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CLASS Bar Awards 2024 celebrates excellence in UK bar scene

Published:  18 April, 2024

CLASS magazine unveiled the winners of its CLASS Bar Awards 2024 during an event held at Battersea Arts Centre in London on Tuesday. Established in 2003, the CLASS Bar Awards is the longest-running celebration of the UK's bar industry.

Representatives from leading bars across the UK gathered at the awards ceremony, attended by 600 industry enthusiasts. Judged by the CLASS Collective, consisting of 140 bar aficionados nationwide, the awards recognise the talent, achievements, and diversity of the UK bar scene.

London's Satan’s Whiskers emerged as the night's big winner, securing both the Best Bar in the UK award and the regional accolade of Best Bar in London & the South East. Meanwhile, Passing Fancies in Birmingham, owned by Eve Green and Matt Arnold, clinched the regional award for Best Bar in the Midlands & East Anglia and earned the prestigious Cocktail of the Year award for its Adult Ribena concoction.

Panda & Sons in Edinburgh impressed voters with its warm hospitality and vintage vibes, winning the Best Bar in Scotland & NI category. Kwãnt, a tropical bar concept by Erik Lorincz, was recognised as the Best New Bar, highlighting its innovative cocktails and revamped ambience.

Other notable winners included Connaught Bar in London, Schofield’s Bar in Manchester, Lab 22 in Cardiff, and Filthy XIII in Bristol, each celebrated for its unique offerings and exceptional service.

The ceremony also honoured establishments for sustainable practices and social media strategy, with Gungho! in Brighton receiving the Sustainable Practices Award and Manolo in Liverpool securing the Social Media Presence of the Year.

The event culminated with the presentation of the Outstanding Contribution Award, which was presented to Hannah Sharman-Cox and Siobhan Payne for their significant contributions to the bar scene over the past two decades.

Hamish Smith, editor of CLASS magazine and co-host of the CLASS Bar Awards, said: “This year felt like a return to form for London, which seems to be in a flourish of regeneration – it took some of the big awards of the night, not least Bar of the Year, New Bar of the Year, Bar Manager of the Year and Outstanding Contribution. 

“Yet, talent continues to shine across the country, with bars and bartenders from Manchester, Birmingham, Cardiff, Bristol, Liverpool and Edinburgh taking home awards. And while we have had 21 winners take to the stage at the CLASS Bar Awards this year, all of our 82 finalists have reason to celebrate. Each and every one of them is driving the UK bar industry forwards.”