SINGAPORE – In a year where travel restrictions crippled global travel and hospitality, bars from the Republic had a mixed showing on the World’s 50 Best Bars list with two bars in the top 10, but two falling out of the top 50.
Atlas at Parkview Square, best known for its 1,400 bottle gin collection, climbed four spots to No. 4, and is also the top-ranking bar from Asia, beating out the likes of Coa in Hong Kong (No. 8) and The SG Club in Tokyo (No. 10).
Meanwhile, Jigger & Pony at Amara Singapore broke into the top 10 for the first time this year, with a No. 9 spot. Founded by husband and wife team Indra Kantono and Gan Guoyi, the bar which puts Asian twists on cocktail classics, climbed 20 spots after first entering the list at No. 29 last year.
It has been a year of successes for the bar, which also clinched the top spot on the Asia’s 50 Best Bars list in May.
The 12th edition of the annual results was announced in a virtual countdown that was live-streamed on Nov 5 from London.
The top three spots on the list went to bars in the United States, Europe and Greece – namely Connaught Bar in London, Dante in New York, and The Clumsies in Athens. Connaught Bar and Dante swapped their top two spots from last year’s ranking, while The Clumsies climbed two spots to No. 3.
Elsewhere on the list, Singapore bars slipped in the rankings. Manhattan, which placed at No. 14, fell three spots, while Native, which placed at No. 18, fell six spots.
Only four Singapore bars made the top 50 this year, compared with last year’s six. Operation Dagger, which shuttered its doors on Oct 31 on Ann Siang Hill, is no longer on the list, while The Old Man Singapore fell out of the top 50 from No. 38 to No. 58.
Outside of the top 50, Singapore bars also had a decent showing on the 51-100 list with year-old No Sleep Club in Keong Saik Road ranking as the highest placing bar from Asia at No. 53.
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Elsewhere, Tippling Club re-entered the 51-100 list at No. 64; 28 Hong Kong Street, which placed at No. 86, fell from last year’s No. 61; while Gibson was another re-entry at No. 92.
The World’s 50 Best Bars list is compiled by votes from The World’s 50 Best Bars Academy, comprising over 540 global drinks experts, including renowned bartenders and consultants, drinks writers and cocktail specialists.
The academy is now also 50-50 gender-balanced, with the voting process and results independently adjudicated by Deloitte.
For this year, the voting period only ran from January 2019 to March 2020, since the majority of bars were forced to close due to the pandemic.
“We at 50 Best hope that the announcement of list will act as a show of strength for the global bar community,” said World’s 50 Best Bars content editor Mark Sansom in a press release.
“It displays to the world that even in the face of the ever-shifting challenges and restrictions being thrown at them, bars are still doing everything that they can to continue to provide great hospitality experiences.”
“As we move into the next stages of international recovery, it is vital to get the message out that bars are open for business and ready to receive guests safely and securely,” he added.
Top 10 bars in The World’s 50 Best Bars 2020
1. Connaught Bar – London, Britain
2. Dante – New York, United States
3. The Clumsies – Athens, Greece
4. Atlas – Singapore
5. Tayer + Elementary – London, Britain
6. Kwant – London, Britain
7. Floreria Atlantico – Buenos Aires, Argentina
8. Coa – Hong Kong, China
9. Jigger & Pony – Singapore
10. The SG Club – Tokyo, Japan
This article was originally published in The Straits Times.