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Three big cocktail trends that will change the way we drink in 2021 and beyond

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Judges L-R Ago Perrone and Hannah Lanfear listen to a presentation for the Johnnie Walker Hidden Highball Challenge at the World Class Bartender of the Year Global Finals 2021

LONDON, UK – As 50 of the world’s best bartenders battle it out to be crowned the world’s best bartender, global leader in beverage alcohol, Diageo, has brought together some of the leading industry figures to reveal the trends and experiences it believes will shape the future of drinks experiences worldwide. From partnerships with Pinterest to inspire your next cocktail, to leveraging the latest AR technology to make world class drinks in the comfort of your own home, the future of socialising looks full of new ideas, aiming to inspire people to drink better around the world.

To bring the trends to life Diageo has opened the virtual doors to a Taste of the Future experience: https://www.diageo.com/tasteofthefuture/.

Simon Earley, Head of Diageo World Class, said: “Each year we work with the world’s best bartenders and innovators to discover the future of world class drinks. The past year has seen extraordinary innovation and creativity within cocktail culture; we want to celebrate that and give everyone a taste of what’s next. A Taste of the Future is a fully interactive virtual space, allowing everyone to explore for themselves some of the near-future partnerships appearing at home or in a bar near them soon.”

Among other things, the virtual space sees visitors able to use Pinterest to answer a series of trend-based questions and as a result find a Pin board, including a cocktail match, completely personalised to their taste; explore how using advanced augmented reality technology via a phone or tablet can create a perfectly measured Johnnie Walker Highball and unlock the next generation of drinks personalisation on a Ketel One Espresso Martini with a unique selfie, using Ripples printed cocktail technology.

But don’t just take our word for it, drinks enthusiasts can also hear leading drinks innovators Ryan Chetiyawardana (Mr Lyan), Tim Philips-Johansson (World Class Winner 2012 /Johnnie Walker Global Brand Ambassador), Benni Lickfett (Diageo’s Global Head of Digital Innovation) and Anna Sudbury (Senior Partner Manager at Pinterest) discuss how elements such as tech and sustainability are central to the future of our drinks experiences in an exclusive Taste of the Future and Johnnie Walker panel ‘The Future of Social Culture’.

Benni Lickfett, Diageo’s Global Head of Digital Innovation, said: “There is a huge amount of passion in our industry, with a lot of the magic happening at the intersection of drinks, food, hospitality, tech and media. At Diageo we collaborate with different partners like Pinterest to really understand their insights and perspectives on how consumer behaviour is shifting, allowing us to focus on experimenting, getting things into market and to really be ahead of the curve.”

Discussing the role of sustainability in future bar experiences, Ryan Chetiyawardana, sustainability trailblazer and Johnnie Walker partner, added, “There has been a real moment of reflection for the trade over the past 18 months, be it connections to consumers; digital tools and sometimes purely operational shifts. The idea of human connection has become so important – people have been craving something new and exploring new horizons. It’s helped people reassess what’s important and fast-tracked concerns such as sustainability. With people increasingly wanting to find the balance between a luxury experience and protecting the planet – there’s a lot to be optimistic about.”