The World's 50 Best Bars

Words by Simon Difford

The World's 50 Best Bars image 1

This list is compiled annually according to the opinions of an international panel "comprised of more than 520 drinks experts, including renowned bartenders and consultants, drinks writers and cocktail specialists from around the world".

The World's 50 Best includes bars from Australasia, Latin America, Asia, Europe and North America and the global spread was more diverse than in previous years with bars in Buenos Aires (Florería Atlántico No.3), Athens (The Clumsies No.6) and Hong Kong (The Old Man No.9) all featuring in the top ten.

As usual London and New York dominated with London claiming more 50 Best Bars than any other city with 10 bars, while NYC slipped to just six bars but with the city's excellent Dante snatching first place. Singapore once again showed the vibrancy of its bar scene disproportionate to its size to match NYC's six bars in The 50 Best.

Is this list a true reflection of what are really the World's Best Bars or is it more a case of the bars that attract the most attention? I am lucky enough to have visited many of the 50 bars below and looking at some of the results I'd argue that the list says as much about a bar's media presence and their being situated in a city that folk like me visit regularly (less as I strive to cut my air miles) as it does the quality of their drinks and service.

That said, this is a list of truly excellent bars and I'd like to extend my congratulations to those who have worked so hard to secure one of the 50 highly coveted places, particularly to Naren and all at Dante – your fluffy orange juice is so delicious that it alone makes you worthy of accolade. And my ongoing thanks to all the bars in London that together make London The World's Best Cocktail City is home to 20% of The World's 50 Best Bars. Hurrah!

The World's 50 Best Bars 2019

⇩ = fallen since 2018
⇧ = risen since 2018
⇳ = same position as 2018
₦ = new entry

1. ⇧ 8 places Dante, New York, USA
2. ⇧ 3 places Connaught Bar, London, UK
3. ⇧ 11 places Floreria Atlántico, Buenos Aires, Argentina
4. ⇳NoMad Bar, New York, USA
5. ⇩ 3 places American Bar, The Savoy Hotel, London, UK
6. ⇧ 1 place The Clumsies, Athens, Greece
7. ⇧ 8 places Attaboy, New York, USA
8. ⇳ Atlas, Singapore
9. ⇧ 1 place The Old Man, Hong Kong, China
10. ⇧ 1 place Licorería Limantour, Mexico City, Mexico
11. ⇩ 8 places Manhattan, Singapore
12. ⇧ 1 place Native, Singapore
13. ₦ Carnaval, Lima, Peru
14. ₦ Katana Kitten, New York, USA
15. ₦ Guilhotina, São Paulo, Brazil
16. ⇧ 13 places Three Sheets, London, UK
17. ⇧ 2 places Himkok, Oslo, Norway
18. ⇩ 6 places High Five, Tokyo, Japan
19. ⇧ 28 places Salmón Gurú, Madrid, Spain
20. ⇧ 17 places Paradiso, Barcelona, Spain
21. ⇧ 17 places Indulge Experimental Bistro, Taipei, Taiwan
22. ⇩ 6 places The Dead Rabbit Grocery & Grog, New York, USA
23. ⇩ 5 places Coupette, London, UK
24. ₦ The SG Club, Tokyo, Japan
25. ₦ Dr. Stravinsky, Barcelona, Spain
26. ⇳Employees Only, New York, USA
27. ⇧ 12 places El Copitas, St Petersburg, Russia
28. ⇳ Scout, London, UK
29. ₦ Jigger & Pony, Singapore
30. ⇩ 7 places Operation Dagger, Singapore
31. ⇩ 9 places Baba Au Rum, Athens, Greece
32. ⇧ 4 places La Factoría, Old San Juan, Puerto Rico
33. ₦ Presidente, Buenos Aires, Argentina
34. ⇧ 9 places Schumann's, Munich, Germany
35. ⇩ 15 places Speak Low, Shanghai, China
36. ⇩ 3 places Little Red Door, Paris, France
37. ⇩ 5 places Tjoget (formerly Linje Tio), Stockholm, Sweden
38. ₦ The Old Man, Singapore
39. ₦ Lyaness , London, UK
40. ⇩ 5 places Happiness Forgets, London, UK
41. ⇧ 5 places Swift, London, UK
42. ⇧ 2 places Trick Dog, San Francisco, USA
43. ₦ Maybe Sammy, Sydney, Australia
44. ₦ 1930, Milan, Italy
45. ₦ Sober Company, Shanghai, China
46. ₦ Electric Bing Sutt, Beirut, Lebanon
47. ₦ Kwānt, London, UK
48. ₦ Artesian, London, UK
49. ₦ Coa, Hong Kong, China
50. ₦ Jerry Thomas Speakeasy, Rome, Italy

Bars ranked in 2018 that have crashed out in 2019

To pave the way for newly ranked bars above, 16 bars placed in 2018 have dropped out of World's 50 Best Bars, but all of which remain great bars:

From 6th place: Bar Termini, London, UK
From 17th place to 64th place: Oriole, London, UK
From 21st place to 67th place: Sweet Liberty, Miami, USA
From 24th place to 84th place: Le Syndicat, Paris, France
From 25th place to 53rd place: Lost + Found, Nicosia, Cyprus
From 27th place to 73rd place: Central Station, Beirut, Lebanon
From 30th place to 80th place: Black Pearl, Melbourne, Australia
From 31st place to 59th place: Tales & Spirits, Amsterdam, Netherlands
From 34th place to 61st place: 28 HongKong Street, Singapore
From 40th place to 60th place: Tommy's, San Francisco, USA
From 41st place to 72nd place: BlackTail, New York, USA
From 42nd place to 58th place: Candelaria, Paris, France
From 45th place: Fifty Mils, Mexico City, Mexico
From 48th place to 63rd place: Buck & Breck, Berlin, Germany
From 49th place to 56th place: Bar Benfiddich, Tokyo, Japan
From 50th place to 91st place: Lost Lake, Chicago, USA

The World's 50 Best Bars 2018

⇩ = fallen since 2017
⇧ = risen since 2017
⇳ = same position as 2017
₦ = new entry

1. ⇧ 1 place Dandelyan, London UK (closed in March 2019)
2. ⇩ 1 place American Bar, The Savoy Hotel, London, UK
3. ⇧ 4 places Manhattan, Singapore
4. ⇩ 1 place NoMad Bar, New York, USA
5. ⇩ 1 place Connaught Bar, London, UK
6. ⇧ 3 places Bar Termini, London, UK
7. ⇩ 1 place The Clumsies, Athens, Greece
8. ⇧ 7 places Atlas, Singapore
9. ⇧ 7 places Dante, New York, USA
10. ₦ The Old Man, Hong Kong, China
11. ⇧ 3 places Licorería Limantour, Mexico City, Mexico
12.⇧ 1 place High Five, Tokyo, Japan
13. ⇧ 34 places Native, Singapore
14. ⇧ 9 places Floreria Atlántico, Buenos Aires, Argentina
15. ⇩ 7 places Attaboy, New York, USA
16. ⇩ 11 places The Dead Rabbit Grocery & Grog, New York, USA
17. ⇳ Oriole, London, UK
18. ₦ Coupette, London, UK
19. ⇧ 1 place Himkok, Oslo, Norway
20. ⇩ 10 places Speak Low, Shanghai, China
21. ⇧ 6 places Sweet Liberty, Miami, USA
22. ⇧ 8 places Baba Au Rum, Athens, Greece
23. ⇧ 1 place Operation Dagger, Singapore
24. ⇧ 10 places Le Syndicat, Paris, France
25. ⇧ 4 places Lost + Found, Nicosia, Cyprus
26. ⇧ 11 places Employees Only, New York, USA
27. ⇧ 27 places Central Station, Beirut, Lebanon
28. ₦ Scout, London, UK
29. ₦ Three Sheets, London, UK
30. ⇩ 8 places Black Pearl, Melbourne, Australia
31. ⇧ 4 places Tales & Spirits, Amsterdam, Netherlands
32. ⇩ 19 places Linje Tio, Stockholm, Sweden
33. ⇩ 22 places Little Red Door, Paris, France
34. ⇩9 places 28 HongKong Street, Singapore
35. ⇩ 23 places Happiness Forgets, London, UK
36. ⇧ 3 places La Factoría, Old San Juan, Puerto Rico
37. ₦ Paradiso, Barcelona, Spain
38. ⇩ 10 places Indulge Experimental Bistro, Taipei, Taiwan
39. ₦ El Copitas, St Petersburg, Russia
40. ⇧ 40 places Tommy's, San Francisco, USA
41. ⇩ 9 places BlackTail, New York, USA
42. ⇩ 23 places Candelaria, Paris, France
43. ⇩ 5 places Schumann's, Munich, Germany
44. ⇩ 18 places Trick Dog, San Francisco, USA
45. ₦ Fifty Mils, Mexico City, Mexico
46. ₦ Swift, London, UK
47. ₦ Salmon Guru, Madrid, Spain
48. ⇧ 5 places Buck & Breck, Berlin
49. ⇩ 13 places Bar Benfiddich, Tokyo, Japan
50. ₦ Lost Lake, Chicago, USA

The World's 50 Best Bars 2017

⇩ = fallen since 2016
⇧ = risen since 2016
⇳ = same position as 2016
₦ = new entry

1. ⇧ 1 place American Bar, The Savoy Hotel, London, UK
2. ⇧ 1 place Dandelyan, London UK
3. ⇧ 5 places NoMad Bar, New York, USA
4. ⇳ Connaught Bar, London, UK
5. ⇩ 4 places The Dead Rabbit Grocery & Grog, New York, USA
6. ⇧ 3 places The Clumsies, Athens, Greece
7. ⇧ 4 places Manhattan, Singapore
8. ⇩ 3 places Attaboy, New York, USA
9. ⇧ 21 places Bar Termini, London, UK
10. ⇧ 5 places Speak Low, Shanghai, China
11. ⇧ 13 places Little Red Door, Paris, France
12. ⇩ 2 places Happiness Forgets, London, UK
13. ⇧ 10 places High Five, Tokyo, Japan
14. ⇩ 1 place Licorería Limantour, Mexico City, Mexico
15. ₦ Highest New Entry Atlas, Singapore
16. ⇧ 17 places Dante, New York, USA
17. ⇧ 15 places Oriole, London, UK
18. ⇩ 2 places Broken Shaker, Miami, USA
19. ⇩ 2 places Candelaria, Paris, France
20. ⇧ 22 places Himkok, Oslo, Norway
21. ⇩ 15 places The Gibson, London,UK
22. ⇳ Black Pearl, Melbourne, Australia
23. ⇧ 26 places Floreria Atlántico, Buenos Aires, Argentina
24. ⇩ 3 places Operation Dagger, Singapore
25. ⇩11 places 28 HongKong Street, Singapore
26. ⇧ 9 places Trick Dog, San Francisco, USA
27. ₦ Sweet Liberty, Miami, USA
28. ₦ Indulge Experimental Bistro, Taipei, Taiwan
29. ⇧ 14 places Lost + Found Drinkery, Nicosia, Cyprus
30. ⇧ 10 places Baba Au Rum, Athens, Greece
31. ₦ Tippling Club, Singapore
32. ₦ BlackTailBlackTail, New York, USA
33. ⇳ Jerry Thomas Speakeasy, Rome, Italy
34. ₦ Le Syndicat, Paris, France
35. ⇩ 17 places Tales & Spirits, Amsterdam, Netherlands
36. ₦ Bar Benfiddich, Tokyo, Japan
37. ⇩ 30 places Employees Only, New York, USA
38. ₦ Schumann's, Munich, Germany
39. ⇩ 8 places La Factoría, Old San Juan, Puerto Rico
40. ⇧ 1 place Quinary, Hong Kong, China
41. ⇩ 2 places Aviary, Chicago, USA
42. ⇩ 14 places Mace, New York, USA
43. ⇩ 24 places Nightjar, London, UK
44. ⇩ 19 places Linje Tio, Stockholm, Sweden
45. ⇩ 33 places The Baxter Inn, Sydney, Australia
46. ⇩ 10 places ABV, San Francisco, USA
47. ₦ Native, Singapore
48. ₦ Tommy's, San Francisco, USA
49. ⇩ 22 places Lobster Bar, Hong Kong, China
50. ₦ Imperial Craft, Tel Aviv, Israel

The World's 50 Best Bars 2016

⇧ = risen since 2015
⇩ = fallen since 2015
⇳ = same position as 2015
₦ = new entry
Difford's Guide rating out-of-five

1.⇧ The Dead Rabbit Grocery & Grog 5+/5, New York
2.⇧ American Bar at The Savoy 5+/5, London
3.⇧ Dandelyan5+/5, London
4.⇧ Connaught Bar5+/5, London
5.⇧ Attaboy 5+/5, New York
6.₦ The Gibson 4.5/5, London
7.⇩ Employees Only 5+/5, New York
8.⇧ NoMad Bar 5+/5, New York
9.⇧ The Clumsies 5/5, Athens
10.⇩ Happiness Forgets 5+/5, London
11.⇧ Manhattan 5+/5, Singapore
12.⇩ The Baxter Inn 4.5/5, Sydney
13.⇧ Limantour, Mexico City
14.⇩ 28 HongKong Street 5/5, Singapore
15.₦ Speak Low 4.5/5, Shanghai
16.⇩ The Broken Shaker, Miami Beach, USA
17.⇩ Candelaria 4.5/5, Paris
18.⇧ Tales & Spirits 5+/5, Amsterdam
19.⇩ Nightjar 4/5, London
20.⇧ Maison Premiere 5/5, New York
21.₦ Operation Dagger 4.5/5, Singapore
22.⇩ Black Pearl 5/5, Melbourne
23.⇩ Bar High Five, Tokyo
24.⇧ Little Red Door 4.5/5, Paris
25.₦ Linje Tio, Stockholm
26.₦ Central Station, Beirut
27.⇩ Lobster Bar & Grill 4.5/5, Hong Kong
28.⇧ Mace, New York
29.⇧ Smuggler's Cove 5+/5, San Francisco
30.₦ Bar Termini 5/5, London
31.⇧ La Factoria, Puerto Rico
32.₦ Oriole 4/5, London
33.⇩ The Jerry Thomas Project, Rome
33.₦ Dante, New York
35.⇧ Trick Dog 4/5, San Francisco
36.₦ ABV 5/5, San Francisco
37.₦ The Walker Inn, Los Angeles
38.⇧ Nottingham Forest 5+/5, Milan
39.⇩ Aviary 3.5/5, Chicago
40.⇳ Baba Au Rum 5/5, Athens
41.⇩ Quinary 5/5, Hong Kong
42.₦ Himkok, Oslo
43.⇧ Lost + Found Drinkery 5/5, Cyprus
44.⇩ Ruby 4.5/5, Copenhagen
45.⇩ PDT 5/5, New York
46.⇩ Bulletin Place 4.5/5, Sydney
47.⇳ Bramble 4.5/5, Edinburgh
48.⇳ Callooh Callay 4.5/5, London
49.⇳ Floreria Atlantico, Buenos Aires
50.⇩ Buck & Breck, Berlin

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