Cover Jay Khan of COA, The Best Bar in Asia winner (Photo: Courtesy of Asia's 50 Best Bars)

The top spot goes to COA in Hong Kong, while last year's winning bar—Jigger & Pony in Singapore—drops to second place

Asia’s 50 Best Bars has named COA in Hong Kong the Best Bar in Asia for 2021. The bar, run by mixologist Jay Khan, focuses on tequila and mezcal with the aim of changing the perception of agave-based spirits in Asia. Last year's winner, Jigger & Pony in Singapore, dropped to second place, while the top five was rounded out by Tokyo's The SG Club, Taipei's Indulge Experimental Bistro and Shanghai's Sober Company.

Ahead of the virtual awards ceremony, the Ketel One Sustainable Bar Award was announced, honouring Penicillin, which debuted on Asia's 50 Best Bars 2021 at number 30, and was rewarded for its commitment to upcycling and sourcing locally as far as possible. 

Related: Kuala Lumpur’s Coley And Pahit Make It To Asia’s Best Bars' Inaugural 51–100 List

Malaysian Winners

Respectively snagging the 47th, 37th and 12th spot on the 2021 list are three Malaysian bars: Three X Co in Bangsar, JungleBird in Damansara Heights, and Bar Trigona in Kuala Lumpur City Centre.

While Bar Trigona and Junglebird also made Asia's 50 Best Bars 2020, this year marks Three X Co's debut.

The Asia's 50 Best Bars 2021 full ranking

*New entries are marked by an asterisk

1. COA (Hong Kong)
2. Jigger & Pony (Singapore) 
3. The SG Club (Tokyo, Japan) 
4. Indulge Experimental Bistro (Taipei, Taiwan) 
5. Sober Company (Shanghai, China) 
6. Manhattan (Singapore)
7. Atlas (Singapore) 
8. No Sleep Club (Singapore) *
9. Bar Benfiddich (Tokyo, Japan)
10. Caprice Bar (Hong Kong)
11. The Bamboo Bar (Bangkok, Thailand) 
12. Bar Trigona (Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia) 
13. Charles H (Seoul, South Korea) 
14. Native (Singapore)
15. Hope & Sesame (Guangzhou, China) 
16. Sidecar (New Delhi, India)
17. Bar Mood (Taipei, Taiwan)
18. Bee's Knees (Kyoto, Japan)
19. Room by Le Kief (Taipei, Taiwan) 
20. The Diplomat (Hong Kong) *
21. 28 Hongkong Street (Singapore)
22. Tropic City (Bangkok, Thailand)
23. Tell Camellia (Hong Kong) *
24. Aha Saloon (Taipei, Taiwan)
25. Quinary (Hong Kong)
26. The Pontiac (Hong Kong)
27. High Five (Tokyo, Japan)
28. The Wise King (Hong Kong) 
29. Barbary Coast (Singapore) *
30. Penicillin (Hong Kong) *
31. Union Trading Company (Shanghai, China)
32. Speak Low (Shanghai, China)
33. Union Brasserie, Bakery & Bar (Jakarta, Indonesia) 
34. Bar Cham (Seoul, South Korea) 
35. Backstage Cocktail Bar (Bangkok, Thailand)
36. Tippling Club (Singapore) 
37. JungleBird (Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia)
38. The Curator (Manila, Philippines) 
39. D.Bespoke (Singapore)
40. Darkside (Hong Kong) *
41. Alice (Seoul, South Korea) 
42. The Old Man (Singapore)
43. Bar Trench (Tokyo, Japan)
44. Le Chamber (Seoul, South Korea) 
45. MO Bar (Singapore) 
46. Vesper (Bangkok, Thailand)
47. Three X Co (Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia) *
48. Teens of Thailand (Bangkok, Thailand) 
49. Sago House (Singapore) *
50. Star Bar (Tokyo, Japan)

Special Awards

As well as the ranking of the top 50 bars in Asia, a number of special awards were announced at the ceremony, which was broadcast online:

The Campari One To Watch Award: Cross Yu's Epic in Shanghai (the first time a bar from Mainland China has won)

The Michter's Art of Hospitality Award: MO Bar in Singapore.

Mancino Bartenders' Bartender Award: The peer-voted award went to Taiwan-based Bannie Kang, founder of Mu: Taipei

Roku Industry Icon: Shingo Gokan of Speak Low and Sober Company, both in Shanghai, was identified as the individual who has done more than most to elevate the art of bartending across the continent

The Heering Legend of the List: Quinary, owned by esteemed mixologist Antonio Lai, was recognised as the bar that has performed most consistently since Asia's 50 Best Bar Awards first launched—this award can only be won once

The London Essence Best New Opening: Barely a year old, John Nugent's The Diplomat took home the award

Nikka Highest Climber Award: The two bars that won each climbed 24 places: Sidecar in India ranked 16 on the 2021 list, while Caprice Bar at Four Seasons Hong Kong came it at number 10 this year

Disaronno Highest New Entry: The award went to Singapore-based bar No Sleep Club, which took home the Campari One to Watch Award last year

© 2022 Tatler Asia Limited. All rights reserved.