Vodka company, 42BELOW are striving for change in the hospitality industry by hosting a sustainable cocktail showcase.
Recently 42 mixologists from New Zealand and Australia competed against each other to gain one of the four winning spots, two from New Zealand and two from Australia. The showcase began in November 2018, challenging competitors to be sustainable, creative and produce a popular drink amongst the public.
The aim of the showcase is to celebrate and promote the hard work that goes into creating a sustainable and delicious cocktail, while bringing awareness to the island of waste – five times the size of New Zealand – that is floating in the Pacific Ocean.
There was a section of public input by consumers and bartenders as voting was opened on the 42BELOW social media pages. This, combined with head judge Kane Stanford (42BELOW’s Global Brand Manager) and other all-star judges tastings and evaluations, four winners were chosen. From New Zealand, Juleon Green from Bedford Soda and Liquor and Alex Vowles from Hawthorn Lounge. From Australia, Tioni Naslund from Flaggerdoot, VIC and Honni Cox from Hades Hula House, SA.
“There were some amazing drinks for us to sift through. We were so stoked to see such creative approaches to sustainable cocktails. No straws is easy, but just the beginning, so it was great to see such innovation from our industry leaders. It was a tough gig to judge, but in the end the winners were clear and deserved. Well played, folks,” says Stanford.
Green's creation named Vitamin Bee (main photograph) focused on showing off the natural ingredient honey. Vowles' drink Below the Bramble used the root-to-flower-to-seed method and incorporated a coaster made of lemon husk.
Cox's initiative to create a zero-waste version of the classic bubble tea, One-in-a-melon, was praised by the judges and fellow Australian, Naslund created 42 Reasons, a cocktail repurposing leftover restaurant and bar waste.
The winners will be off on a trip of a lifetime, including a carbon-offset flight to Bali, where money is donated to carbon reducing companies to help counteract the adverse effects that come from flying. They will be accompanied by a 42BELOW partner Gringgo, a trash-tech start up that's aiming to #endoceanplasticnow.
While in Bali, the plan is to immerse the four winners into the environmental damage humans are creating by touring Bali to see the impact of rubbish, participating in beach clean ups, helping out at recycling plants and running a sustainability workshop for Bali’s hospitality industry.
When they return, 42BELOW says you won’t even want to think of asking them for a straw and hopes it will help ensure #thefuturedoesntsuck.