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The Best Hard Seltzers and Canned Cocktails to Drink This Summer

ELLE Canada logo ELLE Canada 6 days ago Kate Dingwall
Canned drinks are the fast track to a low-effort happy hour.

This long weekend, convenient drinking is key. Whether you’re stuck in the city, or spending the weekend by a lake, the thought of lugging around a bar’s worth of bottles and garnishes on a hot day is, well, unappealing.

Thankfully, there is a range of creative companies that are perfecting the canned drinks – no squeezing limes or muddling mint needed. These brands have crafted something for every drinker, from refreshing hard seltzers, sophisticated coolers; even boozy bottled Old Fashioneds. Simply throw a few of the following options in your bag, pop the tab, and sip the long weekend away.

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A little 90s throwback ft. @haleyscornerr, just in time for the #longweekend! 🌸#AriZonaHard #May24 🇨🇦 A post shared by AriZona Hard Canada (@arizonahardca) on May 15, 2020 at 12:12pm PDT

Best Throwback Option: Arizona Hard Tea 

The breezy iced tea of our youth is growing up with us – Arizona has just released a take on its original iced green tea but this time, spiked with vodka. This version is a bit more expensive than the 99 cent price tag of the non-alc version, but the Hard Tea boasts Arizona’s signature 100% brewed green tea with ginseng, a touch of honey, and a splash of vodka. Each can is 5% ABV.

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Make time to make waves. Celebrate with the pure refreshment of White Claw Hard Seltzer. A post shared by White Claw Hard Seltzer (@whiteclaw) on Aug 28, 2019 at 10:20am PDT

Best Hard Seltzer: White Claw

You simply can’t mention canned beverages without crediting the king of the movement: White Claw. The infamous hard seltzer has taken over the shelves of our liquor stores, become the subject of GIFs, memes, and snuck its way into our generational lexicon (Ain’t no laws when you’re drinking claws!).

What’s the big draw? The hard seltzer was the first of the cooler category to skip the usual overt sugary flavours and opt for a fresher, natural flavour profile. It also boasts all the qualities health-conscious drinkers love: it’s sugar-free, gluten-free, and uses natural ingredients. Thanks to its recent Canadian launch, four flavours are now available across the country: Ruby Grapefruit, Natural Lime, Mango, and Black Cherry.

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BIG BOLD NEWS IN PEI! Our NEW Bold Orange is coming your way! Our BOLD Vodka Soda is 6% abv. and made with a splash of juice for an extra hit of flavour! Look for it at your local liquor store! A post shared by SoCIAL Lite Vodka Soda (@sociallitevodka) on May 23, 2020 at 9:02am PDT

Best Vodka Option: SoCIAL Lite 

SoCIAL Lite offers many of the same draws as White Claw: the cans of Vodka Soda are crips, clean, gluten-free, and free of artificial sugars and sweeteners. But SoCIAL Lite is 100% Canadian, started by a group of friends out of a kitchen in Whitby, Ontario.

One of the big successes of this brand is they opt for more out-of-the-box flavours. There’s a vodka lime soda with a kick of ginger, and a blood orange version with vodka. All flavourings are made using natural juice concentrate.

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Ontario fam! Get stocked up for the long weekend. Swipe through to check out some of our latest releases you'll only find through our Doorstep Delivery and at the brewery! ⁠Gin cocktails are only available for delivery, not at the brewery. ⁠⠀ Head to our link in bio to shop new arrivals plus classic favourites. We're delivering to Express Zones all weekend, including Sunday! ⁠⠀ ⁠⠀ 1️⃣ Pink Gin & Soda w/ Raspberry & Bitter Orange (Delivery ONLY, not available at the brewery)⁠⠀ 2️⃣ Sparkling Hard Teas: Mango & Pineapple, Peach & Orange, Blueberry & Elderberry⁠⠀ 3️⃣ Core Mix Six: All our flagship beers in one 6-pack!⁠⁠⠀ 4️⃣ Surround Sound: Lotus, the latest edition of our rotating-hop DIPA⁠⠀ ⁠⠀ #artplusbrewing #homedelivery #beerdelivery #longweekend #civicholiday #gin #gincocktails A post shared by Collective Arts Brewing (@collectivebrew) on Jul 29, 2020 at 2:36pm PDT

Best Flavours: Collective Arts Artisanal Gin Lemon Thyme 

The Hamilton brewery-slash-distillery has been making some of the most creative craft brews in the country. Their newly-launched canned cocktails channel that same artistic energy, riffing on classic cocktails with quirky, unconventional ingredients. Think a bitter orange and raspberry gin cocktail, made with Collective Arts’ rhubarb and hibiscus gin.

There’s also a sparkling gin and soda made with grapefruit, lemon, and thyme with additional notes of lavender and cardamom. Each can uses real fruit flavours over artificial sugars, helping you skip any incoming hangovers.

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Proudly crafted in Canada using Georgian Bay craft spirits. – – – – #craftedincanada #cheers #cocktails #drinklocal #siplocal #madeincanada #madeinontario #supportlocal #georgianbay A post shared by Georgian Bay Spirit Co. (@georgianbayspiritco) on Jun 29, 2020 at 5:15am PDT

Best Gin Cocktail: Gin Smash 

Georgian Bay’s idyllic lakes are the go-to destination for Ontario’s summer vacationers.  For those of us less-fortunate city-dwellers, they’ve managed to bottle this off-duty lakeside energy in the form of a minty gin smash. It’s crisp and super refreshing, with big bubbles and a bit of sweetness from the addition of natural tangerine flavours.

All of the company’s flavourings, from the juniper in the gin to the cranberries and mint in the canned cocktails, are foraged in the Georgian Bay area. Water used in the distilling process comes from a local spring.

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Who’s stocked up for the summer? 🍋 A post shared by Crazy Uncle Cocktails (@crazyunclecocktails) on Jul 10, 2020 at 2:05pm PDT

Best Cooler Alternative: Crazy Uncle 

We all remember the overtly sugary coolers of our college years (and subsequently, the hangovers that came with them). Crazy Uncle creates adult versions of our favourite sodas and coolers – alcohol-spiked ginger lemonades, orange sodas and root beers. They are less saccharine than, say, a Mike’s Hard Lemonade, with natural flavourings and pure cane sugar sweetener. At 5% ABV, the breezy drinks will sneak up on you.

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Redefine your cocktail experience with our new Late Harvest Vesper kits. Available to purchase from our website for local pickup at @barchef.⠀ #DrinkDifferent⠀⠀⠀⠀ -⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀ -⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀ -⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀ -⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀ -⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀ -⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀ -⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀ -⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀ -⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀ -⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀ -⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀ -⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀ -⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀ -⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀ -⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀ -⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀ -⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀ -⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀ #RedefiningAClassic #mixologist #classiccocktails #cocktailoftheday #cocktailhour #Imbibe #libations #cocktails #Ontario #whisky #bottledcocktails #summerhilltoronto #bourbon #mixology #TOdrink #TorontoCocktails #LCBO #torontostyle #foodanddrink #homebar #giftideas #toronto #barchef #nightout #stopthespread #torontostrong #ontario #supportlocalbusiness #buylocal A post shared by BarChef Project (@barchefproject) on Jul 29, 2020 at 10:10am PDT

Best Craft Cocktail: BarChef Late Harvest Vesper 

Summer calls for laidback drinking, and that certainly doesn’t include bringing an armful of shakers, stirrers, and glassware to wherever you’re headed. Luckily, experimental Toronto cocktail spot BarChef has bottled a few of classic cocktails, taking the work out of drink making. The newest iteration is the Late Harvest Vesper, a Martini riff made with spruce tip-infused gin, Niagara Vidal fortified wine, and bitters made from bay leaves and lavender. It’s lovely over ice, or sip it with a splash of soda.

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NOUVEAUTÉ ✨ Le Distillerie de Montréal Rosemont Mojito Épicé en format prêt-à-boire💚 ✅Lime, Menthe, Rhum Rosemont Blanc et Rhum Rosemont Épicé. #faitauquebec Sur les tablettes de la SAQ dans les prochains jours. Code: 14398751 4x355ml – 18.00$ 📸: @ophelie.boisvert A post shared by Distillerie de Montréal (@distilleriedemontreal) on Jul 9, 2020 at 6:57am PDT

Best Vacation Drink: Distillerie de Montreal Rosemont Mojito 

Quebec residents will be familiar with Distillerie de Montreal’s inventive craft spirits, like an electric orange aperitivo, bright white rums, and local apple brandies. The Montreal distillery has poured said rum into a new canned take on a spicy mint mojito. Expect all the flavours of the classic beach drink, but sans the muddling.

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🍋🍋🍋🍋🍋🍋🍋🍋 Bon week-end à tous! // Have a nice weekend! 🌿🌿🌿🌿🌿🌿🌿🌿 #romeosginfizz A post shared by romeo's gin (@romeosgin) on May 29, 2020 at 11:45am PDT

Most Refreshing: Romeo’s Cucumber Gin Fizz 

Also out of the Quebec camp: craft gin brand Romeo’s Gin is making the boozy version of spa water, with a cucumber-spiked gin fizz. It’s uber-refreshing thanks to the addition of lemon, cane sugar, and cucumber. All recipes are made with 100% organic ingredients.

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Tried our new Blackberry Gin Bramble yet? Available now in BC and Alberta. Order/Buy: BC- SKU#108413 , AB – SKU#833001 #bringthebarhome #barqualitycocktails #realingredients #nopreservatives A post shared by FOUNDER'S ORIGINAL (@foundersoriginal) on Jun 12, 2020 at 3:50pm PDT

Best Bourbon Option: Founder’s Bourbon Smash 

Founder’s has focused their full efforts on canning cocktails, with options for every type of drinker. There are chuggable, picnic-ready cocktails, like a Bourbon Sour (at 5%ABV – far more sippable than a normal bourbon cocktail) and Tequila Palomas with agave nectar and Himalayan Salt.

For those who love a rye & ginger, the Rye and Thai calls for top-shelf Rye Whisky, Thai pomelo fruit, lime juice, and craft ginger ale. If you prefer your drinks a little stronger, Founder’s also offers bottled Old Fashioneds that clock in at 40% ABV. All cocktails are crafted in small batches to maintain quality.

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Cocktail drinking made easy. The Professor's Negroni, our ready to drink prepared cocktail.⁠ ⁠ When you bottle such a classic cocktail as the Negroni you need to make sure the packaging is on point and equally as fly. And we have the team at to thank for this. And all our drool-worthy packaging + design pieces.⁠ ⁠ You can find these pretty looking + tasty bevvies through our online shop, pop-up shop or at the @LCBO.⁠ ••• Photo by: @nataschiawielink A post shared by @ dillonsdistills on May 23, 2020 at 7:31am PDT

Best Boozy Option: Dillon’s Negronis 

Niagara’s craft gin sweetheart (the rose gin is a particular knockout) is now whipping up no-brainer negronis, in petite little single-serve 475mL bottles. Each blends equal parts Dillon’s Dry Gin 7, sweet vermouth, and the distillery’s own aperitivo liqueur.

Pouring it over rocks and throwing in an orange slice would be ideal, but you can’t go wrong by popping the top and sipping it straight.

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Tag someone you’d share a Spritz with 🍹 A post shared by Distilleria Amalfi & Co. (@distilleria.amalfi) on Jul 24, 2020 at 2:07pm PDT

Best for Aperol Spritz Fans: Amalfi Aperitivo Spritz 

One of the newer pre-mixed options to hit the shelves is a riff on a bottled Aperol Spritz. The hand-crafted aperitivo is mixed with sparkling wine, burnt orange, and a mix of bitters to replicate the bright flavours of a citrusy Aperol Spritz. It could use an extra splash of bubbles, but pour it over ice and it’s an effortless summer cocktail.

Best for the Health Conscious: Aquarelle 

For the health-conscious drinker, Aquarelle specializes in light, carb- and sugar-free vodka sodas and vodka water. Think of the soda like a boozy San Pellegrino: there’s delicate bubbles and clean vodka flavour. It comes in a rainbow of flavours, including lemon-lime, pomegranate, and passionfruit. The super chuggable sodas are the ideal sip after a tough workout but at 5% ABV, they came to play.


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The post The Best Hard Seltzers and Canned Cocktails to Drink This Summer appeared first on Elle Canada.


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