Raise a glass, fellow cocktail aficionados and imbibers, for homegrown bar Jigger & Pony has clinched the top spot on the Asia’s Best Bars 2020 list, which was announced virtually via Facebook and YouTube live streaming on the evening of 14 May 2020.
Located within Amara Hotel in Tanjong Pagar, the sleek pioneering bar rose eight spots from its ninth position last year, swooping in to dethrone Hong Kong’s The Old Man, which now occupies second place this year. Meanwhile, third place went to Coa, also in Hong Kong, known for their focus on small-batch Mexican spirits.
Co-founded by husband-and-wife team Indra Kantono and Gan Guoyi, Jigger & Pony’s rise through the ranks has been nothing short of meteoric. It first entered the prestigious list in 2018 at #42, and soared an impressive 33 places up to #9 in 2019, scoring the Highest Climber Award in the process. Described by the list as having a “fun-time ethos and relaxed style of hospitality complemented by an excellent classic drinks list,” it’s no wonder the bar managed to impress the 230-strong judging panel comprising the most knowledgeable and well-travelled industry experts from the bar scene across Asia.
Sister bar Gibson also made an appearance on the list, coming in at #25. Nutmeg & Clove, which surprisingly did not place last year, made a welcome re-entry at #32. Also ranked were Tippling Club (#17), The Old Man Singapore (#22), Ginza-style bar D.Bespoke (#23), 28 HongKong Street (#30), and MO Bar (#46).
Outside of the main list, individual winners included the Campari One to Watch, awarded to six-month-old local establishment No Sleep Club for having the most potential to break into the elite list in the near future; the peer-voted Altos Bartender’s Bartender Award, awarded to Jay Khan from Coa for his unwavering passion in both Mexican spirits and the art of bartending; and the Industry Icon Award, which was awarded to Agung Prabowo to honour his journey from a humble busboy into one of the most iconic veterans of the industry today.
Check out the full list of winners here:
#1 Jigger & Pony (Singapore)
#2 The Old Man (Hong Kong, China) [best bar in China)
#3 Coa (Hong Kong, China)
#4 Indulge Experimental Bistro (Taipei, Taiwan) [also awarded the Heering Legend of the List Award]
#5 Atlas (Singapore)
#6 Native (Singapore)
#7 The Bamboo Bar (Bangkok, Thailand) [best bar in Thailand]
#8 Manhattan (Singapore) [also awarded the inaugural Michter’s Art of Hospitality Award]
#9 The SG Club (Tokyo, Japan) [best in Japan]
#10 Aha Saloon (Taipei, Taiwan)
#11 Vesper (Bangkok, Thailand)
#12 Sober Company (Shanghai, China)
#13 Bar Mood (Taipei, Taiwan) [also awarded the Seedlip Highest Climber Award]
#14 Bar Trigona (Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia) [also awarded the Ketel One Sustainable Bar Award]
#15 Bar Benfiddich (Tokyo, Japan)
#16 Quinary (Hong Kong, China)
#17 Tippling Club (Singapore)
#18 The Wise King (Hong Kong, China)
#19 Speak Low (Shanghai, China)
#20 High Five (Tokyo, Japan)
#21 Bee’s Knees (Kyoto, Japan) [also awarded the Disaronno Highest New Entry Award]
#22 The Old Man (Singapore) [also awarded the London Essence Best New Opening Award]
#23 D.Bespoke (Singapore)
#24 Tropic City (Bangkok, Thailand)
#25 Gibson (Singapore)
#26 Draft Land (Taipei, Taiwan)
#27 Room by Le Kief (Taipei, Taiwan)
#28 8 1/2 Otto e Mezzo Bombana (Hong Kong, China)
#29 Charles H (Seoul, South Korea)
#30 28 HongKong Street (Singapore)
#31 Rabbit Hole (Bangkok, Thailand)
#32 Nutmeg & Clove (Singapore)
#33 Backstage Cocktail Bar (Bangkok, Thailand)
#34 Caprice Bar (Hong Kong, China)
#35 The Pontiac (Hong Kong, China)
#36 Hope & Sesame (Guangzhou, China)
#37 Junglebird (Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia)
#38 The Odd Couple (Shanghai, China)
#39 Bar Trench (Tokyo, Japan)
#40 Sidecar (New Delhi, India)
#41 Bar Orchard Ginza (Tokyo, Japan)
#42 The Curator (Manila, Philippines)
#43 Union Brasserie, Bakery & Bar (Jakarta, Indonesia) [best bar in Indonesia]
#44 Lobster Bar & Grill (Hong Kong, China)
#45 The Back Room (Manila, Philippines)
#46 MO Bar (Singapore)
#47 Alice (Seoul, South Korea)
#48 Coley (Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia)
#49 Le Chamber (Seoul, South Korea)
#50 Bar Cham (Seoul, South Korea)
More than just an awards ceremony, this year’s Asia’s 50 Best Bars is a timely recognition of all the hard work poured in by the bartending industry, and an inspiring call for the community to support each other and stay strong in solidarity.
Heartiest congratulations to all the winners, and we look forward to celebrating together when Singapore hosts the award ceremony next year.