Two London bars have been named among the 10 best in the world, according to a renowned annual competition.
The Connaught — a ritzy Mayfair bar where they dish up martinis from the trolley, and get you to sniff the bitters before plopping them in — bagged #5 spot in 2023's list of The World's 50 Best Bars. Last year's overall runner-up, the more contemporary Tayēr + Elementary in Old Street, had to settle for eighth this time.
The list, of course, is wholly subjective, with the ranking of many bars pinging around from year-to-year. (The Connaught has topped the list twice before, but only placed eighth in 2022 — while last's year's winner, Paradiso in Barcelona, has now slipped to fourth. Quite what these bars do right/wrong to climb up/slip down the table isn't clear — but then I think we're just jealous we didn't get invited to the award ceremony in Singapore so don't listen to us.)
Barcelona itself still holds onto the crown, however, thanks to Sips — a bar already so popular, there are long queues outside the door, and they time you, with a maximum of 45 minutes to drink each cocktail (maybe it should be called Gulps?).
London has a very decent showing in this year's top 50 overall — with a real fave of Londonist's, Satan's Whiskers in Bethnal Green at #28; A Bar with Shapes for a name in Haggerston at #35; and a new entry for Holborn's Scarfes Bar at #41. Lists like this should always be taken with a pinch of (margarita) salt, but there is no question that London remains one of the best places anywhere to wet your whistle in style.