Thanks to a Wynwood-based business, you can drink organic alcoholic beverages on the beach. A new line of wine-based canned drinks was created to taste just like a freshly shaken cocktail.
The popularity of ready-to-drink cocktails has grown exponentially — about 40 percent in the past year — while sales of boozy seltzers have nearly tripled. In addition, consumers are considering the quality of alcoholic beverages: They prefer no added sugar and limited sulfites, those hangover-inducing chemicals found in most table wines and spirits.
Ready-to-drink cocktails, either canned or prebatched, were once associated with sugary lemonades, harmful ingredients, and guaranteed hangovers, but Miami Cocktail Co. is among the few pioneers elevating the category by offering a cleaner product.
Founded by spirits and hospitality veterans Ross Graham and Simon Benstead, Miami Cocktail Co. was born from their passion to craft a canned cocktail made with fresh, natural ingredients.
The result is a wine-based cocktail — not spirit- or malt-based — with a flavor profile achieved by organic fruit juices.
The ready-to-drink products are effervescent and all-natural, with no additives, preservatives, artificial colors, flavors, or sweeteners. Sold in four-packs, each 8.4-ounce can contains 4.2 percent ABV and 110 calories. Flavors are sangria, bellini, margarita, mimosa, and paloma. They're available at area Whole Foods for $12.99 per four-pack.
Graham and Benstead grew up in Miami's hospitality world, but their breakthrough came in 2016 when they launched Miami Cocktail Co., offering a line of prebatched cocktails available in 750ml bottles at a local Whole Foods. They used wine for the cocktail base, and only real fruit and all-natural juices to finish the cocktails.
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Today the duo agrees the foundation for the new line, Spritz, is simple. Though authentic ingredients matter, taste matters more. "We find the word 'craft' is somewhat overused, but to us it means something," Graham says. "Too many of the ready-to-drink offerings are more concoctions than cocktails."
Take, for instance, their paloma, made with organic hibiscus and ginger juice to provide depth and balance. The sangria contains rosé paired with organic orange, lime, and pineapple juices, while the margarita uses 100 percent blue Weber agave wine and organic lime, orange, elderflower, and ginger juices.
"From the start, people have asked when we would launch a single-serve offering," Benstead says. "As a result, Spritz is the culmination of over two years of perfecting what we wanted to bring to market — a true cocktail experience with quality ingredients."
Miami Cocktail Co. 2750 NW Third Ave., Suite 16, Miami; miamicocktail.com.