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11 canned cocktails to drink anywhere this summer

These tasty beverages are ready for the beach, pool, picnic, and more.

Assorted canned cocktails on a colorful background. Credit: Reviewed / Madison Trapkin

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For as long as anyone can remember, beer has had the luxury of living the canned lifestyle—the breezy portability, the ease of cracking a cold one whenever the desire hits. Nowadays, drinkers with most any preference can get it on that action. In the last few years, with the emergence of hard seltzer, both wine and ready-to-drink cocktails have seen a boom. According to analysts, the ready-to-drink category grew 43% last year globally, and is expected to keep rising.

The only problem is that the ready-to-drink popularity means the market is absolutely saturated with portable alcoholic and non-alcoholic beverage options. Where to start?

To find out, I gathered a group of parents who endured an entire pandemic with small children. On an early summer night, we congregated on my roof deck, sans kids, and tested about two dozen drinks. Below, find out which are worth buying. The good news is there are plenty of solid canned cocktail options, and it’s never been a better time to embrace that canned lifestyle.

1. Dogfish Head Blueberry Shrub Vodka Soda

A can of hard seltzer on a white background.
Credit: Dogfish Head

This Delaware-based craft brewery has entered the hard seltzer game.

Even before this craft beer brand's new canned cocktails had hit the market, the Dogfish Head Blueberry Shrub Vodka Soda won best cocktail at the L.A. Spirits Awards. Made with vodka mixed with blueberries and vinegar, it’s tart, a little sweet, and totally refreshing. Also excellent: the Cherry Bergamot Whiskey Sour and Strawberry Honeyberry Lemonade, which Dogfish founder Sam Calagione was inspired to make after visiting a high school friend who now runs an organic farm in Maine, where he grows honeyberries.

Get the 4-pack of Dogfish Head Blueberry Shrub Vodka Soda at Drizly for $14.99

2. Cantina Tequila Ranch Water

Canned cocktails on a white background.
Credit: Cantina

Cantina makes three flavors of canned tequila-based cocktails.

The Austin-based company Canteen has been making 99-calorie vodka sodas in flavors like lime, watermelon, and black cherry, but in April they launched their ready-to-drink tequila cocktail line. Our favorite of the delightful flavors (including Watermelon Margarita and Grapefruit Paloma) is the simple, straightforward Ranch Water, featuring the agave-based spirit mixed with soda water.

Get the 4-pack of Cantina Tequila Ranch Water at Drizly for $10.52

3. Ghia Le Spritz

A stack of cans of Ghia non-alcoholic spritzes against a black background.
Credit: Ghia

This canned non-al cocktail is a riff on Ghia's signature aperitif.

The non-alcoholic drinks sector was waiting for something sophisticated and portable, and Ghia delivered. Le Spritz, the brand’s aperitivo, made with Riesling white grape juice mixed with yuzu and rosemary, is perfectly bitter and complex.

Get the 4-pack of Ghia Le Spritz for $18

4. Coit Paradisio

Mini cans have max flavor in this tropical tiki cocktail with pineapple, passion fruit, coconut, and ginger. Pour over crushed ice, preferably in a fun glass, to conjure oceanside vibes.

Get a 200ml can of Coit Paradisio at Total Wine for $4.49

5. Fishers Island Lemonade Fizz

A can of spiked lemonade sits atop a beach towel on a sandy beach.
Credit: Fishers Island

Lemonade gets an adult twist with booze in this canned cocktail.

The 7-year-old brand founded by Bronya Shillo in Fishers Island, New York, now includes a line of spiked lemonade cocktails in classic, pink lemonade, spiked tea, or sparkling. We liked the latter best—the bubbles cut the sweetness—but don’t miss the frozen spirit pops. Throw a few in the beach cooler or enjoy one while your kids are having their own (non-alcoholic) popsicles.

Get the 4-pack of Fishers Island Lemonade Fizz at Drizly for $16.99

6. Usual Yuzu Spritzer

Cans of wine spritzers scattered across a warm brown surface.
Credit: Usual Wines

Yuzu Brut is a limited edition Usual Wines flavor, so get it while you can!

A favorite of the taste testers, the lightly sparkling Brut bubbly has the perfect balance of sweet and a little tart, thanks to the addition of fresh yuzu juice. The 7.25% ABV means sleek silver cans are also an easy way to upgrade your party without adding too much booze.

Get the 8-pack of Usual Yuzu Spritzer for $48

7. Gosling’s Dark ‘n Stormy

If you love a Dark and Stormy—the classic (and trademarked!) cocktail made with Gosling’s rum and ginger beer—you’ll love this version. It’s perfectly spiced and boozy, the exact drink you’d get on a beach in Bermuda, except with the added bonus of portability.

Get the 4-pack of Gosling’s Dark ‘n Stormy at Drizly for $10.99

8. Bacardi Rum Punch

Rum expert Bacardi recently launched a line of ready-to-drink cocktails in flavors like Mojito, Sunset Punch, and Bahama Mama, with orange, pineapple, and red berries. And, when poured over a tall glass of ice, all make the perfect refresher for a steamy day, or sipped straight from the can. But my ragtag team of taste testers loved the classic rum punch, with pineapple, orange, and mango best.

Get the 4-pack of Bacardi Rum Punch at Target for $10.99

9. Cutwater Peach Margarita

A hand reaches into a cooler filled with hard seltzers.
Credit: Cutwater

Cutwater makes canned cocktails featuring vodka, tequila, and rum.

Made with the Cutwater tequila mixed with real fruit puree, this Peach Margarita is juicy, flavorful, and, at 10% ABV, a little boozy. Try the strawberry, mango, and tequila lime versions, too, or for more sessionable options, go for the brand’s Vodka Soda variety pack, all clocking in at 99 calories and 5% ABV.

Get the 4-pack of Cutwater Peach Margarita at Drizly for $15.99

10. Volley Tropical Mango

Assorted hard seltzer cans against a white background.
Credit: Volley

All of Volley's flavors are made with real fruit juice.

Made with just three ingredients (100% blue agave tequila, sparkling water, and organic juice), this line of cocktails comes in Zesty Lime, Spicy Ginger, Sharp Grapefruit and my testers’ favorite, Tropical Mango. The short list of straightforward ingredients means this cocktail is both delicious and free from any weird aftertaste. They need a gentle shake before drinking, since the fruit juice can settle on the bottom of the can.

Get the 4-pack of Volley Tropical Mango at Drizly for $14.74

11. Lyre's G+T

This award-winning non-alcoholic option hits all the marks—interesting, delicious, and available in a lovely little can to make you feel like an adult sipping an adult cocktail.

Get the 24-pack of Lyre's G+T for $84.99

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