The Ready to Drink Cocktails You Need to Know Right Now

Finding the right Ready to Drink (RTD) for you can be challenging. We’re here to help.

While the pandemic brought upon many challenges and setbacks, one area that saw immense growth was the canned cocktail and Ready to Drink category. Without the opportunity to go to our local watering holes, consumers turned to easy solutions to the complex cocktails they once ordered from their local bartender. This increase in demand also led to increased quality. However, with many players coming into the space, it can be hard to find the “right” canned cocktail for you.

To ease your burden of scouring store shelves to find the right one, we’ve laid out five of our favorite picks (in no particular order) for the best-canned cocktails right now.

The Finnish Long Drink

As popularity has risen for canned cocktails, the same can be said for gin, and the team over at The Finnish Long Drink looked to provide the perfect combination of the two. While the brand itself is relatively new, the Finnish long drink, or lonkero, has been around since the 1952 Summer Olympic Games in Finland. In anticipation for the Games and flocking international imbibers, the Finnish government commissioned the creation of a revolutionary new liquor drink, and so the first long drinks were born.

Coming in 12oz cans with ABVs ranging from 5.5-8.5% and flavors including Traditional, Zero, Cranberry, and Strong, these canned cocktails will provide similar flavors while introducing you to something entirely new.

Social Hour

Bar patrons were not the only ones who found themselves with more time on their hands during the pandemic. Famed bartenders Julie Reiner and Tom Macy set out to give consumers the canned cocktails they wanted with the quality that you would expect from master mixologists such as themselves. This idea sparked what would become a labor of love in crafting the bartender’s canned cocktail, Social Hour. 

With flavors including Pacific Spritz, Sunkissed Fizz, Whiskey Mule, Gin & Tonic, Allora Spritz, Prizefighter, and Harvest Whiskey Sour and ranging from 8-11%, these complex yet inviting canned cocktails will transform the way you think of and experience RTDs.

Canteen

One of the breakthroughs in the seltzer category was the introduction of real spirits versus malt-based beverages. This translated to better-tasting seltzers and more transparent ingredients with perhaps a no better example than Canteen. With real Vodka, Tequila, and Gin as their base ingredients, Canteen seltzers are the real deal. Offering a premium taste with zero sugar and no carbs, these seltzers are perfect for the health-conscious consumer or anyone who enjoys a terrific tasting canned cocktail inspired by the great outdoors. 

ABV ranges from 5-5.6% in 12oz cans with flavors including: 

  • Vodka Soda: Watermelon, Black Cherry, Pineapple, Lime, Ruby Red, Strawberry, Cucumber Mint
  • Tequila Soda: Ranch Water, Grapefruit Paloma, Watermelon Margarita
  • Gin Spritz: Blossom, Ruby, Citrus

LIVEWIRE

At the core of every industry is innovation. It only takes one to break from the mold to lead a mission of change and pioneer a new wave of expansion. If the hospitality industry were the music industry, bartenders would be the rockstars, and Aaron Polsky saw this early on. Founding LIVEWIRE, Aaron uniquely gave bartenders the opportunity to craft their own canned cocktails and choose everything from the packaging on the outside to the juice on the inside. With transparency in pay to equal representation in race and gender, LIVEWIRE is making strides in the canned-cocktail world. 

Expressions from top bartenders include Golden God, Honeydew Collins, Heartbreaker, Crystal Shiso Mojito, Alley Cat Old Fashioned, and Rocket Queen with 7.5% ABV for cans and 39% for bottles.

Tip Top Cocktails

We love our classic cocktails and their ability to transport us to memorable moments through familiar flavors. However, these craft cocktails that we love all require multiple ingredients that aren’t always readily available. Thankfully, the folks at Tip Top Cocktails have set out to solve this problem. While the cans themselves are only 100ml, there is no shortage of flavor or quality in these fun-sized refreshments. 

With canned cocktails ranging in ABVs of 24-37%, these pack the punch with everyone’s favorite staples, including the Negroni, Manhattan, Old Fashioned, Margarita, Bee’s Knees, and classic Daiquiri.