Above: Rays In The Bar illustration by Pez and Pencil for The Cocktail Lovers

Did you know that 2015 is the International Year of Light? Nope, neither did we until we started working on the latest issue of The Cocktail Lovers magazine. But isn’t it apt that at the same time that scientists are looking at advances in fibre optics, energy technology and all kinds of astronomy shenanigans, the world of drinks is lightening up as well?

Think about it. Bars are creeping away from the dark, sombre set-ups and going for lighter, brighter environments, low and non-alcoholic drinks are making more of an impact on menus and the general mood in drinking establishments is becoming lighter as a result.

Coincidence? We think not.

Illustration: Melanie Milne @mellmadedesign for The Cocktail Lovers

In issue 16 of The Cocktail Lovers magazine we talk to Charlie Ainsbury and Luke Ashton about ‘This Must Be The Place, their refreshingly light-filled bar in Sydney; ask five movers and shakers including Alex Kratena to share a lightbulb moment in their careers with us, and talk to the Portman Group about the drinks industry pledge to remove one billion units of alcohol in the UK by the end of the year.

gaz regan sheds light on the subject too, as does François Monti who looks at the surge in popularity of vermouth around the globe while Ben Norum zones in on bars keeping things on the light side in London. Marian Beke explains how getting creative with lighter abv drinks is the way for bartenders to go and pilates expert Marcia Polas shares tips on how to combat the heaviness associated with standing on your feet all day and night.

Have you seen the light yet? If you’re not quite ready to make the switch, don’t worry, we’ve got plenty more to keep you occupied including a visit to Cyprus to check out Lost + Found Drinkery, Tales from Tales of the Cocktail and our pick of the best bars in Barcelona.

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