Steamed buns stuffed with braised pork or fried chicken. Wonton wrapper nachos topped with beef, mozzarella, and sriracha mayo. Crispy calamari served with Thai basil aioli. Bar Bao doles out inventive snacks like these at happy hour, which unfolds every weekday starting at 3 p.m. The specials also include draft brews, house sake and shochu, and cranberry J-POP crushes.
The bao buns also factor heavily into the weekend brunch menu. Order yours filled with fried avocado, braised pork belly, or bulgogi cheesesteak when you come for brunch. Try a fusion “bao-nedict” a bun crowned with poached eggs and your choice of protein plus home fries on the side. Round out your meal with a specialty brunch cocktail like the Bloody Geisha, a blend of sake and house-made bloody mary mix with crushed wasabi peas dusting the rim.
Even though Bar Bao only opened its doors in Clarendon a few days ago, it’s already racked up glowing reviews for its unique Asian fusion fare and its happy hour specials. From 4 to 8 p.m. daily, come to Bar Bao to sample some of its snacks and drinks at a discount, like the bulgogi short rib fries, the pork dumplings, or the calamari with Thai basil aioli for dipping.
When you inevitably return for a full meal, kick it off with a smorgasbord of Bar Bao’s signature steamed buns. Some come stuffed with traditional ingredients, such as braised or crispy pork belly, Korean tofu, or Tamarind shrimp, but others feature unexpected fillings with every bite. Bulgogi cheesesteak, fried chicken with caramelized sweet chili, and fried avocado are among the inventive ingredients. If you’re still hungry after your bun sampling, order an entree like the grilled salmon, “hangover” pho, or the crispy beef in ginger sauce.