Amazing Bars to Drink at Before You Die

The Daily Telegraph, May 04, 2016

Smuggler’s Cove, San Francisco

No trip to San Fran would be complete without a visit to Smuggler's Cove. Yes, the pirate-themed decor, from anchors to fishing buoys, is a bit naff. But the rum is what you come for. There are over 200 varieties stocked on the shelves, including rare and vintage editions, and a cocktail list to die for. Oo ar!

Photo by brito filho

Read more: the best hotels in San Francisco

The ultimate travel bucket list: 25 things to do before you die

Dead Rabbit, New York

Irish owners Sean Muldoon and Jack McGarry have created an award-winning bar that harks back to the taverns their immigrant ancestors might have drank in, with fantastic cocktails and a mean whisky selection. Go, drink and pretend you're in Gangs of New York.

Read more: the best hotels in New York

Rock Bar, Bali

Perched on top of rocks 14 metres above the Indian Ocean, the Rock Bar is a favourite place for those looking to sip unique cocktails whilst admiring the setting sun (and taking oodles of selfies, naturally). Wish you were here?

Read more: the best hotels in Bali

Door 74, Amsterdam

Prohibition era-style bars are everywhere you look now, but this little gem is worth seeking out. Once you've located the hidden door, step into a classy world of both classic and creative cocktails. Plus, sexy light fittings that you'll REALLY want to steal for your flat.

Read more: the best hotels in Amsterdam

The Jerry Thomas Project, Rome

Another classic speakeasy style bar, the Jerry Thomas Project is a homage to 1862's 'How to Mix Drinks' by Jerry Thomas - one of the very first books dedicated to cocktails (good man, Jerry). With a menu that changes twice a year, the team specialise in "classic pre-Prohibition drinks with an Italian touch".

Read more: the best hotels in Rome

Aer, Mumbai

This bar is perched on the 34th floor of the Four Seasons in Mumbai and boasts 360-degree views and a daily "Sunset Happy Hour" as well as nightly jazz and music from the 80s and 90s with a twist. What more do you want?

Read more: where to stay in India

Artesian, London

Artesian is one of London's best destinations for drinkers, and took the number one slot in the most recent World's Best Bars Awards. The incredibly inventive menu changes regularly: last year it was based around perfumes and smells, and from July the theme will be "surrealism." Head bartender Alex Kratena says the menu will "examine the functioning of cocktails in the absence of reason". We're not entirely sure what that means, but it's probably best not to question.

Read more: the best hotels in central London

Arnaud's French 75 Bar, New Orleans

If you find yourself wandering the streets of New Orleans with a craving for classic cocktails and fine cigars, the impossibly beautiful Arnaud's French 75 Bar is the place for you. You'll feel like you've stepped back in time.

Buck & Breck, Berlin

Hidden away next to an old police station, Buck & Breck is one of Berlin's best-kept secrets. Inside a tiny black room with space for just 14 drinkers, owners Gonçalo de Sousa Monteiro and Holger Groll create unforgettable drinks from a small but expertly-concocted menu. Unmissable, unless you have 15 friends.

Read more: the best hotels in Berlin

The Campbell Apartment, New York

Forget sitting in a Wetherspoon's while you wait for your train: New Yorkers catching a train from Grand Central Station can while away an hour inside this stunning bar instead. It used to be the private office and salon of 1920s millionaire John W. Campbell before it was reinvented into a cocktail lounge, and is frequently hailed as one of "the best bars in America".

Read more: the best hotels in New York

Raffles Hotel Bar, Singapore

Serving traditional pub favourites, this two-storey bar in Singapore offers up almost every alcoholic and non-alcoholic beverage imaginable. But it's most famous as the home of the Singapore Sling, a devilishly drinkable concoction featuring gin, grenadine and cherry liqueur. Rudyard Kipling and Somerset Maugham both drank here, so you're in good company.

Read more: the best hotels in Singapore

Le Lion Bar de Paris, Hamburg

Still a fairly new addition to the bar scene, Hamburg's Le Lion Bar has already established a reputation for excellent-hand crafted drinks and elegant decor. Owned by top bartender Jörg Meyey, fans say the team's attention to detail is unequalled in the city. Plus, there's a giant gold lion.

Nightjar, London

Squashed between two cafes, Nightjar describes itself as a "hidden slice of old-school glamour on the fringes of Shoreditch", with live swing music and a seating-only policy. It took third place in the World's Best Bar Awards last year.

Read more: the best hotels in central London

Floridita, Cuba

It may be a little bit of a tourist trap, but you couldn't go to Cuba without sipping a daiquiri at this historic fish restaurant and cocktail bar, Ernest Hemingway's favourite watering hole.

Harry's Bar, Venice

This iconic bar in Venice can boast having the likes of Charlie Chaplin and Ernest Hemingway (yes, him again) as patrons. There is only one drink to have - the bellini, which the bar's founder Giuseppe Cipriani invented in the thirties or forties. Legend has it that its pretty pink color reminded him of the toga of a saint in a painting by the artist Giovanni Bellini. What a sophisticated chap.

Read more:  the best hotels in Venice

Sky Bar, Bangkok

If you're brave enough, why not try out Bangkok's Sky Bar? Suspended over the city, 820 feet in the air, the bar is one of the highest rooftop bars in the world and boasts enviable views that will make all your Facebook friends extremely jealous.

Read more: the best hotels in Bangkok

Nottingham Forest, Milan

Don't let its tiny size fool you: Nottingham Forest is at the forefront of Milan mixology, constantly pushing the art of cocktail making to offer up innovative, unique drinks.

Read more: the best hotels in Milan

High Five, Tokyo

Tucked away in a tiny room in a non-descript office building in Tokyo is this low-lit bar, where you'll find cocktails mixed to create unexpected flavours by the head bartender, Hidetsugo Ueno - a master of his craft who has been known to whip out a thermometer to make sure his drinks are exactly the right temperature.

Read more: the best hotels in Tokyo

Floreria Atlantico, Buenos Aires

Located in a basement, Floreria Atlantico acts as a homage to Buenos Aires' immigrant history. One of the founders, Aline Vargas, explains: "The most important and relevant migratory rounds were between 1900 and 1920 - we’ve divided the menu to reflect this. As a result we have five sections made up of cocktails with a classic structure but with our personal twist. The sections are Italy, Spain, England, France and Poland." Make time for a few visits, so you can do a world tour.

Candelaria, Paris

With an atmosphere that oozes energy - thanks to its clientele of young foodies, designers and architects - the Candelaria is in the running to become one of Paris' hippest bars. They sell delicious tacos and South American style-cocktails using French seasonal ingredients wherever possible.

Read more: the best hotels in Paris

The Baxter Inn, Sydney

If you want good whiskey in Australia, The Baxter Inn is the place to be. Currently they have a selection of over 600 whiskies on their shelves and it only seems to be growing.

Read more: the best hotels in Sydney

The American Bar, London

Since opening in 1889, the elegant American Bar at The Savoy Hotel, where you can sip beautiful drinks while a pianist tinkles out tunes, has become a favourite London pilgrimage for cocktail addicts. Author of The Savoy Cocktail Book Harry Craddock worked here, and the Hanky Panky cocktail was invented within its walls.

Read more: the best hotels in central London

La Capilla, Mexico

The oldest bar in the town of Tequila, La Capilla is a humble bar that's a far cry from the glitz and glamour of other places on this list. But its large range of tequilas and cocktails created by owner, Don Javier Delgado Corona (pictured), are unmissable.

The ultimate travel bucket list: 25 things to do before you die

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