Canned cocktails feel like the intersection of two distinct trends. They're what you get when you take the spritzy, easygoing flavours – and convenient portability factor – of hard seltzers; and combine them with the complexity and booze know-how of bottled cocktails. And despite the fact that we're entering the chilliest part of the year, more and more players are jumping into the canned cocktail space – they'll be angling for prime position in the long lead-in to summer.
Here are some canned cocktails we're loving right now.
Sydney-based gin distillery Archie Rose has been in the canned cocktail game for a good while now, and that experience shows. There are four flavours, ranging from a classic gin and tonic, to a vodka mango spritz with lime and chilli, to a gin and blackberry spritz with lemon myrtle and juniper. As with Archie Rose's gins, the focus here is on Australian ingredients and botanicals.
Curatif is a Melbourne-based company that works with some of the best bars and distilleries around to develop unique canned cocktails. Unlike many of the current canned cocktails on the market – which are lighter, usually fizzy, and geared towards the seltzer-drinking market – Curatif's cocktails are strong, real-deal drinks. They're cocktails. In a can. The range includes an espresso martini made with Archie Rose, a Tommy's Margarita made with Tequila Tromba and a Mai Tai by Sydney tiki bar Jacoby's.
Who doesn't love a mimosa? Star of boozy brunches, ice-breaker at weddings around the world. There's just something timeless about sparkling wine and chilled orange juice. Mymosa is a new Queensland-based brand that's gone ahead and put Mimosas in a can. Bring a four-pack to your next get-together to class up (or class down) proceedings.
Moon Dog was one of the first Australian breweries to get in on the seltzer craze a couple of years ago, and now it's one of the first cabs off the canned cocktail rank. The range has been designed by Moon Dog's head drinks impresario, Chris Hysted-Adams – former head bartender at Melbourne cocktail icon Black Pearl. So far there are only two flavours: passionfruit, yellow peach and yuzu; and blood orange, finger lime and agave. Both are refreshing and just the right side of sweet.
IZZ! is a new canned cocktail brand by Australian seltzer company Saintly Beverage Co, which explains why iZZ! has a focus on all things fizz. There are two fruity flavours to choose from: Watermelon Margarita and Passionfruit Mojito. Both are sweet (but not too sweet), and go down a treat.
Poor Toms is another Sydney-based gin distiller doing big things in the canned cocktail world. Its Negroni spritzes are particularly worthwhile – taking all of the light and easy traits of a spritz, and combining it with the rich bitterness of a Negroni. Cracking stuff. There are also some classic cans of gin and tonic, too.
This is a New Zealand-based canned cocktail operation that's just gotten to our side of the ditch. There are three flavours: peach and nectarine; apple, pear and raspberry; and guava and lime. The retro-branded cans are a good time, and all three flavours go down very smoothly.