CENTRAL STATION SCORES AN INDUSTRY FIRST
Best Bars was held at the Roundhouse in London, UK, providing this year’s annual ranking of bars as voted for by more than 500 cocktail experts from across the globe. It was a big evening for Lebanon and an even bigger one for Beirut’s Central Station boutique bar, run by co-partner and head bartending wizard, Jad Ballout. Commenting in a phone interview from London, Ballout, said, “I was taken aback by being ranked the 27th best bar on the planet and it is an honor to represent Beirut on the global cocktail map. Being the Best Bar of Middle East and Africa 2018 also draws people's attention to this developing market; it is truly a great achievement for our region. Our latest menu "Timeline", received huge applause from the market. It focuses especially on Lebanese history and heritage, with a large focus on local flavors and ingredients, which showcases a new gateway to our culture. Explaining, Ballout said, "We are on par with the global cocktail evolution in terms of creativity and concept development. Seasoned cocktail lovers around the world are looking for originality and authenticity and we did just that. The best bars are no longer restricted to existing genres such as tiki or speakeasy. We are a modern Middle Eastern cocktail bar and we are super proud of it."