Giacomo Janotti of Paradiso on winning the best bar in the world
There is a certain recognition that comes with being considered the best in your profession. For Giacomo Giannotti, owner and master mixologist of Paradiso, winning the world’s best bar award is an accolade not to be taken lightly.
Giannotti’s bar, located in Barcelona, has been ranked first in the list of the 50 best bars in the world for 2022. Taking first place as the best bar in Europe and on the planet, Paradiso also acquires the first bar outside of New York or London. were honored with that honor.
Being the highest rated bar in the world is a testament to the talent, ability and creativity that Giacomo Gianotti and his team have invested in Paradiso. Spepeasy Bar was opened by Giacomo in 2016. Hidden behind an antique fridge in the back of an unassuming pastrami shop in Barcelona’s trendy El Born district, Paradiso offers a truly masterful take on the mic.
The bar combines technique, precision and creativity with an unwavering sense of fun. Signature cocktails, such as the Supercool Martini, use “superchilled” gin to build an ice cube in the glass before the final product is adjusted tableside for a unique guest experience.
Those elements were on full force during the recent guest shift hosted by Rosewood Phnom Penh for the benefit of its guests. As part of the Rosewood Bar Series held at the hotel’s Sora Sky Bar, the property has given us access to the world’s best bars and mixologists this side of the world.
In the current program, a number of top mixologists from the world’s best bar shops have been created for a short stint at Sora Sky Bar during 2022. At the end of the year, Rosewood Phnom Penh clearly saved the best by flying Paradiso. owners Giacomo Gianotti and Margherita Sader for a guest shift at the end of the year.
Over two nights at the end of November, Giacomo provided a taste of paradiso with some notable clues. The Master Mixologist from Tuscany wowed the crowd with a specially designed cocktail menu featuring several Paradiso signatures. Hailing from the Cambodian capital, Giacomo and Margherita showed why Paradiso came out on top of the field with their inventive and creative cocktail options.
With cocktails that used Sichuan Pepper ingredients and props like LED lights and an edible coffee cloud, Giacomo’s cocktails blended elements of mixology, special effects and molecular gastronomy during the guest’s shift.
Giacomo managed to corner Sora at the Sky Bar shortly after the guests’ turn, August Man sat down with the talented mixologist to reveal his take on cocktails, guest rotation and what it takes to become the number one bar in the world today.
The first day was very successful, are you tired?
Yes, it was so, I am very happy. I only arrived last night and it took me 30 hours and three flights to get to Phnom Penh. But it was worth it because it was a great experience because I also get to see the country, the city and its people.
You must be extra busy these days after winning the best bar in the world.
(laughs), the year is super busy. We’ve seen more people come to the bar now. Being awarded has certainly given us tremendous exposure, we have had more visitors from all over the world to Paradiso.
How did it feel to win?
Honestly, that’s an amazing recognition. I’m extremely proud of the team, happy and sincere, sometimes I can’t believe it, because it’s a big recognition. At the same time, we also need to be pragmatic and not get ahead of ourselves. After all, it’s a daily job for us to make cocktails to chat with guests. Don’t get me wrong, it’s amazing and now there’s even more pressure to do well, but that doesn’t change the fact that we have to continue what we want to give to our guests at Paradiso.
Did you ever think that Paradiso would one day win the world’s best bar?
I was hoping we’d get this big one day. When we opened a few years ago, I dreamed of making the list because I love my job. There is no greater secret than daily work and believing in ourselves. It’s all about creating the best experience for the customer with passion. It is a great motivation and a huge responsibility for us. It forces us to refine and elevate our craft, and I’m glad it happened.
Do you feel like the bartending and cocktail landscape has changed immensely in recent years?
Of course. I think we saw the change ten years ago. Before, it was only five or six bars like us around the world. Now, there are various cocktail bars all over the world with different concepts, ideas and approaches to cocktails. Because of this, people are more exposed today. They go to a cocktail bar for an experience and enjoyment, not just a drink.
You constantly mention the experience, what kind of experience do you want to give your guests?
A complete one. When you walk into Paradiso, you already get an experience because it’s a conversation bar. You don’t realize it until you walk in. The atmosphere we create inside is amazing, it’s a happy magical place with incredible cocktails, sometimes a little crazy and made with different techniques. We have put a lot of thought into the preparation and what we want to accomplish because we want to give our guests something they have never experienced before.
Where do you get your inspiration for your cocktails?
The inspiration comes from the teamwork at Paradiso, it spans from concept to creation. We always start with a concept, for 2022 we have chosen the evolution of humanity and our approach is focused on cocktails inspired by the evolution of humans and what we have done throughout history. We are always looking to push the boundaries and do something different with our cocktail ideas. Last year, our concept focused on space, and before that, illusions. These ideas and concepts allow us to push our creativity forward in making cocktails.
Is there pressure on what you want to achieve in the world of mixology?
The pressure. (laughs) I don’t have time to rest, that’s for sure. We have always remained constant in pushing our state of mind. We started Paradiso with three people seven years ago and now we have 40. But we keep the same mentality and every year, we will always try to be better, but the mentality and the approach will always be the same.
Do you see Paradiso maintaining its position at the top of the world’s best bars in 2023?
Well, we have already started our work for this year, we will see.
(Images: Paradiso/Rosewood Phnom Penh)