THE tipple-thirsty will be delighted to know that the second edition of Asia’s 50 Best Bars will again return to Capitol Theatre in Singapore this year, reaffirming the island-nation as quite the destination for bar and nightlife lovers.

Last year’s inaugural awards ceremony – which saw 450 cocktail enthusiasts and industry VIPs descend on the grand and historic venue – was somewhat of a watershed event for Singapore, which as a nation bagged 12 spots on the prestigious list of 50. A total of 14 cities made 2018’s ranked list, which was drawn up from votes cast by more than 200 industry experts across Asia. 

The introduction of the list has doubtlessly spurred growth and development in the local bar scene; many hallowed establishments gave their bars a do-over, and there’s been surge of innovative drinks programmes coupled with a conscientious effort to stay on top of the latest drink trends.

Now there’s a sight for sore eyes. Regent Singapore’s Manhattan has topped the Asia list for two years straight. We concur.

The 2019 event kickstarts a three-year partnership between organisers of the World’s 50 Best and Asia’s 50 Best lists, William Reed Business Media, and Singapore Tourism board. The deal’s also bringing the well-regarded World’s 50 Best Restaurants ceremony to Singapore for its 2019 edition (usually held in June). Come 2021, the World’s 50 Best Bars will be hosted in Singapore as well.

If you’re an aficionado of the scene,  tune in to the gala awards livestream here. The actual list is estimated to start airing at 8.45pm on 9 May (Thursday).


For reference, here’s the full list of 2018’s Asia’s 50 Best Bars awardees – local bars in bold.

  1. Manhattan Bar, Singapore 
  2. Indulge Experimental Bistro, Taipei
  3. Speak Low, Shanghai
  4. Atlas, Singapore
  5. The Old Man, Hong Kong
  6. High Five, Tokyo
  7. The Tippling Club, Singapore
  8. Native, Singapore
  9. The Bamboo Bar, Bangkok
  10. Island Shangri-La Lobster Bar and Grill, Hong Kong
  11. Stockton, Hong Kong
  12. 28 Hong Kong Street, Singapore
  13. Backstage, Bangkok
  14. Sober Company, Shanghai
  15. Quinary, Hong Kong
  16. Bar Trench, Tokyo
  17. Le Chamber, Seoul
  18. Zuma, Hong Kong
  19. Operation Dagger, Singapore
  20. Bar Benfiddich, Tokyo,
  21. Charles H, Seoul
  22. Gibson, Singapore
  23. Employees Only, Singapore
  24. 8 ½ Otto e Mezzo Bombana, Hong Kong
  25. The Curator Coffee and Cocktails, Manila
  26. Alice, Seoul
  27. Vesper, Bangkok
  28. Union Trading Company, Shanghai
  29. Smalls, Bangkok
  30. Janes and Hooch, Beijing
  31. The Pontiac, Hong Kong
  32. D.Bespoke, Singapore
  33. Nutmeg & Clove, Singapore
  34. Gen Yamamoto, Tokyo
  35. TCRC, Tainan
  36. Potato Head Beach Club, Bali
  37. Bar Orchard Ginza, Tokyo
  38. Junglebird, Kuala Lumpur
  39. Loewy, Jakarta
  40. Mixology Salon, Tokyo
  41. Union Brasserie, Bakery & Bar, Jakarta
  42. Jigger and Pony, Singapore
  43. Star Bar, Tokyo
  44. Teens of Thailands, Bangkok
  45. Lamp Bar, Nara
  46. Coley Kuala Lumpur
  47. Keepers, Seoul
  48. Ritz Carlton Bar and Lounge, Macau
  49. Ku Bar, Bangkok
  50. The Other Room, Singapore


written by.
Xiangjun Liao
XJ is the associate digital editor and works the F&B, tech, watch and motoring beats. Correspondingly, he's an alcoholic carnivore with a boyish fascination for all things mechanical. No prizes for guessing which Jaguar he wishes to commandeer.

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