A jury of over 50 industry professionals and bar enthusiasts from across the country are currently at work to create the long list of Top 100 Bars for 2022. Starting early November, a larger pool of more than 200 jurors will vote to rank the country’s 30 Best Bars, and also pick winners in 10 jury-nominated categories including Best Hotel Bar, Best Restaurant Bar, Best Independent Bar, Best Cocktail Menu, Best Bar Team, Best Bartender, etc.
The 2022 Jury Chairs for the 30 Best Bars ranking across various cities include names like Sanjay Ghosh (YouTuber and Director, Cocktails India), Rohan Carvalho (Founder and Partner, Bar Square India), Harinath Shanker (Director, Bar Masons), Puru (Drinks Enthusiast), Shatbhi Basu (Author, Managing Director & Owner, STIR Academy), Shreya Soni (Founder and CEO, DSSC), Minoti Makim (CEO, Carpe Diem), Karthik Setty (Founder of Hyderabad Thirst Club), Kimberley Pereira (Marketing Director at Kade Communications), Nolan Mascarenhas (Photojournalist, UpperCrust), Vaniitha Jain (Founder, The Perfect Pour) and Karina Aggarwal (VP, India Craft Spirits Co).
Incredible resurgence of bars
Speaking on the occasion, Vikram Achanta, Co-Founder of 30 Best Bars India, said, “India’s bar industry has been remarkably resilient over the past two years, and we are now witnessing an incredible resurgence – as new ventures are transforming the bar scene every day. We are incredibly excited to open applications for our third edition, with a new award category introduced to applaud sustainability innovations. We look forward to working with leading alcobev industry members to unveil our 2022 rankings.”
This year the Best Bar Design Award, which commends bars that set new standards of excellence in design, interiors, and bar ergonomics will be voted on by experts of the bar design industry. Bar owners who feel they may have been missed out from being included in the 30 Best Bars India long list can self-nominate themselves on https://www.30bestbarsindia.in/enroll-your-bar/, with required information and photographs.
“When we started, we wanted to honour the country’s best bars and bartending talent. Today, 30 Best Bars India is on every bar’s radar, and they are constantly upping their game to be featured on our Top 100 and Top 30 lists. With our masterclasses, workshops, and cocktail carnivals, we are rapidly shaping India’s cocktail culture, and aim to be the go-to list for consumers to find the best watering holes in their cities,” added Radhakrishnan Nair, Co-Founder of 30 Best Bars India.
Prior to the finale, 30 Best Bars India will also host immersive Masterclasses for the bartending community, cocktail workshops by renowned mixologists, and first-of-its-kind cocktail carnivals with specially curated cocktail menus from the world’s best brands across India.
Co-founded in 2019 by Vikram Achanta and Radhakrishnan Nair of Bar 30 India LLP, 30 Best Bars India aims to raise awareness about the rising standards of Indian bars and beverages nationally, and on international platforms. 30 Best Bars India ranking of the country’s best bars in the previous two editions in 2019 and 2021 have included well known bars that have gone on to be part of international bar ranking lists over the last three years. To see the full list of bars and their rankings in 2019 and 2021 please visit: https://www.30bestbarsindia.in/.
Raising the bar, indeed
Indian bars are stoked that some of them are making it in international rankings, something to cheer about. Some of the Indian cities have a vibrant cocktail culture, but never did they vie for international recognition. There are a couple of reasons for this trend, the first being those founding these heady bars are young, spirited, innovative and above all daring to dream. They are certainly raising the bar. Then there is the customer who is sipping his or her drink with finesse, with a lot of understanding and responsibly. The well-heeled traveller is one of the profiles of the customer, but then the internet of things, so to say, has given birth to a new breed of connoisseurs.
And when Delhi’s chic bar – Sidecar makes its entry into the World’s Best Bars with a ranking of 26, it certainly warms the cockles of one’s heart. Goa’s go to bar Tesouro which opened during the pandemic has just sneaked into the top 100 with a ranking of 99 in 2021.
In Asia’s Best Bars, Tesouro has taken the fourth place. The capital has three ranks in Sidecar – 14th; Hoot – 26th; Home – 30; and Bengaluru’s Copitas is at 44. And the industry believes that the number is going to swell.
Tesouro makes a splash
Tesouro, meaning treasure in Portuguese is a treasure trove in the coastal state of Goa which prides itself of the local brew – Feni. Tesouro in South Goa is a cool bar with Goan-Portuguese design elements and a very impressive bar and bar tending aficionados. The cocktail menu is a showcase of the bar team’s creativity with drinks such as Midnight Brekkie (gin, bianco vermouth, peanut butter, watermelon, strawberry) topping the ranks as the most popular drink. Tesouro certainly has made a splash as a new entrant in the international bar scene.
Sidecar – Racing away to glory
Delhi’s Sidecar has been winning accolades, thanks to the bar legend Yangdup Lama and business partner Minakshi Singh. The duo has positioned Sidecar as a ‘friendly neighbourhood bar’ in a happening place of Greater Kailash. The signature cocktails are something to toast too and Rohan Matmary has dished out amazing iterations of their namesake – the Sidecar.
Hoots – One might as well say ‘I care two Hoots!!’
Ranked 26, Hoots which is tucked away in Vasant Vihar in New Delhi is kind of pivot in the capital’s cocktail scene, kind of a pioneer having introduced a world-class cocktail programme, attracting the globe trotter and haute monde and who know what a fine cocktail is.
Home – Is where the spirit is
Ranked 30th, Home was previously a member’s club and only recently it opened its doors to the public at large who seem to be heading home, just by the whiff of it. The bar reminds one of a Parisian jazz clubs, but some of the offerings have a local flavour to it, making it a perfect fusion. Like a typical home, one can nurse one’s drink with a book in hand or just enjoy the music which wafts through without being loud.
Copitas gives a different flavour to Pub City
It is said to be Bengaluru’s watering holes, besides the many places such as Toit, Byg Brewsky etc. which have elevated the IT city to another level. Copitas is located on the 21st floor of the Four Seasons hotel and come rain or shine, the well-stocked bar leaves one tingling for more. Looking down at the city from that level has got more to do with the bartenders’ artistry than the city lights.
The cocktail culture is fast evolving in not just the Indian metros, but other cities and towns too. Yes, albeit a bit late on the international scene, but sure enough the bars are making waves.