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Three Shanghai bars rank on the Asia's 50 Best Bars 2020 list

Speak Low slips down a few spots, but Shingo Gokan still sweeps up the awards

Photograph: Yang Xiaozhe (The Odd Couple)
Last night, the fifth edition of Asia’s 50 Best Bars swapped its scheduled award ceremony in Singapore for an inaugural 'virtual' countdown that saw Singapore's Jigger & Pony (number nine last year) swoop in to bump The Old Man in Hong Kong off its top spot. On the home front, Shanghai once again emerged with the highest haul across Mainland China.

In no big surprises given years past, Shanghai’s trio of awards have cocktail wizard and 50 Best regular Shingo Gokan’s name written all over them. While Gokan’s best-known bar Speak Low – which has placed on every edition of the list – slipped out of the top ten this year, placing at number 19 (number seven last year), his multi-concept space Sober Company jumped a few spots clocking in at number 12 (number 16 last year). The two were also joined by new entry The Odd Couple, a joint venture from Gokan and Steve Schneider, which came in at number 38.

One city favourite that dropped off the list this year is Yao Lu’s always-buzzing neighbourhood bar Union Trading Co. that reached 30th place in 2019. For the Mainland count, Shanghai was joined only Guangzhou’s Hope & Sesame (number 36). Take a look at the full list for 2020 online.

While in some eyes we might have lost our top ten bragging rights, it seems to us as though the city has still got it pretty good when it comes to cocktails – awarded or not.

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