Brands Report 2023: Beer

There’s a broad country spread when it comes to the beers stocked in the world’s best bars.

The world’s best bars – as we de­fine them, anyway – don’t tend to set themselves apart by their wide and varied selection of beers. In most cases they’re looking for their sales to be skewed towards cocktails, with beer, wine and cider playing a supporting role. Around two-thirds of our sample stocked a bottled beer, about a half had two, while a third offered three.

While craft brands no doubt play their part, their localism means they don’t individually gather enough votes to show up on this global poll. Indeed, those brands that do, have global distribution and worldwide reputations. None more so than Heineken, Peroni Nastro Azzurro and Asahi Super Dry – each of which have topped this list since we’ve been polling on beer over the past 12 years. This time out – and for the seventh time – Dutch lager Heineken was found to be the top seller. Seventeen per cent of our globally strewn sample of bars (that serve beer) made it their number one, with 29% making it one of their top three.

Italian lager Peroni has topped this table three times over the years and is perennially one of the top beers in our bars. This year it was the top seller in 11% of those that stocked beer, and one of the ­first three options in 17%. Its Japanese stablemate Asahi posted an almost identical response, with our poll suggesting it is also one of the beers you’ll be most likely served in the world’s best bars.

Czech Pilsner – seen as one of the quintessential lager styles – is also a popular choice for bars, with Asahi Group’s Pilsner Urquell a top choice in 8% that stocked bottled beer and among the top three in 17%.

Spanish Estrella and Belgian Stella Artois were part of the three-strong roster in 16% of bars with beer, with Corona in 14% and Guinness, our only stout, in 13%. Jamaican Red Stripe and British Brewdog, the only brand in the list which might identify as craft (despite its internationalism), were both on the beer list in 10% of those bars that sold beer. So that’s the 10, tellingly, each hailing from a different country.

How we did it

The Annual Brands Report results are the culmination of a survey of 100 bars from 33 countries around the world which have been nominated or won international awards. The report offers a picture of the buying habits of the world’s best bars – not only which brands sell best, but also what’s trending to indicate the brands that are hot right now.

To view the page-turner edition of the Brands Report click here.

The Brands Report will be serialised on throughout January.