Asia’s 50 Best Bars 2022: The Facts And Figures

Asia's 50 Best Bars 2022 group shot

Asia’s 50 Best Bars 2022 took Bangkok by storm on the 6th of May, where the brightest startenders of Asia met for the sacred awards ceremony. This year sees Mandarin Oriental Bangkok play host to the opulent event requiring a boat for you to reach the ceremony itself. Here’s an analysis and breakdown on this year’s facts and figures.

“We could not be happier that Asia’s 50 Best Bars returns to a live event format this year and that the community can experience much-needed connection and conviviality once again. Asia’s bars have shown remarkable resilience and growth in spite of the challenges of the past two years, and we continue to be proud to celebrate the talent and creativity on display in bars all across Asia. Congratulations to Jay Khan and the team at Coa for holding onto their top position after another tumultuous year for Hong Kong. Coa’s winning cocktail of an Agave-spirits-forward menu, expertly-crafted menu and a complete understanding of the guest experience has again proven to strike a winning chord with our voting Academy.” — Mark Sansom, Content Director, Asia’s 50 Best Bars.

Asia’s 50 Best Bars 2022

  1. COA, Hong Kong, China (No. 1 in 2021)
  2. Jigger & Pony, Singapore (No. 2 in 2021)
  3. Argo, Hong Kong, China
  4. Tesouro, Goa, India
  5. Bar Benfiddich, Tokyo, Japan (No. 9 in 2021)
  6. Indulge Experimental Bistro, Taipei, Taiwan (No. 4 in 2021)
  7. Charles H, Seoul, Korea (No. 13 in 2021)
  8. MO Bar, Singapore (No. 45 in 2021)
  9. Manhattan, Singapore (No. 6 in 2021)
  10. BKK Social Club, Bangkok, Thailand
  11. Sober Company, Shanghai, China (No. 5 in 2021)
  12. Republic, Singapore
  13. Darkside, Hong Kong, China (No. 40 in 2021)
  14. Sidecar, New Delhi, India (No. 16 in 2021)
  15. No Sleep Club, Singapore (No. 8 in 2021)
  16. Quinary, Hong Kong, China (No. 25 in 2021)
  17. Tropic City, Bangkok, Thailand (No. 22 in 2021)
  18. Hope & Sesame, Guangzhou, China (No. 15 in 2021)
  19. Vesper, Bangkok, Thailand (No. 46 in 2021)
  20. Lamp Bar, Nara, Japan (No. 62 in 2021)
  21. The SG Club, Tokyo, Japan (No. 3 in 2021)
  22. Penicillin, Hong Kong, China (No. 30 in 2021)
  23. Atlas, Singapore (No. 7 in 2021)
  24. Aha Saloon, Taipei, Taiwan (No. 24 in 2021)
  25. Bar Trench, Tokyo, Japan (No. 43 in 2021)
  26. Hoots’, New Delhi, India (No. 59 in 2021)
  27. Tippling Club, Singapore (No. 36 in 2021)
  28. Bar Cham, Seoul, Korea (No. 34 in 2021)
  29. Bar Trigona, Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia (No. 12 in 2021)
  30. Home, New Delhi, India
  31. Sago House, Singapore (No. 49 in 2021)
  32. The Cocktail Club, Jakarta, Indonesia
  33. The Pontiac, Hong Kong, China (No. 26 in 2021)
  34. The Wise King, Hong Kong, China (No. 28 in 2021)
  35. Junglebird, Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia (No. 37 in 2021)
  36. Nutmeg & Clove, Singapore
  37. Analogue, Singapore
  38. The Aubrey, Hong Kong, China
  39. Le Chamber, Seoul, Korea (No. 44 in 2021)
  40. Alice Cheongdam, Seoul, Korea (No. 41 in 2021)
  41. Memento Mori, Tokyo, Japan (No. 98 in 2021)
  42. Smoke & Bitters, Hiriketiya, Sri Lanka (No. 91 in 2021)
  43. Asia Today, Bangkok, Thailand (No. 52 in 2021)
  44. Copitas, Bengaluru, India
  45. Union Trading Company, Shanghai, China (No. 31 in 2021)
  46. The Bamboo Bar, Bangkok, Thailand (No. 11 in 2021)
  47. Bee’s Knees, Kyoto, Japan (No. 18 in 2021)
  48. Zest, Seoul, Korea
  49. 28 HongKong Street, Singapore (No. 21 in 2021)
  50. Speak Low, Shanghai, China (No. 32 in 2021)
  51. Room by Le Kief, Taipei, Taiwan (No. 19 in 2021)
  52. Epic, Shanghai, China (No. 64 in 2021)
  53. Tell Camellia, Hong Kong, China (No. 23 in 2021)
  54. PCO, New Delhi, India
  55. Honky Tonks Tavern, Hong Kong, China
  56. Quality Goods Club, Hong Kong, China
  57. Soko, Seoul, Korea (No. 89 in 2021)
  58. Bespoke, Singapore (No. 39 in 2021)
  59. Pine & Co, Seoul, Korea
  60. Smoke & Mirrors, Singapore
  61. Papa Doble Bar, Singapore
  62. The Curator, Manila, Philippines (No. 38 in 2021)
  63. Oto, Manila, Philippines (No. 61 in 2021)
  64. Teens of Thailand, Bangkok, Thailand (No. 48 in 2021)
  65. Live Twice, Singapore (No. 75 in 2021)
  66. Origin Grill & Bar, Singapore
  67. Ark Lounge, Aomori, Japan (No. 94 in 2021)
  68. The Public House, Taipei, Taiwan
  69. Smalls, Bangkok, Thailand (No. 93 in 2021)
  70. Three X Co, Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia (No. 47 in 2021)
  71. Mizunara: The Library, Hong Kong, China
  72. Cocktail Bar Nemanja, Yokohama, Japan
  73. The Living Room, Mumbai, India
  74. The Sailing Bar Nara, Japan
  75. Shin Gi Tai, Singapore
  76. The Bombay Canteen, Mumbai, India
  77. Employees Only, Singapore (No. 70 in 2021)
  78. FindTheLockerRoom, Bangkok, Thailand
  79. Bar Rocking Chair, Kyoto, Japan (No. 80 in 2021)
  80. Bar Landscape, Tokyo, Japan (No. 57 in 2021)
  81. The Old Man, Hong Kong, China (No. 42 in 2021)
  82. Mesa, Macau, China
  83. Mixology Bar, Seoul, Korea (No. 86 in 2021)
  84. Stir, Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam
  85. High Five, Tokyo, Japan (No. 27 in 2021)
  86. HiBoRu, Taipei, Taiwan
  87. The Bellwood, Tokyo, Japan (No. 69 in 2021)
  88. The Loft, Bangkok, Thailand
  89. Bar Mood, Taipei, Taiwan (No. 17 in 2021)
  90. Southside Parlor, Seoul, Korea (No. 92 in 2021)
  91. Moonrock, Tainan, Taiwan
  92. Barossa Cocktailier, Gifu, Japan
  93. Wishbone Bar, Semarang, Indonesia (No. 74 in 2021)
  94. Bar D, Kanagawa, Japan (No. 94 in 2021)
  95. Barbary Coast, Singapore (No. 29 in 2021)
  96. Blackbird, Kathmandu, Nepal
  97. Backdoor Bodega, Penang, Malaysia
  98. Junior The Pocket Bar, Singapore
  99. 40 Thieves, Bali, Indonesia
  100. Coley, Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia

And The Winners Are…

Best Bar in Asia: COA, Hong Kong, China
Best Bar in China: COA, Hong Kong, China
Best Bar in India: Tesouro, Goa, India
Best Bar in Indonesia: The Cocktail Club, Jakarta, Indonesia
Best Bar in Japan: Bar Benfiddich, Tokyo, Japan
Best Bar in Korea: Charles H, Seoul, Korea
Best Bar in Malaysia: Bar Trigona, Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia
Best Bar in Philippines: The Curator, Manila
Best Bar in Singapore: Jigger & Pony, Singapore
Best Bar in Taiwan: Indulge Experimental Bistro, Taipei, Taiwan
Best Bar in Thailand: BKK Social Club, Bangkok, Thailand

China has 13 bars in top 50, 6 bars in top 100, total 19 bars.
India has 5 bars in top 50, 3 bars in top 100, total 8 bars.
Indonesia has 1 bar in top 50, 2 bars in top 100, total 3 bars.
Japan has 6 bars in top 50, 9 bars in top 100, total 15 bars.
Korea has 5 bars in top 50, 4 bars in top 100, total 9 bars.
Malaysia has 2 bars in top 50, 3 bars in top 100, total 5 bars.
Philippines has 2 bars in top 100, total 2 bars.
Singapore has 11 bars in top 50, 9 bars in top 100, total, 20 bars.
Sri Lanka has 1 bar in top 50, total 1 bar.
Taiwan has 2 bars in top 50, 5 bars in top 100, total 7 bars.
Thailand has 5 bars in top 50, 4 bars in top 100, total 9 bars.
Vietnam had 1 bar in top 100, total 1 bar.

Ketel One Sustainable Award: Bar Mood, Taipei, Taiwan
Michter’s Art Of Hospitality Award: BKK Social Club, Bangkok, Thailand
Altos Bartenders’ Bartender Award: Keith Motsi of Charles H, Seoul, Korea
Campari One To Watch Award: Honky Tonks Tavern, Hong Kong, China
Rémy Martin Legend Of The List Award: Bar Benfiddich, Tokyo, Japan
London Essence Best New Opening Award: Tesouro, Goa, India
Disaronno Highest New Entry Award: Argo, Hong Kong, China
Nikka Highest Climber Award: MO Bar, Singapore (37 places)
Roku Industry Icon Award: Colin Chia of Nutmeg & Clove, Singapore
Siete Misterios Best Menu Award: Bar Trigona, Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia

A50BB22 The Best Bar in Asia - Coa | Asia's 50 Best Bars 2022 | Food For Thought

Mezcal Reigns Supreme, Again

COA in Hong Kong, the brain child of Jay Khan, takes the first spot, showing that you do not need to be a bar with a big financial backing to take reign supreme. The mezcal-focus bar not only aims to deliver with its attention to detail and cocktail programme, but is bringing attention to this category of growingly appreciated spirit.

For our interview with Jay Khan see, Asia’s 50 Best Bars 2022: Jay Khan Speaks About Winning Best Bar In Asia Twice.

Malaysia | Asia's 50 Best Bars 2022 | Food For Thought

Malaysian Pride

Malaysia continues to stay in the list with 2 bars placing in the top 50, Bar Trigona (No. 29) and Junglebird (No.35), while the top 100 sees 3 more Malaysian bars, Three X Co. (No. 70), Backdoor Bodega (No. 97) and Coleys (No. 100). We only hope that Malaysia is able to breach the top 50 with more bars in the future.

A50BB22 Awards Ceremony - Siete Misterios Best Cocktail Menu | Asia's 50 Best Bars 2022 | Food For Thought

Inaugural Siete Misterios Best Menu Award

This year saw the induction of a new award, the Siete Misterios Best Menu Award which goes to Malaysia’s very own Bar Trigona. The award-winning menu focuses on 4 indigenous herbs found throughout Malaysia, which not only champions sustainability but also supportive of local industries.

“We are truly grateful and extremely honoured to be part of this prestigious list and given the recognition. The menu focuses on 4 herbs that are very common in Malaysia and aisa. These herbs are hardly ever used in drinks. The menu consists of Pandan, Lemongrass, Pegaga and Bunga Kantan. All these herbs are commonly used in our Malaysian cooking or Asian cooking, hence, we decided to bring this to life and make the herbs “the star” of our drinks. Fun fact is we also have these herbs growing in our Herb Garden where we harvest the herbs from. The aim is to showcase Malaysian herbs and how it can be transforms into your glass.” — Julian Brigget, Bar Trigona, Kuala Lumpur Malaysia.

A50BB22 Awards Ceremony - Altos Bartenders' Bartender | Asia's 50 Best Bars 2022 | Food For Thought

A Bartender’s Bartender

The 2022 Bartender’s Bartender award goes to Keith Motsi of Charles H, Four Seasons Seoul. The notoriously friendly bartender is known for his hospitality and willingness to share knowledge earning him this award by his peers, the only one that is voted on by only bartenders.

“I am extremely honoured, humbled and happy to be recognised by fellow peers, means that much more as they understand and know the challenges we face, day in & day out! Special credit to my team, they make it things happen for us all, wouldn’t be here without them, they make me look much better than I actually am.” — Keith Motsi, Charles H, Seoul, Korea.

A50BB22 Awards Ceremony - London Essence Best New Opening and The Best Bar in India | Asia's 50 Best Bars 2022 | Food For Thought

South Asian Representation

India is making waves by 5 bars represented in the top 50, and 3 in the top 100, making a total of 8 bars, one of the country’s highest showing yet. With Tesouro (No. 4) in Goa taking Best New Opening and the Best Bar in India, the continent is surely seeing some traction. This year also saw two firsts, with Smoke & Bitters (No. 42) in Hiriketiya debuts as Sri Lanka’s first bar to enter the top 50, and Blackbird (No. 96) from Nepal being the first Nepalese bar entering the top 100.

Four Seasons Bars | Asia's 50 Best Bars 2022 | Food For Thought

The Proof Is In The Pudding

This year saw one of the most placing by hotels bars, but not just any hotel bars, specifically Four Seasons and Proof & Co. hotel bars, with Argo in Hong Kong (No. 3), Tesouro in Goa (No. 4), Charles H in Seoul (No. 7), BKK Social Club in Bangkok (No. 10) and Bar Trigona in Kuala Lumpur (No. 29). What do these bars have in common? A great bar programme, a great leader and a great bar team. It really is the devil in the details that elevate such experiences.

A Seat At The Bar: Evolving Voting Patterns

This was an interesting year, with 3 bars placing in the top 50 who are new bars, showing that you can’t really determine voting patterns. Singapore and China still dominate the list with 20 bars and 19 bars respectively, but with everyone travelling more rampantly, we expect the next year’s list to be more truly representative of the Asian drinking industry. We still hope to see a greater widespread representation with all countries within Asia.

For our thoughts on Asia’s 50 Best Bars, see Asia’s 50 Best Bars.
For our thoughts on The World’s 50 Best Bars, see The World’s 50 Best Bars.
For all 50 Best related content, see 50 Best.

| PHOTOGRAPHY: THE WORLD’S 50 BEST | WEBSITE:: ASIA’S 50 BEST BARS |

Nicholas Ng

Nicholas Ng is a restaurant critic and drinks writer and is the editor of independent publication Food For Thought. He has been a freelance journalist for the 15 years and has previously worked as a lawyer and in digital marketing. He currently is the Principal Consultant of A Thought Full Consultancy, a food and beverage marketing consultancy.

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