AUTHOR: TOM TANNER
A popular bar is a busy place. Bars are fast-moving places where time never stands still – especially in a city as frenetic as Singapore. All the more impressive then that this year’s Worlds 50 Best Bars Sustainable Bar winner, as judged by Food Made Good Global, is based in the heart of this hectic metropolis.
Native has always had sustainability on the menu but it too refuses to stand still, constantly evolving and looking to make more positive changes. A fantastic example of this is the work it’s done with a local team of permaculturalists to construct a rooftop farm in the heart of the city, 10 minutes’ walk from the bar, which provides a significant amount of the bar’s produce (i.e. Pandan, Laksa Leaves, Wood Sorrel).
As well as using these native plants grown a stone’s throw away, Native is also raising awareness around foraging and urban farming through classes and trips offered to the public.
With a policy to source food from within 100km and all spirits from within Asia Pacific, Native is helping to showcase the region’s rich larder and support its growers, producers and farmers.
Conscious of the fact that meat production accounts for more than 15% of all greenhouse gas emissions, Native has made its entire snack menu vegetarian and is experimenting with plant-based proteins as meat alternatives.
The team at Native has devised a number of creative ways of tackling the global issue of plastic and packaging. Used cleaning cloths are sanitised, coated with beeswax and repurposed as foodwraps, allowing the bar to move away from using cling film wraps. Tupperware and re-usable cups for staff are used to avoid any disposables. Dried Lotus leaves are used as coasters, with each coaster lasting about 15-20 turns before it goes into the compost and helps to dry up the compost.
Another shining example of what a bar can do to reduce Its impact on the planet is Native’s switch to renewable energy – it is now fully solar powered.
Almost 11,000km away in Barcelona, Dr Stravinsky is also passionate about provenance, proving that what’s good for the planet is also good for business. Customers enjoy the homemade gin, which if a mixer is called for, will come with home fermented ones – no big name fizzy drinks here. And again, following in the footsteps of Native, Dr Stravinsky is becoming something of a plant pioneer – with only one meat dish on its snack menu. In a cracking example of collaboration, the team here has also partnered with World’s 50 Best Restaurant Mugaritz to create some new dishes for the snack menu using ingredients that have already been used in the cocktails.
Please raise a glass to these bastions of the bar world for making drinking out much less of a guilty pleasure.