I first heard canned cocktails were in the works for Ballast Point when I interviewed for a distilling position there years ago. Emotions were mixed upon hearing the news: Canned cocktails? RTDs? In the US? (Traditionally, stats have shown Americans don’t exactly jump for joy re: pre-mixed drinks) I mean I know your Ballast f-ing Point, but you really think you can make that work? #LOLZ… Well guys, they worked. They’re low-key all over grocery stores and liquor stores here in California and to add insult to injury, my local Trader Joes has a whole area permanently dedicated to the colorful 6-packs of all four canned cocktail iterations: Bloody Mary, Rum & Cola, Rum & Ginger and Gin & Tonic. At this point, I think it’s safe to say things are changing on this side of the pond. RTDs (ready to drink, pre-mixed alcoholic beverages) are here to stay stateside and Ballast Point’s entry to the market has done a lot to solidify that. With Labor Day weekend upon us – #RIPWhitePants – I thought it’d be fitting to review one of these cuties for your on-the-go holiday weekend drinking pleasure.
Somewhat unfairly perhaps, I always approach an RTD with caution. I never assume it’s going to be great. This canned G&T was a delightful surprise. Tons of bright, spritz-y effervescence hits you right away thanks to the down right delicious house made grapefruit and elderflower tonic. The gin is there but not nearly as assertive as I like in my G&Ts. After a few more sips, I wanted to pour it over ice and add a shot of my own gin, #sorrynotsorrry. It just didn’t pack enough punch for me. Overall, the flavor and texture are impressive and satisfying. It’s definitely a departure from your classic G&T but I think it’s important and smart for BP to shake things up with the flavored tonic. Excluding the Bloody Mary, all of these cocktail are simple, straight-forward two ingredients cocktails, sans garnish. I mean, isn’t it almost – dangerously so in fact – as easy to pour some gin and some tonic water over ice as it is to pop open a can? By tempting you with that elevated flavored tonic, they’ve given you all the reason you need to give these a try. And in my opinion, you totally should. Just BYO flask of gin, maybe. 😉
Happy Labor Day weekend to all! Xo
p.s. check out my last RTD review: BuzzBoxes