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Around the World in Ten Cocktail Bars

September 25, 2011 Rozanne Woodward 0 Comments

If you’re like us at Barmanguide, the endless quest for the perfect cocktail takes you all over the world in search of the ultimate drink.

For Slae Pub Budapest

Often times this means we end up in some dodgy bars, other times finding us in the most happening bars in the world where both the cocktails and ambience casts a magical spell over patrons local and traveler alike.

These watering holes are often beacons for denizens of the night, attracting jet-setters from around the world to belly up to the bar… and here are ten of the hottest cocktail bars we’ve found so far on our humble planet.

Bemelmans Bar, (Carlyle Hotel, 35 E 76th St, New York, NY 10021, Tel: (212) 744-1600, www.thecarlyle.com/dine4.cfm).

Oozing old-world elegance and charm, this posh bar in the Carlyle Hotel has been serving up the goods for many years now. If you’re going to New York and want to hang within elbow room of the movers and shakers, {mnf=off} save your money by checking into a great hostel and spend it instead on some great drinks and great food all served lovingly by a great staff. Aside from the stars of Hollywood, sports, fashion and industry that often will be sitting right next to you, the 24-carat gold leaf-covered ceiling will dazzle you even more as you soak up the scene is one of the best drinking lounges in the world.

The Connaught Bar, (The Connaught Hotel, 16 Carlos Place, London W1K 2AL Tel: 020 7499 7070,www.the-connaught.co.uk).

On the other side of the pond, once clearing customs, you’ll want to head over for some tipple at a bar where the cocktails dramatically mix tradition and innovation. As one can only expect from ol’ Blighty, the Con’ stocks nothing less than the most exclusive vintages and limited edition champagnes, as well as spirits and liqueurs from around the world, all served up by bartenders rumoured to be amongst the best in the kingdom.

Le Lion Bar de Paris, (Rathaustr. 320095 Hamburg, Tel: 040 334753780, www.lelion.net).

Don’t expect schnapps here, at the Lion, the cocktail menu is extensive and the décor is as tasteful as the flawlessly prepared drinks (Do you expect any less from “ze Germans”?). A favourite on Friday nights for networking with the North German elite, but it’s relaxed enough you can leave the tuxedo at home.

Closerie des Lilas

Closerie des Lilas, (171 bd Montparnasse, 75006 Paris, Tel: 01 40 51 34 50, www.closeriedeslilas.fr).

If a Parisian bar in a German port town is not enough for you, then it’s time for you to invade the scene in ol’ Paris, and once there, you’ll find nowhere better to start your drinking blitzkrieg than in the crème de la crème of the Parisian scene. Coming up on their 165 th birthday, this storied restaurant and bar has seen many celebrities and intelligentsia grace their tables, and was even immortalised in no less than two of Ernest Hemmingway’s classic novels. A truly inspiring and magical venue serving nothing less than the best, making it a must drink stop for any visitor to France.

Manga Rosa Bar

Manga Rosa, (14 Rua Sociedade Filarmonica Incrivel Almadense, Lisbon, Tel: +351 96 552 60 60, www.myspace.com/mangarosamusic).

An elegant and hip bar, Manga Rosa is much more ‘literati’ than ‘glitterati’, a nice mix of industrial and elegance (dark and moody colours, fine art and chandeliers) located not far from the seashore. Holding court on the outskirts of town, the venue is the real deal and attracts a lively youthful crowd attracted to the venue as much for the vibe of the place as for the perfectly priced and mixed cocktails.

P J Clarke’s Saloon, (947 McLean Ave, Yonkers, NY 10704, Tel: (914) 237-0115).

Over 100 years old, this New York institution is worthy of visiting for two reasons, and you’ll have try both to decide which is the better reason; mixing up great cocktails OR cooking up what have been called the best burgers in NYC, and serving it all up in turn of the century charm. It will be tough to choose, as they’ve had plenty of time to excel in both. If burgers aren’t your thing, but beer is, be sure to try the Guinness braised short ribs, you won’t be sorry!

Dry Martini Bar, (Carrer d’Aribau, 152, 08036 Barcelona Tel: 932 175 072, www.drymartinibcn.com).

Spain, long famous for it’s olive industry, makes the perfect place to set up a bar dedicated to the pinnacle of cocktailology; the Martini. Located in the heart of Barcelona, you can put on your swankiest fashions and enjoy all things Martini, with more than a hundred variations of this proud cocktail in the hefty menu. Sit back, flash the gold Rolex, polished shoes and leave the sunglasses on, as the leather and wood interior provide the perfect location to imbibe and ponder the meaning of life while checking out the centuries-old bottles that are part of the décor. So whether it’s shaken, stirred or a double head shaking Wasabi Martini you crave, they’ve got you covered.

Pusser’s New York Bar, (Falkenturmstr. 9, 80331 Munich, Tel: (4989) 220 500 , www.pussersbar.de).

While Bavaria is more famous for Oktoberfest and giant tankards of beer, back in the day, Grog, (the original cocktail) and rum drinks ruled the roost, and this quaint piano bar located on a quiet little street in Munich, (not far from Hofgarten), proudly recreates that era. With a nautical theme of Anglo naval paraphernalia, including flags, old recruitment posters and age worn photographs, all inspired by the iconic Naval rum libations made with Pusser’s Rum, this place is a fun joint to tie one on. So belly on up to the bar old sailor, get fruity with tropically-inspired rum-based cocktails and drink up to the sun setting on the British empire while the musician tickles the ivories. Oh, my empire, I miss you so!

Bar K, (1-3-3 Koyo Building, B1F, Osaka, Kita-Ku.Tel: +81 66-343-1167).

What does Japan and America have in common? A love of Whiskey! And located not too far from Kyoto (20 minutes by train) in Osaka, is the tiny Bar K, which might look like your typical American bar, but take a look at the shelf and you’ll see that it’s stocked primarily with fine Japanese whiskeys, which the well seasoned bartenders almost religiously mix up into cocktails that have been called “a connoisseur’s delight”. Precision mixing is all part of the show, and worth a visit for that alone. And for Scotch lovers, they’ve got you covered with the best selection in Asia as well.

Saphire Bar, (Bötzowstr. 31, 10407 Berlin Tel: 030 25562158, www.saphirebar.de) .

Not to be confused with the also worthy Saphire Martini Bar in Berlin, this whiskey bar is one of the best in Middle Europe and offers up a staggering array of cocktails to entice the taste buds of even the most jaded barfly. Posh white leather furnishings, including sofas you can’t help but sink into as you begin your night with one of bar’s signature cocktails made with some of the best whiskeys, come together to create the perfect meeting place while on the road. In the summer, call ahead and reserve one of the outdoor seating options, and enjoy life at it’s warmest pleasant best!

So there you are designated drinker, ten of the best places to plan your next round-the-world-trip around, and since you don’t have to drive, you can thoroughly enjoy yourself worry free. You also won’t have to spend a lot of money in your travels, if you know that where you sleep off the hangover is less important than getting one on in the coolest bars around. Because no matter where your cocktail lust takes you, {mnf=off} HostelWorld.com has the perfect accommodation for you.

That’s right, while you were on your sixth Rumtini Flamingo and wearing grooves into the bartop surface dancing the night away, they were scouring the world looking for the best places for you to sleep it off. And they’ve been doing it since 1999, when the world decided to party like, well… like it was 1999, meaning they know the score. Since then, Hostelworld.com has become the world’s #1 hostel booking website, so you can focus more on how to catch a taxi to the next bar without speaking the language, than if the hotel you booked will still be in business when you get back.

That’s because they also have the largest number of customer ratings and traveler reviews of any booking site out there, as well as great video content, podcasting downloads and travel guides to make your trip just that much more smooth, leaving time for the important things in life, like enjoying a bottle of Bushmills Malt 21 year old (an extremely rare single malt Irish whiskey). Bon voyage!

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