These 4 Indian Bars Are Among Asia's Best

best bars in asia

What is the standing of Indian bars in the world of mixology and bartending? The recently held eighth edition of Asia’s 50 Best Bars validates what most patrons of Indian bars have always believed. Indian bars are world-class yet offer a smorgasbord of sophisticated 'Desi' flavours through locally produced ingredients. Four Indian bars made it to the top 50 and a total of nine in the top 100! Most of the bars on the list make their own bitters and syrups and are committed to sustainability. Check out the top four bars of India that you must visit!

1. Sidecar, Delhi

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Sidecar from Delhi came up 18th in Asia's best bar list and is the leading Indian bar in the list. The bar is co-owned by Minakshi Singh and the indomitable mixologist Yangdup Lama. The bar team is led by Lopsang Galchen Lama. Sidecar is relatively modestly decorated so as to give the patrons a feel of the simpler times. It has Darjeeling-esque interiors that give out the vibes of that 'friendly neighbourhood bar'. It is spread across two floors. The main bar is on the second floor and the library and cafe are on the first floor.

Sidecar attracts a mix of creatives, entrepreneurs, techies and corporates. It is popular for its artisanal cocktails, especially the namesake Sidecar.  Flavour extractions such as bitters, syrups, grogs and tinctures are mostly made in-house. The bar menu is noted for creating drinks that exude nostalgia. The cocktail, Dear Delhi, is particularly known for bringing out the essence of India's national capital. The menu also pays tribute to Indian culinary traditions and seeks to make the drinkers live the smells and flavours of their home kitchens.

2.  The Bombay Canteen, Mumbai

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As famous as the restaurant is for its innovative food menu, its bar menu also keeps changing to bring up newer drinks. Located primarily in Mumbai, it is the city's drinking destination. Its menu boasts a unique selection of classics which are imbued with local flavours. Every iteration of the menu pays homage to various Indian cities.  The bar is headed by Prantik Haldar, who is the Head of Beverage Innovations. Under Haldar's leadership, the bar has created some memorable drinks and ever-evolving signatures.

The Bombay Canteen is located in an iconic area of the city known for its textile mills. Its cocktails such as People of the Promenade and Runner’s High have been mentioned in the global media. The bar was placed 35th in Asia's best bars list.

3. Copitas, Bengaluru

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This destination bar located on the 21st floor of the Four Seasons Hotel is the mecca for bar-goes in Bengaluru. The location provides a sprawling view of the city's landscape. The bar boasts uncomplicated, yet delicious cocktails. Apart from the mouth-watering cocktails, the Copitas also has Asian-inspired bar nibbles and a cigar selection. The bar is also popular for its sustainable functioning.  The bar is managed by renowned mixologist Sarath Nair. It secured 38th position in Asia's best bars list.

4. The Living Room, Mumbai

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Two years ago, Mumbai's highly awarded restaurant, Masque launched a new bar called The Living Room. The mezzanine level of the restaurant was converted into a bar which seats no more than 12 guests. The bar notably makes in-house syrups and bitters and is famous for its experimentations with local flavours. Its menu takes the drinker on a journey of flavours in India. The kitchen stands tall with its offerings of scrumptious bar nibbles. The bar is led by Ankush Gamre who himself is a bartender extraordinaire. His team endeavours towards innovation and sustainability. They conduct their research and development at the Masque lab.