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The 2016 list: Comment

The World's 50 Best Bars editor Hamish Smith offers some insight into the 2016 list

It comes to them all – champions eventually fall. Artesian is no different and after a turbulent 12 months its four-year domination of The World’s 50 Best Bars has come to an end. The king is dead, long live Dead Rabbit Grocery & Grog.

Sean Muldoon and Jack McGarry’s New York Irish bar seemed for years the next in line to the throne – it debuted in 5th in 2013, then came second to Artesian two years in a row. There had been calls for The Langham Hotel bar to be retired into a hall of fame to give others a chance – we disagreed. If a ranking isn’t meritocratic then it’s not a ranking at all.

Certainly it’s not our job to pull a high card out of the pack, it’s up to the industry to trump it.  And that, the Dead Rabbit finally did. It prevailed from a full, unbridled field thus it is the first time Dead Rabbit can be legitimately called the World’s Best Bar. It is a worthy victor – a true great of the modern era, its devotees emanating from all corners of the world. It is this global nature of The World’s 50 Best Bars poll that distinguishes it. This year we took in the voices of 476 industry experts, from 57 countries.

Their choices reflect that diversity of background and opinion. An Irish-American bar may be number one, but there are hotel bars – grand, boutique and even hostel – speakeasies and basement bars, neighbourhood hangouts, multi-floored volume venues, tiki haunts, café-bars and music joints making up this hospitality jamboree.

Drinks International