Jay Khan and Lok Cheung from Coa celebrate the bar's No.1 win at the Asia’s 50 Best Bars 2022 awards ceremony, sponsored by Perrier, live in Bangkok, Thailand (pic: Asia's 50 Best Bars)
Asia Hong Kong

Hong Kong reigns the no.1 spot for Asia’s 50 Best Bar

While there is no signs of reopening in Hong Kong's bar scene, the following good news may cheer up the bar community - Coa from Hong Kong has won the no.1 spot of Asia’s 50 Best Bar for the second time in a row.

While there is no signs of reopening in Hong Kong’s bar scene, the following good news may cheer up the bar community – Coa from Hong Kong has won the no.1 spot of Asia’s 50 Best Bar for the second time in a row, with 7 other local bars also recognized on the top 50 list for 2022.

For the first time since 2019, Asia’s 50 Best Bars for 2022 was announced at an in-person award ceremony with 500 guests in Bangkok, which was live-streamed on Facebook and Youtube. 

Sponsored by the French brand of mineral water Perrier, this year’s edition has unveiled the highly-anticipated countdown featuring bars from 16 cities across Asia with 14 new entries.

Jay Khan and Lok Cheung from Coa celebrate the bar's No.1 win at the Asia’s 50 Best Bars 2022 awards ceremony, sponsored by Perrier, live in Bangkok, Thailand (pic: Asia's 50 Best Bars)
Jay Khan and Lok Cheung from Coa celebrate the bar’s No.1 win at the Asia’s 50 Best Bars 2022 awards ceremony, sponsored by Perrier, live in Bangkok, Thailand (pic: Asia’s 50 Best Bars)

The seventh edition of the annual awards aims at gathering and lighting up Asia’s bar community after a hiatus in live events, as the region was now largely free from the pandemic’s challenges and travel restrictions.

In total, Hong Kong secured 8 positions on the list.

Coa is the second bar to achieve consecutive victory after Manhattan from Singapore in 2017 and 2018.  

Launched in 2017 by bartender-owner Jay Khan with over-13-year experiences, Coa offers an extensive menu of handcrafted Mexican spirits including tequila and mezcal, as well as rarer expressions such as raicilla, bacanora, sotol and charanda. Khan himself was also chosen as the Bartenders’ Bartender at Asia’s 50 Best Bars 2020 from peers voting.

Argo at Four Seasons Hong Kong ranked no.3 with an additional Disaronno Highest New Entry Award. The bar was lauded by cocktail enthusiasts with its breath-taking architecture based on traditional conservatory and a truly authentic and creative cocktail list.

Honky Tonks Tavern from the city’s “SoHo district” also squeezed into no.55 on the Asia’s 50 Best Bars extended list and was named the Campari One To Watch Award, meaning it has the potential to break into the 1-50 list in the future. 

This Americana-inspired restaurant, wine and cocktail bar offers tequila, mezcal, bourbon, Australian natural lo-fi wines and more in its cozy spot on Man Hing Lane.  

Asia's 50 Best Bars 2022 group shot (pic: Asia's 50 Best Bars)
Asia’s 50 Best Bars 2022 group shot (pic: Asia’s 50 Best Bars)

Mainland China also successfully put 4 bars on the list, with 3 bars from its commercial hub Shanghai, including Sober Company at no.11, Union Trading Company at no.45 and Speak Low at no.50. Guangzhou’s Hope & Sesame also came in 18th position.

Outside of Hong Kong and mainland China, Singapore’s cocktail bars had the strongest presence with 11 positions on the list. Jigger & Pony was lauded as the first-runner up winner with titles of The Best Bar in Singapore for the second year in a row.

The award list also features Japan, Thailand, South Korea, India, Malaysia and Indonesia, with Sri Lanka being a new entrant this year. 

In addition to the top 50 list, the ceremony also awards multiple special awards including Ketel One Sustainable Bar Award, Campari One To Watch Award, Roku Industry Icon Award, Rémy Martin Legend of the List, Altos Bartenders’ Bartender Award and more.

Mark Sansom, Content Director for Asia’s 50 Best Bars, says: “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.”

Sansom also shines lights on the champion from Hong Kong, “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.” he said.

Launched in 2016, the Asia’s 50 Best Bars aims to recognise the talent and constant innovation across Asia’s bar landscape, as well as pushing for positive change in the hospitality sector. 

The annual list is voted by Asia’s 50 Best Bars Academy which comprises 250 Asia-based industry leaders including bartenders, bar owners, drinks writers, educators and cocktail experts. In particular, the Ketel One Sustainable Bar Award is independently adjudicated by the UK-based non-profit Sustainable Restaurant Association.

Here is the full list of Asia’s 50 Best Bar 2022 and Special Awards:

50 List 

1. Coa, Hong Kong 

2. Jigger & Pony, Singapore 

3. Argo, Hong Kong 

4. Tesouro, Goa 

5. Bar Benfiddich, Tokyo 

6. Indulge Experimental Bistro, Taipei 

7. Charles H, Seoul 

8. Mo Bar, Singapore 

9. Manhattan, Singapore 

10. BKK Social Club, Bangkok 

11. Sober Company, Shanghai 

12. Republic, Singapore 

13. Darkside, Hong Kong 

14. Sidecar, New Delhi 

15. No Sleep Club, Singapore 

16. Quinary, Hong Kong 

17. Tropic City, Bangkok 

18. Hope & Sesame, Guangzhou 

19. Vesper, Bangkok 

20. Lamp Bar, Nara

21. The SG Club, Tokyo 

22. Penicillin, Hong Kong 

23. Atlas, Singapore 

24. Aha Saloon, Taipei 

25. Bar Trench, Tokyo 

26. Hoots’, New Delhi 

27. Tippling Club, Singapore 

28. Bar Cham, Seoul 

29. Bar Trigona, Kuala Lumpur 

30. Home, New Delhi 

31. Sago House, Singapore 

32. The Cocktail Club, Jakarta 

33. The Pontiac, Hong Kong 

34. The Wise King, Hong Kong 

35. Junglebird, Kuala Lumpur 

36. Nutmeg & Clove, Singapore 

37. Analogue, Singapore 

38. The Aubrey, Hong Kong 

39. Le Chamber, Seoul 

40. Alice, Seoul 

41. Memento Mori, Tokyo 

42. Smoke & Bitters, Hiriketiya 

43. Asia Today, Bangkok 

44. Copitas, Bengaluru 

45. Union Trading Company, Shanghai 

46. The Bamboo Bar, Bangkok 

47. Bee’s Knees, Kyoto 

48. Zest, Seoul 

49. 28 HongKong Street, Singapore 

50. Speak Low, Shanghai

Special Awards

Disaronno Highest New Entry: Argo, Hong Kong

Siete Misterios Best Cocktail Menu Award: Bar Trigona, Kuala Lumpur

The Ketel One Sustainable Bar Award: Bar Mood, Taipei

Michter’s Art of Hospitality Award: BKK Social Club, Bangkok

Siete Misterios Best Cocktail Menu: Bar Trigona, Malaysia

Rémy Martin Legend of the List: Bar Benfiddich, Tokyo

London Essence Best New Opening : Tesouro, Goa

Nikka Highest Climber: MO Bar, Singapore

Altos Bartenders’ Bartender Award: Keith Motsi, Head Bartender at Charles H, Seoul

Roku Industry Icon Award: Colin Chia, Nutmeg & Clove, Singapore

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