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Raise a Toast (Again!) to Asia’s Most Sustainable Bar at Four Seasons Hotel Kuala Lumpur

Bar Trigona wins top honours for its sustainability efforts, from locally grown ingredients to a low-carbon spirits program

April 23, 2020,
Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia

For the second year in a row, Bar Trigona at Four Seasons Hotel Kuala Lumpur has taken home the Ketel One Sustainable Bar Award, announced on April 23, 2020 in the prestigious Asia’s 50 Best Bars 2020 list. The accolade recognises Bar Trigona’s unparalleled commitment to sustainability, once again placing it among Asia’s top cocktail trailblazers.

Helmed by Head Bartender Ashish Sharma, this innovative Four Seasons bar celebrates Malaysia’s natural abundance in every delectable sip, sourcing ingredients directly from small farmers and artisanal producers. Not only that, the mixology team also uses a root-to-shoot approach to ensure minimum wastage. As Ashish notes, “Nearly every part of the plant has a use, even the husks and shells.”

Sip a New, Fruit-Inspired Menu

The team at Bar Trigona is constantly experimenting with ways to combine their love for great drinks with their passion for the planet. “We see sustainability as an ongoing journey,” says Ashish. With a reimagined menu on the horizon, aficionados can explore a newly minted selection of cocktails, designed around exotic and everyday fruits. Taste a fascinating story in each creative concoction, from tales of jackfruit and watermelon to mythologies of mango and Mandarin orange.

“So much good produce gets wasted because consumers have an unrealistic idea of what is beautiful and what is ugly,” explains Ashish. “With this menu, our focus is on redefining the aesthetics of fruit.” Collaborating with four local farmers, the bartending team will extract and use the true essence of each fruit – its taste, colour, fragrance and texture – regardless of outward appearance.

The Art of Local Honey

Among all the homegrown ingredients on the menu, the star is undoubtedly trigona honey – the inspiration behind the bar’s name. Made by stingless bees, native to the Malaysian countryside, this highly-prized honey marries sweet and sour notes into a distinctive flavour profile. Guests can join Bar Trigona’s efforts to preserve local bee habitats by “adopting” a hive at Dino Kelulut Organic Farm in Negeri Sembilan. Each adopter receives six jars of wild honey, harvested from their very own beehive, along with a bottle of bee propolis, prized for its healing properties.

Going Green Behind the Bar

On January 1 this year, Bar Trigona switched over to a low-carbon spirits program, becoming the first bar to do so in Kuala Lumpur. ecoSPIRITS is an innovative technology that dramatically minimises spirits packaging and transport, thereby reducing the carbon footprint by up to 80 percent. In other words, every cocktail or spirit poured through ecoSPIRITS saves 30 grams of carbon emissions.

Of winning the Ketel One Sustainable Bar Award, Ashish says, “It rewards the hard work of my team who are truly passionate about operating sustainably. It’s great to have some positive news in this difficult period.”

Bar Trigona will welcome guests back later this summer with its brand-new, fruit-infused menu. Until then, the award-winning bartenders will be sharing their favourite DIY cocktail recipes on Bar Trigona's Instagram.