Zero-waste cocktails bring sustainability to the bar
The growing zero-waste cocktail movement seeks to conserve natural resources, keep waste out of landfills and use ingredients to their full potential.
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From family-size meals to virtual cooking classes, the past year has inspired untold innovations within the food and drink industry – and none so successful as the carryout cocktail, especially in a classic Mason jar.
Your grandma’s favorite for canning tomatoes has already had a bit of a renaissance in the last 10 years as the go-to glassware for hipster bars and rustic wedding receptions. A few Mason-jar-only restaurants have even popped up over the years.
Then, as states began loosening restrictions on carryout last spring amid months-long restaurant and bar closures, the Mason jar – with its convenient screw-top lid – became a sustainable solution for businesses looking to recapture lost profits and send home a piece of the in-person experience.
But if carryout cocktails are discontinued in your state – or your restaurant doesn’t serve alcohol at all – there are still plenty of ways to leverage your creativity with this classic glassware (our pick: the BPA-free Infinium Mason Jar). Here are some ideas:
Heat and eat meals: Families are busier than ever right now. There’s no time to sit down for a meal, let alone prepare one. For guests on the go, you can offer single- or double-serving portions of your top-selling entrees in Mason jars that can be taken home and quickly reheated (in a separate container) for dinner.
Sweet sips: Does your restaurant have a signature non-alcoholic beverage – like iced tea, lemonade or even a mocktail? Offering these specialties as add-ons can boost average check totals and help maintain guests’ connection to your brand.
Baking kits: For years, fans of your bakery, café or breakfast joint have been clamoring for your famous recipe for pancakes, biscuits or cake. Now they can have it: Fill a Mason jar with all of the dry ingredients, include how-to instructions, and offer it to guests at checkout for a DIY take-home treat.
Stacked salads: Beautifully stacked Mason jar salads and noodle bowls have been all over social media for years. With the wellness trend bigger than ever, pre-portioned, ready-to-eat salads are an easy on-the-go option for the health-conscious crowd.
Bonus tip – Big batch beverages: If the relatively large size (16 oz.) of the average Mason jar would make the cost of your cocktails too expensive, consider creating a takeout-only punch recipe that can be enjoyed in large volumes. Be sure to use ingredients that will maintain their flavor on the drive home without being diluted.