? I'm just not a big fan of Rum and Coke.

dakidjacki1 karma

No sorry, only cokes!

FueledByTesla1 karma

Do you happen to have any signs or distinguishing marks to show that its a bar, or do you rely on word of mouth? Either way I love the concept.

dakidjacki4 karma

Word of mouth. I thought a sign would defeat the purpose

arichone1 karma

What year is the coca cola machine from?

dakidjacki2 karma

Someone replied from the 50's

Jesus_Faction-4 karma

what's dating like in china?

dakidjacki2 karma

It's pretty interesting. Definitely different dating Chinese girls and American girls! Those with experience can chime in

dangerdark-7 karma

How big is your dick?

dakidjacki34 karma

bigger than yours probably

dflixxx-8 karma

You seem like you have money. Could I come work for you if chance I moved across the world?

dakidjacki2 karma

Naw, it's a passion! If your in Shanghai why not!

Davey_Jones_III-8 karma

I really don't understand the concept. I mean, what's the point, other than having a different kind of entrance?

dakidjacki43 karma

We wanted to do a speakeasy bar with a hidden entrance, fitting to the Prohibition era. Our designer came up with the coca-cola machine entrance!