All Slow in Oslo? By no means! A nordic metropolis changing at lightning speed!

Not long ago, MIXOLOGY uncovered the dynamic evolution of the famous nordic captial and it’s bar scene. Just in time for the Oslo Bar Show, we give away some background facts, visions and talk about the greatly versatile program.

For a long time it appeared that the shimmering polar-lights of the bar-scene’s development would never pop up in and around Norwegian territory. Epicenter of creativity and mostly hit by those blinking lights it was mostly and very often to the favor of neighboring metropolises such as Stockholm or Copenhagen; cities that were much more enlightened with liquid intelligence than the shabbily treated capital of Norway, a true late bloomer.

But over time and more and more often over the past few years, some little rays of hope and change have hit the former territory non grata. The reasons for that are as varied as they are comprehensive. If going for costly drinks – high prices in the most expensive city all around Europe are more or less order of the day – then you do it in style. It did not take long until even young fellows started swapping their shots for Old Fashioneds. ‚A bartender is only as good as his clients’ – a very true but simplified saying would state, yet on the evolution of the bar-scenery of Oslo it is quite applicable.

Oslo goes big

Alongside the universally accepted awareness for great drinks and high-quality alcoholic experiences that resulted in the renaissance of several bars around the city, in 2015 the time had finally come to underline this postive evolution with an own bar show that would highlight the nordic qualities for the rest of the world. After a brilliant first Oslo Bar Show in 2015, it’s now time for a second edition. What to expect this year?

Not only will there be a huge variety of different exhibitors with diverse products but as well the who is who of the world wide cocktail community that will hit the city in late June this year. Great and famous bartenders like the former Artesian bar managers Alex Kratena and Simone Caporale, Norwegian headliner Monica Berg, Zdenek Kastanek from 28th Hong Kong Street, Remy Savage and German bar owner Jörg Meyer will give speeches or run masterclasses and workshops that focuse on topics such as ‚the first bar’, ‚innovation of the cocktail menue’, ‚food pairing’ and ‚marketing’. A real first this year, will be the ‚personal blending session’.

Focus on the city

Chris Grøtvedt, co-organiser and bar manager of Oslo’s premium bar ‚The Thief’, tell us ‘the program will be very versatile’. For him and the crew behind the bar show, bringing euphoria right into the core of the city was one of the most important goals. Pursuant to this ambitious idea, numerous pop-up bars, boat trips and closing parties will array the official program over the two days from June 26th to June 27th, 2016.

For better interaction between the Norwegian bar scence and the international bar scene, the team around Grøtvedt has created something truly original. Under the name ‚rematch beeyatch’ the best nordic bartenders are about to compete against international ‘bar celebrities’. More exhibition than competition, ‘it’s going to be all about speed’, Grøtvedt states.

As one of the highlights and concluding events of this year’s Oslo Bar Show the ‚Bar Awards’ stand out the most. Offering a rightful forum for the best of the best within the nordic bar community, not only bartenders but as well innovative concepts and new openings will be awarded the prestigious prize. ‚It was of an extreme importance to us, to combine fun and education. Like infotainment. Something for everyone’, the organizer says fully convinced of his vision.

Norwegian Attitude

Hold your breath, ladies and gents. Quality awareness of the Norwegian is adequately familiar to all of us. The program refers to some very diverse two days packed full with workshops and speeches held and given by sorceres of the art. Despite all the ‚educational initiatives’ the fun and entertainment so often reprehensibly treated with disdain will not be missed out. The Oslo Bar Show 2016 – educative, entertaining and inspiring! You’ll come, won’t you?!


Foto: Photo via Jørn Eriksson, Postproduction: Tim Klöcker.