- London-based cocktail maker to represent UK in global competition
- Award-winning sustainable cocktail available for a limited time at Bar Antoine at the Four Seasons Hotel on Park Lane
- Best cocktail makers from around the country compete in close-knit final
In a nail-biting final last night, London-based mixologist Guiseppe Lombardi shook off fierce competition to be crowned the UK winner of the Flor de Caña Sustainable Cocktail Challenge.
The zero-waste initiative saw Guiseppe go head-to-head with bartenders from across the country to create the best eco-friendly cocktail. Competitors were challenged to pair Flor de Caña rum – the world’s only carbon neutral and Fair Trade-certified spirit – with seasonal, local, or Fair-Trade ingredients or repurposed leftovers. Each used their creativity and expertise to craft a drink that will also help to eliminate 15 tonnes of food waste.
Finalists’ concoctions were judged by a panel of industry experts including António Oliveira, European Brand Ambassador for Flor de Caña; Robbie Humphrey, Sustainability Coordinator for Whyte & Mackay; and Manny Monoghan, the global winner of Flor de Caña’s first Sustainable Cocktail Challenge. The criteria was simple: history and inspiration, use of sustainable ingredients and techniques, level of creativity, flavour, and appearance.
Guiseppe impressed the judges with his Acqva Friska cocktail, which takes inspiration from the classic ‘Old Cuban’ and uses ingredients commonly water in bars. All the mint waste produced from garnishes is reused twice, first to infuse milk and then powdered to create the garnish. The name Acqva Friska is a rephrasing of the words “aqua fresca” (“fresh water” in Italian), as that freshness is the sensation Guiseppe creates with the cocktail, which comes served in a handmade vessel.
Mateo Ortiz, UK Brand Ambassador for Flor de Caña, said:
“Guiseppe totally blew us away. His cocktail demonstrated consistency and forward thinking like no other. Just like the inspiration for his drink, his creativity flowed like water, beyond what we could imagine. His innovation, unique story, and passion for sustainability made him a clear winner despite close competition.
“We hope Guiseppe – and all of our talented finalists’ – spectacular creations inspire others to adopt meaningful sustainable practices and raise awareness of the importance of reducing food waste, one sustainable cocktail at a time!”
As well as a sustainably made trophy, Guiseppe takes home a cash prize and ticket to the global final of Flor de Caña’s Sustainable Cocktail Challenge in Nicaragua in 2024, where only one will be crowned the World’s Most Sustainable Bartender.
Guiseppe’s winning cocktail, Acqva Friska will also be available for guests to enjoy at Bar Antoine at the Four Seasons Hotel on Park Lane.