Melbourne Cocktail Favourite Byrdi Has Been Named in The World's 50 Best Bars 51-100 List for 2023

Just like in 2021, the La Trobe Street bar is the only Australian joint to make this year's extended list ahead of the top 50 reveal.
Sarah Ward and Libby Curran
Published on October 11, 2023

Melbourne is home to one of the best places in the world to have a drink in 2023, and the Victorian capital's Byrdi is back among the top 100 watering holes around the globe.

Each year, The World's 50 Best Bars does exactly what its name says, picking the standout 50 bars on the planet — and 2023's top 50 will be announced on Tuesday, October 17 in Singapore. But this ranking doesn't stop at 50, which is where its annual The World's 50 Best Bars extended 51–100 longlist comes in. It's announced first, throwing some love at the next 50 venues worth checking out, and Byrdi is Australia's sole entry.

Jana Langhorst

There's a touch of déjà vu about this news, because this exact thing also happened in 2021. So, once again, the La Trobe Street bar has scored some worldwide recognition and become the only Aussie joint to make this year's extended list ahead of the top 50 reveal. In 2022, Byrdi didn't feature in either the longlist or the top 50, with Melbourne's Caretaker's Cottage and Sydney's Re featured in the former, and the Harbour City's  Maybe Sammy and Cantina OK! in the latter.

This year, Byrdi ranked 61st, down from its 56th placing in 2021. In 2020, it came in at 80th, after only opening in 2019. In its 2023 ranking, Luke Whearty's famed local cocktail haunt was applauded for being "seriously cool, coming complete with its own lab for creating bold new ingredients" and serving up "a damn good time". Its Jungle Byrd cocktail, which is made with Carolina Reaper chilli, bitters, lacto-fermented pineapple and Davidson plum, also earned a specific shoutout.

Kate Shanasy

Byrdi was launched in 2019 by Whearty and co-founder Aki Nishikura, who were also behind Singapore's multi award-winning — and World's 50 Best Bars regular — Operation Dagger. You'll find the Melbourne favourite nestled within the CBD's Ella precinct, whipping up some truly exceptional, innovative drinks.

It sits on 2023's The World's 50 Best Bars extended 51–100 longlist alongside watering holes from 33 other cities, including six from the US, plus five from both the UK and Singapore. Fourteen of this year's picks have made the list for the first time, such as the debut entries from Tulum, Guadalajara and Tirana.

When the full list drops, here's hoping that Australia is well-represented. In addition to placing in the top 50 in 2022, Maybe Sammy took out 22nd place in 2021 and Cantina OK! came in at number 23. Melbourne's Above Board earned a spot at number 44 and the aforementioned Re placed, too.

Watch this space — we'll run through the winners of the World's 50 Best Bars 2022 list when they're announced.

Kate Shanasy

For the full 51–100 list of the World's 50 Best Bars for 2023 (and past years' lists), see the website. The top 50 rankings will be revealed at 5.20pm AEDT on Tuesday, October 17 via Facebook and YouTube.

Top image: Byrdi, Haydn Cattach.

Published on October 11, 2023 by Sarah Ward
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