SINGAPORE — Sips in Barcelona, Spain is the best bar in the world, according to this year’s ranking by the 50 Best organization.
The World’s 50 Best Bars were announced at an awards ceremony in Singapore on Tuesday evening — the first time the ceremony was held in Asia. Double Chicken Please in New York came in second, and Handshake Speakeasy from Mexico City is third on the list.
The annual ranking is published by William Reed Business Media, a U.K.-based company that also publishes “The World’s 50 Best Restaurants” list — and in a first, “The World’s 50 Best Hotels,” published in September.
The 50 Best organization has published an annual ranking of “The World’s 50 Best Bars” since 2009, with London and New York dominating the lists ever since. But Barcelona bars have climbed the rankings in the last two years, reaching the top three spots.
The 2023 winners
This year’s 15th edition of the list includes bars from 28 cities, with 11 new entries.
This is the second year in a row that a Barcelona bar has claimed the crown as Sips jumped to the top from No. 3 last year.
“When we started Sips, we strongly believed that the bar was a beacon name itself,” Marc Álvarez, co-founder of Sips, told CNBC. He said that the drinks, music and the architecture of the bar itself are like “little drops that fill the glass,” creating an experience that is unique to Sips.
Bars in Europe dominated this year’s list with 22 spots, while North and South America accounted for 14 slots. Asia came up ten times, while Australia and Dubai, United Arab Emirates, lodged two spots each.
The top ten bars were all located in Europe and North and South America only. London and Barcelona continued their streak of success in 2023, claiming two spots each among the top ten.
Himkok in Oslo, Norway was a new name among the top ten, climbing 33 places to No. 10.
In Asia, Singapore secured the most number of spots, with three bars named among the world’s best. Seoul, South Korea’s Zest takes the Highest New Entry Award, joining the list for the first time at No.18 on the list.
The full list includes:
- Sips, Barcelona – The Best Bar in Europe
- Double Chicken Please, New York – The Best Bar in North America
- Handshake Speakeasy, Mexico City
- Paradiso, Barcelona
- Connaught Bar, London
- Little Red Door, Paris
- Licorería Limantour, Mexico City
- Tayēr + Elementary, London
- Alquímico, Cartagena, Columbia – The Best Bar in South America
- Himkok, Oslo – The Highest Climber
- Tres Monos, Buenos Aires, Argentina
- Line, Athens, Greece
- BKK Social Club, Bangkok – The Best Bar in Asia
- Jigger & Pony, Singapore
- Maybe Sammy, Sydney – The Best Bar in Australasia
- Salmon Guru, Madrid
- Overstory, New York
- Zest, Seoul – The Highest New Entry
- Mahaniyom Cocktail Bar, Bangkok – New Entry
- Coa, Hong Kong
- Drink Kong, Rome
- Hanky Panky, Mexico City
- Caretaker’s Cottage, Melbourne, Australia – New Entry
- Café La Trova, Miami
- Baba au Rum, Athens
- CoChinChina, Buenos Aires
- Katana Kitten, New York
- Satan’s Whiskers, London
- Wax On, Berlin – New Entry
- Florería Atlántico, Buenos Aires
- Röda Huset, Stockholm – New Entry
- Sago House, Singapore – New Entry
- Freni e Frizioni, Rome – New Entry
- Argo, Hong Kong
- A Bar With Shapes For A Name, London
- The SG Club, Tokyo – A Re-Entry from No.18 in 2021
- Bar Benfiddich, Tokyo
- The Cambridge Public House, Paris – New Entry
- Panda & Sons, Edinburgh, Scotland
- Mimi Kakushi, Dubai, United Arab Emirates – New Entry, The Best Bar in Middle East & Africa
- Scarfes Bar, London – New Entry
- 1930, Milan
- Carnaval, Lima, Peru
- L’Antiquario, Naples, Italy
- Baltra Bar, Mexico City
- Locale Firenze, Florence, Italy
- The Clumsies, Athens
- Atlas, Singapore – A Re-Entry from No. 16 in 2021
- Jewel Of The South, New Orleans – New Entry
- Galaxy Bar, Dubai
In addition, Renato “Tato“ Giovannoni of Florería Atlántico in Buenos Aires was given the “Industry Icon Award,” while “Best Cocktail Menu” went to The American Bar at Gleneagles in Auchterarder, Scotland.
Singapore’s Night Hawk is the first recipient of the “Best Bar Design Award” — a new hospitality design award launched on April 25. The “Sustainable Bar Award” was bestowed upon Röda Huset, Stockholm.
The 50 Best Bars The Blend Scholarship was awarded to Apoorva Kohli from New Delhi, earning two expenses-paid internships at this year’s winning bar, Sips in Barcelona and Alquímico in Cartagena, which placed No. 9 on the list.
How the list is created
This year’s list compiled votes from 680 industry experts across the globe, including bartenders and bar owners, plus “drinks writers” and “well-travelled cocktail experts,” according to the 50 Best website.
Each voter casts seven votes, with a maximum of five for bars in their home country. Voters must have visited the bar at least once within the last 18 months, and are not allowed to vote for bars they own or have a financial interest in.
More bars around the globe
A week before the ceremony, the 50 Best organization released an extended ranking showing the bars that were ranked 51 to 100. It includes 34 cities, 17 of which are in Europe, while North and South America tied with Asia at 15 slots each.
Singapore came in strong with five spots, while Byrdi, Melbourne (No. 61) was the only bar from Australia to make the extended list.
Seven bars that ranked among the world’s best 50 bars in 2022 fell into the 51-100 ranking this year. Employees Only, New York, saw the biggest drop in rankings, down by 52 spots from No. 47 to No. 99.