Ready-to-Drink/Premixed Cocktails

Ready-to-drink or RTD cocktails got their start as so-called “alcopop” beverages, such as Smirnoff Ice, which are malt liquor-based beverages that approximated a cocktail experience through the addition of different flavorings, generally sugar- and fruit-heavy, plus a healthy amount of carbonation. As with most alcoholic beverages, RTD products have moved upscale in recent years, with numerous craft distillers producing genuine cocktails ready to drink out of the can or bottle. These are often made with the identical ingredients you’d get if you made the cocktail from scratch, though quality tends to vary considerably.

Top Ready-to-Drink Cocktail Posts:

Cutwater Spirits Whiskey Highball and Whiskey Lemon Tea
Truly Spiked & Sparkling Water

Review: Drake’s Organic Boxtails, Complete Lineup

By Robert Lublin | March 27, 2022 |

Here’s a new concept in the RTD space: A massive box of margaritas or mojitos that you can tap into any time. Drake’s Organic Boxtails are 1.75 liters of shelf stable cocktails that have no artificial colors, flavors, or sweeteners. They are very convenient because they don’t need to be refrigerated. Instead, they are meant…

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Review: 2022 Sovi Non-Alcoholic Sparkling Rose

By Rob Theakston | March 13, 2022 |

In mid-December 2021 we had the opportunity to review the inaugural offerings from California’s Sovi line of ready-to-drink canned non-alcoholic wines. While the red blend was flavorful and well-rounded, the Sparkling Rose could have used some fine-tuning.  I am pleased to report that, after receiving this year’s vintage, things have improved for the better. Before…

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Review: Golden Rule Margarita and Old Fashioned

By Christopher Null | March 7, 2022 |

It’s hard to resist those tiny, 4 oz cans that offer a single serving cocktail, ready to pour into glass and knock back, no mixing required. San Francisco-based Golden Rule Spirits offers two such offerings, both made with authentic ingredients (no malt liquor here) and coming in at 80 to 100 calories per serving. (Though…

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Review: Mico Tequila and Seltzers, Complete Lineup

By Christopher Null | February 5, 2022 |

Mico is a new tequila brand, the name translating to “monkey” in Spanish — which seems to have little to do with the brand aside from the mascot, which is a suited man with a monkey’s face. The tequilas are 100% agave (source unknown), double distilled, and, in the case of the aged renditions, double-barreled with…

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Review: Shiner 1909 and Juicy Dill Pickle Straight Shooter

By Christopher Null | January 17, 2022 |

Texas’s Shiner has been busy lately, offering new beers and a large line of seltzers to boot. Today we’re looking at one of each, including a seltzer with a … particular … flavor. Shiner 1909 – A “heritage lager,” Shiner 1909 is made with heritage 2-row barley, Noble hops, and Shiner’s proprietary lager yeast. Quite…

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Review: Buzzbox Perfect Margarita

By Robert Lublin | January 4, 2022 |

Ready-to-drink cocktails are showing up everywhere these days, and buzzbox (with a lowercase “b” to keep it casual) is a new company devoted to providing premium cocktails made without preservatives, additives, or artificial colors or flavors and packaged in eco-friendly boxes that look somewhat like — well, actually exactly like — my children’s juice boxes.…

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Review: 2021 Sovi Non-Alcoholic Red Blend and Sparkling Rose Canned Wine

By Rob Theakston | December 18, 2021 |

It’s a bit of a double nightmare for wine drinkers of a certain pedigree: an alcohol-free wine arriving in a can. With the rumored forthcoming glass bottle shortage and supply chain issues, plus more people opting to no longer partake in traditional wine, it would be unsurprising if there was a market shift in favor…

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Review: Hardwood Spiked Seltzer Bitter Citrus

By Monica Uhm | December 4, 2021 |

Hardwood Spiked has essentially created a cocktail that inverts the role of ingredients where the bitters are featured front and center and the spirit and fruit are mere accoutrements. These 100 calorie seltzers use a corn whiskey base that “extracts 8 organic botanicals prior to oak barrel aging… balanced with organic maple syrup, though dry…

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Review: Nutrl Vodka Seltzers, Complete Lineup

By Monica Uhm | November 23, 2021 |

Nutrl is a new line of ready-to-drink vodka seltzers flavored with real fruit juice, launched by Anheuser-Busch. There’s nothing particularly unique about the product line, but Nutrl is hoping to win over fans by offering these “unpretentious and uncomplicated,” refreshing, sessionable, low-calorie (100 calories per can), low-alcohol drinks, made with just vodka, seltzer, and real…

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Review: Sunday’s Finest Gold Fashioned Craft Cocktail (2021)

By Christopher Null | November 23, 2021 |

Has the ready-to-drink cocktail market jumped the shark? While ultra-cheap offerings are increasingly commonplace, a Chicago outfit called Sunday’s Finest is marketing a ready-to-drink Old Fashioned — called the Gold Fashioned — that is premium in every way, “the world’s first luxury ready-to-drink cocktail.” How premium? A 750ml bottle is $150. That’s how premium. It’s…

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