MOORHEAD - Summer is in full swing, and that means beverages will be flowing. Whether the weather brings you to the lake or the backyard, there is a drink for every occasion.
To some, the warm weather signals beer season. Others may like to live their lives a little harder - complete with those red plastic cups and a slice of lime, lemon, orange or whatever citrus their heart desires.
Lugging heavy liquor bottles and sodas or juices to mix while enjoying the great outdoors can be a hassle, but there's an increasingly common option to decrease spillage and lighten the load: cool summer cocktails all canned and ready to go.
"It's summer, so the refreshing drinks are going to be super popular," says Justin Blanford, general manager of 99 Bottles in Moorhead. "(99 Bottles) is on the way to lakes country and people want something like this for the boat."
These cocktails can be found at most liquor stores around Fargo-Moorhead, but what's behind their recent popularity? According to Blanford, it's all about convenience. Canned or bottled malt-based cocktails have been around for a while, but spirit-based options like these are just coming into their own now.
Whether en route to the lake or preparing for a backyard barbecue, skipping the clunky bottles in favor of sleek, slim cans can make any event the more convenient. Consider leaving the cups and mixers in the kitchen and check out these five canned cocktails.
Released just a few months ago, Sauza Agua Fuerte is a tequila-based sparkling water cocktail. It pairs the classic taste of Sauza tequila with fruit flavors like lime, grapefruit and mango.
Sold in packs of four, these 12-ounce cans easily slide into the smallest of coolers, ensuring that cold, fresh drink is within reach.
These ready-to-drink cocktails can be found for about $10 at local liquor stores, including 99 Bottles.
A traditional Brazilian cocktail, caipirinha's key ingredients include limes, sugar, ice cubes and cachaca, a liquor made from sugar cane first distilled around 1530 when the Portuguese began to colonize the northeastern part of the country.
The folks at Novo Fogo have brought the taste of Brazil to the Midwest and have been distributing Nova Fogo Sparkling Caipirinha since 2017.
The cocktail's key ingredient, muddled lime wedges, is difficult to can. However, by carbonating cachaca and then sealing it in a 200-milliliter can, Novo Fog's effervescent sparkling caipirinha has captured the flavors of the land of palms to create a refreshing canned beverage that is a muito gostoso (Portuguese for very yummy) drink.
This 11-percent ABV beverage comes in a four-pack for about $10 at local liquor stores, including 99 Bottles.
Bourbon and soda
The classic is now even more obtainable, as Jim Beam has canned the oaky vanilla of Kentucky bourbon and paired it with two flavors, cola and ginger ale.
Open the fridge, kick back and enjoy the sweet and luscious flavorings from a name that bourbon lovers have come to trust.
Jim Beam's pre-mixed cocktails come in 6-packs for about $12 at liquor stores around the area, including 99-Bottles in Moorhead.
Have you ever had a lime, some vodka and ginger beer and thought "Gee, I wish I could make a Moscow mule if only it wasn't so much work?" Well, fear not.
The three-ingredient beverage that has become ever-so-popular in recent years can now be found in a copper-colored can. Brands like Punching Mule and Mule 2.0 have hit the shelves and boast a true-to-taste flavor of the classic mule. The lemon-lime-ginger flavor creates a crisp, refreshingly light carbonated ginger-citrus finish that will tickle the nose with each sip.
Find four-packs of Punching Mule for about $14 and Mule 2.0 for about $11 at local liquor stores, including Happy Harry's.
With three fruity flavors to choose from, the Joia Spirit Craft Cocktails transport you to the hottest rooftop bar - even if you're just lounging by the lake.
Greyhounds, Moscow mules and cosmopolitans are mixed with vodka and have fewer calories than "skinny" cocktails, a glass of wine or typical bar cocktails. Joia's options are bright and refreshing and pack a punch, with 7 percent alcohol by volume. Four-packs sell for about $12 at local liquor stores, including Happy Harry's.