Hong Kong swept the awards with 12 bars on the annual list, followed by Singapore with 11 winners.
Held at Singapore’s art deco-style Capitol Theatre on May 9, the award ceremony for Asia’s 50 Best Bars was a rousing celebration of the region’s best in the drinks scene.
Taking top spot is Hong Kong cocktail bar The Old Man, which made waves across Asia despite opening just two years ago. Inspired by author Ernest Hemmingway’s favorite libations, the bar’s well-curated cocktail list features drinks made with unlikely sweet and savory ingredients, including gruyere cheese.
Coming in second is Singapore’s Manhattan Bar, the previous reigning two-year champion. It continues to take pride of place as the Lion City’s best bar, specializing in iconic cocktails from the 19thcentury Golden Age of drinking.
Meanwhile, Taipei’s Indulge Experimental Bistro placed third, thanks to its innovative cocktails that showcase Taiwan’s micro-seasons.
Special accolades were also given to the following: Pussyfoot Saloon from South Korea clinched the title Campari’s One to Watch, Bar Trigona of Kuala Lumpur won Ketel One Sustainable Bar award, and Japanese bartender Shingo Gokan attained the Altos Bartender’s Bartender, which recognized his unprecedented contribution to the bar scene.
Overall, Singapore’s Jigger & Pony at the Amara Hotel was the highest climber, scaling 33 spots to take the ninth place on the list.
Asia’s 50 Best Bars 2019 list:
1. The Old Man, Hong Kong, China
The best bar in China, as well as Asia.
2. Manhattan, Singapore
The best bar in Singapore.
3. Indulge Experimental Bistro, Taipei, Taiwan
The best bar in Taiwan.
4. Native, Singapore
5. Atlas, Singapore
6. High Five, Tokyo, Japan
The best bar in Japan.
7. Speak Low, Shanghai, China
8. The Bamboo Bar at Mandarin Oriental, Bangkok, Thailand
The best bar in Thailand.
9. Jigger & Pony, Singapore
Highest climber award.
10. Quinary, Hong Kong, China
11. Tippling Club, Singapore
12. Coa, Hong Kong, China
Highest new entry.
13. The SG Club, Tokyo, Japan
14. Charles H, Seoul, South Korea
Best bar in Korea.
15. Gibson, Singapore
16. Sober Company, Shanghai, China
17. Bar Benfiddich, Tokyo, Japan
18. The Wise King, Hong Kong, China
19. Le Chamber, Seoul, South Korea
20. Backstage Cocktail Bar, Bangkok, Thailand
21. 28 HongKong Street, Singapore
22. Operation Dagger, Singapore
23. Bar Trench, Tokyo, Japan
24. Aha Saloon, Taipei, Taiwan
25. D.Bespoke, Singapore
26. Vesper, Bangkok, Thailand
27. Coley, Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia
Best bar in Malaysia.
28. Bar Orchard Ginza, Tokyo, Japan
29. Alice Cheongdam, Seoul, South Korea
30. Union Trading Company, Shanghai, China
31. Tropic City, Bangkok, Thailand
32. The Pontiac, Hong Kong, China
33. Lobster Bar & Grill, Hong Kong, China
34. Rabbit Hole, Bangkok, Thailand
35. Hope & Sesame, Guangzhou, China
36. Stockton, Hong Kong, China
37. The Curator, Manila, Philippines
The best bar in the Philippines
38. 8 1/2 Otto E Mezzo Bombana, Hong Kong, China
39. Union Brasserie, Bakery & Bar, Jakarta, Indonesia
The best bar in Indonesia
40. Bar Trigona, Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia
Ketel One Sustainable Bar Award, as well as a new entry.
41. Employees Only, Singapore
42. Smalls, Bangkok, Thailand
43. Bar Mood, Taipei, Taiwan
44. Junglebird, Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia
45. Draft Land, Taipei, Taiwan
46. The Other Room, Singapore
47. Oto, Manila, Philippines
48. Teens of Thailand, Bangkok, Thailand
49. Mixology Salon, Tokyo, Japan
50. The Back Room, Manila, Philippines
Pussyfoot Saloon, Seoul, South Korea
Campari One to Watch.
Altos Bartenders’ Bartender Award
More information here.