20 Finalists of Novo Fogo Cachaça Bar Strength Challenge

Novo Fogo Cachaça invited eco-conscious bartenders to enter an original cocktail recipe centering around the theme of sustainable drinking using its thoughtfully produced Bar Strength Organic Silver Cachaça.  

Out of hundreds of entries these TWENTY (20) sustainable and eco-friendly Novo Fogo Bar Strength Cachaça cocktails stood out to the judges. *Winning cocktails will be showcased FIVE (5) per week in no order, for a total of TWENTY (20) winning cocktails.

Here are the 20 Finalists in Novo Fogo Cachaça Bar Strength Challenge:

Berylly Jaded

Created by Karla Green

Libélula Rosa: My Pink Dragonfly

Created by Maxwell Berlin

The Lorax

Created by Leanne Favre

Everything With Purpose

Created by Lance Bowman

Created by A.J. Goodrich

The Phoenix

Created by Taylor Lax

La Madrugada

Created by Karla Green

Coco Novo

Created by Angela Wood

Everything But The Kitchen Sink

Created by Joan Villanueva

Vitamin Sea

Created by Gary Schneck

The Protégé Effect

Created by Gabriela Holzer

Eu Gosto De você

Created by Pedro Nivar

Mercy Mercy Me

Created by Paula Lukas

The Tale of Tucupi and the Night-Sun King

Created by Maxwell Berlin

Extra-Curricular Activities

Created by Colleen Hughes

Serra Do Mar

Created by Jilson Ramos

Clean Bean

Created by Christopher Devern

The Amazon Always Wins

Created by Clint Spotleson

Leap of Fortune

Created by J.A. Harrison

We Belong Together

Created by Keyatta Parker

Thank you to all the bartenders who participated. Stay tuned for the announcement of the Final 10 Bartenders chosen to compete for the Grand Prize trip to Brazil coming in August, 22.

Berylly Jaded

Created by Karla Green

Jefferson, IN


This cocktail was all about using what I had on hand. I had some fruits that were ripe and ready to turn so I juiced them separately. The softer vegetal notes of honey dew complement the Cachaca and worked to enhance this profile further by adding an aquavit with strong dill and elderflower notes as well as Green Chartreuse which provided enough sugar content, I didn’t need to add any. I had some milk on hand and am really fascinated by the primitive techniques of fat or milk washing cocktails (as we know them today). The result reminded me of milky green precious gemstones like beryl, tourmaline, and jade. In today’s hyper-connected environment, it’s easy to get discouraged by the bombardment of depressing or negative news. I refuse to let those messages determine my outlook on the world. Berylly Jaded is all about keeping the faith, staying grounded and positive in a perpetually anxious world. “Don’t be a hard rock when you really are a gem.” -Lauryn Hill


  • 1 ½ oz Novo Fogo Organic Bar Strength Silver Cachaca
  • Whole Milk to clarify
  • .66 oz Green Chartreuse
  • ½ oz Spirits Direct Stockholm Small Batch aquavit
  • Juice one small lime
  • Juice ripe pineapple spear or juice ripe 1/2 large honeydew melon
  • Basil blossom or another foraged herb (for garnish)

Preparation: Run the honey dew and pineapple through a juicer to extract as much juice as possible. Juice separately. Save the pulp for baking or send to compost pile. To minimize electricity usage, pineapple and honeydew can be muddled, but juice yield is less. Adjust liquor specs Juice from the small lime should yield about .75 oz. Total juice yield is approximately 5-6 oz. To achieve that milky green precious-stone effect, clarify the cocktail by pouring all the combination of spirits and juices slowly into about 2.5 oz. of whole milk. Place in fridge for a few hours (overnight is best). Strain larger curds through reusable cheesecloth several times. For a final strain, one compostable unbleached coffee filter is sufficient to remove any residual smaller curds.

Everything With Purpose

Created by Lance Bowman

Chicago, IL


One of the best pieces of advice I’ve been given was remarkably simple: “Do everything with purpose.” The reason this applies so much to me, especially in this case, is that years ago in my earlier days of delving into sustainable cocktail practices I would often just use a sustainable technique or ingredient for the sake of doing something sustainable and losing sight of making a focused, purposeful, and delicious cocktail. We should all embrace sustainability and use a deft hand in implementing these practices to assure we make something that is sustainable, delicious, and as easy as possible to execute. I set about making a sustainable, sublime, and relatively simple Novo Fogo Cocktail. With the new Bar Strength Silver expression already having beautiful ripe fruit notes and spice character I wanted to build upon that and developed a beautiful cordial with clementine, pineapple, and second steep chamomile, and some baking spices. I use a good amount of chamomile in my beverage program already (along with drinking a pot of it almost daily) and one thing most people don’t realize is that you can use tea more than once. Utilizing it in the cordial making process we still get those beautiful floral chamomile flavors. To sweeten the cordial, I went for one of the most sustainable ingredients possible: local honey. Aside from the sustainability aspect it also lends that honeyed richness that perfectly plays against the fruit, chamomile, and cachaca. Some cognac and sherry liven it up, increases shelf life, and adds depth, lending us a beautiful and versatile cordial, that also gives us a tasty edible garnish, and is almost no waste, we also use the fronds from the pineapple to add some visual wow factor to the cocktail. With the cordial adding sweetness we need acid to balance it and I did this by acid adjusting the cordial, with a “stuice” made by combining fresh lime juice and citrus stock made from the waste lime hulls leftover from juicing. Citrus stock can be a great tool, but let’s be honest, a lot of it isn’t great and a lot of the recipes out there take way more time than necessary. I figured there had to be a better way to make stock and found a way that not only tastes better but also eliminates the energy-wasting reduction step most recipes utilize. When blended with fresh juice it gives us a product that is much more sustainable than fresh lime juice but still maintains almost all the character of fresh juice and is far more sustainable. A couple dashes of bitters round out the cocktail make for a low-touch and easy execute cocktail, that is still distinctively a Novo Fogo cocktail through and through. Everything with purpose is a mantra we should all apply to everything we do as hospitality professionals and bartenders, from ingredient selection to sustainability, ease of execution of a cocktail behind the bar, and hospitality itself. It’s a mantra I try to follow every day and have put fully into this cocktail, hence, “Everything with purpose.”


  • 2 oz Novo Fogo Bar Strength Silver Cachaca
  • 2 oz Acid Adjusted and Fortified Spiced Pineapple, Clementine, and Chamomile Honey Cordial*
  • Lime Stuice**
  • 2 dashes Bittermen’s Elemakule Tiki

Preparation: Combine all ingredients in a shaker tin, add crushed ice and briefly shake, pour cocktail and crushed ice directly from the tin into a double old-fashioned glass. Top with fresh crushed ice, garnish with a reusable cocktail pick of candied pineapple and clementine reserved from making cordial, and a reusable straw *Cordial and Garnish: Ingredients: 1-quart cubed pineapple (save fronds and skin) 1.75 lb quartered clementine and their peels 4 tbsp chamomile 1tbsp Saigon Cinnamon Chips 1/4tsp whole cloves 1/4 tsp sea salt, 2 quarts local honey, 1 quart water Volume of Lime Stuice, 4 oz Augier L’Oceanique Cognac, 2oz Amontillado Sherry Method: Combine all ingredients except cognac and sherry in a pot and bring to a boil while stirring to dissolve honey, reduce heat and simmer covered for 30 minutes. Remove from heat strain, cool liquid, and add an equal volume of 50/50 fresh lime juice and lime stock, then add cognac and sherry. Transfer fruit to a dehydrator for 3 hours or until fruit is slightly tacky, reserving for garnish (alternatively you can use an oven at low heat). Use skins to make tepache or compost. Garnish with candied pineapple and mandarin reserved from making cordial and trimmed pineapple fronds. **Lime Stuice: Ingredients: Fresh Lime Juice Juiced Lime Hulls Hot Water Fair-Trade Palm Sugar Citric Acid Powder Malic Acid Powder Method: Fill an 8 qt cambro to the 6-quart line and fill with enough hot (140-degree F) Water to fully cover and let steep for 10 minutes, strain water into a stock pot and bring to a boil. Add in lime hulls and blanch for 3 ½ minutes. Remove from heat, strain through a fine chinois and measure volume. Add by volume to liquid 7.5% fair trade palm sugar, 2.5% Citric Acid, and 1.5% Malic Acid (for example per 1 liter of liquid: 75 grams sugar, 25 grams citric acid, and 15 grams malic acid) and stir to dissolve. Cool and mix 50/50 with fresh lime juice. Compost the lime hulls for zero waste.

A.J. Goodrich

Los Angeles, CA


I wanted to create something bold, tropical, and funky in a way that reused the major ingredients involved. The eponymous 1980 funk song, by Zapp, was voted by Billboard Magazine as the number one funkiest song of all time but it also speaks to how the cocktail itself is environmentally friendly. I literally got more bounce to the ounce in my drink by recycling the ingredients in several ways. I was inspired by Novo Fogo’s own mission of human and environmental sustainability, as a carbon negative company with a zero-waste distillery, to create a virtually zero-waste cocktail. Thinking about environmental impact from top to bottom, I used only local, organic, and sustainable products that would bolster the flavor profile of Bar Strength Organic Silver Cachaca and make it shine. My recipe calls for both pineapple and strawberry juice. Juicing both in a centrifugal juicer, I saved the pulp and refuse, as well as the pineapple core, skins, and strawberry tops to create a homemade pineapple strawberry Tepache, which is a traditional Mexican fizzy drink that is basically like a young fruit wine with a low 2-4% ABV. I then used as a spritz topper, I also used local, organic, and sustainably farmed honey, instead of the traditional sugar in Tepache, to avoid the environmental issues of refined sugar. For my main sweetener, I used date syrup—local, 100% organic, and sustainably made in California. Date syrup production has a low carbon footprint and causes no known environmental damage to air, water, land, and soil. It’s also significantly healthier than sugar, and is packed with antioxidants, potassium, magnesium, iron, and phosphorus. To avoid the issue of waste by using only citrus juice and not the rest of the fruit, I used Citric Acid to balance my cocktail. Citric acid poses little risk to the environment, is naturally occurring, and biodegradable. I added .5 oz. of Amaro Angeleno to give it a bit more heft and complexity, while still letting Novo Fogo’s Bar Strength Silver Cachaca be the star of the show. Amaro Angeleno is made an hour from my house. I wanted to avoid a big carbon footprint with shipping and distribution. They also are committed to sustainable agricultural practices, using local, wildcrafted sources. Finally, I replanted the stem of the pineapple. With the strained, fermented Tepache refuse, as well as any other refuse (basically just the plucked unused pineapple leaves), I used the Bokashi method of composting to create a nutrient-rich tea to fertilize my baby pineapple. Any other remains can be ground as compost for your garden. You don’t just get a cocktail, you get a new tropical houseplant, too! “More Bounce to the Ounce,” may be an environmentally friendly cocktail that highlights Novo Fogo Bar Strength Silver Cachaca, but it’s also just big, bold, fun, and funky. Everything you could want in a glass. Cheers!


  • 1 1/2 oz. Novo Fogo Bar Strength Silver Cachaça
  • 1 1/2 oz. Pineapple Juice
  • 1/4 tsp. Citric Acid
  • 1/2 oz. Amaro Angeleno
  • Pineapple Strawberry Tepache*
  • 3/4 oz. Strawberry Date Syrup**

Preparation:  Shake and strain into Collins Glass with regular block ice. Top with Homemade *Pineapple Strawberry Tepache: Cut tops of strawberries off wash thoroughly and add to a large pot Juice strawberries (2 cartons) in a centrifugal juicer (save juice for syrup later) Take leftover pulp and add to large pot, along with the stems. Cut top of pineapple off, about 2 inches below the stem (save for later) Cut off bottom, sides, wash thoroughly, and add to large pot. Cut pineapple into chunks as you normally would Juice pineapple chunks in a centrifugal juicer (save juice for cocktail recipe) Put core into the large pot. Save a few strawberry and pineapple slices for garnish! Add to the large pot: 6 cups of filtered water, 1 cup of local organic sustainable honey, 2 cinnamon sticks, 6 cloves. Cover pot lightly with a kitchen towel, let sit out at room temperature for 2-3 days (works best at 77-86 degrees Fahrenheit) Once mixture begins to ferment, spoon off white foam at the top of the pot. Strain out any solids (save for later) Bottle and refrigerate remaining **Pineapple Strawberry Tepache Strawberry Date Syrup: Add 1 part strawberry juice to 2 parts organic local date syrup Store and refrigerate. To Replant Pineapple: Twist off stem at the base Remove lower half of leaves, gently pulling off at the base, saving 6-12 leaves at the center Add discarded leaves and remainder of pineapple top to your Bokashi compost bucket Add strained out Tepache solids/remainder to your Bokashi compost bucket Add any other organic compostable material you may have to your Bokashi bucket, if desired Let pineapple stem dry out for 2 days, then sit it in a shallow glass of water up to the stem until roots start to sprout, changing the water every few days (roots in about 2 weeks) Plant sprouting stem in a 10 inch pot with potting soil. Fertilize with liquid “Bokashi Tea” from the bottom of your compost bucket as solids break down. The plant will grow like an indoor moderate tropical houseplant and can be moved outdoors in warm weather, doesn’t need to much water, just when soil dries out You can remove any “suckers” and plant them too to grow more! Fruit will mature in 2-3 years Any remaining compost can be ground up and added to your garden or favorite houseplant as a fertilizer! Garnish with Pineapple Leaves, Strawberry and Pineapple Slices (Save the leaves for compost when you’re done!)

Coco Novo

Angela Wood

Tampa, FL


I wanted to create a cocktail that was made from fresh ingredients that tastes great and does not include ingredients with fake colorings and products that do not support sustainability as well. I personally love cachaca and the whole concept of Novo Fogo really inspired me to think outside of the box. Upon studying its history and where it comes from, I learned that Brazil is one of the top four places in the world for coconut production. So, using a fruit that is abundant and grown locally was a go to for me. I also included banana because the peels are perfect for composts or can even be used to make things like an Oleo Saccharum which is also fantastic for no waste and sustainability! I also wanted to use the coconut in its entirety so there is no waste or glassware to wash and in all honesty, it was really fun to make. I had never made simple syrup out of coconut water before but after doing so, it will be one of my go to flavorings from now on when working of craft tiki cocktails. I also wanted to include palm sugar because it is made from the sap in coconut trees and is a perfect addition for this concept. I really enjoyed making this and I appreciate the thoughtfulness of this product and I am definitely going to be more conscience of myself and how I can work more cleanly and do my part to encourage environmentally-friendly drinking.


  • 1 ½ oz of Novo Fogo Bar strength Cachaca
  • 2 oz of coconut water and palm sugar syrup with pulp
  • ½ banana
  • 2oz of coconut puree (I used Coconut Real)
  • 1 oz of fresh lime sour
  • 1 tsp of the heavy whipped cream (optional but suggested)
  • Toasted sweetened coconut shavings (for garnish)
  • Sweetened whipped heavy cream (for topping)

Preparation: Add all ingredients except the toasted coconut shavings to a blender and blend until frothy Add small shaker worth of ice and blend again until smooth. Pour frozen cocktail into the coconut shell and top with loads of whipped heavy cream and sprinkle with the toasted sweetened coconut shavings. To make the coconut water and palm sugar syrup: open and drain a large green coconut (reserve liquid and soft pulp for syrup and make a “cup” out of the shell to serve cocktail in). Spoon out soft coco pulp and add to reserved liquid. Clean shell and cut around edges and wipe a juicy lime around cut edges for an attractive vessel and citrus smell to make coconut and palm sugar syrup; Bring reserved liquid and 3oz block of palm sugar to a small sauce pan to make palm sugar syrup. I added extra natural pressed coconut water (coco joy brand) to about 4 oz because the palm sugar is very sweet. Garnish with sweetened whipped heavy cream (topping) and Toasted sweetened coconut shavings. *Glassware: Large green coconut shell shaved flat bottom and cleaned after draining and reserving water and soft pulp for cocktail.

Everything But the Kitchen Sink

Joan Villanueva

San Antonio, TX


The idea for this cocktail revolves around creating syrups with items that would end up in the trash, all the ingredients used in the cocktail are composted after the syrups are created to reduce their environmental impact. Both the fat wash and the syrups made for this cocktail are crafted with materials that can be found in any home’s kitchen and are generally just discarded as trash without considering another use for them before being disposed of. The name everything but the kitchen sink makes a reference to the fact that all the ingredients used to make the cocktail can be found in any kitchen and that you can always up-cycle most food scraps before they end up being tossed away or in the kitchen sink. Also, the bacon fat left from fat washing the cachaça can be used on bread before toasting it.


  • 2 oz Bacon Washed Novo Fogo Cachaça*
  • 1 1/2 oz Lime Juice
  • 3/4 oz Pear Syrup**
  • 3/4 oz Pineapple-Cinnamon Oleo***
  • 3 dashes Scrappy’s Cardamom bitters

Preparation: Add all ingredients to shaker tin. Add ice and shake. Strain over large rock into rocks glass. Garnish with Sage sprigs and Star Anise pod *Bacon Washed Novo Fogo Cachaça: Add 16 oz Novo Fogo Cachaça Bar Strength, 4 ounces Rendered Bacon Fat in a container that can be sealed tight mix all ingredients and close tightly. Shake container until contents mix. Place container in freezer and allow bacon fat to freeze. Remove container from freezer and separate fat and liquid using a fine mesh strainer. Transfer to new container label and date Note: Bacon Fat is now cachaça flavored and can be used to grill toast **Pear Syrup Recipe: Pulp from 3 juiced pears 4 ounces water 6 ounces of sugar 1 pinch of salt, add all pear pulp and water to small sauce pan and heat over low medium heat until simmer. Reduce heat and stir sugar into mixture, 3. Stir until sugar is fully dissolved and let mixture cool down. Strain mixture with sieve. Compost remaining pulp from mixture. *** Pineapple cinnamon Oleo: Skin from one pineapple, 3 cinnamon sticks, 1 cup of sugar, 1 pinch of salt. Add all ingredients to container and seal tightly. Let mixture sit overnight. Strain contents and transfer syrup to airtight container. Compost remaining pineapple and cinnamon sticks. Garnish with sage sprigs and star anise.

The post 20 Finalists of Novo Fogo Cachaça Bar Strength Challenge appeared first on Chilled Magazine.

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