[:en]The Diageo Reserve World Class, the international bartending competition established by Diageo, saw the triumph this year of the Italian Orlando Marzo, with the Lûmé of Melbourne. The event, in addition to crowning the best bartender according to Diageo, has always been an important moment of reflection on future trends in global mixology, many of which come to light for the first time during the competition.
How will we drink in 2019? What will be the most ordered drinks and what are the most popular trends for next year?
We had already anticipated some of these in the latest edition of MT Magazine, which between Turin, Milan, Bologna, Florence and Rome constituted an excellent observatory not only on contemporaneity but also on the future of Italian cocktail making, which it is no coincidence that it will confirm, according Diageo, a trend Low Alcohol for 2019. Most of our bartenders had already expressed their opinion on the matter, confirming the public's ever-increasing attention to health issues and, consequently, low alcohol consumption, which among other things also allows for a more direct approach to the nuances that each cocktail expresses in its meeting of flavors. Excessive doses of alcohol, in addition to being dangerous, prevent us from fully understanding the philosophy underlying the combinations of which each drink is the result, risking covering tastes and aromas, flattening the final mix. For an increasingly cultured public attentive to the quality and history of what they drink, this risk has become, at least during 2018, something intolerable, with all due respect to those who in the 90s invented cocktails based on three or more spirits that had the sole purpose of stunning those who ordered them.
The second trend, also partially anticipated by MT Magazine during the Mix Contest Italy Tour, the traveling competition between bartenders that runs along the entire Peninsula, was called #MyCocktail and it is none other than the ever-growing influence of "famous" consumers, who through social media enhance the more aesthetic aspect of the drink, the care for which is now comparable to that which great chefs put into gastronomic preparations. It is no coincidence that one of the criteria with which the bartenders are judged at the Mix Contest Italy Tour is precisely that of the aesthetics of the cocktail, which, although it always remains subordinate to the taste, the quality of the raw material and its processing, is now a element of indisputable relevance in the creation of any drink.
Finally, the last line that according to Diageo will characterize the 2019 mixology will be that of sustainability, with the progressive disappearance of all those elements that are complementary to cocktails but harmful to the environment, first and foremost plastic straws or paper napkins. Also in this case, many of the cocktail bars present in MT Magazine had expressed themselves favorably, confirming that they wanted to eliminate within a few months (or had already eliminated) all those accessories or preparations that went against the criteria of environmental sustainability, bordering on even in some cases the concept of "reuse" of generally discarded raw materials, through processes often similar to those of cooking which allow new approaches to new flavours, aromas and consistencies within a drink.
If we had to define the mixology of 2019 in just one word, that would be "awareness", of quality, health, eco-sustainability and beauty. A perfect mix that will give rise to a year certainly full of surprises or confirmations thanks also to Diageo and all those who, in addition to bringing the quality of the raw material to levels of excellence, are also involved in studying and institutionalizing an ancient art that is slowly taking back the space it deserves at various levels.[:]