London’s Connaught Bar reigns once again in World’s 50 Best Bars list

In times of change, the World’s Best Bar remains a reassuring constant. Here are the results from the World’s 50 Best Bars 2021

Words by Laura Richards

connaught bar best bar in the world
London's Connaught Bar came out on top for a second consecutive year

If cocktails are your thing – and in particular, Martinis – then the chances are you’re no stranger to the Connaught Bar, a London watering hole that’s just been named the best bar in the world at the World’s 50 Best Bar Awards.

Situated inside Mayfair’s Connaught Hotel, since its relaunch just over a decade ago, the glitzy bar has become synonymous with stylish service and cocktails impeccable enough to keep the bar cemented in the number one position for a second consecutive year.

The Connaught Bar‘s win was announced last night (Tuesday December 7) at a surprisingly raucous ceremony – very much a return to the form of previous celebrations – held at the Roundhouse in Camden Town, London.

bartenders from London's Connaught Bar accepting award at World's 50 Best Bar Awards
agostino perrone making martinis at the connaught bar
The team from London's Connaught Bar accepting their award (left); the bar's director of mixology Agostino Perrone, pouring one of the bar's signature Martinis

The bar’s dapper, besuited team took to a circular stage occupying the centre of the room – like the world’s best-dressed wrestling team – to accept the accolade. On stage, the Connaught’s director of mixology, Agostino Perrone, expressed pride not only for his team in a difficult year, but also for an entire concert hall filled with bartenders flown in from far and wide. ‘We show everyone that bartending is the best job ever,’ he said.

Another London bar joined the dizzy heights at the top of the 2021 list – Tayēr + Elementary rose to number two from its previous position at number five in the charts. The Shoreditch bar fronted by Alex Kratena and Monica Berg first opened in 2019, but has dazzled cocktail enthusiasts in that short time, thanks to its informal bar at the front – serving frozen cocktails and signature One Sip Martinis – and its bar at the back, laid out like an open kitchen and pouring original, seasonal libations.

tayer + elementary bar in London
Inside Tayēr, one of two bar concepts that make up the second best bar in the world

London aside, the World’s 50 Best Bars list saw some shake-ups, with Barcelona’s Paradiso rising up the ranks to number three (previously at 19), Mexico City’s Licorería Limantour up from number 17 to a new position at number six in the list, and St Petersburg’s El Copitas moving up to number eight (from 27). Hanky Panky, another Mexico City watering hole, was the highest new entry in at number 12. Singapore also sealed its status as a drinking destination, with a total of five bars making it into the top 50.

bartenders from Mexico City's Hanky Panky bar accepting their award at World's 50 Best Bars
Bartenders from Mexico City's Hanky Panky were there to accept their award as the highest new entry in the top 50 list

In an ordinary year, what can only be described as an extreme amount of bar-hopping forms the backbone to the world’s 50 Best Bar Awards – with experts, journalists and bar professionals casting their anonymous votes based on their travels around the world. So what happened in a year when bars were sporadically ordered to keep their doors closed – and as international travel still hangs in the balance?

Organisers said that for the 2021 list, 600 global experts continued to cast their votes, but in a change-up to the rules, they were allowed to vote for bars closer to home this year, instead of being made to vote outside of their own domain. The list should hopefully inspire some future jet-setting, at least.

Here’s a full list of the World’s 50 Best Bars 2021…

  1. Connaught Bar, London
  2. Tayēr + Elementary, London
  3. Paradiso, Barcelona
  4. The Clumsies, Athens
  5. Florería Atlántico, Buenos Aires
  6. Licorería Limantour, Mexico City
  7. Coa, Hong Kong
  8. El Copitas, St Petersburg
  9. Jigger & Pony, Singapore
  10. Katana Kitten, New York
  11. Two Schmucks, Barcelona
  12. Hanky Panky, Mexico City
  13. Insider Bar, Moscow
  14. Baba au Rum, Athens
  15. Manhattan, Singapore
  16. Atlas, Singapore
  17. Zuma, Dubai
  18. The SG Club, Tokyo
  19. Drink Kong, Rome
  20. 1930, Milan
  21. Presidente, Buenos Aires
  22. Maybe Sammy, Sydney
  23. Cantina OK!, Sydney
  24. Salmon Guru, Madrid
  25. Handshake Speakeasy, Mexico City
  26. No Sleep Club, Singapore
  27. Camparino in Galleria, Milan
  28. Café La Trova, Miami
  29. Little Red Door, Paris
  30. Dante, New York
  31. Kwānt, London
  32. Bar Benfiddich, Tokyo
  33. Tres Monos, Buenos Aires
  34. Attaboy, New York
  35. Lucy’s Flower Shop, Stockholm
  36. MO Bar, Singapore
  37. Sips, Barcelona
  38. Baltra Bar, Mexico City
  39. Sober Company, Shanghai
  40. Tjoget, Stockholm
  41. Epic, Shanghai
  42. Charles H, Seoul
  43. Tippling Club, Singapore
  44. Above Board, Melbourne
  45. Galaxy Bar, Dubai
  46. Re, Sydney
  47. Sidecar, New Delhi
  48. Union Trading Company, Shanghai
  49. DarkSide, Hong Kong
  50. Quinary, Hong Kong