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4 stars 68 reviews

Ming Eat Drink

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520 17 Ave SW
Calgary, AB  T2S 0B1

(403) 229-1986

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Reviews [1]
English
4 star rating
Maddy Calgary October 01, 2010
Small but cool

This is a cool lounge downtown. Great music, a really good vibe inside. Friendly staff, you feel like you're among friends, and they have some crazy inspired drink recipes. Drinks for 2 as well.

Editorial Reviews from the web
English
December 14, 2011

A small and unassuming spot just below street level, Ming is a refuge in the often-frenzied swirl of revelry on 17th. With its rich red walls, the club is sophisticated and fashionable, and a welcome respite from throbbing music and drunken teens. The cocktail menu focuses on unique martinis: the Mother Teresa has Bombay gin, after the Indian city, while others are named for Napoleon, Ghandi,... more

Brought to you by frommers

Other Reviews from the web
English
4 star rating
July 13, 2015

THE BEST!!! The food is great, the drinks are unique and delicious (Try the sangria). Honestly had one of the best servers I've ever had here! It's on 17th..it has a patio.. what more could you ask for?

Brought to you by yelp

4 star rating
April 11, 2015

Fantastic food and awesome staff! 3 for $28 is a great way to enjoy their wide menu selection - we had the Thai curry chicken, ginger beef, Cantonese noodles and gyoza, each of which was superb. We will definitely be back! Excellent work!

Brought to you by yelp

4 star rating
January 19, 2015

At one time this establishment was THE cocktail lounge, not only in Calgary but perhaps North America. A brash statement perhaps but for those of us who were here at Ming conception and have since moved on to other countries and pastimes there was nothing quite like this "home". What lured me in originally to Ming? Steve Ming had been opened for a month, and I had read in the National Post he... more

Brought to you by yelp

4 star rating
January 17, 2015

I really like this place. It has a real lounge bar feel to it, and it's unfortunately been fairly quiet whenever I have been here (although that's been late on Mondays and Tuesdays). I kind of like that though, as you can have your own space and actually have a conversation!
They have a great cocktail list, with lots of options with fresh lime. Once I came here and chose anything that listed... more

Brought to you by yelp

4 star rating
August 24, 2014

Um.... A communist themed bar on a subzero Calgary evening? Obviously. Part kitsch/part throwback to the days of loungey chic before gastro pubs conquered the universe. There is a thorough martini menu with theme named drinks. We tried 3 of them, and they were pretty good... And stiff.
The Asian fusion cuisine was decent but nothing to brag about.
The star attraction here is the bizarre theme... more

Brought to you by yelp

4 star rating
waitress do not advise of a mantadory 18 % gratuity
February 19, 2014

like the title says.... if you have a group of 8 or more ensure you check the bill, in fine print under gst there is a charge 'grat' which was adding 18% (mind you, 2 in our party only stopped for 1 drink each and then left leaving the rest of us with the mandatory tip added)
when handed the... more

Brought to you by tripadvisor

4 star rating
January 26, 2014

Oh my gosh! I never would've thought to pop in here for food if it wasn't for a friend that owns the place. The menu items are really tasty!! Tako yaki balls are really tasty. Their ribs are delicious. The service is phenomenal. Come here for some good Asian fusion pub food!!

Brought to you by yelp

4 star rating
January 17, 2014

The drinks were decent, service was disappointing. We got into Ming for drinks when the place was not busy, and still found the service to be spotty. Also, I liked two out of three of the martinis I had, but found one of the martinis incredibly bitter. Note that my waitress insisted on charging me for the undrinkable martini. I can't speak to the restaurant as I didn't eat, so please check out... more

Brought to you by yelp

4 star rating
September 25, 2013

Very good Martini and Cocktail selections, the place is too dark to read the menus and the men's washroom was tight and small. Services was okay though.

Brought to you by yelp

4 star rating
August 15, 2013

2 words : Chairman Mao

Brought to you by yelp

4 star rating
March 20, 2013

I like Ming, but I am not in love with it...

It has a certain cheekiness, with interesting decor and drink names, and the service is quite good, but there are better options on 17th...

I think it is a great place to duck in for a quick drink around 730pm, after dinner and before going out. It's small and dark and has low ceilings, makes me feel a little claustrophobic....

Check it out for... more

Brought to you by yelp

4 star rating
Great way to start your date
February 24, 2013

After visiting Ming a few months ago with the boys, I decided to start a date night with the girlfriend here. I expected to have a few cocktails and then head out for dinner but she was starving so we ordered some food to share.
We were pleasantly surprised with just how good it was! The atmosphere is comfortable and... more

Brought to you by tripadvisor

4 star rating
November 22, 2012

November Challenge - 23/30

What! I haven't reviewed Ming yet?! I love Ming, and their cocktails named after famous rulers and dictators. How can I say no to a martini named after Noriega, that has banana liqueur and pop rocks on the rim?

Well, maybe I'll say no on a first date, because I'd rather not have that dude's first impression of me; be of me fellating the pop rocks off the rim on a... more

Brought to you by yelp

4 star rating
November 01, 2012

first stumbled across ming on a chilly monday night

the fieplace in the lounge area next to the bar was a welcome sight

the friendly russian bartender Lisa advised me that on mondays they have a special on
liquor - therefore i had a vodka on the rocks - a very friendly little enclave on 17th
with some interesting decor of the cold war
i said cheers to mao se tung whose portrait was hangling... more

Brought to you by yelp

4 star rating
October 27, 2012

If you have a political sense of humour, this place will leave you smiling. Located in 17th Ave, we found Ming on Yelp. The part that brought us into the door? A communist Bar! Nothing could be more amusing. They have a fabulous variety of cocktails in their "Manifesto" including The Churchhill, The Dali Lama, Ghandi and my absolute favourite: Harvey Lee Oswald. Between the awesomely named... more

Brought to you by yelp

4 star rating
October 27, 2012

What an excellent little bar!

I'm going to write a longer more detailed review later but for now I will give you some bullet point highlights:

-- Communist theme: Red, pictures of Our Great Leader, manifestos,
-- Chic atmosphere; part club like, part bar, areas for private conversations and areas to rally the troops!
-- Amazing cocktail menu. I tried the Trotsky, the Lee Harvey Oswald, the... more

Brought to you by yelp

4 star rating
September 08, 2012

Ming you jazzy old broad, I'll never get tired of your dictator themed cocktails. The second last time I was here, some poet laureate berated me for drinking a whiskey sour because it was a feminine drink. Who gives a @#*@%#? Anything that's named Shogun is far from being anything feminine, a@!%!*e.

Nothing gets the night going like a good Chairman Mao and Karl Marx. Just saying.

I got their... more

Brought to you by yelp

4 star rating
June 05, 2012

Nice spot to get a drink and food - esp. if you want to have a conversation. Lots of choices in cocktails and beer. I ate the clubhouse sandwich - it was huge. Instead of bread - they used flatbread. Lots of fresh, chopped up lettuce, bacon and chicken. It wasn't overly sauced up or greasy. The side of fries were amazing - nice to have option of chipotle or dill dip. I really enjoyed the Red... more

Brought to you by yelp

4 star rating
Nice little bar
May 31, 2012

I love this place for drinks. Some of the food is great including the Veggie Ali, the Shining Path pizza and the Four Cheese pizza.

Brought to you by tripadvisor

4 star rating
March 06, 2012

I adore Ming!!! Back in my hay days I would go to Ming for all my first dates. It's fun, interesting, and has a really cozy intimate feel to it. It's small so sometimes it's hard to find a table, but I love the ambience and the obscure movies they're always playing on the TV's. The servers are always really friendly, the menu is cool (drinks named after communists...love it), and the food is... more

Brought to you by yelp

4 star rating
March 01, 2012

I went to Ming for my friends birthday and we had a blast! She had chose Ming as her dinner location as she saw they had a shrimp stir fry she just had to try. Didn't get her input on the food, but everything that was ordered looked amazing! I had saw on here that the ginger beef was worth they try and when it comes to Chinese food, ginger beef is my fave! HANDS DOWN THE BEST GINGER BEEF I HAVE... more

Brought to you by yelp

4 star rating
Surprisingly good food, funky ambiance
January 30, 2012

7 of us went for dinner and drinks on a Friday night. We were pleasantly surprised with the food - I had the ginger beef (excellent) and very good veggie burger (yes, I'm a bit of a walking contradiction... I'm trying to eat less red meat, LOL). Oh - the chocolate martini (I can't remember the name) was not good... more

Brought to you by tripadvisor

4 star rating
November 30, 2011

Ming is quite the unique place. Atmosphere-wise, it's got a cozy late-night-lounge feel to it. There is a bit of a Communist theme to it, and this is reflected not only in their menu (with sections like "Primary Agenda" and "Processions"), but also in the decor (with pictures of different Communist dictators on the walls). They have some amazing cocktails on their menu, and their ginger beef is... more

Brought to you by yelp

4 star rating
November 27, 2011

So after my boyfriend and I escaped Vinyl, we drove to Ming because we needed to gather our wits and dignity in a more civilized environment.

It was around 1 am that we arrived here and there was quite a few tables available, thankfully. So we went to the alcove-ish area and got a table. Ming felt like heaven at that point because exactly half an hour earlier I was at Vinyl, and saying that a... more

Brought to you by yelp

4 star rating
November 22, 2011

I'll always have a soft-spot for MING. I used to go often during University as the food and beverages were reasonable and the decor had a charm that appealed to the politico in me, and still does.

It's very intimate, which is nice if you're looking for some place cozy. The fireplaces are definitely nice during the cooler months.

They used to be known for their sweet potato fries with banana... more

Brought to you by yelp

4 star rating
November 19, 2011

Ming is a great place to visit for cocktails and/or a late-night dinner. We went on a Monday night so it was pretty dead, with just a few tables taken. The drinks at Ming are delish - we had one that was meant to share between two people and found it quite flavourful (I'd try to find the name but I find the website hard to navigate and the drink menu is nowhere to be seen).

I had the spicy... more

Brought to you by yelp

4 star rating
October 15, 2011

Some friends and I headed over to Ming last night, after having a good time at last month's Yelp Elite event. We thought it'd be pretty busy on a Saturday night, but we actually had no problem finding a prime table, situated right next to a framed picture of Mr. Joseph Stalin.
I have never really been a cocktail lady, preferring microbrew beer most of the time, but the names are so charming, I... more

Brought to you by yelp

4 star rating
Swing by Ming for an outstanding night
June 25, 2011

The decor is over the top with red & black throughout but it totally works. It feels like you're in some pimped out secret bunker. The cocktail menu is extensive with creative names of politicians thoughtfully corresponding with the ingredients. The food, OMG, the food. Where to begin? Spinach dip was the best I've ever had (and I've had many)... more

Brought to you by tripadvisor

4 star rating
June 21, 2011

This bar has an interesting Asian/Communist theme and is great for groups, but cozy enough for a date.. Great original drinks, always good service and pretty decent food. Can, of course get busy on a weekend, which means a wait. It's gay friendly and has holds a Film Festival once a year..how much cooler does a place get?

Brought to you by yelp

4 star rating
April 07, 2011

The decor is actually shoddy, and kitschy. The bathrooms are filthy. Typical Calgary, it's a dive that somehow purports itself as a classy establishment to self-justify its exorbitant drink prices.

Yet, Ming is a good place. Why?

First: Deep-down, Ming knows it's a dirty swill-hole, thus, the staff is extremely friendly. The doorman doesn't treat you like a piece of garbage that's blown in... more

Brought to you by yelp

4 star rating
March 21, 2011

I think Ming is a great lounge - "have a drink and chill out" venue. The ambience about it is very unique, and hard to find in Calgary. The layout is somewhat "e" shaped, but it gives great variety for your sitting options :) You can sit close to the front door, and see the action on 17th ave, or you can venture off further and sit deep inside ming, tucked away from any distractions. They even... more

Brought to you by yelp

4 star rating
February 20, 2011

I love Ming for its dark and edgy vibe. It's in a really great location on 17th ave, which makes it a perfect stop along the way while you're bar hopping.

The drink menu is awesome. They name their drinks after political leaders which I find pretty cute. My favorite is Boutros Boutros - essentially just a chocolate martini but delicious. Food is pretty good too if you need to snack on... more

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4 star rating
January 24, 2011

Love Ming.
Funny bartenders, a great variety of drinks, and delicious food.

I hear there will be gay Mondays? So excited!

Brought to you by yelp

4 star rating
November 02, 2010

Ming is one hot place to go for a date. My husband and I went here on our second date and it was super romantic. A huge list of fabulous cocktails and a great appetizer menu make for a perfect night out.

It is also a great place for a girls nite out. Hardly any other bars or lounges in Calgary have such a great ambience. My favourite thing to order is a glass of Champagne for something like... more

Brought to you by yelp

4 star rating
September 22, 2010

Crystal H chose Ming for us as a happy hour pit stop based on their Yelp reviews. Score one in Calgary for Yelp and for Crystal.

When I sat in Ming sipping my glass of bubbly I felt like I was somehow involved in a covert operation. I mean this in the absolute best way, too. The rooms are dim, with red-hued lights and feel very sexy. The seats huddle around tables making you lean in, as if to... more

Brought to you by yelp

4 star rating
September 20, 2010

Ming is, quite possibly, the hippest bar in Calgary. From its ironic communist theme to its knockout cocktails it's completely unique in this city's scene. The food is tasty too: a variety of appetizers to enjoy with your buddhas or lenins. Its decor is inspired, with red lighting and plenty of nooks to sit in and watch the crowd. Two thumbs up from this lady!

Brought to you by yelp

4 star rating
September 07, 2010

You'll be hard pressed to find someone in Calgary that doesn't love Ming. The martinis are the best in town and the atmosphere is second to none. If you get yourself a table, then plan on staying all night. The drinks are that good.

I'm taking a single star away because of their terribly small bathrooms. Yes, bathrooms are a re-occurring theme in my reviews because I think they are so... more

Brought to you by yelp

4 star rating
August 16, 2010

Excellent choice of Dictator Martinis and tasty beers. Ming has an amazing intimate atmosphere. I have never been disappointed by Ming in any way.

Great place to start the night or even spend the whole night. Good appies, cool decor. A true original.

Brought to you by yelp

4 star rating
Great martinis & atmosphere
April 05, 2010

Great martinis & atmosphere.

Brought to you by tripadvisor

4 star rating
March 27, 2010

awesome place....we got the funkiest spots in the bar.

We were all up on the fire place and the chairs were hands with big fingers as the backing. We were in the the palm of their hand - not sure who's hand, but in the palm.

At first the fire, was a little too hot - the waitress (super friendly and noticed our slight discomfort immediately) reached INTO the fireplace and turned it down -... more

Brought to you by yelp

4 star rating
November 17, 2009

Decided to "Ming" it tonight, after reading so many good yelp reviews about the place. The exterior is deceiving, it seems small but what it opens up to is in fact a very large place with lots of seating and great ambiance. The handrails are metal bamboo, and there are plasma TVs and Buddhas throughout.

The red communist party vibe is alive and kicking here. There is a nice portrait of Mao... more

Brought to you by yelp

4 star rating
November 14, 2009

It's the commie bar! Nice setup, cool lighting, and the drink list is extensive. I never had any of the food, however. Service is grande and the music is at a volume conducive to interaction! A bit pricy which is funny considering it's a commie bar... Or does communism make everything market-based expensive? I don't remember..

Brought to you by yelp

4 star rating
November 10, 2009

Hello Communist Bar! I love edgy lounges with great drinks and tongue-in-cheek humour about political ideologies. I think the dim lighting and subtle red glow of the bar scare a lot of people, but that's cool because the place is pretty full anyways.

There is a great atmosphere of like-minded individuals who want to enjoy some good cocktails, look pretty and celebrate the culturedness. Ming is... more

Brought to you by yelp

4 star rating
September 16, 2009

Ming is one of my all-time favourite hangouts on 17th Ave.

The atmosphere is sultry, dark, mysterious and inviting. In fact, when I was living in Toronto, I found a restaurant that had the EXACT same vibe & layout. For all you Torontonians, Ming has the SAME vibe & feel as The Queen Mother Cafe on Queen Street West. No, Ming does not serve Pad Thai, but boy do they make mean martinis! I'll... more

Brought to you by yelp

4 star rating
June 16, 2009

The atmosphere is what keeps luring me back to this delightful venu. Also, I have never been treated with such courtesy by a waiter before in my life. I was ready to propose to the man, but suspected alcohol may have been at work. The martinis are pricey but the indiscriminate drinker can order a 40 in a brown paper bag and feel just as classy. I gave them 4 instead of 5 stars as I ordered a... more

Brought to you by yelp

4 star rating
March 06, 2009

Decent martini bar.

Brought to you by yelp

4 star rating
February 17, 2009

Honestly, this is my favourite place to go if fabulous drinks, ambiance and conversational verve are on my menu!

The feel of Ming is sexay reds, yellows and blacks with lots of great lil seating nooks to choose from....if you're there before 9:00 PM. Depend on vulturing for a table thereafter. Yes the decor plays from its namesake but it takes a back seat to feeling comfortable amidst a... more

Brought to you by yelp

4 star rating
October 15, 2008

Ming is very cool. It's the bar with a faux communist theme and several Iconic (and ironic) drink names. The banana Ketchup served with your fries is odd but worth trying and their cocktails are served in everything from tiki heads to coconuts. The drinks are expensive but loaded with creativity and alcohol so worth it every now and then.

Here's a fun game: When I go I enjoy counting the... more

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4 star rating
October 14, 2008

Although the communist decor might scare the hell out of any intelligent individuals, this is one of the coolest lounges in the city. The pulsing red lights make one feel as though their walking the surface of Mars. Portraiture featuring the faces of Mao and other communist figureheads envelope the place.

There are tapas on the menu as well as excellent indie rock, electronica, and strange... more

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4 star rating
its ok. very much a chache place
July 09, 2008

its ok. very much a chache place

Brought to you by tripadvisor

4 star rating
Awesome martinis (love the Hirohito) and their FLQ flatbread is delicious
June 24, 2008

Awesome martinis (love the Hirohito) and their FLQ flatbread is delicious.

Brought to you by tripadvisor

4 star rating
Nice atmosphere, party place
June 05, 2008

Nice atmosphere, party place

Brought to you by tripadvisor

4 star rating
Frankly, I just go to see the inventive names for the martini's
April 20, 2008

Frankly, I just go to see the inventive names for the martini's.

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4 star rating
Amazing Martini menu!!! My favorite place to go with good friends
February 28, 2008

Amazing Martini menu!!! My favorite place to go with good friends!!!

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4 star rating
Ginger Beef is the Best!! The best Martinis Great Atmosphere, get there early for group seating, they do take
February 24, 2008

Ginger Beef is the Best!!
The best Martinis
Great Atmosphere, get there early for group seating, they do take reservations.

Brought to you by tripadvisor

4 star rating
yummie martinis
February 02, 2008

yummie martinis

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4 star rating
I love their sweet potato fries
January 16, 2008

I love their sweet potato fries.

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4 star rating
The Dahli Llama drink is
January 14, 2008

The Dahli Llama drink is fantastic

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4 star rating
I love Ming for drinks, appy's martini's wine and a great time
January 04, 2008

I love Ming for drinks, appy's martini's wine and a great time!

Brought to you by tripadvisor

4 star rating
Excellent for drinks
December 16, 2007

Excellent for drinks

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4 star rating
Great Martini Lounge, the food is okay.. I just love the names
December 16, 2007

Great Martini Lounge, the food is okay.. I just love the names

Brought to you by tripadvisor

4 star rating
Great martini lounge
December 13, 2007

Great martini lounge

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4 star rating
Chillin' place to hang out and drink
November 29, 2007

Chillin' place to hang out and drink.

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4 star rating
Cant go wrong when the drink menu is a manifesto
November 17, 2007

Cant go wrong when the drink menu is a manifesto

Brought to you by tripadvisor

4 star rating
Love the ambience, well
November 05, 2007

Love the ambience, well mixed drinks and good selection.

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4 star rating
August 17, 2005

Blood red walls & pictures of Mao everywhere.... Is it just me, or does that seem a bit odd? Usually good live bands. Can be crowded if school is in.

Brought to you by dinecomca

French
4 star rating
August 14, 2002

Love the atmosphere! Good food, more variety would be nice though. I'll be back.

Brought to you by restaurantca

Business Description from the Web
English
July 15, 2013

Ming Eat Drink offers these services: restaurant.

Brought to you by ourbis

September 25, 2011

Ming sports a decidedly modern industrial decor and caters to the trendy urban professional bar crowd; most of the whom are young professionals looking to show off their dates and their latest designer outfits. The cool decor consists of stainless-steel stools and tables with plumbing-fixture railings and stamped-steel stairs. Patrons consider Ming's atmosphere and martinis to be the best in... more

Brought to you by wcitiesca

September 29, 2008

Sunken below street level, this intimate lounge invites conversation and discussion in its subdued space. Boasting vivid red walls, the club is a sophisticated, fashionable destination if you don't want to be bombarded by throbbing music and drunken teens. The drinks menu concentrates on martinis of all formulations; the ingredients that comprise each one give hints as to its name. For example,... more

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