A new take

The United States Bartenders’ Guild (USBG) challenged 17 of the world’s best bartenders to compete against each other to create an original version of a Pina Colada recipe at the Tales of the Cocktail event in New Orleans. Sponsored by Bacardi and In the Mix Magazine, the competition was judged by a group of technical and tasting cocktail authorities based on appearance, aroma, balance of flavors, taste, creativity, technical skills, presentation and the overall appeal of character. All participants were required to use rum as the base spirit. The first place judges’ choice was Debbi Peek from Chicago with her cocktail, “No Passport Required.” The first place people’s choice went to Matt Meyers from Las Vegas with his cocktail, “Thai Pina Colada.”


Bicycle book

New Belgium Brewing published a book that celebrates its traveling bike festival. The book, “Tour de Fat: Sights, Sounds, Feelings, Flavors,” is a first-person narrative from the cyclists, carnies, performers and car swappers who participated in the event during the last 11 years. With stops in 13 cities throughout the summer and fall, the bike tour raises money for non-profits through beer sales and challenges one driver from every city to give up their car for a year in exchange for a bicycle. This season, the Tour de Fat is expected to surpass $2 million raised for bike advocacy since the program’s inception.


Find Your Beach

Corona Extra introduced a new TV commercial as part of its Find Your Beach campaign. The commercial, called “Commuters,” features a group of friends enjoying a bucket of Coronas on a beach when an unexpected flurry of commuters rushes into the frame. The camera then shifts perspective to reveal that the small group actually is drinking at a patio bar in the city as they watch commuters hurry toward public transportation after work. A final flip back to the beach symbolizes that these friends have broken away from that chaos and transitioned into a relaxed Corona state of mind after a hard day of work, the company says. The spot closes on the beach with the line, “Find Your Beach.”


Nature sweepstakes

Nestlé Waters North America Inc.’s recent Better Things in Life survey found that 95 percent of Americans consider spending time in nature among the best things life has to offer, and 98 percent of Americans considered visiting America’s national parks one of the best ways to enjoy nature. However, a majority of Americans feel they do not have enough time to enjoy nature and that spending time enjoying life’s pleasures takes a backseat to work and other day-to-day responsibilities, the survey reported. To help Americans make time for nature and the things they find rewarding, Nestlé Waters launched its Better Things in Life sweepstakes for each of its six regional spring water brands. By visiting the website for the spring water brand in their region before Nov. 30, consumers can enter for a chance to win a grand prize trip for four to their choice of 394 U.S. national parks along with hundreds of other prizes, including tickets to theme parks and local sporting events.


Vending machine contest

The National Automatic Merchandising Association launched a national, eight-month-long “Vend.Love.Win” Facebook contest geared to generation Y. The contest invites vending machine fans to post photos and videos of their favorite vending machines or vended products to the Vend.Love.Win Facebook page for a chance to win prizes, including $200 for themselves or a charity, and a $5,000 grand prize. The Facebook contest also includes “Vend This” and “Vend Here” tabs that allow consumers to give direct feedback to the vending industry regarding products they’d like to see in vending machines and where they would like vending machines to be located.


Superfruit advertising

Veev Acai Spirit launched an outdoor advertising campaign inviting consumers to “Wake Up Your Tastebuds” and “Quench Your Thirst for Good.” Created by the agency Slingshot and appearing in Chicago, Dallas, Atlanta and Seattle, the campaign is designed to inform consumers about the growth of superfruit flavors in spirits. The campaign calls out the brand’s growth in fine, casual and specialty dining restaurants, the company says.