Decade by decade, our social lives are built by the styles, attitudes, and trends of the day, a.k.a. the era’s zeitgeist. Fashions come and go. Music, movies, and other media change with time. When the winds of change blow, our tastes evolve. Sometimes, a product comes along, however, that redefines industry expectations.
When it comes to the bar scene –and great alcoholic drinks in general– this era’s defining product is the ready-to-drink cocktail. By the end of the decade, the industry is expected to balloon to $32 billionin valuation. The zeitgeist is clearly on the side of these canned alcoholic beverages. With that in mind, let’s take a look at the social perks inherent in the ready-to-drink market.
Ready-to-Drink Cocktails Vs. Bar-Made Drinks
Mention cocktails in a social context, and you’ll inevitably conjure up images of your favorite bar. Yet the magic of the ready-to-drink cocktail lies in how it so accurately captures bar-grade cocktails with the convenience of a canned beverage. How do the two stack up against one another given current trends and consumer sentiment?
There was once a clear line in the sand when it came to the quality of alcoholic drinks. On one hand, you had fresh, bar-made drinks. On the other hand, cheap malt liquors and macro-brewed beers. The choice between the two boiled down to your immediate needs and the situation at hand.
If you wanted portability, beer was the only choice you had. If you were after quality or a unique new taste, you’d go to the bar. There wasn’t much middle ground. The space between these two extremes is where high-quality, canned cocktails shine the brightest.
While canned cocktails seem to have exploded onto the scene over the last few years, the concept has actually been around for quite some time. Before the popularity of the canned cocktail began to explode, hard seltzers emerged to fill the gap between bar-made drinks and bar-quality canned beverages. With hard seltzers, consumers found a lighter, more unique taste than an average beer that still allowed them to take their favorite drink into any social situation or adventure that they chose, all without breaking the bank.
Hard seltzers may have opened the doors to alternative canned alcoholic beverage options, but there’s not a lot of flavor in these ubiquitous drinks, and they can’t achieve the complex flavors and refined enjoyment that a bar-quality cocktail offers. People wanted more from their portable alcoholic beverage options, and high-quality canned cocktails answered the call.
Related: Canned Cocktails Vs. Seltzers: What’s the Difference?
The best of today’s RTD cocktails use high-quality distilled spirits instead of malt liquors to give the drink a solid, flavorful base from which to develop the cocktail’s complexity. Pair that with 100% real ingredients, such as lime juice for example, a proprietary canning technique, and a perfectly proportioned size that seals in freshness, and the best RTD cocktails are capable of rivaling anything you’ll find on the bar scene.
But what about the social aspect of the bar experience? Going to your local bar isn’t just about the drinks; it’s equal parts atmosphere and social environment. The bar experience is just that –an experience. While it’s tough to replace a good belly-up-to-the-bar experience, ready-to-drink cocktails create an opportunity to take that experience just about anywhere.
Elevating Your Social Experience with RTD Cocktails
The local bar may be a social experience, but it’s anything but portable. For those with a curious and adventurous spirit – RTDs provide a level of cocktail-portability that didn’t exist before. The major allure of the RTD alcohol market is based on both the portability and adaptability of the canned drink’s format. With the traditional bar, you’re tied to one specific location. Not so with canned cocktails. RTD cocktails can help you elevate your social experience across a variety of contexts.
Upgrade Your Hosting Game at Your Next Get-Together
Whether you enjoy a boisterous, large-scale gathering or an intimate get-together, social gatherings are a staple event in the average American’s social life. But when it comes to alcoholic beverages for these social events, boozy refreshments fall into one of three standard modalities:
While beer is the go-to option for many a friendly gathering, it can be a stale and predictable option unless the host springs for high-end microbrews, and even those can be an acquired taste. After all, not everyone likes the latest experimental IPA. Wines lend an aura of sophistication and grace, but again, they aren’t always crowd-pleasers. A variety of cocktails, on the other hand, are capable of satisfying a much wider audience. The only problem here is that the more time you spend collecting tools and mixing, the less time you have to socialize.
Ready-to-drink cocktails represent the ideal solution, a way to elevate your next social gathering both in terms of high-quality refreshments and a comfortable social scene. Try replacing domestic cans with a variety of premium canned cocktails. You and your guests can choose a favorite drink, pour over ice, and enjoy the festivities.
Cocktails by the Fire: Add That Special Ingredient to Your Next Camping Trip
There’s nothing quite like relaxing in the woods, far from the daily rat race. Surrounded by the beautiful sights and sounds of nature, free from responsibility and expectation, these kinds of getaways help us recharge our batteries, especially when good friends come along for the ride. But how can you signal boost that feeling of utter relaxation? RTD canned cocktails, for starters.
Just like the intimate gathering, canned domestic beers were popular additions to the outdoor social event in the days prior to portable cocktails, but left something to be desired. It would be great to mix drinks in the wilderness, but nature isn’t the most conducive environment to set up a full bar. Great canned cocktails bridge the gap. Forego the beer and try bringing a pack or two of your favorite cocktail combinations on your next outdoor adventure, complete with fresh ice from the cooler. No barkeep required.
Romantic Nights and Fancy Drinks
Do you and your significant other have a romantic date night planned? Whether you are cooking up a gourmet meal together or just curling up to watch Netflix, not just any refreshment will do. Wine is the classic pairing for romance, but a high-quality cocktail can add an extra sense of excitement to the evening. For dramatic effect, upgrade to some fancy cocktail glasses.
Related: The Best Canned Alcohol Without the Carbonation
Whether you’re in the mood for a daiquiri, old fashioned, or cosmopolitan, there’s a ready-to-drink cocktail designed to match your mood. Grab a couple of packs, mix and match your favorites, and stir things up on your next romantic night in.
Bring the excitement to your next sporting event
Sports and alcoholic drinks go hand in hand. While you can’t BYOB to every sporting event, there are a few key places where the inclusion of alcoholic refreshments truly elevates the experience, such as:
- Adult softball, kickball, football, or soccer leagues
- Hosting a get-together for the big game
If you’re the type of person that enjoys watching —or participating in— a local sports league, you know celebratory drinks are part and parcel of the process. Instead of bringing your typical cases of domestic beer, try bringing something new next time like a ready-to-drink canned cocktail. You’ll enhance the spirit of both competition and camaraderie, while simultaneously being a conversation starter yourself.
Tailgating is another sports-based social situation where canned cocktails shine. If you’ve ever spent a game outside the stadium, you know the air is filled with an atmosphere of camaraderie and shared excitement (or misery – depending on your team). Be the center of the party with something novel like a canned cocktail drink, made with superior ingredients, proportioned in the perfectly drinkable size, and ready to share with like-minded fans.
Add some sunshine to your summer fun
Summer is almost here. All across the country, people will soon emerge from their relative hibernation in search of that life-affirming vitamin D. Nothing brings people out quite like a backyard barbecue.
Instead of your typical beer selection, add a touch of sophistication and flavor to your next outdoor gathering. Your guests will thank you for starting the summer adventure off right.
Ready-to-Drink Cocktails: Moving Beyond the Beer
Alcohol has always had a reputation as a social lubricant. Whether it’s a nice, relaxing day at the beach or a vibrant social gathering, adding the right selection of refreshments can elevate the experience. Fortunately, there are options above and beyond the standard array of large-batch, domestic brews.
If you’re looking to move beyond beer or hard seltzer, now’s the time. Look for ready-to-drink canned cocktails that include simple ingredients without compromise, just like you’d get at your favorite bar. The right brand will elevate a wide array of social interactions. Visit Post Meridiem today to see our full line of beverages and order a pack of your own.