Is The Savoy’s Beaufort Bar Sustainable?

Can cocktails be sustainable? Can a decadent drink do good for the planet? Georgina Wilson-Powell books into the Beaufort Bar to find out.

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Being ushered into the hallowed, hushed, dimly lit space in The Savoy’s Beaufort Bar feels like stepping back in time.

Not to the Prohibition era or the swinging ’20s but to a few years ago pre-pandemic, when I used to routinely review five star cocktails bars in the many roles I had pre-pebble. When sustainability wasn’t on my horizon, like many of us.

But times change, we’re more aware, we want to avert the Climate Emergency.

As does, believe it or not, most luxurious hotels. After all, there are no guests on a dead planet.

Looking up at the iconic Savoy entrance, on a rare night out in London, it’s sort of surprising to discover that this iconic five star hotel has been working hard behind the scenes to be a part of the Green Key Global Eco-Rating Program 2020 from Five Green Keys and has won many awards for being an eco-friendly hotel over the years.

(Albeit, these aren’t consistent. I’m sure there’s a long way to go in some areas of the hotel – no luxury hotel can be 100% sustainable of course and I would welcome many more moves to tackle guest overconsumption but.. for today, our focus is the Beaufort Bar.)

What is The Beaufort Bar?

Hidden away in The Savoy, is a the perfect respite from busy crowds, new normal level faff and blustery autumn days.

The Beaufort Bar envelopes each guest like a welcome hug, its jet black and gold decor absorbing anything that’s annoying you and all sense of time.

The 1920s decor takes us back to a time when movie stars sat at the bar, drama and gossip drifted between the tables and everything seemed more glamourous. It’s dramatic, romantic, a black hole in the very best way.

The drinks

The reason we’re here is to taste the hotel’s new seasonal The Co-Naissance cocktail designed to reduce carbon emissions and the product of a more circular approach to cocktail ingredients.

It has been created from foraged and locally sourced seasonal ingredients, elderflower from Little Venice, fig leaves from Embankment Gardens and Portobello Gin.

All of these are transported and stored using a closed loop system means that cocktail eliminates more than 90% of the carbon emissions footprint of normal cocktails.

It also uses re-carbonated Champagne from across the hotel’s outlets that would normally have been discarded (you’d never know).

Anyone who knows me well, knows I love a good cocktail.

Not the fluro sweet stuff, piled with sugar but the Prohibition era, legendary storied drinks developed as reactions to their times.

During lockdown, I spent many weekends perfecting my mixologist impression…I also keep score of the best Aviation cocktails (my favourite) across London and I’m happy to report that the Co-Naissance is delicious.

Delicate, floral and with more of a kick than a Kir Royale or Bellini, this sparkling glass takes me back to easier times, without the guilt. it’s more-is without being overly sour or sickly.

I blame it for my shoulder shaking laughter that startled our next table, giddy as I was to be out and enjoying a friend’s company in real life.

Try one of these sustainable cocktail recipes.

Delicate, floral and with more of a kick than a Kir Royale or Bellini, this sparkling glass takes me back to easier times

The sustainable bit

Working with ecoSPIRITSTM – a new low waste, low carbon spirits technology, which saves at least 550 grams of carbon emissions with each bottle eliminated, The Savoy is phasing out spirits bottles.

Elsewhere in the hotel, The Savoy have an onsite onsite table-water bottling plant, rather than buying in bottled water to serve.

Food waste and used kitchen oil are recycled to renewable energy and the bars’ natural corks are recycled by a local school to craft items that in turn are sold to raise charitable funds.

Read more about The Savoy’s sustainable initiatives here.

There’s a long way to go before iconic hotels like The Savoy are carbon positive or carbon neutral but increasing the ways guests can vote with their pocket, and their tastebuds seems like a galvanising approach to play a part in the UK’s move to Net Zero.

Book your drink at The Beautfort Bar here.

Want other eco-friendly places in London to try?

Or check out our eco-friendly hotel reviews.