London’s Connaught Bar was named The World’s Best Bar, in addition to claiming the number one spot on The World’s Best Bars List 2020 and the award for The Best Bar in Europe.

The Connaught beat out bars from 23 countries around the world for top ranking, including last year’s winner Dante in New York. The bar also won additional accolades this year including ‘Best International Team’ by Tales of the Cocktails 2020 and ‘Best Bar’ at GQ’s Food and Drink Awards.

Under the leadership of Agostino Perrone, the venue’s Director of Mixology, Connaught Bar honours its principles of presenting artful drinks with graceful service in an elegant setting.

“This accolade rounds off a long journey of dedication for the entire Connaught Bar team who have never stopped believing in our work,” explains Perrone. “Our commitment to the hospitality industry and to our beloved guests has been our core pillar and driver for the past 12 years and in particular for the last 18 months.”

He adds: “We have been working hard and keeping up, as individuals, professionals but foremost as a team and a bar community. Unity has been an essential factor and it will always be, for our team and for our industry.”

Designed by the late David Collins – who also designed The Berkeley’s iconic Blue Bar – the Cubist-inspired bar opened in 2008 and has continued to maintain its position at the forefront of the London cocktail scene, offering a mix of traditional cocktails with innovative twists, and has spearheaded the art of table side theatre with its signature Martini trolley.

In response to the Coronavirus pandemic and national lockdown, the bar released The Connaught Bar’s Collection online, enabling cocktail lovers to enjoy their drinks at home.

“Hats off to Connaught Bar, undoubtedly one of the finest cocktail bars of our time,” says Mark Sansom, Content Editor for The World’s 50 Best Bars. “The institution has earned a place on the list every year since 2010 and it has gradually grown in stature to become the world-beating bar it is today. Ago Perrone and his team are dedicated to excellence and look at every element of the guest experience to choreograph a faultless service.”

The UK leads Europe with nine bars featured on the list including The Savoy’s American Bar at No.20, Sea Containers’ Lyaness at No.29 and The Langham’s Artesian at No.41.

Another London Bar, Kwānt, received special recognition at the awards: London Essence Best New Opening. The special award is given to a bar with the highest position on the overall list (No.6) that has opened in the last 18 months.

Founded by Erik Lorincz who is famed for his work at The Savoy’s American Bar, Kwānt serves Lorincz’s carefully curated drinks list including a selection of ‘Japanese Highball’, spritzes and classical twists that showcase inventive combinations of flavours using a storied collection of vintage spirits.

Looking further afield, New York’s NoMad Bar earned the No.13 ranking on the list, followed closely by The Regent Singapore’s Manhattan Bar at No.14.

The list of The World’s 50 Best Bars 2020, sponsored by Perrier, was announced during a virtual ceremony. The ranking and awards are voted for by the Academy comprising 540 anonymous industry experts. This year, the voting period ran from January 2019 to March 2020 when the majority of bars were forced to close due to the pandemic.

“This year, we are particularly proud to show our appreciation to all the bars that have made the list during such a hard time,” comments Elisa Gregori, Perrier International Business Unit Director. “The pandemic has heavily impacted the entire hospitality industry and the situation remains shaped by uncertainty, yet the industry is adapting quickly and we believe it will return stronger after these difficult times.”