World’s Best Bars
Naming the ‘World’s Best Bar’ can be a tricky business – mainly because what that means will vary from Joe to Joe. For some, it’s purely a drinks business and the more unique the concoctions and presentation the better. While for others, a good bar is only as good as its atmosphere.
For us it’s a combination of the two, as well as a place which can give you a genuinely unique experience while still putting comfort ahead of style. So without further ado – from London to New York City – here are some of the world’s best bars.
Black Pearl, Melbourne
Melbourne’s The Black Pearl is perfectly located on the city’s busy Fitzroy Street. Serving some of the best cocktails in Australia, the bartenders at The Black Pearl often receive ‘Bartender of the Year’ accolades but don’t think this place is intimidating. It’s comfortable, relaxing and humble, and to illustrate the point they still serve the same homemade sausage rolls they’ve been serving since Day 1 of their nineteen year existence!
The first of London’s entries into our list, Nightjar in Shoreditch is a basement bar which is defined by its 1920s Prohibition glitz. The low-lit room with comfortable seating puts on live music every night of the week with mostly jazz- and blues-orientated artists. This is a speakeasy bar but the cocktail menu is playfully divided into different eras (pre-Prohibition, post-war, etc.) A warning: it gets busy, so you’ll need to pre-book a table online.
The Dead Rabbit Grocery & Grog, New York
Located in South Manhattan’s Financial District, The Dead Rabbit Grocery & Grog is somewhat of an unexpected gem in the area. The two-story haunt combines a lunch taproom with a parlour serving small dishes and cocktails. Much of its success is down to the lack of pretentiousness – the Dead Rabbit is almost an Irish pub-meets-swanky cocktail bar. Its cocktail menu is organised by the four seasons just to make choosing from the long list a little easier.
28 Hongkong Street, Singapore
28 Hongkong Street is a constant in lists naming the best bars in Asia. Named after its actual address, this dimly lit bar has been at the forefront of Singapore’s speakeasy scene since its inception, offering up original cocktails and a cosy ambience. The drinks menu focuses on spirits and American-style cocktails, usually with eight classic cocktails, eight contemporary creations and two punches.
Buck & Breck, Berlin
Hidden behind a secret door between a Berlin police station and a bistro, you’ll find probably the smallest bar on our list. Buck & Breck only has room for a bar, a table with fourteen seats and a barman, so it most definitely fits into the ‘exclusive’ category. Service is the order of the day and mobile phones are even banned here. But don’t let that put you off. This is one of the coolest bars in one of the coolest cities in the world. The cocktail bar serves classics done immaculately, with only the subtlest of twists.
Baxter Inn, Sydney
Another Aussie offering on our list, this time we take a trip to the Baxter Inn in Sydney, a traditional speakeasy bar/pub with more than a hundred whiskeys on its chalkboard menu. While getting something neat is essential if you’re into your amber, it’s easy to forget some of the country’s best bartenders are the other side of the wooden bar. So do yourself a favour and order one of the classic cocktails. The best bit about Baxter Inn is it’s for everyone: No booking, no functions and no lists at the door.
Moving away from the speakeasies, Candelaria in Paris is bright, bustling and possesses the distinct feel of South America. This taqueria is the first of its kind in the French capital and while the tacos here are superb, if you head through the unmarked door at the back, you’ll find one of the best bars in the world. Serving frozen Margaritas, Mexican beers and extensive tequila options, Candelaria is like nothing else on the continent.
American Bar, London
Steeped in history, The American Bar at the Savoy Hotel draws in the crowds as much now as it did 126 years ago when it opened. This bar is the epitome of London chic with clean white lines at the art deco bar complimented by the legendary Savoy cocktail book of 100 recipes. There’s also a live jazz pianist performing here every night.
Employees Only, New York
Employees Only in New York City has the rare quality of being a bar for everyone. Whether you’re on a first date, grabbing a quick drink at lunch or in it for the long haul, this retro Prohibition bar brings in the locals as well as the tourists. Located in the West Village, it’s known for its whiskey but there’s plenty of other inventive options with Aperitifs, Long Drinks and Fancy Cocktails all clearly divided in the extensive menu.
For the fourth year in a row now, the Artesian has topped the list for ‘The World’s Best Bar’ from Drinks International Magazine, and for good reason. Set in the five star Langham Hotel’s modern oriental styled bar, Artesian showcases the city’s largest collection of rums and serves some of the most innovative cocktails on the planet, all with Surrealism in mind. The drinks don’t come cheap but this is an experience yo