Top 50 Cocktail Bars

Lab 22 named UK’s number one cocktail bar

By Nikkie Thatcher

- Last updated on GMT

Number one: Cardiff's Lab 22 took the coveted top spot at this year's Top 50 Cocktail Bars
Number one: Cardiff's Lab 22 took the coveted top spot at this year's Top 50 Cocktail Bars

Related tags Top 50 Cocktail Bars Cocktails Spirits Vodka Rum Gin

Cardiff-based Lab 22 was awarded named the best cocktail bar in the UK on this year’s Top 50 Cocktail Bars list.

Jumping up 32 places in two years, Lab 22, which is tucked away above a well-known bakery, has a daring drinks menu from award-winning head bartender Max Hayward.

Also located in the Welsh capital is Pennyroyal – a new entry at 36 – known for its friendly neighbourhood vibe and bold, eccentric cocktails.

As well as the Welsh entries, this year’s list also features 10 bars in the north of England, three in the west, two in the Midlands, three in the south and five in Scotland, meaning London dominates half the list.

The capital’s Swift Soho came in a number two and in third place was The Connaught Bar, which was also named 2021 ‘Best Bar in the World’ in The World’s 50 Best Bars.

Beating heart of drinks discovery

The list was revealed by TV presenter and drinks expert Aidy Smith at One Night Records near London Bridge last night (Tuesday 1 February).

Smith said: “I am absolutely honoured to present this year’s Top 50 Cocktail Bars and in doing so, celebrating the beating heart of drinks discovery.

“Without mixology, the world would never be able to discover drinks in such a unique and beautiful way. It’s this passion that sets bars and teams apart with a collective love and thirst for taste exploration.

“After two harrowing years, I can’t wait to get stuck in and honour some truly incredible people making some truly spectacular cocktails. Let’s do this!”

Tayēr + Elementary was positioned at number four on the list and was this year’s Highest New Entrant.

Special awards

Specialist awards were also given including Newcomer of the Year, which was awarded to Bar Ikigai in Birmingham and Little Mercies in Crouch End, north London was presented with the Sustainability Award.

Manchester’s Three Little Words was named Bar Team of the Year and Déjà vu in Hereford, Herefordshire was picked out as the One to Watch.

Top 50 Cocktail Bars publisher Chris Lowe said: “London has always been seen as a global leader for cocktails but as you’ll see from the 2022 list, other major cities across the UK are now catching up.

“Our newly launched website will help cocktail connoisseurs discover the best of the UK bar scene with many of these very much still under the radar.”

The Top 50 Cocktail Bars 2022 list in full:

  1. Lab 22, Cardiff
  2. Swift Soho, central London
  3. The Connaught Bar, Mayfair, west London
  4. Tayēr + Elementary, Shoreditch, east London
  5. Satan’s Whiskers, Bethnal Green, east London
  6. Bramble Bar & Lounge, Edinburgh
  7. Three Sheets, Hackney, east London
  8. Oriole, Smithfield Market, City of London
  9. Panda and Sons, Edinburgh
  10. Speak in Code, Manchester
  11. , Haggerston, east London
  12. Disrepute, Soho, central London
  13. Nightjar, Shoreditch, east London
  14. Homeboy Bar, Islington, north London
  15. American Bar, Covent Garden, central London
  16. SCHOFIELD’S BAR, Manchester
  17. Opium Cocktails & Dim Sum Parlour, Chinatown, central London
  18. Coupette, Bethnal Green, east London
  19. Artesian, Marylebone, west London
  20. Scarfes Bar, Covent Garden, central London
  21. Trailer Happiness, Notting Hill, west London
  22. Lucky Liquor Co., Edinburgh
  23. Happiness Forgets, Shoreditch, east London
  24. Jake’s Bar & Still Room, Leeds
  25. Little Mercies, Crouch End, north London
  26. The Absent Ear, Glasgow
  27. The Milk Thistle, Bristol
  28. Berry & Rye, Liverpool
  29. Laki Kane, Islington, north London
  30. Filthy XIII, Bristol
  31. Lyaness, South Bank, central London
  32. Roland’s Leeds, Leeds
  33. Gungho!, Brighton, East Sussex
  34. Hacha, Dalston, east London
  35. The Hideout, Bath
  36. Pennyroyal, Cardiff
  37. Couch, Birmingham
  38. Bar Termini, Soho, central London
  39. Below Stairs, Leeds
  40. Hay Palu, Edinburgh
  41. Public, Sheffield
  42. Hedonist, Leeds
  43. Present Company, Liverpool
  44. The Pineapple Club, Birmingham
  45. Publiq., South Kensington, west London
  46. Ojo Rojo, Bournemouth, Dorset
  47. L' Atelier du Vin, Brighton, East Sussex
  48. Callooh Callay, Shoreditch, east London
  49. Mother Mercy, Newcastle upon Tyne
  50. The Cocktail Trading Co, Shoreditch, east London

Related topics Spirits & Cocktails

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