Top 50 Drinking Spots: The World’s 50 Best Bars has named Paradiso, a bar hidden behind a pastrami shop in the El Born neighborhood of Barcelona, the best drinking spot. This is the first time an establishment outside of New York or London has won the award. After passing a counter specializing in cured meat, visitors enter the hidden bar through a white refrigerator door. Among the bar’s cocktails are smoked milk punch with bourbon and tahini, which is served under a dramatic, arched wooden ceiling.
World’s Best was topped by Tayer & Elementary, a London bar that mixes casual drinks with more ambitious cocktails in the back. Runner-up last year as well. A third Barcelona spot, Sips, jumped 34 spots from 37 to third.
Connaught Bar, which ranked No. 1 for the last two years, ranks No. 8 this year. World’s 50 Best Bars content director Mark Sansom says the bar has relinquished its crown.
The list remains dominated by New York. Overstory, which is located on the 64th floor of an office building in the Financial District, is among the top 50 bars in the Big Apple. The idiosyncratic Double Chicken Please, which specializes in food-focused cocktails on the Lower East Side, placed highest among new entries, at No. 6.
In Barcelona, 1,000 guests attended a live event to announce this year’s awards. For the first time since the awards began in 2009, the ceremony was not held in London. (The awards were bestowed virtually in 2020.)
As a result of the new venue, there were an unusual number of new entries: 14 out of 50. Red Frog in Lisbon and L’Antiquario, an Italian speakeasy-style bar, were two of the newcomers.
There were a few notable omissions from the list. Due to Russia’s invasion of Ukraine earlier this year, El Copitas in St. Petersburg and Insider Bar in Moscow, respectively ranked No. 8 and No. 13, were not considered. As an organization, we do not believe it is appropriate to promote Russia as a drinking destination at this time. “We acknowledge all Russians who have bravely voiced their opposition to their leaders’ actions.”
A minimalist Scandinavian bar, Roda Huset, in Stockholm, No. 78 on the list, was awarded the Campari One to watch prize during the ceremony. A committee member highlighted the bar’s potential to rise to the top in the future. Little Red Door in Paris won the Ketel One Sustainability title. Hanky Panky in Mexico City was awarded Michter’s Art of Hospitality, the first time the award has been given to a Mexican establishment.
On September 27, bars ranked 51-100 were announced in the second half of the list.
A prestigious place that dropped out of the top 50 was Tokyo’s SG Club, which slipped from 18th to 63rd. In Sydney, Re fell from 46 to 87, a drop of more than 40 places.
COVID-19 restrictions should be relaxed for such rankings, as demonstrated by the list. Three bars in Mexico City placed in the top 15 spots, more than any other city, following the start of the pandemic. Tokyo, known for its talented cocktail culture, had only one spot: Bar Benfiddich took No. 48.
World’s 50 Best Bars and World’s 50 Best Restaurants, both owned by William Reed Business Media, compile the annual list. From January 2021 to July 2022, more than 650 drinks experts from around the world voted regarding their experiences.
Voters were allowed to cast up to five votes for places within their country before the pandemic; at least two votes had to be international. Voters who were unable to travel in cities like Tokyo were granted the option of voting only in five regional locations in order to address travel restrictions. While voting guidelines are not back to pre-pandemic levels, Sansom says voting has been altered to ensure the highest level of authenticity.
World’s 50 Best Bars (* denotes a new entry)
1. Paradiso, Barcelona
2. Tayer + Elementary, London
3. Sips, Barcelona
4. Licoreria Limantour, Mexico City
5. Little Red Door, Paris
*6. Double Chicken Please, New York
7. Two Schmucks, Barcelona
8. Connaught Bar, London
9. Katana Kitten, New York
10. Alquimico, Cartagena
11. Handshake Speakeasy, Mexico City
12. Jigger & Pony, Singapore
13. Hanky Panky, Mexico City
*14. BKK Social Club, Bangkok
15. Salmon Guru, Madrid
16. Drink Kong, Rome
17. Coa, Hong Kong
18. Floreria Atlantico, Buenos Aires
19. The Clumsies, Athens
20. Baba au Rhum, Athens
21. Cafe la Trova, Miami
22. Attaboy, New York
*23. Satan’s Whiskers, London
*24. Tropic City, Bangkok
*25. Kumiko, Chicago
26. Sidecar, New Delhi
27. Tres Monos, Buenos Aires
*28. Argo, Hong Kong
29. Maybe Sammy, Sydney
30. Swift, London
*31. Line, Athens
32. Baltra Bar, Mexico City
33. Manhattan, Singapore
*34. Overstory, New York
35. 1930, Milan
36. Dante, New York
*37. A Bar with Shapes for a Name, London
38. Zuma, Dubai
*39. Locale Firenze, Florence
*40. Red Frog, Lisbon
41. Cantina OK!, Sydney
*42. Cochinchina, Buenos Aires
43. Himkok, Oslo
44. Carnaval, Lima
45. Galaxy Bar, Dubai
*46. L’Antiquario, Naples
47. Employees Only, New York
48. Bar Benfiddich, Tokyo
49. Lucy’s Flower Shop, Stockholm
*50. Bulgari Bar, Dubai
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