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Bubbling Under

Asia’s 50 Best Bars releases its prestigious 51-100 list ahead of grand unveiling in Hong Kong this week.

A selection of the region’s most creative bars were highlighted last week week as Asia’s 50 Best Bars released its prestigious 51-100 list, ahead of the live awards ceremony in Hong Kong when this year’s top venues will be unveiled.

The ranking is created from the overall Asia’s 50 Best Bars voting process, which sees its 260-member Academy – consisting of bartenders, bar owners, drinks writers and cocktail aficionados – place independent and anonymous votes for their seven best bar experiences of the 18-month voting window.

Singapore boasts the greatest number of bars on the 51-100 list, with Last Word leading the pack at No.61. Named after the forgotten classic cocktail, Last Word, the restaurant and cocktail bar is by the award-winning team from Nutmeg & Clove, which features on both Asia and The World’s 50 Best Bars lists.

The city also counts four new entrants on the list: The Elephant Room (No.64), Night Hawk (No.73), Offtrack (No.79) and Origin Bar & Grill (No.95). Rounding off the city’s showing is Tippling Club (No.63) and No Sleep Club (No.74).

Topping the 51-100 list is Seoul’s Charles H at No.51 and it is joined by fellow Seoul destination, Pine & Co (No.72). From Taipei, To Infinity and Beyond places at No.52, and the city’s bar scene keeps a strong foothold on the extended list with Room by Le Kief (No.54), Aha Saloon (No.91) and Bar Mood (No.93). Tainan retains one spot, with Moonrock moving up 20 places to No.71.

At No.53 is Hong Kong’s The Pontiac. This stalwart bar, which is led by an all-female team, is joined by four other bars from the city, including Mizunara: The Library (No.86), The Wise King (No.89), Tell Camellia (No.97) and Honky Tonks Tavern (No.98). Moving over to Shanghai, Epic is at No.70, and The Odd Couple and Union Trading Company place at No.87 and No.90, respectively.

Kuala Lumpur’s Jungle Bird places at No.55 and is joined by three other bars from the capital, including new entrant Reka (No.65), a self-proclaimed ‘post-modern flavour lab’, Coley (No.67) and Three X Co (No.77).

Japan maintains a solid showing with seven bars on the extended list, starting with Gold Bar (No.56) and Bar Trench (No.92) from Tokyo. Kyoto’s Bar Rocking Chair (No.81) and Nara’s The Sailing Bar (No.88) retain places on the list, while bars from new cities are represented by Osaka’s Craftroom (No.62), Okinawa’s El Lequio (No.80) and Kumamoto’s Yakoboku (No.84).

From Bangkok, Opium – where the drinks offering revolves around the concept of ‘liquid surreality’ – enters the list at No.59. It is joined by three other establishments from Thailand: Asia Today (No.68), #FindTheLockerRoom (No.78) and Loft (No.99).

In India, Americano from Mumbai breaks high into the 51-100 list at No.57. The vibrant neighbourhood destination is known for its creative cuisine, genuine hospitality, and expertly crafted cocktails. Also on the list are three bars from New Delhi, Home (No.58), Hoots’ (No.60) and PCO (No.94); as well as Hideaway (No.66) in Goa.

Manila and Semarang are represented by one bar each on the list, The Back Room (No.75) and Wishbone Bar (No.76), respectively.

Kathmandu and Ho Chi Minh each have two bars on the list. The former with new-entrants Bitters & Co. (No.69) and Barc (No.100), and the latter with Stir (No.82) and Enigma (No.96). From Hanoi, The Haflington, which places No.85, is inspired by the great museums of Europe, and offers a beautifully illustrated menu showcasing drinks ranging from lesser-known classics to namesake signatures.