On 8 October, this year's 50 Best Bars were announced. We've got the lowdown on the list, as well as the list's London bars, including winner Artesian
Published: Friday 9th October 2015
The results are in, and 2015's best bar in the world is the Artesian, the Langham London's hotel bar. It keeps its spot at the top for the fourth year running, while City Road speakeasy Nightjar also retains third place on the prestigious list.
The Artesian team celebrate their fourth straight win
Photograph by Rob Lawson
While the top few were largely unchanged, Israel's Imperial Craft, Cyprus's Lost & Found and Puerto Rico's La Factoria are surprise first-time inclusions.
We've got everything you need to know about the London bars to be named on the list. It was a great year for our capital, which, due to the number of London bars in the top 50, was also named the best city in the world for bars. So we can all be officially smug for at least a year.
Have a browse of London's winners in the gallery, and see the full list of the World's 50 Best Bars 2015 below.
When a bar wins best in the world for four consecutive years, you sure as hell expect something amazing. Thankfully the Langham hotel's resident bar and its head bartender Alex Kratena more than deserve the accolade. Top-notch mixology has seen the creation of a 'Surrealism' menu (one example is the 'Snake Charmer #FeelingAdventurous,' consisting of carrot, sesame, elderflower, and orange blossom) alongside longstanding classics such as the Langham Martini and the Disaronno Sour.
Ever wondered what sea plankton tastes like? Head to Nightjar and you might just find out, although if it's been mixed into a cocktail by bar manager Marian Beke, we'll bet it's delicious. A roster of talented jazz and swing bands and a speakeasy theme has made this a firm favourite on the London bar scene just for the glamour, but the bar's team of innovative mixologists have worked hard to see that Nightjar has been in the top 5 since 2012. Other out-there ingredients this year have included maggots and tequila-infused worms. Tasty.
One of the most iconic bars in the world, the American Bar – surprisingly enough – focuses on American-style cocktails. Last year saw it celebrate its 125th birthday with a specially dedicated menu, but this time around the consistent quality, attention to detail and innovation from head bartender Eric Lorincz has seen it jump from 8 to 5 in the listings. Not bad for a bar that's been around since before there were buses in London.
Great Cocktails, No Wallies: that's the brilliant tagline of this industry favourite, which is known for being a proper bartender's bar. The menu is regularly updated, classics are given contemporary twists, and the bar staff have free reign to create bespoke drinks for the ever-thirsty clientele.
The underlying theme behind this hotel bar is resplendent luxury, from the doorman to the drinks list. Originally based on a traditional American bar, the Connaught is best known for its iconic martini trolley, and an unusual menu divided into Masterpieces, Continental, Transatlantic and Pacific.
The Hoxton outpost of the bars belonging to Ryan Chetiyawardana (trying saying that three times as fast as you can), the White Lyan breaks the rules when it comes to cocktail making: there's no citrus, no ice and the drinks are pre-mixed. Purists might see this as sacrilege, but the experts don't seem to mind – White Lyan has now been in the World's 50 Best Bars for 2 years in a row.
The Savoy's second bar on the list, the Beaufort Bar is a lesson in opulence – think gold, gold and more gold. £40,000 worth of gold, in fact. Something which even extends to the menu, with a lot of the drinks incorporating champagne and/or gold flakes. Naturally. It also gains bonus points (unofficially speaking) for being a favoured haunt of Frank Sinatra – in fact, you can order an Ol' Blue Eyes, the cocktail inspired by the man himself, at the bar today.
Reading the ingredients of the Prairie Oyster cocktail at this Islington bar (technically without a name, and thus referred to by its address) makes us genuinely feel hungry: tomato yolk, horseradish vodka, Oloroso sherry, shallots , pepper sauce, celery salt and micro herbs. That's very much the style of its impresario, the legendary Tony Conigliaro, whose molecular mixology is world-renowned. A deserved inclusion on this year's list.
Dandelyan's decor has hit the nail on the head spot on when it comes to the current verve for all things 1970s, but that plays second fiddle to the drinks list, which has adopted a 'transatlantic botany' theme. Confused? No worries – we've got it on good authority that this means fern garnishes, capillaire and garden bitters and a host of other botanical ingredients.