Pernod Ricard Vodka company Absolut will start prototype trials for a new paper bottle in the UK and Sweden later this month in the next step towards sustainability.
The paper bottle prototypes will be tested with two products, Absolut Vodka (40% ABV) and Absolut Mixt (4% ABV) and will be launched initially in the UK and Sweden.
The bottles are made with 57 per cent paper and 43 per cent recycled plastic, and are themselves recyclable. The first production run is set to go into testing this November; if successful, TAC will start work on a fully bio-based bottle – its ultimate goal.
Niclas Appelquist, innovation director of future packaging at Absolut, said, “We’ve taken a concept and created a real-world prototype that is planned to be in controlled consumer testing in a matter of months.
“Our sustainability strategy is making a commitment to a fully circular process, and the rollout of our prototype is a step in the right direction toward that goal.”
The company will incorporate customer feedback into the second pilot scheduled for next spring. Danish beer company Carlsberg announced a paper bottle in 2019 and other beverage companies like Pepsi have taken steps to reduce plastic in their bottling processes. Johnnie Walker announced that they would introduce a paper bottle in spring 2021.
Making A Stir
Crystal Head Launches Limited-Edition "Paint Your Pride" Bottle
Global Vodka brand Crystal Head has redesigned it’s signature skull bottle to launch its “Paint Your Pride” bottle in honor of Pride month this June.
Following the success of the rainbow bottle launched in 2020, the new specialty Pride bottle displays a colorful, paint-splattered design against a white bottle.
Bringing the creative spirit to life, the brand has ensured that the Pride bottle’s artistic charm shines brightly with the integration of additional colors to celebrate the diversity and inclusivity of the LGBTQ+ community.
“We’re ecstatic about the launch of the “Paint Your Pride” bottle, utilizing art as a form of empowerment while inspiring social change and fostering community,” said Dan Aykroyd, Crystal Head Vodka founder, actor and musician.
“Art is an essential tool of empowerment LGBTQ+ creators embrace as a means of positive visibility and proud, authentic self-representation. We’re thrilled that this bottle embodies these values quintessential to the Crystal Head brand and LGBTQ+ community.”
Crystal Head Vodka is committed to supporting LGBTQ+ communities with continuous global efforts throughout the year. The brand is dedicated to using its platform as a tool to educate, support, and value its partnerships with LGBTQ+ communities around the world, such as Boston Globe Sip The Rainbow, Human Rights Campaign, Kaleidoscope Trust, Mid-South Pride and Test Positive Awareness Network (TPAN), among others.
We also have an affiliate link to the product with Drizly. Must be 21 or older to purchase.
Making A Stir
ITALIAN BARTENDER WINS THE ITALICUS GLOBAL BAR ARTIST 2023
Italian liqueur brand Italicus has named Fabrizio Candino, from Sartoria Cocktail Bar, Italy, as the global winner of its Art of Italicus Aperitivo Challenge.
The global bartending competition that celebrates art-inspired aperitivo cocktails, the Art of Italicus Aperitivo Challenge, is now in its fifth edition and conceived by Giuseppe Gallo, founder and CEO of Italicus and aims to showcase the talents of emerging bartenders in the industry.
Candino, a 34-year-old bartender from Palermo, Sicily, won the competition with his winning cocktail, called “In-Vite,” which pays homage to the Mediterranean vine and incorporates the concept of invitation and conviviality.
The drink impressed the competition’s jury with its unique combination of Italicus, infused stale bread, aperitivo wine, and citron juice. The choice of using bread, an unconventional ingredient in cocktails, added a twist to this riff on a Spritz and captivated both the judges and the audience.
The final challenge, held in Rome on May 28th, brought together bartenders from Croatia, France, Germany, Greece, Italy, Norway, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland, Hungary, the United Kingdom, and the United States. Each participant crafted an aperitivo using Italicus as a key ingredient.
The competition aimed to highlight aperitivo drinks that drew inspiration from various forms of art, such as sculpture, design, painting, fashion, music, literature, dance and more. This year, participants were also required to create their cocktails with sustainability in mind, avoiding waste and promoting the use of locally sourced ingredients.
Valeria Coletti, Fabrizio Candino & Johannes Sæterbø
“The competition serves as a creative platform through which bartenders have the opportunity to express their artistic sensibilities while staying rooted in the Italian aperitivo cocktails tradition,” explained Giuseppe Gallo, Founder and CEO of Italicus.
‘This year, we had the honour of experiencing a competition with highly skilled bartenders, from their technique to the style of their presentations and their sustainable approach. We feel honoured to have so many talents from around the world participating in this program with the goal of improving and growing within the industry in a more sustainable world.”
In second place, Johannes Sæterbø, from Svanen bar in Norway, presented the “Apples & Bergamot” cocktail. His creation aimed to express the connection between independent artistic scenes by using objects created by local artists.
Valeria Coletti, an Italian bartender working in London at Baccarat, secured the third place position with her cocktail “Bee the Action,” inspired by the Red Earth Environmental Art Group, a UK-based collective focused on sustainability through installations and artistic performances.
Making A Stir
DON JULIO & PHOTOGRAPHER GRAY MALIN INTRODUCE THE ‘AGAVE SERIES’
Photographer Gray Malin has captured the agave fields of Don Julio as you have never seen them before in a series of aerial images.
Travelling to the highlands in Jalisco, Mexico, Malin captured once-in-a-lifetime aerial images, some of which he shot with custom-designed umbrellas alongside traditionally dressed jimadors to represent the legacy of Don Julio, one of Mexico’s most beloved tequila brands.
“I’ve loved Tequila Don Julio for a long time, so it was an honour to capture their stunning agave fields where the tequila-making process all begins,” shares Gray Malin.
“This was my first time shooting work above this type of landscape, and I was mesmerized by the geometric rows of the teal agave contrasted against the red soil. Experiencing the fields from this perspective, and the care that goes into each plant to produce every bottle is immensely impressive. It’s an art in itself.”
Eleven different images are available in the series, which are available now as prints or framed in sizes ranging from small to oversized via the Gray Malin website.
You can also mix up the official ‘Malin Margarita’ and enjoy the beauty of your own surroundings all summer long:
1.5 oz Tequila Don Julio Blanco
.75 oz Fresh Pineapple Juice
.75 oz Fresh Lime Juice
.5 oz Agave Syrup
4 Sage Leaves
Combine all ingredients in a shaker with ice and shake well. Strain over fresh ice into a rocks glass. Garnish with a pineapple wedge.
“In the same way that Tequila Don Julio revolutionized the tequila category, Gray Malin has paved the way in photography with his signature aerial style and celebration of beautiful destinations all over the world,” shares Stacey Cunningham, Director of Tequila Don Julio.
“Gray creates for the love of it, just as Don Julio González did, and this partnership is a celebration of just that – creating Por Amor.”
The images will also be brought to life through an immersive pop-up event in the Hamptons in August that will offer guests the opportunity to experience the worlds of Gray Malin and Tequila Don Julio.
Making A Stir
ZACAPA RUM AND BACCARAT PARTNER WITH 76TH ANNUAL TONY AWARDS
Ultra-premium Guatemalan rum Zacapa and renowned French luxury house Baccarat have announced their partnership with the 76th Annual Tony Awards.
With an exclusive series of first-ever cocktail experiences at the awards ceremony and beyond, the brands have joined to raise a toast to the artistry of Broadway, champion the community, and bring elevated moments of joy and celebration.
XO On A Cloud
This year also marks a change of venue, as the Awards will be presented for the first time at the historic United Palace in Washington Heights on June 11th. And to celebrate, the VIP experience – named Zacapa XO x Baccarat Speakeasy – will offer an evening like no other.
“Community is the lifeforce of Zacapa Rum, and as a brand, we’re focused on uplifting those who make our product possible,” says Sam Salameh, Vice President of Breakout Growth Brands, Diageo. “Our rum is made in the heart of Guatemala and forged by the local community, where we regularly employ 700 female artisans to provide viable pathways towards economic growth.
“And, like Baccarat, we place the highest emphasis on craftsmanship and attention to detail,” Salameh continued. “We’re proud to partner with like-minded organizations like Baccarat and the Tonys to celebrate the craft and incredible community that is Broadway in such a cultural cornerstone as Washington Heights.”
Zacapa Gold Fashioned
Artfully incorporating dazzling lighting, decor and glassware from the House of Baccarat, the speakeasy space will nod to the heritage and craftsmanship of Baccarat’s 260-year history, alongside the signature experience of Zacapa XO.
Zacapa Rum will work with Master Mixologist Lynnette Marrero and a supporting cast of talented local mixologists to craft bespoke cocktails inspired by the culture and community of Washington Heights. Those in attendance will have a choice of two original cocktails featuring Zacapa XO, crafted à la minute and presented in delicate crystal; each a trophy on its own.
In addition to the Zacapa XO x Baccarat speakeasy that is exclusive to Tony Awards VIP guests, Zacapa Rum will have a presence at the official Tony Awards after party, complete with three additional Zacapa No. 23 serves to round out Lynnette Marrero’s collection. The Zacapa Rum Tony Awards Cocktail Collection includes:
XO on a Cloud – A decadent serve combing Zacapa XO, Guatemalan Cold Brew, Pimento Bitters, and Spiced Cacao Simple Syrup, topped with a whisper of smoke
Zacapa Gold Fashioned – A tropical take on an Old Fashioned using Zacapa XO, Cinnamon Infused Agave Syrup, Banana Liqueur, and Mole Bitters, garnished a gold gilded banana leaf
Zacapa Piraguas – A twist on a Piragua – shaved ice topped with Zacapa No. 23 and a choice of three refreshing flavors – coconut, passion fruit, or pineapple
Palace Sparkler – A bracing, effervescent offering made with Zacapa No. 23, Lime Juice, Simple Syrup, Aromatic Bitters, and topped with Champagne
Showstopper– An herbaceous classic featuring Zacapa No. 23 with Oloroso Sherry, Simple Syrup, Yellow Chartreuse, aperitivo, and lemon juice
Global Rum brand Bacardi in collaboration with streetwear brand Stadium Goods, wants you to dance like everyone is watching.
Under its “Do What Moves You” platform, the brand is launching a series of unique activations to encourage people to embrace community and enjoy the freedom of self-expression.
June will see both brands launch speakeasy pop-up, a one-of-a-kind retail and party experience. At first glance, these may appear to be traditional merch offerings, but in a nod to classic speakeasy cocktail bars, the surprise will lie in a secret entrance behind the stockroom door where attendees will be immersed in a lively, Caribbean-inspired Bacardí celebration.
The New York pop-up, open to consumers aged 21+ on June 8th by RSVP only, will feature pop-up musical guests, exclusive Bacardí rum cocktail tastings, and more.
“The spirit of Bacardí has always been one of self-expression, free of judgment, and, of course, one that is ready to dance,” said Laila Mignoni, Global Head of Brand Marketing Communications for Bacardí.
“Every aspect of our partnership is designed to bring people together, embracing the connective tissue between our iconic rum and the sneaker community to inspire movement in both the physical and emotional sense.”
To ensure everyone who attends a BACARDÍ party this summer is equipped with the perfect pair of ‘dancing shoes’, BACARDÍ will gift attendees the Dancing Shoes NFT, an exclusive digital wearable created in collaboration with creative visionary and founder of the streetwear brand STAPLE, Jeff Staple, and web3 studio, Kollectiff.
Dropped into guests’ digital wallets during the event, the NFT will appear with a purposefully simplistic design, allowing for individual customizations by interacting with various elements within the temporary retail store. Those who complete the NFT customizations at the event will have a chance to forge their digital creations into a one-of-a-kind physical pair of sneakers—their one-of-a-kind Dancing Shoes—that will be delivered directly to them this summer.
Following the New York launch, the activations will continue, starting with Governor’s Ball in NYC on June 9th and continuing through Lollapalooza (Chicago), Life is Beautiful (Las Vegas), Parookaville (Germany), Lowlands Festival (Netherlands), and more.
The campaign will culminate in October with a final pop-up ahead of Amsterdam’s biggest dance music festival, featuring exclusive merchandise and a limited-edition giveaway of collectable physical Dancing Shoes in collaboration with a world-renowned Amsterdam streetwear brand.
Countries all over the world, including Spain, New Zealand, Germany and Austria, will put on their Dancing Shoes this summer with festival activations, local retail partnerships and pop-up experiences.