SUSTAINABILTY TIPS FOR YOUR VENUE
The term ‘sustainability’ has got thrown around a lot of late. We’re not saying this is a bad thing, but using it too much, or wrongly, and it begins to lose some of its potency.
One venue not using the term lightly is London’s Eve. With a deep commitment to reducing waste and operating with cause, we spoke to Bar Manager, Sam Orrock, on some best practices to becoming a green machine.
Launched in 2017, Eve is the first standalone bar from Adam Handling, tucked beneath his renowned restaurant Frog in Covent Garden. The bar prides itself on a close relationship with the restaurant above and its associated bars. We all share a common drive and ethos (and resources) to better reduce waste and operate ethically.
This group effort naturally incurs benefits around sourcing – using as few suppliers across venues as possible, sharing resources in preparation and waste disposal, amongst others, helps us operate more centrally and, in turn, responsibly.
HOW WE DO IT
At Eve, we operate with a focus on minimal waste and one way that really helps with this is the close proximity and relationship that Eve has with our restaurant, Frog by Adam Handling, which is located upstairs.
Working alongside a restaurant kitchen is an excellent way to create a sustainable environment. Having a team of chefs and bartenders working so closely together means it becomes like a creative hub and we’re constantly coming up with new and exciting ways to use surplus ingredients to produce garnishes, new dishes etc.
No ingredients go to waste and the cycle of sustainability travels from the kitchen to the bar and vice versa. For example, with bananas, we separate the juice and pulp with pectinex protein, a Thermomix and a centrifuge, and then the pulp goes to the restaurant to make banana bread - which then ends up coming downstairs again as a garnish for the cocktail monkey business.
HOW YOU CAN CREATE A SUSTAINABLE VENUE
To create a sustainable venue you need think about reducing as much waste as possible. Our way of thinking is to make sure you’ve exhausted all possibilities with an ingredient before throwing it away.
Can it be frozen, fermented, made into an oil or a garnish? Working with the seasons and using locally-sourced ingredients is also very important. Eliminate non-recyclable materials, like plastic, where and as much as you can.
We’ve already banned plastic straw across the network of venues, but we’re working on eradicating as much of it as we can from the kitchens too. It's not as easy as it sounds as so much of it is out of our control, like the way ingredients are packaged by suppliers, but we are trying our best.
TRAINING STAFF ON SUSTAINABLITY
Ensuring your team, from bartenders to bar servers, are onboard with the sustainability ethos is really important and training is vital. When you join Eve, you are taught about our ethos on sustainability and the importance of this practice within the bar.
It's part and parcel of what we do here so there's also a lot to learn as you go. It’s a great way to get the team invested in this philosophy as everyone can get involved with coming up with new ideas and ways to improve on what we already achieved.
At Eve, we’re very lucky to have an innovation lab. Visible to guests behind glass, the aim of the lab is to build awareness of the unique drink production at the bar, whilst also encouraging engagement and conversations around sustainability.
The lab allows us to distill, carbonate and clarify our own signature creations, using surplus or food waste from the kitchen upstairs. We also batch and bottle cocktails which ensures consistency, but it’s also a really great way to reduce waste whilst really pushing the boundaries to be experimental and create unforgettable cocktails.
In your bar a great sustainable tip is using leftover waste to produce a garnish. I also forage ingredients which ensures you are using local and in season produce. There’s a fig tree close to my house and we use the leaves to infuse with gin for our ‘Fig Leaf Fizz’ cocktail.
A zero-waste cocktail that uses apple off-cuts to craft a delicious concoction of apple-infused tequila, cherry bark, aperitif wine and apple oil distilled in our drinks lab.
- 1 oz. Apple Infused Don Julio Anejo
- 1/4 oz. Tanqueray London Dry Gin
- 1 oz. Cherry Bark Infused Lillet Blanc
- 1/4 oz. Apple Oleo Saccharum
- 1/8 oz. St-Germain
- 1/8 oz. Tio Pepe Fino
- Pour the Apple Infused Don Julio, Cherry Bark Infused Lillet Blanc, Tanqueray, St-Germain, Tio Pepe and then Apple Olleo Sacrum into a cocktail tin.
- Then add the ice and stir and strain.
- Pour into a glass, serve immediately.
Alcohol content per serve: 0.9 fl oz.
- Reducing wastage saves on bar costs and forces staff to get creative.
- Designate space and time to focus on making your venue or outputs more sustainable. Change won’t happen without the effort.
- Get your team involved in your sustainability ethos and passion and ask for ideas that could improve your efforts.
- Tie in with your chef or a nearby kitchen that practices sustainable efforts for key insights and learnings.
- Don’t hide your efforts away – get guests involved and shout loud about the efforts you’re making.