The Asia’s Best Bars 2021 list, sponsored by Perrier, features bars from 10 countries
• Coa, Hong Kong, ranks No.1 in the 2021 edition of Asia’s 50 Best Bars and is also named The Best Bar in China, sponsored by Perrier
• The list features bars from 10 countries across Asia, with eight new entries
• China has the most venues on the list, with 13 bars and four new entries
• Quinary, Hong Kong, wins the Heering Legend of The List Award
• The Diplomat, Hong Kong, is named the London Essence Best New Opening
• No Sleep Club, Singapore, secures the Disaronno Highest New Entry Award
• Caprice Bar, Hong Kong, and Sidecar, New Delhi, are joint winners of the Nikka Highest Climber Award
• Japanese bar owner Shingo Gokan is crowned Roku Industry Icon
The 2021 list of Asia’s 50 Best Bars, sponsored by Perrier, was announced over a virtual awards ceremony on 6th May at 6pm SG/HK time. Featuring bars from 10 countries in Asia, the sixth edition of the annual awards aims to recognise the immense talent, dedication and resilience evident across Asia’s cocktail landscape. Given the devastating impact the global pandemic has had on the region’s bar scene, 50 Best’s role in championing great bars is more important than ever, as the organisation looks to inspire guests to return to bars through its lists and surrounding content programmes.
Coa in Hong Kong clinches the No.1 spot to take home the awards for The Best Bar in Asia and The Best Bar in China, sponsored by Perrier. Launched in 2017 by bartender-owner Jay Khan, Coa is a shrine to all things agave and houses an extensive collection of 200 handcrafted Latin American liquids including tequila, mezcal, raicilla, sotol and more. Khan, who was voted Bartenders’ Bartender at Asia’s 50 Best Bars 2020, is particularly well-versed in the category of agave spirits and is always happy to educate guests while they sip on expertly crafted cocktails from his standout menu. The Mexicana drinking den first debuted on the Asia’s 50 Best Bars list in 2019, winning the Highest New Entry Award at No.12, and was ranked No.3 last year. Coa’s meteoric rise continues on a global scale as 2020 saw it place at No.8 at The World’s 50 Best Bars, securing the Highest Climber Award.
At No.2 is Jigger & Pony, Singapore, which also wins The Best Bar in Singapore, sponsored by Matusalem. This is the second time the establishment is named The Best Bar in Singapore after taking home The Best Bar in Asia title at last year’s ceremony. Coming in at No.3 is The SG Club, which wins The Best Bar in Japan title, while Taiwan’s Indulge Experimental Bistro maintains its No.4 spot on the list, reclaiming the title of The Best Bar in Taiwan, sponsored by Asahi Super Dry. Sober Company, Shanghai, takes the No.5 spot.
Mark Sansom, Content Editor for Asia’s 50 Best Bars, says: “We want to extend our heartiest congratulations to all the bars named in the list. We hope that the announcement of the 2021 ranking – as well as the publication, for the first time, of those ranked from 51 to 100 – will provide optimism and encouragement to all bars as travel routes gradually open up and guests begin to plan their next fine-drinking experiences. It is a well-deserved debut win for Coa and credit goes to Jay Khan and his team who have proven themselves to be at the heart of the continent’s cocktail culture. The bar serves a perfect blend of subtle agave education, relaxed vibes and a simply fantastic drinks list. This, combined with the great work they have been doing to support their community throughout the pandemic, makes Coa a bona fide No.1 this year.”
For 2022, 50 Best is delighted to announce that it has confirmed its partnership with the Singapore Tourism Board to bring the Asia’s 50 Best Bars awards ceremony back to Singapore. Sansom says: “We look forward to holding a physical awards ceremony not only to celebrate and recognise the best in the business when the situation improves, but to bring together bartenders, bar owners, drinks writers and cocktail aficionados from around the world. We are hopeful that the ongoing vaccine roll-out will allow the bar community to take this opportunity to reunite in Singapore next year."
( Coa - The Best Bar in Asia 2021 )
For the first time ever we welcomed the development of the list being extended up to 100 bars with a precursory announcement of the top 51 to 100 bars featuring the inclusion of a triumvirate of bars from Vietnam. By happy coincidence these 3 bars were evenly split geographically from locations in Hanoi in the north to Nha Trang in the central coastal region and Saigon in the South. Leading the charge for Vietnam was Hybrid Bar from Nha Trang at #96 who have been gaining rave reviews for their futuristic wave style décor and molecular cocktails curated using locally foraged ingredients. Next, at #77, came Summer Experiment from Saigon driven by Jay Moir who made his name in establishing the uber popular cocktail joint Layla on Dong Du and is now offering an elevated experience at Summer which,coincidentally, is housed on a trendy 3rd floor location on 77-79 Ly Tu Trong. Representing the capital city Hanoi and tucked in adjacent to Summer at #76 comes Ne Cocktail Bar based around Hanoi's iconic Hoan Kim Lake district and presenting a warm and welcoming speakeasy style concept know as the "go to" for the most imaginative cocktails in Hanoi prepared by their talented young team of mixologists.